A

a, per
  • Do not use a in place of per.

Americans generate millions of tons of waste per year.

abbreviations (See also abbreviations )

Academic degrees use periods without spaces. (See also academic degrees.)

B.A.
ss M.S.
Ph.D.

  • Some academic abbreviations and acronyms do not use periods. Spell out on first reference if readers may not be familiar with the term.

GPA (grade point average)
SAT (Scholastic Achievement Test)
ACT (American College Testing)
GRE (Graduate Record Examination)
MCAT (Medical College Admission Test)
LSAT (Law School Admission Test)

  • When used as adjectives,abbreviate United States and United Nations using periods with no spaces. Spell out when used as nouns. Do not use America in place of United States or American in place of U. S.

U.S. policy
U.N. treaty

  • Spell out units of measurement (see numbers, numerals, figures).Abbreviate without periods only when they occur frequently, as in technical or scientific text, or where space is limited. (See also measurement )

4 inches or 4 in
12 feet or 12 ft
2.3 miles or 2.3 mi

  • Commonly known rates of measurement may be abbreviated without periods or in technical or scientific text, or where space is limited.

mph (acceptable in all uses)
ppm
psi

  • In U.S. place names, do not abbreviate Fort, Point, Mount, or Port.

Fort Collins
Fort Carson
Mount Rainier

  • In U.S. place names, abbreviate Saint.

St. Louis
St. Lawrence River

  • Plurals of abbreviations are formed by adding an s (with no apostrophe unless possessive).

GPAs
Ph.D.s
SATs

  • Use a or an before an abbreviation depending on how the abbreviation is pronounced. If the first letter is pronounced with a vowel sound, use an; if the first letter is pronounced with a consonant sound,use a.

an M.A degree
an LSAT test
a U.S. official

abbreviations of foreign phrases
  • When using foreign expression, use periods only with the words that are abbreviated. Do not italicize common foreign phrases and abbreviations, and do not hyphenate when used as adjectives, as in ad hoc committee.
  • Some common foreign abbreviations, their full spellings, and translations follow.

ad hoc – meaning for a particular purpose
ad lib. – adlibitum, meaning at will
ad loc. – ad locum,meaning at the place
c or ca. – circa,meaning approximately
e.g. – exempli grata, meaning for example
et al. – et alii,meaning and other people
etc. – et cetera,meaning and so forth
et seq. – etsequentes, meaning and the following
i.e. – id est,meaning that is
ibid. – ibidem,meaning in the same place
loc. cit. – lococitato, meaning in the place cited
op. cit. – operecitato, meaning in the work cited
pro tem – pro tempore, meaning for the time being
vs. or v. – versus, meaning against

  • The abbreviations, i.e. and e.g. may be used in technical or informal writing but it is better to use the more common English phrases in general and formal writing. When using these phrases, precede with semicolon and follow with a comma. A dash may be used instead of the semicolon for added emphasis.

I need some additional information; i.e., your estimated cost and delivery.
Include extracurricular activities; for example,volunteer work, sports, or clubs.

academic degrees
  • Capitalize full names of academic degrees. Do not capitalize the field of study in which the degree was awarded.

John Jones has a Master of Science in communications.
He received his doctorate in psychology.

  • Do not capitalize generic forms such as baccalaureate or doctorate. Lowercase and use an apostrophe s for adjective forms such as master's degree. When referring to more than one degree, add s only to degree (bachelor's and master's remain singular).

bachelor's degree or baccalaureate degree
master's degrees
bachelor's and master's degrees
post doctorate, postdoctoral degree

  • Doctoral or postdoctoral are the adjective forms; doctorate or postdoctorate are the nouns.

 
She did her postdoctoral work at CSU,
Not: She did her postdoctorate work at CSU.

He received his doctorate at CSU.
Not: He received his doctoral at CSU.

  • The word degree should not follow a specific degree, whether spelled out or abbreviated.

She received her Master of Fine Arts from Colorado State University.
He has a B.A. in history.
Not: He has a B.A. degree in history.

  • Capitalize degree abbreviations and use periods without spaces.The following degrees currently are offered at Colorado State University.

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)
Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.)
Bachelor of Music (B.M.)
Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (D.V.M.)
Master of Accountancy (M.Acc.)
Master of Agriculture (M.Agr.)
Master of Arts (M.A.)
Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.)
Master of Computer Science (M.C.S.)
Master of Education (M.Ed.)
Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)
Master of Fishery and Wildlife Biology (M.F.W.B.)
Master of Forestry (M.F.)
Master of Music (M.M.)
Master of Natural Resources Stewardship (M.N.R.S.)
Master of Science (M.S.)
Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)

  • Form the plurals of degree abbreviations by adding an s.

More than 2,000 B.A.s were awarded at the commencement ceremony.

  • Set off degree abbreviations with commas when used after names.Do not use courtesy titles such as Dr., Mr., and Rev. before a name when a degree designation is used after the name.

John Q. Smith, Ph.D., will give the keynote address.

  • For listing alumni information, state the individual's name, the degree abbreviation and/or the major, and the year of graduation. Enclose the year within commas or parentheses following the name.

John Doe, computer science, '71, resides in Denver.
Mary Smith (B.S., '65; M.S., '68) has been voted this year's honor alumna.

  • Do not capitalize or italicize honors designations. (See also honors.)

cum laude (meaning with distinction)
magna cum laude (meaning with great distinction)
summa cum laude (meaning with highest distinction)

academic departments, colleges, offices (See departments.)
academic titles (See also titles.)
  • Capitalize academic titles such as professor, dean,president, and professor emeritus when they precede a name. Also,when used before names, capitalize words that are part of the title such as Department Chairman or Assistant Professor.

On Monday, President Jane Smith will deliver the opening address.
In her lecture, Associate Professor Mary Smith will discuss economics.

  • Do not capitalize words that come before the formal title if those words normally would not be capitalized (See also departments).Also do not capitalize titles that are occupational or descriptive, even if they appear before names.

Next week, social sciences Professor James Anderson will chair the meeting.
The Department of Sociology Chairman Robert Jones presented the award.
Also participating in the project is research assistant John Martinez.
Local high school teacher Mary Smith will serve on the committee.

  • Lowercase formal titles, descriptors, and modifiers used after a name and set them off with commas.

Jane Smith, president, will deliver the opening address.
Robert Jones, dean of the College of Engineering, addressed the graduates.
Mary Smith, associate professor of management, will discuss world policy.
Sally Jones, Colorado State University Extension equine specialist, will teach the short course.

  • A formal title or an academic degree may be used on first reference, but not both in the same reference. Subsequent references generally use last names only. (See also academic degrees. )

President Jane Smith or Jane Smith, Ph.D.
Not: President Jane Smith, Ph.D.

  • Capitalize full names of endowed professorships and fellowships. Lowercase when used generically. Capitalize Fellow in reference to a fellowship, regardless of gender.

Robert M. Jones was the first recipient of the John Q. Smith Professorship.

She received the fellowship.
She was named a Fellow of the American Society of Agronomy.

  • Do not hyphenate vice president.
  • In general writing, do not use courtesy titles such as Mrs. and Dr. The designation Dr. may be used in first reference (and, if appropriate to the context, in subsequent references) before the name of an individual who holds a doctoral degree in the health or medical fields.
  • In a formal context, courtesy titles may be used in all references. In this case, Dr. may be used before the names of individuals who hold other types of doctoral degrees. However, be sure that the individual'a specialty is stated in the first or second reference to avoid confusion with medical and health doctors.
acronyms (See also abbreviations.)
  • In general, avoid the use of acronyms. Spell out the organization's full name on first reference. Do not follow the first reference with an acronym whether set off within parentheses or by dashes or commas. The acronym may be used on subsequent references only if the acronym is easily identifiable.If an acronym is confusing or is not easily identified with the full name of the organization, the acronym should not be used.

The Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory began in 1968as a world leader in grassland research. Over three decades, the scope of research at NREL has expanded to include projects on every continent.

  • Use a or an before an acronym depending on how the acronym is pronounced. If the first letter is pronounced with a vowel sound,use an; if the first letter is pronounced with a consonant sound, use a.

an FBI agent
a USGS official
a scuba instructor
a SWAT team
an HIV infection
an NREL scientist

  • Form the plural of an acronym by adding a lowercase s. Do not use an apostrophe unless possessive.

There are 2,617 YMCAs serving communities throughout the United States.
The FBI's Ten Most Wanted list can be viewed on the Web.

  • Commonly known acronyms can stand alone and do not need to be spelled out on first reference. Capitalize but do not include periods or spaces.

FBI
CIA
YMCA
ZIP code (for Zone Improvement Program)

  • Medical and veterinary acronyms do not include periods.

AIDS
HIV
FeLV
FUS
BSE

  • Capitalize, space, spell, and punctuate computer software and programs according to manufacturer preference.

FORTRAN
COBOL
Microsoft Word
Photoshop
InDesign
Quark Xpress
PC-cillin

  • Some acronyms have become so common that they are no longer capitalized.

laser (light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation)
scuba (self-contained underwater breathing apparatus)

  • Spell out the names of countries and federal agencies. Use acronyms only as adjectives. Do not use American in place of U.S.

United Kingdom
U.S. Air Force
U.S. Department of Agriculture but USDA

  • Do not spell out or use a comma to set off Inc., Co.,or Corp. unless the organization prefers to do so.

