The suburb was gazetted as a Division Name on 12 May 1966 but residential housing was not built until the late 1980s. Isaacs is next to the suburbs of O'Malley, Mawson and Farrer. It is bounded by Yamba Drive and Ngunawal Drive. Located in the suburb is the Canberra Nature Park of Isaacs Ridge and the Long Gully pine plantation.
It is named after Isaac Isaacs (1855–1948), politician, Chief Justice and the first Australian born Governor-General (from 1931–36).
Theme for streets
The suburb's theme is 'educationists': the streetsCanberra's suburbs and street names: Woden Valley and Weston Creek: Origins and meanings, ACT Government, 1992) are therefore named after people associated with Australian education. Some of the main streets in Isaacs, and their honorees, are:
Alexander Mackie Circuit: Alexander Mackie (1876–1955): academic who was first principal of the Sydney Teacher Training College and first Professor of Education at the University of Sydney (New South Wales)
Buntine Crescent: Walter Murray Buntine (1866–1953), teacher and campaigner for public education (Victoria)
Dorsch Street: Agnes Maria Johanna Dorsch (1871–1958), private teacher at Government House; teacher at Concordia College, 1923-43
Julia Flynn Avenue: Julia Teresa Flynn (1878–1947), secondary school teacher and school inspector (Victoria)