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Revision of the Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) System

The Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) system is used by Federal statistical agencies to classify workers into occupational categories for the purposes of collecting and reporting workforce data. The SOC classifies workers into one of 840 detailed occupations based on job duties and, in some cases, on skills, education, and/or training. The SOC also combines these detailed occupations into 461 broad occupations, 97 minor occupational groups, and 23 major occupational groups.

The Federal government periodically revises the SOC. The revision process for the current 2010 version of the SOC is now underway. During this process, an inter-agency SOC Policy Committee will solicit public input through a Federal Register notice to be published by the end of 2013. Comments from that initial notice will result in a proposed revision that will be available for public comment through a second Federal Register notice in early 2015. Publication of the final 2018 SOC codes, titles, and definitions will occur in early 2017. More information on the SOC revision process, including information on how to submit comments via the Federal Register notices, can be found at this link: http://www.bls.gov/soc/home.htm#revision. As noted in the link, all comments must be submitted as responses to the Federal Register notices. The SOC Policy Committee encourages all interested parties to use the information in that link to submit their comments during the Federal Register open periods.

If you have any questions or would like further information on the SOC revision process, please contact Lisa Hudson at NCES @ lisa.hudson@ed.gov.