Hewlett-Packard Company; HP (on second reference)
Hensel Phelps Construction Co.
IBM Corporation; IBM(on second reference)
Time Inc.
Anheuser-Busch Companies, Inc.

  • The preferred way to refer to Colorado State University is by the full name, Colorado State University. Colorado State University should always be used on first reference. However, the University, Colorado State, or CSU may be substituted for the full name within publications for variety or when space does not permit the use of the full name. These substitutes may not appear as main heads. (Note: Capitalizing University differs from the AP Stylebook.) Also see Communications Toolbox at graphicstandards.colostate.edu.
addresses
  • Use the abbreviations Ave., Blvd., and St. only with numbered addresses. Spell out and capitalize when part of a formal street name without a number, but lowercase and spell out when used alone or with more than one street name.

208 Mountain Ave.
College Avenue
the avenue
College and Mountain avenues

  • Always spell out alley,drive, road, terrace, place,lane, and circle. Capitalize when part of a formal name or an address.Do not capitalize in general use or when used with two or more names.


University Terrace
123 Park Lane
Old Main and East drives

  • Abbreviate north,south, east, and west with numbered addresses. If compass points such as northwest or southeast are part of the street address, capitalize and abbreviate with periods and no spaces.

500 S. College Ave.
12534 N. County Rd. N.W.

  • Capitalize all letters in ZIP (the acronym for Zone Improvement Program) without spaces or periods. Since this is a common acronym, do not spell out. Do not capitalize code. ZIP alone may be used where space is limited, as on forms.

The University's ZIP code is 80523.
City ______________&.aspx#8195;State _____&.aspx#8195;ZIP__________

  • Use the two-letter Postal Service state abbreviations only with full addresses that include ZIP codes. Do not use periods or commas between the state abbreviation and ZIP code. (See state names.) Put the ZIP code on the same line directly following the state abbreviation, which is followed with one space but not with a comma. For international mail, follow the ZIP code with a space and U. S.A. (with periods).
  • The correct style for University addresses is name and title(optional), department or office name, street address or room number and building name (optional), Colorado State University, XXXX Campus Delivery (must be next-to-last line), Fort Collins, CO 80523-XXXX (where XXXX is the department's assigned four-digit Campus Delivery number). If the piece will be mailed internationally, add U.S.A. after the ZIP code (see the Communications Toolbox at graphicstandards.colostate.edu). For example:

Jane Smith, Director
Communications and Creative Services
271 Aylesworth Hall S.W.
Colorado State University
6025 Campus Delivery [must be next-to-last line]
Fort Collins, CO 80523-6025 U.S.A.

  • Business Reply Mail to be returned to Colorado State University must follow a strict address order and use different ZIP codes as determined by the U.S. Postal Service.

Communications and Creative Services
6025 Campus Delivery
Colorado State University (must be next-to-last line)
Fort Collins, CO 80521-9984 (for Business Reply Cards or 80521-9900 for Business Reply Envelopes)
 

  • Other requirements and restrictions apply. Contact Mail Services at(970) 491-6529 or Communications and Creative Services at (970) 491-6432 for additional information.
  • In the return address on standard format Colorado State University envelopes and mailing panels, do not use Colorado State University (redundant with the logo)and spell out Colorado instead of using CO. (See Communications Toolbox at graphicstandards.colostate.edu.)
adviser
  • Use the spelling adviser in generic use. The spelling advisor may be used as preferred by an individual person or office.


Professor Jones is my adviser.
John Smith is senior advisor to the president.

affect,effect
  • Affect is a verb meaning to act on or move or to pretend or assume.

The music affected the crowd.
The actor affected a limp.

  • Effect as a noun means result or condition of being in force.

Increased exercise has had a beneficial effect on her health.
Plan B now is in effect.

  • Effect as a verb means to bring about, accomplish,or become operative.

Increased exercise has effected an improvement in her health.
The new policy will take effect next week.

African American (See also nonbiased language.)

Note: The following differs from the AP Stylebook but is the preference of Colorado State University's Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity and should be used in all University communications. Also check with the subject or source for the preferred usage.

  • African American is the preferred usage at Colorado State University. Do not hyphenate in any use.

The African American community is celebrating Martin Luther King Day.
African Americans nationwide are celebrating Martin Luther King Day.

ages
  • Always use figures for animals and people but not for inanimate objects less than 10 years old.

The woman is 30 years old.
The child is 5 years old.
The law is eight years old.
Our 25-year class reunion is next month.

  • Use hyphens for ages expressed as adjectives before a noun.

She is a 30-year-old woman.

  • Do not use apostrophes when referring to a general age. If a person's age is used after a name,enclose in commas.

The president is in his 60s.
Don Smith, 47, was hired.

alumni
  • Use alumna for a woman, alumnae for a group of women, alumnus for a man, and alumni for a group of men or a group of men and women.
  • Do not use the term alum.
  • Alumni status also is granted to people who attended Colorado State University but did not complete degrees.
  • For listing alumni information, state the individual's name, the degree abbreviation and/or the major, and the year of graduation. Enclose within commas or parentheses following the name.

John Doe, computer science, '71, resides in Denver.
Mary Smith (B.S., '65; M.S., '68) has been voted this year's honor alumna.

a.m.,p.m.
  • Always lowercase and use periods without a space before the m. Avoid redundancy.

3:30 p.m. or 3:30 this afternoon
Not: this afternoon at 3:30 p.m.

among, between
  • In general, use between when referring to two people,things, or groups and among when referring to more than two persons,things, or groups.

The manager divided the tasks between John and Maria.
The difference between their team and ours is motivation.
Picket fences run between the lots in the neighborhood.
Place a napkin between each plate.
The rumor spread among the students.
Excitement was high among students, players, and coaches.

  • Also use between when referring to three or more elements that are considered two at a time or as a group.

There was disagreement between the employees, the management, and the board.

ampersand (&)
  • Do not use in the names of offices and departments or in general writing in place of and.
  • Use only when part of an official name, such as AT&T.
Anglo (See nonbiased language.)
Asian American (See nonbiased language.)
assure, ensure, insure
  • Assure, ensure, and insure all mean to make secure or certain. However, only assure is used in reference to setting a person's mind at rest. While ensure and insure generally are interchangeable, insure is now more widely used to mean to guarantee financially against risk, particularly in the insurance industry,and ensure is recommended for use in a non financial context.
athletics
  • The correct title of the Colorado State University department is Department of Athletics (plural). See departments for capitalization guidelines.

athletics staff
the Department of Athletics
the athletics department

  • The title Athletics Director should be capitalized when used before a name (see titles).

According to Athletics Director Jane Smith, this will be an exciting season.
Jane Smith, athletics director, said this year's team looks promising.
The name of the new athletics director will be announced tomorrow.

  • Capitalize Rams when referring to athletic teams or players.

The Rams' mascot is CAM, a Rambouillet ram, named for the Colorado Agricultural and Mechanical College in 1947.

  • Do not capitalize names of individual sports.

football
men's golf
women's basketball

awards, fellowships, medals, prizes, scholarships
  • Capitalize formal names of awards, scholarships, and honorary designations such as fellowships, honorary chairs, and professorships without quotation marks or italics. Do not capitalize generic designations or references.

Nobel Peace Prize but the peace prize
National Book Award
Bronze Star
Medal of Honor
Margaret B. Hazaleus Award
Monfort Professor but the professorship
University Distinguished Professor
University Distinguished Teaching Scholar
Ed Warner Endowed Chair in Geophysics but the endowed chair
Fellow of the American Society of Agronomy but the fellowship
National Merit Scholarship but the scholarship

  • The titles of lecture series stand alone without quotation marks or italics. Enclose in quotation marks the title of an individual lecture.

In the Monfort Lecture Series, primatologist and conservationist Jane Goodall delivered the 2007 Monfort Lecture, "A Reason to Hope," to an audience of more than 6,000.

  • When used in an adjective phrase, only hyphenate after the last word in the award name. Do not hyphenate a noun phrase.

Nobel Peace Prize-winning chemist
Pulitzer Prize winner
National Merit Scholarship-winner

  • Do not capitalize the discipline or category in which the award was received.

Nobel Prize in physics
Pulitzer Prize for fiction

  • In "Best of" lists, capitalize (title case) and enclose in quotation marks.

In 2006, Fort Collins was named "Best Place to Live" by Money Magazine.

Our civil engineering team won first place in the concrete canoe competition.
The first-place award went to CSU's team in the horse judging competition.
The relay team placed 11th in the finals.


B

Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science (See academic degrees.)
beside, besides
  • Beside means next to. Besides means in addition to.
black,Black American (See African American and nonbiased language.)
blog
  • Internet jargon, short for Web log.
  • Enclose blog titles in quotation marks.
board (See also Board of Governors of the Colorado State University System.)
  • Do not capitalize board or phrases such as board of directors or board of trustees in general use. Capitalize only when used in conjunction with the official name of an organization.

First National Bank's Board of Directors will meet today.
The bank's board of directors met today.
Today's board meeting includes only half of the Board of Governors members.

Board of Governors of the Colorado State University System (See also Colorado State University System.)
  • On first reference, use the complete name of the board. Thereafter, the following shortened forms are acceptable:

Board of Governors of the CSU System
CSU System Board of Governors
Board of Governors
the Board
the System

  • The former name, State Board of Agriculture, is obsolete and should not be used except in historical references.
book titles (See also composition titles.)
  • Italicize titles and subtitles of published books,including catalogs of reference materials. (Note that this differs from the AP Stylebook.)
  • Enclose in quotation marks chapter titles, partial titles, and titles of short stories, and essays. Italicize titles of such works published separately.
  • Capitalize titles of commonly recognized parts of books, but do not italicize or enclose in quotation marks. Do not capitalize these general terms.

