The SIF Specifications are not a product

They are a technical blueprint for enabling diverse applications to interact and share data related to educational entities in instructional and administrative environment. 

The Specification is designed to:

The SIF Implementation Specification defines architecture requirements and communication protocols for software components and the interfaces between them; it makes no assumption of specific hardware or software products needed to develop SIF-enabled applications and middleware implementations, other than their ability to support technologies leveraged as the foundation for SIF, most prominently XML and HTTP(S).

Every SIF Specification release consists of two major components:

Data Model

a set of XML schemas that define the payload formats of educational “objects” as they are exchanged between SIF-compliant applications.


defines the transport and messaging functionality of the secure and robust “wire” over which those payloads are securely exchanged.

All SIF Implementation Specifications are based on the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) endorsed Extensible Markup Language (XML) which is not linked to a specific operating system. XML is both ‘platform independent and vendor neutral’ and defines common data formats and rules of interaction and architecture.

Each release comes with a recommended infrastructure version to be used with the corresponding data model.  To find out more about either the SIF (global) Infrastructure or any of the locale-specific SIF Data Models, please select from the following:

Specification Development

The following supporting documentation can be found on the Technical Support page.