Canadian Subject Headings (CSH) - File download

Canadian Subject Headings (CSH) are maintained by Library and Archives Canada (LAC).

The following versions are up-to-date as of December 14 and November 29, 2022. LAC will produce updated versions periodically.

Note: The existing Canadian Subject Headings do not reflect current terminology used by First Nations, Inuit and the Métis Nation for describing material with Indigenous content. The direct contribution of First Nations, Inuit and the Métis Nation is an essential part of our efforts to update this list. In the fall of 2019, we began discussions with the librarian community, particularly with Indigenous librarians and knowledge keepers across the country. Revised headings will be included in updated versions of the following files once completed.

We recommend using Firefox, Microsoft Edge, or Chrome to download the following files.

  • CSH records in MARC21 tagged format - ANSI file: December 2022 (TXT/ANSI; 1.9 MB)
  • CSH records in MARC21 tagged format - UTF8 file: December 2022 (TXT/UTF8; 1.9 MB)
  • CSH list: December 2022 (PDF; 4.5 MB)
  • CSH related to Indigenous Peoples: November 2022 (Excel; 171 KB)

The MARC files provided above contain "tagged" or eye-readable records. These files can be converted to machine-readable records for loading using MARC editing software. LAC also provides machine-readable MARC files of CSH via its SFTP subscription service.

Contact us:
Description Division, Standards and Systems
Published Heritage Branch
Library and Archives Canada
395 Wellington Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0N4
Fax: 819-934-6777