Chapter 2
Appendix A
Table of Contents
Index
The book contains six chapters, an index, and a table of contents.

  • Italicize titles of poetry collections and long poems published separately. Enclose titles of short poems in quotation marks.
  • Capitalize (but do not italicize or put in quotation marks)titles of religious works, versions, and editions.

the King James Version of the Bible
the Old Testament
the Book of Job
the Lord's Prayer
the Torah
the Koran

buildings, places (See also campus buildings.doc.)
  • On first reference, use the official name of campus buildings,rooms, and facilities with initial capital letters. After the first reference,do not capitalize such general terms as hall, center,laboratory, and building if the full name is not used.

North Ballroom
Cherokee Park Room
Johnson Hall
James L. Voss Veterinary Medical Center or Voss Veterinary Medical Center
North Conference Room of the Administration Building

  • Capitalize commonly recognized parts of campus.


Main Campus
the Oval
the Plaza
Foothills Campus

  • Spell out Lory Student Center. On subsequent reference, student center may be used. When space is limited, LSC may be used on second reference for internal communications only. Use Lory Student Center Theatre,not Theater; however, use theater in generic uses.

 
The Lory Student Center has a theater with a balcony.

  • Use Morgan Library when referring to the main library only. When referring to Colorado State's library system or its buildings collectively, use University Libraries (or the Libraries after first reference).
  • In addresses and when referring to locations, cite the room number first (the word Room is optional) followed, without a comma, by the building name. When the location requires a compass-point distinction,abbreviate it in capitals and with periods following the building name.

21 Spruce Hall
271 Aylesworth Hall S.W.
A102 Engineering Building (no hyphen between section and room number)
221-223 Lory Student Center

Business Reply Mail (See addresses.)

C

Cabinet
  • Capitalize Cabinet in references to a specific body of advisers heading executive departments.

President Smith announced two new Cabinet members.
The president will be forming a Cabinet soon.

capitalization

Note: The following guidelines are intended to address the most common usage questions and to avoid excessive capitalization, since capitalization confers added significance to common nouns. (Readers may not consider such capitalized words to be as momentous as the writer does.) Use good judgment in selecting a particular style – with this guide as a reference – and apply that style consistently throughout the document.

  • Capitalize professional and formal titles when they precede a name (see also academic titles). Do not capitalize titles used after a name or words that are occupational titles.

On Tuesday, President Jane Smith will deliver the opening address. Afterward, President Smith will introduce keynote speaker Mary Jones, poet and professor of English, and soloist James Roberts will conclude the ceremony with the alma mater.

  • Capitalize University and System when they specifically refer to Colorado State University. (See Colorado State University and Colorado State University System. This differs from the AP Stylebook.)
  • Capitalize complete and official names of Colorado State University colleges, schools, divisions, departments, centers, offices, and programs (see also colleges and departments). In all other instances, do not capitalize.

Department of Physics; the physics department
University Center for the Arts; the center
College of Business; the business college
Computer Visualization Laboratory; the laboratory
School of Occupational and Educational Studies; the school
Office of Admissions; the admissions office
Women's Program; the program

  • Capitalize full names of specific committees, councils, and divisions. Do not capitalize in general use.

The Classified Personnel Council met today.
The council discussed employee benefits.

  • Capitalize full names of degrees such as Bachelor of Arts but not generic versions such as bachelor's degree. (See academic degrees.)
  • Capitalize class rankings of freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior only when indicating a specific class or program title.

The Senior Class sponsored the lecture.
All freshmen are invited to attend Freshman Premier activities.

  • Capitalize commonly recognized features and landmarks.

the Main Campus
the Oval
the Lagoon
the Plaza
the Oval Office

  • Capitalize references to specific rooms and buildings.

North Ballroom
Cherokee Park Room
Johnson Hall

  • Capitalize commonly recognized regions in Colorado that are widely known by a distinctive name. In other references, do not capitalize the modifier.

Western Slope
Front Range
Northern Colorado
northwestern Colorado
central Longmont

  • Capitalize the full name of a specific class or a class title that uses a proper noun or numeral.

He took Introduction to Philosophy, Experimental Psychology, and Algebra II.
My English class meets every day at 9 a.m. followed by advanced algebra at 10.

  • Capitalize seasons only when part of a specific name or time. Do not capitalize derivatives such as springlike.

Fall 2008
Summer Session 2009
Summer Olympics
She will teach two courses during the summer session.

  • Capitalize names of historical and geological periods and events.

Paleozoic Era
Age of Reason
Dark Ages
Boston Tea Party

  • Capitalize the name of a school district when preceded by a township, county, or proper name.

Poudre School District

  • Capitalize government entities when part of a proper noun or an agency's formal name.

Federal Reserve Board
Department of State
the State Department (also acceptable)

  • Do not capitalize government entities such as city, county, state, and federal when used as a common noun or adjective or when used in place of the actual name.

the city of Fort Collins
the state of Colorado
an employee of the state
federal loans

  • Capitalize the first word of a complete quotation.

They said, "We are pleased by the progress they are making."

  • Capitalize the first word following a colon when it introduces an independent, complete sentence.

His meaning was clear: There would be no further discussion.

  • Do not capitalize the first word following a colon when it does not introduce an independent, complete sentence.

There are three parts to the sentence: the subject, the verb, and the object.

  • Capitalize the full, official titles of CSU organizations and programs.

Associated Students of Colorado State University (or ASCSU after first reference)
Board of Governors of the Colorado State University System
Colorado State University System (or CSU System after first reference)
Faculty Council
Honors Program
Fall 2009 Commencement (when referring to a specific commencement)
University (when referring to Colorado State University)

  • Do not capitalize the first word of an indirect or partial quote. Indirect or partial quotations, which do not require commas before or after quotation marks, should be used only sparingly.

He said he was "­pleased by the progress" they were making.

  • Do not capitalize the following words and phrases in general use:

ad hoc committee
admissions form
alma mater
amendment
baccalaureate
bachelor's
black (when referring to race; see nonbiased language)
board
bureau
central administration
city of Fort Collins
college
colonial (when referring to the style of architecture)
commencement
committee
cum laude (do not italicize)
department
doctoral, doctorate
fall
freshman
junior
master's
orientation
president of the United States
president of the University
program
school
senior
sophomore
spring break
spring
state of Colorado
summer
white paper
winter

Caucasian, white (See also nonbiased language.)
  • The term nonminority should be used when appropriate in place of white, Caucasian, etc.
century
  • Do not capitalize. When used with ordinal numbers less than 10, as in sixth century, spell out the ordinal and do not capitalize. When used with ordinals 10 and larger, as in 21st century, use figures and do not superscript the suffix – instead, place the suffix (-st, -nd, -rd) in the same size and on the same baseline as the running text. (To override the autoformat superscript function of the word processing program, check the program's users manual or help menu.) Hyphenate the ordinal and century when used as a compound adjective.

Colorado State University is a 21st-century land-grant institution.
the first century
the 20th century
Not: the 20th century

chairman, chairwoman
  • Use chairman when referring to a man and chairwoman when referring to a woman. Use chairperson instead of chair only if gender is unknown or if it is an organization's preferred title for that position.
chapters
  • Capitalize chapter when used with a numeral in reference to a section of a book or legal code. Always use Arabic figures. Lowercase when standing alone.

Chapter 1
Chapter 20
the third chapter

Chicano, Chicana (See nonbiased language.)
cities
  • Follow a city name with the name of the state unless the city is well known by the audience. (See state names for the proper abbreviations and a listing of state names that are not abbreviated.)

Chicago
Paris, Texas
Laramie, Wyo.

  • Enclose state, county, or country names or abbreviations in commas when they follow city names.

The prospective student traveled from Glenville, Ill., to Fort Collins, Colo.

  • In an international context, spell out state names.

Fort Collins, Colorado, U.S.A., is the home of Colorado State University.

colleges
  • The eight colleges at Colorado State University are:

College of Agricultural Sciences
College of Health and Human Sciences
College of Business
College of Engineering
College of Liberal Arts
College of Natural Sciences
College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences
Warner College of Natural Resources (Warner College is acceptable after first reference.)

  • Capitalize full, official college names. Avoid using acronyms for University names. Shortened names may be used on subsequent references but do not capitalize them.
  • Within a specific college or department context, College or Department may be capitalized in place of the full college name after first reference.

Dartmouth College
college graduate
the College of Natural Sciences
The College received a grant from the National Institutes of Health.

Colorado State University (See also athletics; capitalization; names.)
  • The preferred way to refer to Colorado State University is by the full name, Colorado State University. The full name, Colorado State University, should always be used on first reference; however, the University, Colorado State, or CSU may be substituted for the full name in publications for variety or when space does not permit the use of the full name. These substitutes may not appear as main heads. (Note: Capitalizing University differs from the AP Stylebook.) Also see "Communications Toolbox" at graphicstandards.colostate.edu.
  • In formal or official context, when referring to the University president, use Tony Frank on first reference. Thereafter, use either Frank, President Frank, the president, or Dr. Frank. Also, in less formal context, Penley may be used after first reference or as consistent with style being used.

