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Reader Aids

Reader Aids

Reader Aids help people use and understand the federal rulemaking process. Reader Aids information is not published in the Federal Register.

Use these helpful educational articles, tutorials and videos increase your understanding of the Federal Register publication system and improve your skills.

Office of the Federal Register Blog view

Using FederalRegister.Gov view

  • Website Features

    Sections We organize published Federal Register documents into six sections, similar to a web journal (Money, Environment, World, Science & Technology, Business & Industry, and Health & Public Welfare).  We think these sections include themes that have broad interest and which cover a majority of the documents published in the Federal Register. We feature articles in these sections … Continue reading “Website Features”

  • Document Features – Text

    Active Links Agency-included links When an agency has included links as part of the document text, we activate those links using the text in the document.  The link may not work if the link in the published document contained an error or if the target website is no longer at that location. Automated legal links … Continue reading “Document Features – Text”

  • Document Features – Sidebar

    Document Utility Bar The utility bar runs along the left side of the document and scrolls with you down the page.  You can access the Public Inspection version and the official electronic format of the published document using the 2 bottom icons. And you can print using the printer icon. Sharing You can share (email, … Continue reading “Document Features – Sidebar”

  • Understanding Public Inspection

    The Public Inspection web page on offers a preview of documents scheduled to appear in the next day’s Federal Register issue. The Public Inspection page may also include documents scheduled for later issues, at the request of the issuing agency. This gives the public access to important or complex documents before they publish in … Continue reading “Understanding Public Inspection”

  • Commenting on Federal Register Documents

    Our “Site Feedback” tool and Federal Register email addresses are only intended for users to submit technical questions and comments on the functionality of the website.  These tools cannot be used to submit comments on rulemaking actions or to petition agencies on public policy issues. We have no authority or ability to process comments on … Continue reading “Commenting on Federal Register Documents”

  • Search Tips and Techniques

    This site has a basic search tool and an advanced search. The basic search box appears in the main navigation at the top every page. The “Search” pull-down tab in the main navigation shows various search options: Document Search: You can search by citation (for example, enter: ’75 FR 12345′ or ’75 Fed. Reg. 12345′ … Continue reading “Search Tips and Techniques”

Understanding the Federal Register view

  • Federal Register Statistics

    Statistics Federal Register & CFR Publication Statistics – Aggregated Charts PDF XLS Federal Register & CFR Publication Statistics – Individual Charts Federal Register Pages Published (1936-2019) (PDF) Federal Register Documents Published (1936-2019) (PDF) Federal Register Documents – Annual Percentage Change (1976-2019) (PDF) Code of Federal Regulations Total Pages and Volumes 1938-2019 Code of Federal Regulations Actual … Continue reading “Federal Register Statistics”

  • Document Drafting & Research

    These links can help you better understand the document drafting process and research Federal Register documents. Drafting Document Drafting Handbook Incorporation by Reference (IBR) Handbook Federal Register Bulletins Final Guidance on Implementing the Plain Writing Act of 2010 Federal Register Plain Language Tools Thesaurus of Indexing Terms List of Subjects by CFR Title GPO Page Rates … Continue reading “Document Drafting & Research”

  • Related Resources

    Here are external resources that are helpful for understanding the Federal Register, its parent and partner agencies, and the rulemaking process. (Official Docket System for Public Comments) (Unified Agenda & Regulations Under Review) Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, OMB National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST – database of standards incorporated by … Continue reading “Related Resources”

Government Policy and OFR Procedures view

  • About This Site

    The Office of the Federal Register (OFR) of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), and the U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) jointly administer the website. We developed this website to make it easier for citizens and communities to understand the regulatory process and to participate in Government decision-making. Legal Status Website The OFR/GPO partnership … Continue reading “About This Site”

  • Contact Us

    Send us your questions and feedback: For questions or comments on editorial content, features, or design, email us at: For questions concerning programming and technical issues, please use the Feedback button. For questions on access for the visually impaired, see the Accessibility page of this website. To contact the Office of the Federal Register, visit … Continue reading “Contact Us”

  • Privacy is an authorized service of the Office of the Federal Register (OFR), National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), and the U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO). We are committed to protecting the privacy and security of your visits to this website. We follow OMB recommendations and best practices for protecting Internet privacy. Outlined below is our … Continue reading “Privacy”

  • Accessibility

    We designed this site following Section 508 and W3C accessibility design guidelines. This site uses text-based files and Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF) files, which are text-accessible through the use of Adobe PDF Tools. See more about Adobe Acrobat Reader and PDF Files below. The OFR and GPO are committed to assisting people with disabilities in … Continue reading “Accessibility”

  • FOIA

    Federal Register publications, including the website and the various editions of the daily Federal Register, the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Federal Register/CFR indexes, and the Public Laws posted on the Federal Digital System ( are not subject to the request for records provisions of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Under the FOIA, … Continue reading “FOIA”

Congressional Review view

Recent Site Updates view

Videos & Tutorials view

  • Federal Register Workshop

    The Federal Register Workshop describes the Federal Register system and how to use it. The workshop lasts about three hours and is presented by a member of the Office of the Federal Register, National Archives and Records Administration. The workshop explains the relationship between the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), provides … Continue reading “Federal Register Workshop”

  • Using Complex Search Terms

    We support numerous ways for you to customize your search. Some search options are available in the advanced search tool, and others are inherently available in the basic search entry box. The examples and search strategies in this help document describe search options you can use in the basic search entry box.

  • Linking to

    If you are referencing documents on you can link to them in a number of different ways depending on the document and your preferred pattern. These various patterns are explained below with examples. Linking to Federal Register documents can be cited in a variety of ways; it may be convenient to link to FR … Continue reading “Linking to”

Developer Resources view

  • REST API & Interactive Documentation

    Federal Register data originates with the files used to produce the print and PDF editions. During the publication process these are transformed into bulk XML files made available by the Government Publishing Office (GPO). Additional MODS files that contain metadata about each document are also produced at the same time. Because these files are meant … Continue reading “REST API & Interactive Documentation”

  • API Clients

    Ruby API Client The team maintains a Ruby API client that is available as a Ruby gem. This client gem is used to power the web display of You can find it on GitHub and RubyGems. Other resources To learn more about our API you can read more here and explore the API with … Continue reading “API Clients”

  • is Open Source

    Project Source Code is a fully open source project and its source code is available on Github. The source code is available in two repositories. The first, federalregister-api-core, contains the code that powers the import of Federal Register data from various sources and serves our API responses. This repo is undergoing active cleanup … Continue reading “ is Open Source”