Indexing Classes

If you’re looking for a formal education in indexing, there are a few live courses in the Pacific Northwest for you to look into. Those we know about are listed below by state in alphabetical order.

Attendance at regional PNW/ASI chapter meetings is another way to gain more skills and practice. There is often a speaker with methods and strategies that will help you directly or indirectly, and gathering with other indexers who attend can provide you with resources, and resources for more resources.The Peer Reviews that happen at the informal gatherings in your own area are almost as useful as personal tutoring, and this website itself can offer you much information on indexing as a business, as a profession. Don’t miss the Newsletter, the marketing pages, the publisher and other resource pages here on this site.

If you know of other indexing courses in the Pacific Northwest, please contact the PNW/ASI Webmaster. Remember, the national ASI web site lists other courses (including video and correspondence).


Emporia State University (Portland, OR)

The School of Library Information Management program occasionally offers this course (LI 842XI: Indexing and Abstracting) online.  For information contact Candace Boardman at .

Sherry L. Smith Indexing Services (Bend and Eugene, OR)

Sherry L Smith, a professional indexer, offers indexing classes and workshops, as well as self-paced individual tutorials. In the classes, you will learn about the basics of back-of-the-book indexing with an emphasis on text analysis. The workshops are designed for advanced and intermediate indexers who want to improve their skills and learn from other indexers. The one-to-one tutorials are designed for the person who wants to learn about back-of-the-book indexing and prefers individual instruction.


Bellevue Community College (BCC) (Bellevue, WA)

BCC’s Continuing Education Department offers two indexing courses: a one-day seminar (“Creating Superior Indexes”) and a five-week class (“Becoming a Professional Indexer”). Visit their web site for more information.

Index West (Olympia, WA)

Index West, the freelance indexing business of Kari Kells, offers classes in the Olympia- or Seattle-area, as well as self-paced individual tutorials. For more information, stop by the Index West web site at

Lake Washington Technical College (Kirkland, WA)

The Library Technology certificate program, offers a class that includes learning a bit about indexing is offered (“Indexing and Bibliographies”), which is taught by a faculty member. For more information contact LWTC at or (425) 739-8100.

University of Washington, Graduate School of Library Science (ISchool) (Seattle, WA)

Two indexing-related classes are offered here: “Indexing and Abstracting” (LIS 536) and “Construction of Index Languages” (LIS 537). Instructors are ISchool faculty. For more information contact them at (206) 543-1794.

University of Washington, Department of Technical Communication (through UW Extension) (Seattle, WA)

In the past, this class (TC N100) was taught by Kari Kells, a professional indexer. Because of low enrollment, this class hasn’t been offered since 2000. If you’re interested in taking a technical indexing class, please contact someone at one of the above UW departments and let them know that you’d like them to bring back TC N100.

Wasser Inc. (Seattle, WA)

Wasser sometimes offers a one-day workshop on indexing. Past classes have been taught by editors or writers. Contact them at (206) 441-0707 if you’d like to receive information on their workshop offerings.

There are other distance learning courses available as well – see the ASI website for those.

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