Tony Frank gave his annual fall address today. Following the address, President Frank invited the audience to the picnic and activities on the Oval.

  • When referencing Colorado State University prior to May 1, 1957, when it was renamed and granted university status, use the college's official name at the time, indicating as appropriate that this was the University's name at the time.

In 1949, William E. Morgan became president of Colorado Agricultural and Mechanical College, later known as Colorado State University.

Colorado State University was established in 1870 as the Agricultural College of Colorado.

For a brief timeline of the prior names and presidents of Colorado State University, see "Colorado State University: University History.

Colorado State University Extension
  • Formerly known as Colorado State University Cooperative Extension or Cooperative Extension. Do not use Cooperative Extension Service. Neither Cooperative nor Service is part of the organization's official name as of June 2007.
  • Use Colorado State University Extension on first reference. Thereafter, use Colorado State Extension. If printed material includes multiple references, Extension may be used to minimize lengthy repetition.

For more information, contact the Extension office in your county.

  • Generally, most Extension employees who are called specialists also are professors at the University, and most employees who are called agents are located in field offices throughout the state.

Colorado State University Extension nutrition specialist Mary Smith will discuss healthy food choices in next week's column.

Colorado State University System
  • The Colorado State University System is a higher education system that incorporates Colorado State University in Fort Collins and Colorado State University in Pueblo (formerly called the University of Southern Colorado) to assist the institutions in accomplishing their objectives and to provide staff support to the Board of Governors of the Colorado State University System.
  • On first reference, spell out in full and capitalize. Thereafter, CSU System may be used.

Larry Edward Penley is chancellor of the Colorado State University System, which comprises Colorado State University and Colorado State University-Pueblo.

  • On first reference, spell out the Pueblo campus as Colorado State University-Pueblo. Subsequent references may be abbreviated CSU-Pueblo.
commas
  • In U.S. English, commas and periods always go inside single or double quotation marks. (In the United Kingdom, they always go outside the marks.)
  • Use a comma to separate independent clauses (complete sentences) joined by a conjunction. If clauses share a common subject, do not use a comma. Do not separate two dependent clauses with a comma, but separate more than two dependent clauses with commas, as with any series.

Fort Collins enjoys a moderate climate, and it is located near the foothills.
Fort Collins enjoys a moderate climate and is located near the foothills.
Fort Collins enjoys a moderate climate, is located near the foothills, and has enough snowfall to keep winter enthusiasts happy.

  • Use commas to separate elements in a series, including a final comma in a series of three or more elements. (This differs from the AP Stylebook.)

She took microbiology, psychology, and art history.
Course work is required in natural sciences, arts and humanities, and business.

  • Do not use commas if all the elements in a series are joined by conjunctions.

"I have school and my roommates and sports to keep me busy," she said.
The rooms share a living room, kitchen, and laundry room.

  • Use a comma after introductory phrases, including short introductory phrases. (This differs from the AP Stylebook.)

That year, only two schools participated.
That year only, two schools participated.
In Fall 2006, more than 20,000 undergraduates were enrolled.
Note: Although it is not necessary to use commas after certain introductory phrases, it is never incorrect to use the comma, and simply using a comma after all introductory phrases makes punctuating less confusing and expedites the writing and editing processes.

  • In listing dates, no comma is needed between a month and a year or between the time and date.

The lecture was scheduled for October 2006.
The club will meet 1-3 p.m. March 25 in the Cherokee Park Room of the Lory Student Center.

  • Use commas with a month, day, and year. Set off the year with commas.

The lecture scheduled for Oct. 17, 2006, was cancelled.

  • Enclose in commas state and country names when they follow a city name.

They traveled from St. Louis, Mo., to Madison, Wis.

  • Use a comma to separate multiple adjectives and adverbs that each modify the same word. As a memory aid, do not use a comma if and cannot be inserted between the modifiers.

It was a long, hot summer. (It was a long and hot summer.)
Colorado State University is a 21st-century land-grant institution.
Not: Colorado State University is a 21st-century and land-grant institution.

committee
  • Do not abbreviate. Capitalize when part of a formal name.

the Joint Budget Committee

  • Do not capitalize committee in shortened versions of formal committee names.

ethics committee

complement, compliment
  • Complement means something that completes. Compliment means an act or expression of courtesy or praise.

The complimentary dinner is tonight.
The dinner complements the evening activities.

compose, comprise, constitute
  • Compose means create, put together, or make up – the parts compose [make up] the whole.

Fifty states compose the United States.
The United States is composed of 50 states.
Twenty-six letters compose the English alphabet.
The English alphabet is composed of 26 letters.

  • Comprise means to contain or consist of – the whole comprises [contains] the parts. Do not use comprise in the passive sense. (Comprise of is redundant.)

The United States comprises 50 states.
The English alphabet comprises 26 letters.
Not: The English alphabet is comprised of 26 letters.

  • Constitute, when used to mean form or make up, may work best when neither compose nor comprise seem to fit.

Fifty states constitute the United States.
Twelve people constitute a jury.

  • Do not use comprise instead of includecomprise implies that all parts follow; include implies that only some parts follow.

The English alphabet includes the letters A, B, and C.

composition titles (See also book titles; conference titles journal titles; musical titles; newspaper and newsletter titles.)

The following differs from the AP Stylebook

Capitalize all principal words in titles (see title case) and italicize or enclose in quotation marks as follows.

  • The general rule of thumb is to italicize the titles of larger works (such as books and magazines) that contain smaller parts (such as chapters and articles), which would be enclosed in quotation marks.
  • Italicize titles and subtitles of published books, journals, pamphlets, proceedings, reports, collections, periodicals, newspapers, and all works published separately (such as a long poem published separately and not as part of a larger collection).
  • Italicize titles of collections of poetry and long poems published separately. Enclose in quotation marks the titles of short poems.
  • Italicize titles of long musical compositions. Enclose in quotation marks the titles of songs and short compositions.
  • Italicize album titles. Enclose in quotation marks the titles of individual songs.
  • Italicize the titles of drawings, statues, and other works of art.
  • Italicize the titles of motion pictures, plays, and television and radio programs.
  • Enclose in quotation marks the titles of lectures, speeches, theses, white papers, essays, poems, short stories, magazine or newspaper articles, book chapters or sections, and shorter works not published separately.
  • Enclose in quotation marks the titles of television episodes and radio stories.
compound words (See hyphens.)
comprise (See compose, comprise, constitute.)
computer terminology (See e-mail; Internet; URL; Web.)
conference titles
  • Capitalize all principal words in titles of conferences and symposia, but do not italicize or enclose these titles in quotation marks. (This differs from the AP Stylebook.) Italicize conference themes, and enclose in quotation marks the titles of individual talks, discussions, or speeches.

A Study of Modern Life is the theme of the Sixth Annual Healthy Living Conference, which includes a keynote address, "Moving Ahead," by John Smith. The conference will be held in September.

contractions
  • Be careful not to confuse contractions with possessive pronouns – contractions have apostrophes; possessive pronouns do not. (Tip: To test if a contraction is used correctly, think of the words that form the contraction.)

Who's [Who is] going to the game?
Whose book is this?
Not: Who's [Who is] book is this?

It's [It is] the dawn of a beautiful day.
The dog lost its bone.
Not: The dog lost it's [it is] bone.

They're [They are] going to the game.
Their mission is threefold.
Not: They're [They are] mission is threefold.

You're [You are] in trouble!
Your comments are important to us.
Not: You're [You are] comments are important to us.

The decision was theirs to make.
There's [There is] still time to decide.

  • Be sure that contractions agree with the number of the sentence.

There are too many cooks in the kitchen.
Not: There's [There is] too many cooks in the kitchen.

Cooperative Extension (See Colorado State University Extension.)
countries (See also nonbiased language.)
  • Spell out the names of countries and world entities when used as nouns.

United States
United Kingdom
United Nations

  • When used as adjectives, names of countries and world entities may be abbreviated with periods.

U.S. policy
U.K. economy
U.N. treaty

  • Check Webster's New World College Dictionary for adjective forms of country names.
course titles and numbers
  • Capitalize official course names and formal names of programs. Do not put in quotation marks or italics.

He took Introduction to Philosophy, Experimental Psychology, and Painting II.

  • Do not capitalize general references to courses except for proper nouns.

She took classes in psychology and German.

  • Usually, when referring to Colorado State University courses, official course names are sufficient. When including course numbers with course names, use official University course numbers, which consist of an alphabetical prefix (indicates the college, department, or unit that offers the course) followed by a space and the number of the course.

AT 300

  • For CSU courses approved for inclusion in the All-University Core Curriculum, CC is added after the prefix. If the prefix consists of only one letter, put a space before the CC. If the prefix consists of two letters, do not add a space before CC.

M CC 125
JTCC 100

course work
  • Course work is two words.

D

dash
  • A dash is used to signal an abrupt change in thought or a pause within a sentence. It may be used in pairs to set off or enclose a word, a phrase, a list, or a clause – as with commas or parentheses – but with more emphasis than commas or parentheses.
  • A dash also may be used alone, like a colon – to detach the end of a sentence from the main body or to offer additional information.
  • A dash may be used before an attribution to set it off from a quotation.

I never think of the future – it comes soon enough.
– Albert Einstein

  • There are several characters used to create a dash. An en dash [ – ] is longer than a hyphen [ - ] but shorter than an em dash [ — ]. The double hyphen [ -- ] today is considered obsolete.
  • The en dash should be used with spaces on either side.

