We describe the application of a microarray platform, which combines information from exon body and splice-junction probes, to perform a quantitative analysis of tissue-specific alternative splicing (AS) for thousands of exons in mammalian cells. Through this system, we have analyzed global features of AS in major mouse tissues. The results provide numerous inferences for the functions of tissue-specific AS, insights into how the evolutionary history of exons can impact on their inclusion levels, and also information on how global regulatory properties of AS define tissue type. Like global transcription profiles, global AS profiles reflect tissue identity. Interestingly, we find that transcription and AS act independently on different sets of genes in order to define tissue-specific expression profiles. These results demonstrate the utility of our quantitative microarray platform and data for revealing important global regulatory features of AS.