In the context of freshwater fisheries changing their strategies from the regulation of harvest and the enhancement of populations, to the creation and protection of habitats and the management of ecosystems, moves toward establishing an aquatic habitat classification system. Eight papers, from the February 1988 Symposium on the Classification and Inventory of Great Lakes Aquatic Habitats (the last in a series of Great Lakes Symposia), propose various classification approaches, most using a limited number of physical, chemical, and/or biological variables to produce some form of index. They also include overviews and summaries of the classification process.

1. Introduction to the Process, Procedure, and Concepts Used in the Development of an Aquatic Habitat Classification System for Lakes 2. A System for Aquatic Habitat Classification of Lakes 3. A Review of Lake Habitat Classification 4. Great Lakes Aquatic Habitat Classification Based on Wetland Classification 5. Review of Habitat Classification Schemes Appropriate to Streams, Rivers, and Connecting Channels in the Great Lakes Drainage Basin 6. A Review of the Physical and Chemical Components of the Great Lakes- A Basis for Classification and Inventory of Aquatic Habitats 7. Application of Biological Measures to Classification of Aquatic Habitats in the Laurentian Great Lakes 8. State-of-the-Art Techniques for Inventory of Great Lakes Aquatic Habitats and Resources