Note: Though some prefer to use the unspaced em dash, others argue that its length is visually disrupting to the reader and can create problems with line spacing and line breaks. Therefore, in the interest of consistency and efficiency, the Colorado State University Writers Style Guide recommends using the en dash with spaces.

To make an en dash in most word processing programs, type a space followed by a hyphen followed by another space. To make an em dash, type two hyphens without a space before or after.

dates (See also decades and years.)
  • Be sure to include a time reference on all communications, both printed and electronic. This may be as obvious as including the year of an annual report in its title, the dates of a conference on a cover, or the volume number, issue number, and date on a periodical. It may be less obvious but still accessible to the reader, such as putting a date at the bottom of a Web page, a copyright date on an inside front cover, or a revision date at the bottom of a form or back of a brochure.
  • Use figures with dates. Do not use ordinals in dates (21st, 32nd, etc.).

Jan. 23, 2008
Not: Jan. 23rd, 2008

  • When a month is used with a specific date, abbreviate only Jan., Feb., Aug., Sept., Oct., Nov., and Dec.

Feb. 17, 1957
April 23, 2008

  • Use commas with a month, day, and year. Enclose the year in commas when it follows a date.

The lecture scheduled for Oct. 17, 2006, was cancelled.

  • Spell out the month when used alone or when used with a year alone. No comma is used between a month and a year.

January
February 2008
September 2009

  • It is not necessary to use the year with a month and/or date that fall within the current year unless the context refers to multiple years.

The award was presented in April.
The ceremony will be Sept. 16.
Engineering Visit Day will be Oct. 20, 2008, and Music Visit Day will be Feb. 18, 2009.

  • Do not use in or on with dates unless its absence would lead to confusion.

The seminar begins June 30.

  • Use a hyphen for continuing or inclusive numbers.

Classes are scheduled for the 2008-2009 academic year.
She taught in the math department from 1985-2003.

  • When indicating a span of three or more consecutive dates, use a hyphen and avoid using from. When indicating a span of two consecutive dates, use and instead of a hyphen.

Submit applications May 7-9.
Submit applications May 7 and 8.

  • In listing events, list the time first followed by the date and the place. No comma is used between time and date or between month and year.

The club will meet 1-3 p.m. March 25 in the Cherokee Park Room of the Lory Student Center. The final meeting will be in June 2006.

The lecture was scheduled for 3 p.m. Oct. 6 in the cafeteria.

  • Use an s without an apostrophe to indicate spans of decades or centuries unless possessive. Use 's for singular possessive or s' for plural possessive.

the music of the 1960s
the 1960s' music (plural possessive)
1960's biggest hit (singular possessive)

  • Years are the only exception to the general rule that a figure is not used to start a sentence.

1998 was a very good year.

days of the week
  • Spell out days of the week.
  • Abbreviate only when space is limited, as in tabular matter.

Sun., Mon., Tues., Wed., Thu., Fri., Sat.

  • Abbreviate (with no periods) when space is very limited, as in course listings.

Su, M, T, W, Th (R in course listings), F, Sa

dean
  • Capitalize Dean when used as a title before a full name on first reference. In general context, do not capitalize. In more formal writing, Dean may be used and capitalized before a last name as a professional title.

During Dean Elizabeth Gifford's tenure, she served as associate dean of the School of Home Economics, and in 1950, Dean Gifford became the first dean of the College of Home Economics.

  • Lowercase dean's list in all uses.

She is on the dean's list.

decades
  • Use Arabic figures to indicate decades of history, except in special expressions.

the 1920s
the Roaring Twenties
the mid-1930s

  • Use an apostrophe or a right (closing) single quotation mark to indicate centuries that are left out. Add the letter s without an apostrophe for plurals. Use 's for singular possessive or s' for plural possessive.

the 1920s
the '20s
the mid-1920s
the '20s' headlines

degrees, academic (See academic degrees.)
degrees, temperature (See measurements.)
departments, offices, centers (Note: The following differs from the AP Stylebook.)

Note on capitalization: The following guidelines are intended to address the most common usage questions and to avoid excessive capitalization, since capitalization confers added significance to common nouns. Readers may not consider such capitalized words to be as momentous as does the writer. Use good judgment in selecting a particular style – with this guide as a reference – and apply that style consistently throughout the document.

  • Capitalize full, official department, college, and office names. In all other instances, do not capitalize. The official format for names of Colorado State University colleges and departments is College of and Department of. Do not use ampersands, and follow this style guide's punctuation style.

College of Liberal Arts
the liberal arts college
Department of Physics
physics department
the Department of Music, Theatre, and Dance
the music program

  • Shortened or informal names may be used on subsequent references but do not capitalize.

The Department of Economics and the Department of History, in cooperation with the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs, are hosting the event. Jim Smith, professor in the economics department, is the featured lecturer. He will speak on the history of global economics.

  • Avoid using acronyms for University names (see acronyms).
dimensions (See measurements.)
directions, regions
  • Lowercase north, south, northeast, northern, etc., when they indicate compass direction. Do not abbreviate except in addresses. Capitalize when such terms designate regions.

The snowstorm is moving east.
The storm system that developed in the Midwest is spreading eastward.
He has a Southern accent.
The economy of Northern Colorado is growing rapidly.
A blizzard hit the Front Range of the Colorado Rockies.

  • Lowercase compass points only when they describe a section of a state or city, but capitalize when part of a proper name.

western Texas
southern Atlanta
North Dakota
West Virginia

disabilities (See nonbiased language.)
diversity (See nonbiased language and nondiscrimination statements.)

E

effect (See affect, effect.)
ellipsis (See also quotations.)
  • An ellipsis is a series of three periods with no spaces between and with one space on both sides. It is used to indicate that text has been removed from within quoted material, that the speaker has hesitated or faltered, or that there is more material than is cited.

"Fourscore and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, ... dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal."
"I just had a thought ... "

  • Be careful to avoid deletions that would distort the meaning of the original quotation.
  • Use an ellipsis where the actual deletion of text occurs – for example, within a sentence, between sentences, or before or after a punctuation mark.
  • Do not use ellipses at the beginning or end of direct or partial quotations. The quotation marks indicate that the material has been excerpted.
e-mail
  • Short form of electronic mail. Hyphenate but do not capitalize unless it is used at the beginning of a sentence or as a stand-alone line. Also: e-book, e-commerce, e-business.

E-mail your e-mail problems to help@colostate.edu.
E-mail help@colostate.edu for help with your e-mail problems.
E-mail: jane.smith@colostate.edu (a stand-alone line, not a complete sentence)

emeritus
  • Emeritus is added after titles of people who have retired but retained their rank. Only capitalize if it precedes a name.

Professor Emeritus Robert Jones is visiting the University.
Robert Jones, professor emeritus of music, is performing on Thursday.

entitled, titled
  • Use entitled to mean a right to do or have something. Do not use it to mean titled, which refers to the name of something. Do not use a comma before the title.

She was entitled to the promotion.
His lecture is titled "The Economic Power."
Not: His lecture is entitled "The Economic Power."

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (See also nonbiased language.)
  • Spell out on first reference. EEOC is acceptable on subsequent reference.
essential, nonessential clauses (See also that, which, who.)
  • Essential clauses, which are phrases that are necessary to the meaning of a sentence, should not be enclosed in commas.

The storm hit where damage from the previous storm was greatest.
He will graduate this spring if he passes chemistry.

  • Use commas to set off nonessential clauses, which add information but which can be omitted without changing the meaning of the sentence.

The storm hit the Midwest, where damage from previous storm was greatest.
He will graduate this spring, if I remember correctly.

ethnicity, ethnic origin (See nonbiased language.)
events
  • In listing events, the preferred style is to list the time first followed by the date and place. No comma is used between time and date or between month and year. Use a comma after the year when listing a full date.

The meeting runs 3-4 p.m. April 27 in the Cherokee Park Room of the Lory Student Center.
The lecture, scheduled for 3 p.m. Oct. 6 in the cafeteria, was postponed.
The discussion will be Sept. 12, 2008, in the ASCSU Senate Chambers.

  • However, the timeframe and context within which events are listed should determine the most logical order of the information.
Extension (See Colorado State University Extension.)

F

farther, further
  • Farther refers to physical distance, and further refers to an extension of time or degree.

We'll paddle farther up the creek with our oars.
If you're willing, look further into the matter of the missing oars.

fax
  • Fax is the commonly accepted abbreviation for facsimile or facsimile machine. Use fax (all lowercase) unless it is used at the beginning of a sentence. It is acceptable to use as a noun or a verb (faxed as past tense).

Fax or mail your completed application to this office by Jan. 31.
A fax of your application should be received by Jan. 31.

fellow, fellowships
  • Capitalize full names of fellowships without italics or quotation marks. Lowercase when used generically.

She received the American Society of Agronomy Fellowship.
She received the fellowship.

  • Capitalize Fellow in reference to a fellowship, regardless of gender.

She was named a Fellow of the American Society of Agronomy.

fewer (See also under, less than, fewer than.)
  • In general, use fewer than for individual items that can be counted and less than for bulk or quantity.

