Body’s of Knowledge


According to Wikipedia, a Body of Knowledge is a term used to represent the complete set of concepts, terms and activities that make up a professional domain, as defined by the relevant professional association.

The following are Bodies of Knowledge that may be of interest to Business Analysts:

Agile Body of Knowledge

The Agile Body of Knowledge is a community-driven effort to create an Agile Body of Knowledge in wiki form. It is freely available and can be accessed here.


Guide to the Business Analysis Body of Knowledge (BABOK)

Formally known as “A Guide to the Business Analysis Body of Knowledge” the BABOK® Guide is a summary of the knowledge within the BA profession, reflecting current generally accepted practices, as collected and distributed by the IIBA .  The current version of the BABOK Guide is version 2.0, with version 3.0 currently under development and expected to be released towards the end of 2014. In addition to the standard BABOK, there is an “Agile Extension to the BABOK” that the IIBA produced.

The BABOK was organized and structured in a particular way in order to comply with ISO standards for bodies that provide a professional certification. As such, it is the core reference for both the CCBA and CBAP Certification exams.

The IIBA has made a complete copy of the BABOK Guide accessible via Google Books.  You cannot download a copy, but you can view it here.   Additionally, the IIBA has recently made the full BABOK Guide available to members-only as a commentable Wiki site, in addition to the PDF members-only version.

In addition to BABOK 3.0, the IIBA is also reportedly working on an Enterprise Business Analysis extension to the BABOK.

The Enterprise Extension builds on the content of the BABOK® Guide to discuss business analysis outside the context of the project or individual change initiative.  Topics covered in this extension will include:

  • Business Strategy
  • Portfolio Management
  • Governance
  • Enterprise, Business, and Process Architecture
  • Change Management
  • Organizational Design
  • Organizational Performance Management


Guide to the Business Process Management Common Body of Knowledge (BPM CBOK)


The Guide to the Business Process Management Common Body of Knowledge (BPM CBOK) is specified by ABPMP International and serves as the primary reference for the CBPP certification.

The Guide to the BPM CBOK® provides a basic reference document for all practitioners. The primary purpose of this guide is to identify and provide an overview of the Knowledge Areas that are generally recognized and accepted as good practice. The Guide provides a general overview of each Knowledge Area and provides a list of common activities and tasks associated with each Knowledge Area. It also provides links and references to other sources of information which are part of the broader BPM Common Body of Knowledge .

The BOK is not available for free.  You can see an overview here.


Enterprise Architecture Body of Knowledge (EABOK)

Per Wikipedia, the Enterprise Architecture Body of Knowledge (EABOK) is a guide to Enterprise Architecture produced by MITRE (specifically MITRE’s Center for Innovative Computing and Informatics), and was substantially funded by US government agencies. It provides a critical review of enterprise architecture issues in the context of the needs of an organization.

The EABOK is freely available in PDF format here.


Guide to the Systems Engineering Body of Knowledge (G2SEBoK)

The G2SEBoK is a comprehensive resource for understanding the extent of the practice of Systems Engineering.  Accomplished systems engineers will use it to find just in time performance support and to access in-depth information in particular discipline areas.  Those new to the practice of systems engineering will use it to expand their knowledge and increase their effectiveness in implementing systems engineering.  Project managers will use it to find answers to questions about interacting with systems engineers as well as engineering their organization (system) of engineers and managers.  This guide is both comprehensive and simple to use.

The G2SEBoK is freely available in wiki form and can access it at this link.


Process Knowledge Body of Knowledge (PkBoK)

(Temporarily unavailable?)

The Process Knowledge Body of Knowledge (PKBoK) was an effort by the Process Knowledge Initiative (PKI) to create a common, open source, process knowledge body of knowledge (PKBoK) to support the standardization of business process terms and concepts.

The effort to create a Process Knowledge Initiative Body of Knowledge (PKBOK) was undertaken as a wiki based on a semantic knowledge model where the key element is the task, an independent process undertaken by process practitioners in the course of doing process work. Techniques are descriptions of specific approaches that have been created to help accomplish tasks. A technique may be used to help in the accomplishment of more than one task. Roles are descriptions of how actors implement specific tasks. Tasks are grouped into knowledge areas to help organize and provide an overview of the knowledge, and the same tasks may be included in more than one knowledge area.

