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I have various articles on my website basically circling about psychology and psychotherapy. On a few articles in which I have added schema.org definitions, here is some examples of the itemprop and itemtypes I've used:

<div itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/MedicalWebPage">
<link itemprop="about" href="https://schema.org/..." />
<link itemprop="specialty" href="https://schema.org/..." />
<meta itemprop="name" content=".. " />
<meta itemprop="alternateName" content=".." />
<meta itemprop="keywords" content=".."/>
<meta itemprop="aspect" content=".."/>
<div itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/Article">
<meta itemprop="dateCreated" content=".."/>
<meta itemprop="datePublished" content=".."/>
<meta itemprop="dateModified" content=".."/>
<meta itemprop="headline" content=".."/>
<meta itemprop="image" content=".."/>
<meta itemprop="discussionUrl" content=".."/>
<meta itemprop="url" content=".."/>
<span itemprop="author" itemscope itemtype=".."/></span>

I have gotten to a stage where I'm totally confused. I don't even know if it makes any sense to have so many markup definitions for an article page (like "url" which only contains the article's URL, or 'keywords' which are contained in the header anyway). I haven't seen Google displaying any of those properties anyway.

On top of that, I am not sure how to find the correct values for the property values, like:

  • https://schema.org/MedicalTherapy
  • https://schema.org/Psychiatric

Question(s): Is there any "official" table of item types I can use to find out which properties fit best for my respective articles and papers? Most I've found are for medical use, but not well applicable for psychology.

Note: I am offering article ratings. On top of that, I wanted to use some schema markup to help search engines "understand" the topic of my articles better. So to explain that the respective page is, for instance, about psychology, the issue of anxiety, and treatment methods, and to markup several sections of my articles ('definition', 'treatment', 'classifications', 'caveats',...) would be nice.

  • What did you expect to be done with your schema mark-up?? Very little schema mark-up is used in the SERPs, however, schema mark-up is designed to ensure that data is passed to search engines and other entities correctly and understood correctly. While not all of schema mark-up is used by search engines, the data is generally trusted more. Mark-up can help search engines know topics and authorship better. – closetnoc Feb 25 '16 at 0:13
  • I am not trying to be snotty with my question. I just thought it would help for us to understand what you were expecting so that we can target the answer better. Cheers!! – closetnoc Feb 25 '16 at 0:18
  • 1
    I am offering article ratings. On top of that, I wanted to use some schema markup to help search engines "understand" the topic of my articles better. So to explain that the respective page is, for instance, about psychology, the issue of anxiety, and treatment methods, and to markup several sections of my articles ('definition', 'treatment', 'classfications', 'caveats',...) would be nice. – richey Feb 25 '16 at 0:42
  • Perfect description! I have not followed mark-up much since Google scrambled to implement it. A lot of work has happened since then and I just have not kept up like I would like. The theory for much of mark-up is that it describes content elements so that search engines can understand it better. Behind that is an extensive ontology for the knowledgegraph and for search. That we know. In this respect, mark-up really helps to isolate valuable data to be evaluated and possibly included into the ontology. – closetnoc Feb 25 '16 at 1:34
  • Google start removing rating in search result, just search on Google "Gladiator review", many of poor webmaster include 5 star in all type of articles, hence Google does not think, it is good to show in search result.. Another thing is that, use those schema which is currently supported by Google(Check Google Developer site to see all schema), and your schema is not currently support by Google, and may be some Spam web crawler collect this type of information from your site, so just don't implement it at this time, and focus on other things :) – Goyllo Feb 25 '16 at 7:34
4

The website http://schema.org/ is the relevant and the only canonical source for Schema.org types and properties.

Type vs. property. A type represents a thing, a property is for providing information about that thing. The name of a type always starts with an uppercase letter (e.g., Person), the name of a property always starts with a lowercase letter (e.g., name).