Fewer doctors result in less medical care.
At ABC Corp., fewer than 10 employees make less than $70,000 per year.

fiscal year
  • A fiscal year is an accounting year that, at Colorado State University, runs from July 1-June 30. The U.S. government fiscal year runs from Oct. 1-Sept. 30. Business fiscal years typically coincide with the calendar year.
    Note: It is important to specify fiscal year in University communications, since the years alone could be confused with the academic calendar, which runs from fall semester through spring semester (typically August-May at CSU).
  • Use the full spelling and both years on first reference for audiences who may not be familiar with shortened forms; thereafter, shortened forms may be used.

first reference: Fiscal Year 2005-2006 or Fiscal Year 2005-06
thereafter: FY05-06

  • When referring to a span of more than one fiscal year, use the full spelling and terms on first reference for audiences who may not be familiar with shortened forms; thereafter, shortened forms may be used.

Fiscal Years 2005-06 and 2006-07
FY05-06 and FY06-07
FY05-06 through FY07-08

  • A fiscal year may be identified by using only the year the fiscal year closes – FY07, for example – if the time span is clear to the intended audience.
    Note: FY05-06 could be interpreted as Fiscal Year 2005 through Fiscal Year 2006 (July 1, 2004, through June 30, 2006) or Fiscal Year 2005-2006 (July 1, 2005, through June 30, 2006), so be sure the meaning is clear to the reader.
foreign names, words (See also abbreviations of foreign phrases.)
  • Whenever possible, use special characters as appropriate for diacritical marks (also called diacritics or accent marks), in foreign names and words. Check the software users manual or help menu for how to insert special characters or symbols.

façade
resumé
piñada
José

Fort
  • Do not abbreviate Fort for cities or military installations.

Fort Collins
Fort Lauderdale
Fort Benning

fractions
  • Spell out fractions less than one and hyphenate between words. In technical or tabular matter or text such as recipes, fractions may be expressed in figures.

two-thirds
seven-sixteenths
four-fifths

  • Use figures for amounts larger than one, and convert to decimals whenever appropriate. For mixed numbers, use hyphens between whole numbers and fractions or use special characters for fractions (3¼, 9¾) when possible, without hyphens. A thin or ¼ em space may be inserted between whole number and fraction if needed. (See software users guide or help menu for creating or using fractions and thin or ¼ em spaces.) Do not mix different fraction styles. (This differs from the AP Stylebook.)

1-1/2    2-5/8    1-3/16
1½     2¾     3¼
1.5    2.625    1.1875

  • Use figures and decimals exclusively in tabular material.
fundraising, fundraiser
  • One word in all uses.

A committee of experienced fundraisers from throughout the region determined that the fundraising program would include community fundraisers in each state.


G

gender-specific language (See nonbiased language.)
governor
  • Capitalize and abbreviate as Gov. when used as a formal title before a name. Lowercase and spell out in all other uses.

Gov. John Smith is meeting with other governors in the region.

grade point average, GPA
  • GPA may be used in all references to grade point average; however, for audiences who may be unfamiliar with the term, spell out on first reference and do not capitalize.
grades, -grader
  • Use figures in reference to grade levels.

Students in Grades 2-4 will take the assessment test.

  • Use K as an abbreviation for kindergarten only in reference to primary education levels.

The project will study how teachers in Grades K-12 teach math.

  • For class rankings, hyphenate both the noun forms and the adjective forms, and spell out ordinals first through ninth.

Second- and third-graders may go on the field trip.
All 11th-grade students should meet with their advisers by Oct. 1.

  • Do not hyphenate high school student. (See hyphen.)
  • Capitalize grade letters, and round to one numeral after the decimal point in GPAs unless more accuracy is needed in the context.

She got an F in Forensic Accounting, which brought her GPA down to 3.3.

graphic standards (See the Communications Toolbox at graphicstandards.colostate.edu.)
greater (See over, greater than, more than.)

H

hall
  • Use the correct form for campus facilities: Eddy Hall, not Eddy Building. (See "Colorado State University Building Names" at [insert URL and link] and buildings and places.)
handicap (See nonbiased language.)
Hispanic (See nonbiased language.)
historic, historical
  • Historic refers to something important that stands out in history. Historical refers to something that happened in the past.
  • The use of a is preferred to an before both terms, though either is correct.

a/an historic event

a/an historical building

homecoming
  • Capitalize when referring to a specific event. Use lowercase for generic references.

We volunteered to organize CSU's Homecoming and Family Weekend.
We had a nice homecoming party for Sid.

honors (See also academic degrees.)
Graduation with distinction:
  • Colorado State recognizes outstanding scholarship by granting baccalaureate degrees cum laude (with praise), magna cum laude (with great praise), and summa cum laude (with greatest praise) to students who have achieved unusually high academic excellence in undergraduate programs.
  • To avoid confusion with Honors Program awards, the phrase graduate(d) with honors should not be used.
Graduation as a University Honors Scholar:
  • Students who complete the University Honors Program Core Curriculum, a thesis/project, and achieve at least a 3.5 grade point average earn the designation of University Honors Scholar. Scholars are recognized at graduation by the Honors Program and during the colleges' commencement ceremonies.
  • The University Honors Program may be shortened to the Honors Program after first reference.
hyphen (See also dash and prefixes, suffixes.)
  • Use hyphens without spaces to:

o        combine words in compounds such as well-being, advanced-level, clerk-typist, fine-tune, A-frame, and artist-in-residence (see note below).

o        divide words at the ends of lines.

o        separate numbers such as phone numbers: (970) 491-6432.

o        show inclusive dates and numbers: Jan. 5-Oct. 7, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

  • Vice president has no hyphen.
Hyphenating compound words
  • A compound word can be hyphenated, spaced, or solid, depending on whether it is being used as an adjective, noun, or verb. Check Webster's New World College Dictionary to see if a word – and the way it is being used – should be hyphenated. The Gregg Reference Manual also has a helpful section on compound words.

the cleanup of a mess [noun]
a clean-up chore [adjective]
to clean up a mess [verb]

  • In general, hyphenate words in a compound adjective when used before a noun but not when they follow a noun.

up-to-date information (information that is up to date)
a well-known judge (a judge who is well known)
a three-tiered structure (a structure that has three tiers)
advanced-level class (working at an advanced level)

  • In general, when a compound noun is a well-known organization or concept, such as income tax or high school, a hyphen is not necessary. Do use a hyphen if the audience is not familiar with the compound or could be confused. (In a case where drug use is an issue, it would be best to rewrite the sentence to make the meaning clear: a student who uses drugs.)

high school student
income tax return
small animal practice (an animal practice that is small)
small-animal practice (a practice that specializes in small animals)

  • Do not hyphenate a compound modifier when it is a proper name or a commonly known foreign phrase.

Colorado State employee
bona fide offer

  • When a proper name is combined with another word to create a modifier, use a hyphen before the last term in the modifier.

Pulitzer Prize-winning author
National Institutes of Health-funded project

  • Do not use a hyphen in a compound adjective when the first word is an adverb that ends in -ly and the second word is a participle. Use a hyphen when the first word is a noun or adjective that ends in -ly and the second word is a participle.

He is a highly motivated employee.
A friendly-looking person stopped to help me.

  • When more than one hyphenated adjective shares a common word, the hyphens can be suspended.

The listing offers both on- and off-campus housing.
The agent showed us two-, three-, and four-bedroom homes.
This suggestion addresses both our long- and short-term needs.


I

information technology
  • Spell out and do not capitalize in general use.
in order to
  • Avoid using in order to; the word to is sufficient.

We ride the bus to help reduce air pollution.
Not: We rode the bus in order to help reduce air pollution.

Internet (See also computer terminology; URL; WWW.)
  • Capitalize and spell out Internet.
  • The World Wide Web, also WWW or the Web, is a subset of the Internet. Capitalize Web when referring to the WWW. The Web is acceptable in all uses.
  • Internet addresses include website designations and e-mail addresses. Follow the spelling and upper/lower case designations of the website owner. Certain addresses may be case-sensitive, so be sure to follow the owner's address specifications.
  • Use the / (forward slash) at the end of a Web address only if the mark is required to connect to the site.
  • Do not italicize or emphasize Web addresses in running text.
  • Do not underline Web addresses, which sometimes include an underscore ( _ ) character that would be obscured if the entire address is underscored. (Check the software's users guide or help menu for how to turn off autoformatting of hyperlinks.)
  • Avoid using lengthy and complicated addresses – instead, use a shorter URL and "click on" instructions if possible – and try to keep addresses on one line. If an address must break between lines, split the address immediately before a slash or a dot. Use a period when an address falls at the end of a sentence; if the address occurs in mid-sentence, punctuate with a comma or similar mark as appropriate. Never hyphenate any word within a URL.
  • Always test Web addresses. In most cases, an address such as www.colostate.edu is sufficient; however, colostate.edu will not work. To ensure accuracy, include http:// or other prefixes such as ftp://.

Students may find out more about the University on the Web at www.colostate.edu.
Click on "Future Students" at http://welcome.colostate.edu for more details.
The address www.colostate.edu belongs to Colorado State University.

  • The terms website, webcam, webcast, and webmaster are now commonly accepted as one word and are not capitalized. (The spelling of website differs from the AP Stylebook.)
  • Capitalize and use as two words Web page.
  • When transmitting information via e-mail or over the Internet, such as public relations releases, use quotation marks for titles instead of italics, which may not transmit correctly to the recipient's screen.
italics
  • Use italics when available instead of underlining.
  • Use italics for the titles of longer works or compilations, shorter works published separately, and works of art such as paintings, drawings, and sculptures. (See also composition titles. This differs from the AP Stylebook.)