The Process Knowledge web site was taken down and is now listed as “Under Construction”. I don’t know what happened to the wiki content, but if you want check and see if it has reappeared you can go to the Process Knowledge Initiative website here.


Guide to the Systems Engineering Body of Knowledge (SEBOK)

The Guide to the Systems Engineering Body of Knowledge is overseen by three steward organizations, which are the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE), the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Computer Society (IEEE-CS), and the Systems Engineering Research Center (SERC).

The SEBoK provides a compendium of the key knowledge sources and references of systems engineering, organized and explained to assist a wide variety of users. It is a living document, accepting community input continuously, and regularly refreshed and updated.

About Systems Engineering

Systems engineering is an interdisciplinary approach and means to enable the realization of successful systems. Separate articles in Part 1 provide an overview of systems engineering, place it in historical context, and discuss its economic value.

Systems engineering has roots in systems science. Major sections (called knowledge areas (KAs)) in Part 2 discuss Systems Fundamentals, Systems Thinking, Representing Systems with Models, and the Systems Approach Applied to Engineered Systems.

About the SEBoK

The SEBoK is organized into 7 parts, with a Glossary of Terms and a list of Primary References.

  • Part 1 discusses the Scope of the SEBoK, and its structure, including its hierarchy of parts, knowledge areas, and topics. Part 1 also includes a lengthy discussion of SEBoK Users and Uses, including five use cases.

The other parts include:

  • Part 2 Systems
  • Part 3 Systems Engineering and Management
  • Part 4 Applications of Systems Engineering
  • Part 5 Enabling Systems Engineering
  • Part 6 Related Disciplines
  • Part 7 Systems Engineering Implementation Examples

The SEBOK is freely accessible and can be freely accessed via this web page.


Guide to the Software Engineering Body of Knowledge (SWEBOK)

The Guide to the Software Engineering Body of Knowledge (SWEBOK) was established by the IEEE with the following five objectives:

  • To promote a consistent view of software engineering worldwide
  • To clarify the place “and set the boundary” of software engineering with respect to other disciplines such as computer science, project management, computer engineering, and mathematics
  • To characterize the contents of the software engineering discipline
  • To provide a topical access to the Software Engineering Body of Knowledge
  • To provide a foundation for curriculum development and for individual certification and licensing material

The HTML version f the SWEBOK used to be freely accessible to all, but the IEEE has apparently decided to make it a members-only option, so it’s no longer available to non-IEEE members.


Usability Body of Knowledge (Usability BOK)

The Usability Professionals’ Association (UPA) has initiated a long-term project to collate a comprehensive Body of Knowledge (BoK) for the usability profession, which will provide an authoritative source of reference and define the scope of the profession.

Preliminary work has started: intended audiences and subject areas have been agreed, a format for documenting usability methods has been defined, and work has started on documenting the more common methods.

The Usability Body of Knowledge project is dedicated to creating a living reference that represents the collective knowledge of the usability profession. Such a collection of knowledge for the usability profession will necessarily be broad and inclusive in scope, because the profession is inherently multidisciplinary and draws on a wide range of other practices.  They recognize that the Usability BoK should be derived from published literature, conference proceedings, and the experiences of practitioners accumulated over many years.  It is not possible or desirable to duplicate all of the existing resources.  Rather, the outcome will be a guide that contains core material supplemented by pointers to existing resources, and continues to evolve as the practice of usability evolves.

Defining such a guide is an important step in the development of a Usability profession because it represents a broad consensus regarding the profession itself and the range of knowledge, skills, and methods that should be mastered by practitioners in the field.

The guide to the Usability Body of Knowledge will:

  • Define the knowledge underlying the usability profession.
  • Describe and provide pointers to methods, knowledge, and skills that are important for usability professionals.
  • Promote the advancement, understanding, and recognition of the usability profession among those who interact with the usability community.
  • Facilitate professional development for usability practitioners at any stage in their careers, as well as people who come to usability from other backgrounds/disciplines.
  • Provide the basis for future curriculum development.
  • Provide support for professional development and any future certification schemes.
  • Promote integration and connections with related disciplines.

The Usability BOK can be freely accessed at this link.

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