Metadata Object Description Schema

The Metadata Object Description Schema ( MODS ) is an XML format for bibliographic metadata. It is developed as an XML schema by the Network Development and MARC Standards Office of the Library of Congress and managed since June 2010, it is the version before 3.4.

MODS was a compromise between the complexity of MARC ( a very detailed bibliographic exchange format ) and developed for many applications to simple Dublin Core. Therefore, there are many - the corresponding XML elements MARC fields in MODS - but not for all. Moreover, there are in MODS elements that are not compatible with marc. The elements were - in contrast to the numerical codes of MARC - named in English. To convert between Dublin Core, MARC, and MODS, the Library of Congress a series of XSLT scripts.

MODS is supported by a few reference management programs, including BibDesk, JabRef and Zotero. But also in repositories, the data model is used. So MODS is, for example, implemented in MyCoRe. There are also examples of mapping example from DSpace by MODS.


  • Machine exchange format for libraries (MAB )
  • Metadata Encoding & Transmission Standard ( METS )