Death of a Salesman is showing on Broadway.
What time is All Things Considered on the radio?
My favorite novel is Rabbit is Rich.

  • Translate foreign titles into English unless a specific work's original name is well known.

Puccini's La Bohème is on stage at the Met.

  • Do not italicize commonly used foreign terms or abbreviations (see abbreviations).
its, it's
  • It's is a contraction for it is or it has. Its is the possessive form of the neuter pronoun.

It's going to be fine.
It's beyond me.
The troll lost its prey.

  • Memory aid: To be sure of the proper form, spell out or include the contraction as appropriate.

It's going to be fine. (Translates to the correct form: It is going to be fine.)
Not: The troll lost it's prey. (Translates to the incorrect form: The troll lost it is prey.)


J

job titles (See also names; academic degrees; titles of people.)
  • Capitalize job titles only when they immediately precede the individual's name or when they are named positions or honorary titles. Do not capitalize or abbreviate titles that come after a name, but set them off with commas.

President Jane Smith will deliver the opening address.
Social sciences Associate Professor Robert Jones leads the meeting.
Robert Jones, social sciences associate professor, is leading the meeting.
The president will arrive soon to meet with the pope.

  • Vice president has no hyphen.
  • Do not capitalize an occupational title used either before or after a name.

Local artist Mary Johnson hosts a show.
Surgery was done by world-famous veterinarian James Smith.

  • Courtesy titles such as Dr., Mr., Mrs., Ms., and Miss generally are not used in either first or subsequent references, except in formal applications. However, Dr. may be used on first reference as part of a title if the person is a medical doctor or veterinarian. (See "doctor" when using the AP Stylebook.)

The world-famous veterinarian, Dr. James Smith, performed the surgery.

  • Place long titles after names and enclose in commas

John Smith, assistant dean for undergraduate studies in the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, will hand out the diplomas.

  • Abbreviate titles before names such as Sen., Maj., Gov., Hon., and Rev. (These may be spelled out in formal applications.) However, always spell out Reverend and Honorable when used with the.

Gen. Robert Jones
Lt. Col. Mary Smith
the Reverend James Anderson
the Honorable Jane Martinez

journal titles (See also composition titles.)
  • Use italics for the titles of journals.

 
The quote came from the New England Journal of Medicine.
African Affairs is published on behalf of the Royal African Society.


K

K
  • Use the capital K with no space after the numeral for measurements of computer transmission speed.

56K modem

  • Do not use K in place of 1,000 or $1,000.

$34,000 (Not: $34K)

  • Use K as an abbreviation for kindergarten only in reference to primary education levels such as K-12.

L

languages
  • Capitalize proper names of languages and dialects.

Spanish&.aspx#8195;
Yiddish&.aspx#8195;
Persian&.aspx#8195;
Ilocano

  • Italicize foreign phrases but not commonly used foreign expressions or abbreviations (see abbreviations).
Latino, Latina (See nonbiased language.)
lectures, lecture series
  • Capitalize principal words and use quotation marks for the titles of lectures.

The adventurer's lecture explores "How the West Was Lost."

  • The titles of lecture series stand alone without quotation marks or italics.

Read more about the Monfort Lecture Series on CSU's website.

legislative titles
Senators, representatives, other formal titles
  • Abbreviate and capitalize representative, representatives, senator, and senators as formal titles before one or more names in regular text. Spell out and capitalize these titles before one or more names in a direct quotation.

Rep. Sam Jones spoke to the audience.
Reps. Jane Smith and Sam Jones attended the event.
Sen. Mary Johnson cut the ceremonial ribbon.
Sens. Mary Johnson and Tom Williams voted with the majority.
"Senators Mary Johnson and Tom Williams voted with the majority," he said.

  • Spell out and lowercase representative and senator in other uses.
  • Spell out other legislative titles in all uses.
  • Capitalize formal titles such as assemblyman, assemblywoman, city councilor, delegate, etc., when they are used before a name. Lowercase in other uses.
  • Add U.S. or state before a title only if necessary to avoid confusion.


U.S. Sen. Mary Johnson spoke with state Sen. Tom Williams.

  • Generally use a title such as Rep. or Sen. in first reference. It is not necessary, however, if an individual's title is given later in the story. Omitting the title on first reference is appropriate when an individual is well known.

Barry Goldwater endorsed President Gerald Ford. The senator said the president deserved another term.

Congressman, congresswoman
  • Rep. and U.S. Rep. are the preferred first-reference forms when a formal title is used before the name of a U.S. House member.
  • Use congressman or congresswoman, in lowercase, in subsequent references that do not use an individual's name. Capitalize when used as a formal title before a name only in direct quotation.
Organizational titles
  • Capitalize titles for formal, organizational offices within a legislative body when they are used before a name.

Speaker Thomas Smith
Thomas Smith, speaker of the House
Majority Leader Robert Jones
Mary Johnson, minority leader
Democratic Whip Kathleen Garcia

legislature
  • Capitalize government entities when part of a proper noun, an agency's formal name, or a formal title.

Federal Reserve Board
Secretary of State

  • Capitalize Legislature when preceded by the name of a state.

The Colorado Legislature is meeting.

  • Keep the capitalization when the state name is dropped but the legislative reference is specific to that state.

Both houses of the Legislature are meeting today.

  • Use lowercase in generic or plural references.

The Wyoming and Colorado legislatures are complex.
The study of legislative bodies is complex.

  • Amendments, ordinances, resolutions, and rules are adopted or approved. Bills are passed. Laws are enacted.
less than (See also fewer and under.)
  • Use less or less than with amounts or quantities and fewer or fewer than with individual items. Use under when referring to spatial relationships.

Less than 20 percent of students report immediate post-graduation employment.
Fewer than 20 students reported immediate post-graduation employment.
Not: Under 20 percent of students report immediate post-graduation employment.
Fewer lawsuits result in less litigation.
Less debris and fewer fish have been seen under the bridge.
The estate is valued at less than $1 million.
Not: The estate is valued at under $1 million.

letter style
lists (See also commas; parallel structure; semicolons; series.)
  • Use commas to separate a series of items and before concluding conjunctions. (This differs from the AP Stylebook.)

The sale runs today, tomorrow, and next month.

  • Use semicolons to separate elements in a series in which commas are used within one or more of the elements in the series.

New members are Terry Vitas, president; Pat Ellis, vice president; and Sandy West, secretary.

  • If a series or list is all-inclusive, do not introduce the series with include, which means there is more than what is listed.

The committee includes deans, directors, and department heads.
[implies other groups are represented]
The committee consists of deans, directors, and department heads.
[only those groups listed are represented]

  • Strive to be consistent among lists within a document. Also, be consistent in the capitalization and construction of the elements within a list.
Numbered and bulleted lists
  • In lists, introduce items with numbers only when the order matters. Otherwise, use bullets or typographical symbols.

To operate the dispenser:

  1. Deposit one quarter in the slot.
  2. Turn the knob one complete turn clockwise.
  3. Lift the flap and remove the gumball.
  • When numbering a list within a sentence, enclose figures within parentheses.

The priorities for the coming year are (1) increasing revenue, (2) building morale, and (3) improving customer service.

  • If items in a bulleted list are complete sentences, or if each item in the list completes the sentence that preceded the list, end those items with appropriate punctuation.

The vice president said:

  • We will protect our domestic interests.
  • Some people will question our commitment.
  • Sometimes you have to punt.

The research came to the conclusion that:

  • All cows have horns.
  • All cows are ruminants.
  • All cows are horned ruminants.
  • A list also may be formatted as a paragraph without bullets.

The meeting will include discussion on entry-level computer workshops, building morale in cubicle environments, and improving customer service.

  • If items in a list must be connected with either and or or, follow each with a comma or semicolon depending on construction, place the final conjunction (e.g., and or or) at the end of the next-to-last item, and end the last item with a period (or other end punctuation).

The admission application must include:

  • your high school transcript,
  • your ACT or SAT test score, and
  • your essay.

To fulfill the requirements, you must take:

  • 12 credits of literature, English composition, or journalism;
  • 12 credits of a foreign language; or
  • 12 credits of history, economics, or political science.
  • For short entries, omit the punctuation at the end of each item, including the last item.

Topics will include:

  • my agenda
  • your input
  • our consensus
login, log on, logoff
  • In computing, a login is a user's identification and password required to gain access to a computer, program, or network. Use two words for verb forms.

Go to the login page to make sure you have access.
I'll log on to my computer.
He didn't do the logoff procedure correctly.

long term, long-term
  • Hyphenate when used as an adjective.

Our long-term assignment is due.
Our assignment is long-term.
We'll be here for the long term.

long time, longtime
  • Use as one word without spaces when used as an adjective.

We're longtime friends.
We've been friends for a long time.


M

magazine titles and articles (See also italics and composition titles.)
  • Use italics for the titles of magazines, but use quotation marks for articles within magazines.

The article, "Play Defensive Ping-Pong!" is found in Rigorous Sport Quarterly.

majors and programs of study
  • Do not capitalize majors, minors, specializations, or concentrations of study.

He is majoring in business.
The Department of Technical Journalism offered a news-editorial concentration.

  • Capitalize formal names of programs.

She has been admitted to the Program for Ecological Studies.

man, mankind (See nonbiased language.)
measurements (See also time.)
  • Use numerals for measurements, but spell out inches, feet, and other units of measure, except in technical matter or where space is limited. Hyphenate adjective forms before nouns.

