newspaper names — Italicize the proper name except for the, even if the is part of the formal name. If necessary to identify the state or other location, use parentheses. Example: the Birmingham News, Birmingham Post-Herald, the Wall Street Journal, the Anniston (Ala.) Star. Second references may be shortened: the Star, the News.
numerals — Spell out the following: “whole numbers from one through one hundred, round numbers, and any number beginning a sentence. For other numbers, numerals are used.” (Chicago, 380) Numerous exceptions exist — please consult the 15th edition.
office of, office — Capitalize only when office is part of the formal name of an organization, unit, subunit or agency; lowercase second references when the word stands alone. Examples: Office of Graduate Studies, president's office, the Office of the President.
online/offline — Used as one word in all cases, not as on-line/off-line.
over — Use more than when referring to a number. Example: More than 9,000 students attend JSU.
pamphlets, reports — Titles of pamphlets, corporate or institutional reports, brochures, and other freestanding publications are treated as book titles: italicize. Examples: The university's 2003-2004 Annual Report; the university's Viewbook .
paintings, titles of — Italicize.
papers, titles of unpublished — “Titles of unpublished works — theses, dissertations, manuscripts in collections, printouts of speeches, and so on — are set in roman type, capitalized as titles, and enclosed in quotation marks.” (Chicago, 374) JSU extends this to unpublished studies, internal documents, etc.
periodicals, titles of — Periodicals such as newspapers, newsletters, journals, magazines, and similar publications should be italicized. Words such as magazine and journal should be italicized only if they are included in the formal publication name.
PhD — No periods. No apostrophe is used in the plural form. Examples: There were several PhDs on the faculty. John Smith, PhD.
plays, titles of — Italicize.
poems, titles of — Italicize.
possessives — Add an apostrophe and omit the possessive s on all words ending in s . Example: Dylan Thomas' poetry, Maria Callas' singing.
possessive versus attributive forms — “Although terms such as employees' cafeteria sometimes appear without an apostrophe, Chicago dispenses with the apostrophe only in proper names (often corporate names) or where there is clearly no possessive meaning.” (Chicago, 285) Examples: A consumers' group; taxpayers' associations; children's rights; the women's team, a boys' club . But note: Publishers Weekly, Diners Club, Department of Veterans Affairs, a housewares sale.
Prepositions, ending a sentence with — “The traditional caveat of yesteryear against ending sentences with prepositions is, for most writers, an unnecessary and pedantic restriction. As Winston Churchill famously said, 'That is the type of arrant pedantry up with which I shall not put.' A sentence that ends in a preposition may sound more natural than a sentence carefully constructed to avoid a final preposition. Compare Those are the guidelines an author should adhere to with Those are the guidelines to which an author should adhere. The ‘rule' prohibiting terminal prepositions was an ill-founded superstition.” (Chicago, 188-189)
professional designations — Do not use periods with abbreviated professional designations such as CPA. Do not capitalize such credentials when spelled out. Examples: Sue Jones, CPA. Sue Jones, a certified public accountant. There was a meeting of certified fund raisers.
professorships, named — Capitalize these titles in all instances, before or after a name and when standing alone. Example: Mark Edmundson is the Daniels Family Distinguished Teaching Professor at the University of Virginia.
publication titles, capitalization — Principal words should be capitalized. Articles, prepositions, and conjunctions should be written lowercase unless used as first or last word in the title.
quad, quadrangle — Lowercase. At JSU the word describes a location; it is not used as a proper noun.
quotation marks, enclosing periods and commas — “Periods and commas precede closing quotation marks, whether double or single. This is a traditional style …. As nicely expressed in William Strunk Jr. and E. B. White's Elements of Style, ‘Typographical usage dictates that the comma be inside the [quotation] marks, though logically it often seems not to belong there.' The same goes for the period.” (Chicago, 242)
quotations — When quoting someone in an article, follow the Associated Press rule-of-thumb: “Never alter quotations even to correct minor grammatical errors or word usage. Casual minor tongue slips may be removed by using ellipses but even that should be done with extreme caution. If there is a question about a quote, either don't use it or ask the speaker to clarify. … Do not routinely use abnormal spellings such as gonna in attempts to convey regional dialects or mispronunciations. Such spellings are appropriate when relevant or help to convey a desired touch in a feature.” (Goldstein, 212)
quotes, full versus partial — “In general, avoid fragmentary quotes. If a speaker's words are clear and concise, favor the full quote. If cumbersome language can be paraphrased fairly, use an indirect construction, reserving quotation marks for sensitive or controversial passages that must be identified specifically as coming from the speaker.” (Goldstein, 212-213)
quotes, retaining context — “Remember that you can misquote someone by giving a startling remark without its modifying passage or qualifiers. The manner of delivery sometimes is part of the context. Reporting a smile or a … gesture may be as important as conveying the words themselves.” (Goldstein, 213)
reason why — “Although some object to the supposed redundancy of this phrase, it is centuries old and perfectly acceptable English. And reason that is not always an adequate substitute.” (Chicago, 227)
scare quotes — Quotation marks used to “...alert readers that a term is used in a nonstandard, ironic, or other special sense. Nicknamed ‘scare quotes,' they imply, ‘This is not my term' or ‘This is not how the term is usually applied.' Like any such device, scare quotes lose their force and irritate readers if overused.” (Chicago, 293) Example: Don't “diss” the work ethic.
