AGLS metadata standard

Retirement of the AGLS Metadata Standard

The AGLS Metadata Standard was developed in 1997 to improve the visibility, availability and interoperability of online information. Since then it has been periodically revised. A recent review by the National Archives of Australia has concluded it is no longer fit for purpose and there is low uptake by Australian Government agencies. 

We will decommission the AGLS website by the end of 2023 and uncouple our responsibilities from AS 5044-2010 which is managed by Standards Australia. These changes will not affect the continuing existence of AS 5044-2010 but the role of the National Archives will change. We will consult with Standards Australia throughout the project to minimise any disruption.

The National Archives has prepared new advice on Metadata for the web and a case study from Geoscience Australia to assist those agencies which want to plan for the post-AGLS environment.

The AGLS Metadata Standard is a set of descriptive properties designed to improve the visibility and accessibility of online resources. AGLS is issued by Standards Australia as AS5044: 2010.

The AGLS Metadata Standard has been mandated for use by Australian government agencies.

Why a metadata standard?

Metadata allows you to search for any resource that has been described online by using keywords, names and phrases in a structured context of well-defined properties such as title, creator, date and intended audience of the resource.

Standardised metadata descriptions such as AGLS enable web-based search engines to do their job more efficiently. This helps ensure that people searching government websites are presented with relevant and meaningful results in response to search requests.

By investing in the use and maintenance of AGLS metadata, Australian Government agencies can:

  • improve the general discoverability of, and access to, resources
  • help people without a knowledge of government structures to locate the government resources that they need
  • increase return on the agency's initial web-publishing investment
  • improve the management of their website
  • ensure their agency’s information and services are comprehensively available.

More information