Index QC

Check the following to confirm the quality of index documents.

Consult the appropriate style guide (CMS, APA) as well as individual publisher guidelines and project specifications.


Content Presence and Order


If the file is proceeding to the author for review, lock the tracked changes.

If the file is proceeding to conversion to another format, all tracked changes should be accepted and Track Changes turned off.

Rendering (General)

Are there any colors present that are not part of the Word template?


Are there query marks or comments that should not be present?

Spell Check


Check for unmatched paired punctuation.

Check for missing paragraph-ending punctuation.

Index Expectations

Check the length of index.

Check the length of individual entries.

Check for the inclusion of necessary elements.

Check for the exclusion of unnecessary elements.

Index Alphabetical Order

Examples: Letter by letter or word by word; numbers alphabetized separately or as though spelled-out

Index Page Numbers

Do ranges of notes use “nn” instead of “n”?

For index page locators with note numbers, is there more than one instance of that note number on the page?

When two notes on the same page have the same number, is the chapter indicated in parentheses after the note number?

Index Text and Punctuation

Does the punctuation treatment match the treatment used in the body of the book?

Are en dashes used correctly to indicate page ranges?

Are semicolons used between subentries (in run-in indexes)?

Are colons used correctly between main entries and subentries?

Index Cross-References

Inclduing variations like “see also” and “see also under.”

Text Checks

Export .sam from InDesign to perform text checks in the .sam file.

Convert the Index .docx file to .sam. Add the index to the end of the main .sam file, before the closing </sam> tag. (Do not include the metadata from the index file.)

Upload the new .sam file to the Digital Hub and convert to .scml.

Run the searches under “Index Section (.scml files)" to find possible linking or formatting issues.