school — JSU is made up of academic departments, not schools. Exception: the Auctioneering School, which is a program of the Department of Continuing Education. Also note: It is the College of Nursing, not the “school of nursing.” Never refer to Jacksonville State University as a school.
semester — Do not capitalize academic semesters except in directories, tabular data, etc. Example: He enrolled for fall semester 2004.
seminar titles — Capitalize; do not italicize or set in quotes.
Southerners — The correct title of JSU's band is the Southerners. Do not use Marching Southerners. See: Marching Ballerinas.
space, in text — Allow only one space between sentences.
staff, singular and plural — The personnel at JSU are referred to as staff, both in the singular and the plural. Examples: The support staff of the university. John is on our staff. John is a member of our office staff.
state abbreviations — Use the traditional abbreviations, not the two-letter USPS format. Examples: Ala., Mo., Tenn., Ga.
student groups — Capitalize formal names of organized groups of students and student classes, but lowercase student classifications. Examples: The International Student Organization, the Math Club, Student Government Association, freshman class, class of 2003, freshman, sophomore, junior, senior, graduate, undergraduate.
smbols — In text, spell out percent, degrees (temperature), feet, inches, and cents. In tables it is acceptable to use symbols (%, °, ‘, ”, ¢).
T-shirt — Not tee-shirt, etc.
television programs, titles of — Italicize.
theses, titles of — Use quotation marks.
trustee — Trustee is used lowercase as a stand-alone word. Capitalize when used before a name as a proper title. Examples: Trustee John Doe. John Doe, trustee. The trustee had a long drive . See: board of trustees.
under way — “In most cases, use the two words: The project is under way. The naval maneuvers are under way. It is one word only when used as an adjective before a noun in a nautical sense: an underway flotilla. (Martin, 235)
university — Lowercase as a stand-alone word, even when referring to JSU. Examples: Mrs. Jones works at Jacksonville State University. Mrs. Jones works in the business office at the university. Sam attends the university each summer.
universitywide — Avoid university-wide.
viewbook — A publication given to prospective college students. When used as a title, the word should be used in caps and italicized. Example: High school students receive copies of JSU's annual Viewbook.
vita/vitae — A condensed biography. The term vita is preferred to the longer curriculum vitae. The plural form is vitae.
voice-mail — Voice-mail, with hyphen, in all cases.
Web — Always capitalized when referring to World Wide Web.
whether — “Generally, use whether alone — not with the words or not tacked on (they didn't know whether to go). The or not is necessary only when you mean to convey the idea of ‘regardless of whether' (we'll finish on time whether or not it rains ). Whether is sometimes replaced by if in informal usage (we didn't know if we would finish); in more formal usage, whether is preferred.” (Chicago, 231-232)
workshop, title of — Capitalize.
Xerox — A trademarked name; never a verb. Do not use as a generic term meaning to photocopy; write photocopy instead.
yearlong — Use as a closed compound word.
year-round — Always hyphenate.
A.A., Associate of Arts
Bernstein, Theodore M. Watch Your Language . New York : Channel Press, 1958.
Gay, Robert Malcolm. Words Into Type, Third Edition . Upper Saddle River : Prentice Hall, 1974.
Goldstein, Norm, ed. Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law with Internet Guide and Glossary . New York : The Associated Press, 2003.
Martin, Paul R., ed. The Wall Street Journal Essential Guide to Business Style and Usage . New York : Wall Street Journal Books, 2003.
Siegal, Allan M. and William G. Connolly, eds. The New York Times Manual of Style and Usage . Revised and expanded ed. New York : Three Rivers Press, 1999.
Zinsser, William. On Writing Well . New York : Harper & Row, 1980.