Available properties. If you want to provide structured data about your content, the first thing you have to do is to find appropriate types that can represent the things/entities your content represents or is about. If you know the type, knowing which properties can be used is easy: they are listed in the table of the type’s page.¹

Type hierarchy. Types are organized in a hierarchy, and each type inherits the meaning and the properties from all its parent types. The child types, if any exist, are listed at the bottom of the type page ("More specific Types"). The top-level type is Thing. So no matter which Schema.org type you use (Person, Rating, etc.) it’s always (also) a Thing

How to find a suitable type? There are two ways:

  • Start at Thing and go down the hierarchy.
  • Go to http://schema.org/docs/full.html (which lists all types on a single page) and use your on-page search (Ctrl+f) with some related keywords.

The second way can be quick, but you need luck as you need to use the same words as the Schema.org team used. The first way will always work, but might require more work.

The "algorithm" for going down the hierarchy is obvious:

  1. Look at the sub-types of the current type.
  2. Is there a sub-type that matches your entity?
    • Yes: Make this sub-type the new current type and go to step 1.
    • No: Use the type from step 1.

It’s always okay to go with Thing if there doesn’t exist a more specific type for your case (Schema.org doesn’t offer specific types for everything) or if you can’t find one. But it’s of course a good practice and useful to use the most specific type availabe.

So look at the sub-types of Thing: Is it an Action? Is it a CreativeWork? Is it an Event? Let’s pretend it’s an Event. You could now use Event, but, again, try to find a more specific type: Is it a BusinessEvent? Is it a ChildrensEvent? And so on.


¹ Only the first table on that page lists the properties you can use. The second table (titled "Instances of […·] may appear as values for the following properties") lists properties that can have the page’s type as value.

² There is actually another top-level type, DataType, but there is typically no need for authors to use it.

0

Is there any "official" table of item types I can use to find out which properties fit best for my respective articles and papers?

The schema.org website is the official source. But I'd take a step back and ask: what are your objectives in using all this structured data?

Very little structured data is explicitly supported by search engines, and what is supported tends to be focussed primarily on ecommerce and mainstream publishing.

That's not to say there's no value in using structured data which isn't explicitly supported by search engines. They may be, and probably are using things that aren't publicly documented.

All that said, it's a living schema which is developing all the time. Many of the more obscure schemas, like the ones you're interested in, aren't yet well documented and so are difficult to use in full confidence that you're doing so correctly.

But again, whether it's correct may ultimately be meaningless if we don't know for sure if it's being used at all and, if so, how.

You may find some useful information at the W3C Web Schemas Wiki.

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You are on the right way - so don't be confused:

  1. It is absolutely right to add all and every single structured data type and property, if they match the topic of your page. And if i understand your site idea correctly, the main content of your site are articles to medical topics.
  2. You should change a little bit your markup structure - doing so, you will get more visible benefits from Google. Your pages should be marked up like following example:

    <div itemscope itemtype="https://schema.org/MedicalScholarlyArticle">
       <link itemprop="mainEntityOfPage" href="https://schema.org/MedicalTherapy" />
     ... Here comes all your article microdata ...
    </div>
    

Read this article: https://developers.google.com/structured-data/rich-snippets/articles - you'll find there all need info to properly markup your articles.

  • 1
    That's not how mainEntityOfPage is used. I encourage you to re-read the article you linked to which details its use. – grg Feb 25 '16 at 10:31
  • Its exactly the correct kind, how mainEntityOfPage should be used. Google's markup examples contain pretty often violations against schema.org standard. Look into schema.org/mainEntityOfPage – Evgeniy Feb 25 '16 at 11:01
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    No, that link matches what Google recommends and what I'm saying. It's for the canonical link to the containing page, not the schema. Check the example on the page you just linked to in your comment. – grg Feb 25 '16 at 11:04
  • The developers.google.com link illustrates my problem: how can I find out which schema.org/{...}Article types there are in order to choose which one applies for my own kinds of articles? Mine neither fit schema.org/NewsArticle nor schema.org/BlogPosting. I have the same issues for psychological content - there doesn't seem to be a schema.org/Psychological property, so I would have to find one of 'medical' or 'psychiatric' context that fits best. But which are there? Is there any document listing all available properties there are? – richey Feb 28 '16 at 11:24

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