He's 5 feet 9 inches tall.
The 5-foot-6-inch man is walking ahead.
He's a 6-footer and short for an NBA player.
The sloop is 36 feet long and 12 feet wide.
The 9-by-12-foot rug is colorful.
The 4-pound, 3-ounce toad is a record size.

  • When using feet or inch marks in technical contexts, place periods and commas outside the marks, and use the marks with both dimensions. (Note: This rule does not apply with single or double quotation marks, which always go outside periods and commas. See quotations).

The ad dimensions are 2" x 8".
Not: The ad dimensions are 2 x 8".

    Note: Use straight single quotation marks ( ' not curved ‘ ' ) to indicate feet and straight double quotation marks ( " not curved " " ) to indicate inches. Check the software's users manual or help menu for how to do this.
  • Percentages are treated as singular nouns when standing alone or when a singular word follows of. A percentage is treated as plural when a plural word follows of.

The professor said 60 percent was a failing grade.
He said 50 percent of the group was there.
He said 50 percent of the members were there.

  • Always use figures (Arabic numerals) for percentages. For amounts less than 1 percent, precede the decimal with a zero. Spell out percent except in technical copy or where space is limited. Repeat percent for each separate figure.

The range is between 0.4 percent and 60 percent.
He said 50 percent of the group was there.
It's between 1 percent and 5 percent.

  • Do not use a in place of per.

Americans generate millions of tons of waste per year.

millions, billions
  • Use figures in all except casual uses.

She won't do it in a million years.
The city has 8 million residents.
Rebuilding will cost $2 billion.

  • Use decimals instead of fractions, but don't go beyond two decimal places.

3.52 million people
1.5 million (Not: 1 1/2 million)

  • Use million or billion with both figures in a range.

The city will request between $2 million and $3 million.

  • Do not use hyphens to join figures and million or billion.

The finance committee submitted a $21 million budget.

minorities (See nonbiased language and nondiscrimination statements.)
money
  • Use numerals with the dollar sign. For whole dollars, do not use .00.

$15, $15.25, $15.50, $20
Not: $15.00

  • For dollar amounts in the thousands, use commas.

$1,256
$323,256

  • Beyond thousands, use the dollar sign, figure, and appropriate word, and do not use a hyphen between the figure and the word.

The grant was $14 million, and the budget is $82.6 billion.
The $14 million grant was approved.
 
Not: The $14-million grant was approved.
Not: The grant was $14,000,000, and the budget is $82,600,000.00.
 

months (See also also dates; time; events.)
  • Capitalize months and abbreviate as appropriate when months are used with specific dates.

His birth date is March 10, 1952.
She will graduate Dec. 16.

  • Spell out months when used alone or with a year alone.

January can be cold.
February 1992 was a good month.

  • Do not abbreviate March, April, May, June, or July in any usage.
more than, over, greater than
  • Over refers to spatial relationships; greater than or more than is preferred with numbers.

The plane flew over the city, where more than 500,000 people live.

movie titles
  • Use italics for movie titles.

Gone With the Wind is available on DVD.
 

mph
  • The abbreviation mph without periods is acceptable in all references for miles per hour.
musical titles
  • Enclose in quotation marks the titles of songs and italicize the titles of compilations, albums, or CD titles.
  • Italicize titles of operas, long musical compositions, and their descriptive titles.

Listen to Beethoven's Sixth Symphony (the Pastoral Symphony).

  • Translate the foreign title of a song or composition unless it is well known.

N

names (See also titles and Colorado State University.)
  • For initials, use with periods and no spaces.

T.R. Smith is a former faculty member.

  • Do not abbreviate names such as George, William, and Benjamin.
  • Do not enclose Jr., Sr., or other personal suffixes with commas.

Robert Jones Jr.
Richard Williams III

  • When inserting a nickname into a given name, use quotation marks.

Thurman "Fum" McGraw

The president and his wife, Elizabeth, attended the dedication.
(Elizabeth is added information, not needed to identify which wife.)
Groucho Marx's brother Chico went on to become an orchestra leader.
(Using Chico without commas indicates which brother.)

  • On second reference, use only a person's last name without a courtesy title. If more than one person shares the same surname, use the first and last name in subsequent references.

Stephen and Marsha Jones are pillars of their community. Stephen Jones is a longtime employee of the city, and Marsha Jones is a high school English teacher.

national heritage, countries of origin (See nonbiased language.)
Native American (See nonbiased language.)
newspaper and newsletter titles (See also composition titles.)
  • Italicize the formal and shortened names of newspapers and newsletters. Place headlines in quotation marks. Do not capitalize or italicize the unless it is part of the newspaper's preferred name.

The Daily Bugle is popularly known as the Bugle.
A feature story, "CSU on the March," is now in Comment Quarterly, the University's newsletter that for 36 years was known as Comment.

nonbiased language
    The following guidelines have been reviewed by and reflect the preferred usages of Colorado State University's Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity and Resources for Disabled Students. These guidelines may differ from the AP Stylebook and other style manuals. (When referring to the AP Stylebook, see Americanisms, colloquialisms, dialect, foreign words, jargon, special contexts, and vernacular.)
    The student advocacy offices at Colorado State University are:
    Asian/Pacific American Student Services, (970) 491-6154
    Black Student Services, (970) 491-5781
    El Centro Student Services, (970) 491-5722
    Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Student Services, (970) 491-4342
    Native American Student Services, (970) 491-1332
    Resources for Disabled Students, (970) 491-6385

Women's Programs and Studies, (970) 491-6384

    Note: When referring to race, age, color, religion, national origin, gender, disability, sexual orientation, veteran status, or disability, be sure all such designations are tactfully applied and crucial to the material.
Gender-specific language
  • Use gender-specific language only in a gender-specific context. Use he, she, or he or she (but not he/she or just he) when statements apply to both genders. Using plurals also is an option with subject/verb/object agreement.

Each student must submit a written report on his or her project.
Students are required to submit written reports on their projects.
The student submitted a written report on his project. (if the student is male)
Not: Each student must submit a written report on his project.
Not: Each student must submit a written report on their project.

  • When referring to the human species, use people, human beings, men and women, humanity, or humankind instead of man, men, or mankind. Use man only when referring to an adult human male. (This differs from the AP Stylebook.)

If people were meant to fly, they'd have wings.
Not: If man were meant to fly, he'd have wings.

  • Refer to an occupation according to the work performed, not to the gender of the worker. Words that can substitute for -man or -men include agent, associate, worker, representative, operator, officer, person, clerk, personnel, and member of.

press operators, sales associates, letter carriers, police officers, fire fighters, servers, flight attendants
Not: pressmen, salesmen, mailmen, policemen, firemen, waiters, stewardesses

  • Use chairman when referring to a man and chairwoman when referring to a woman. If gender is unknown, use chairperson or chair.

National heritage, ethnicity, race

  • Capitalize nationalities, tribes, races, and other groups of people, and be sure such designations are tactfully applied and crucial to the material.

Hispanic
Caucasian
Irish
Latina

  • When designating dual heritage, do not hyphenate the terms whether used as nouns or adjectives.

African American
Asian American
French Canadian
Italian American
Mexican American
Native American

    Colorado State University's preferred usages follow but can vary with the context. Whenever possible, check with your source or the appropriate advocacy office for the preferred usage.
  • The term Hispanic is considered the most inclusive designation for people of Spanish-speaking descent or origin. In other, more specific contexts, Latino or Latina (of Latin American descent or origin) or Chicano or Chicana (of Mexican American descent or origin) may be used, based on gender and the source's preference.
  • African American (instead of black) is the preferred usage at Colorado State University. The University also uses the federal term white non-Hispanic (instead of Caucasian).

African American (Not: black or Black American)
Native American
Asian American and/or Pacific Islander (Not: Oriental)

  • The term nonminority should be used when appropriate in place of white, Caucasian, etc.

Disability

  • In referring to people with disabilities, focus on the individual, and do not use the disability as a label. Do not use pitying and pejorative terms and phrases such as stricken with, confined to, afflicted with, suffers from, and victim of. Do not imply disease.

He has diabetes.
Not: He is a diabetic.
She has multiple sclerosis.
Not: She is stricken with multiple sclerosis.

  • Emphasize abilities, not limitations.

Sally is a wheelchair user.
John uses a wheelchair.
Not: John is confined to a wheelchair.

  • Put people first, not the disability.

children who are deaf instead of deaf children
people with disabilities instead of disabled people
child with epilepsy or child with a seizure disorder instead of epileptic child.

  • Do not patronize by sensationalizing or exaggerating abilities of people with disabilities or by using awkward constructions such as handicapable.
  • When referring to people without disabilities, use nondisabled instead of normal, able-bodied, whole, or healthy.
nondiscrimination statements
     
    Three statements affirm Colorado State University's nondiscrimination policies. One of these statements should be used in publications and advertisements that represent the University. Contact the Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity at (970) 491-5836 with questions regarding the use of the statements.
  • The long statement follows and should be used on University publications of widespread distribution such as the General Catalog and Graduate Bulletin.

Nondiscrimination Statement

Colorado State University does not discriminate on the basis of race, age, color, religion, national origin, gender, disability, sexual orientation, veteran status, or disability. The University complies with the Civil Rights Act of 1964, related Executive Orders 11246 and 11375, Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, Sections 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 402 of the Vietnam Era Veteran's readjustment Act of 1974, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, as amended, Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the Civil Rights Act of 1991, and all civil rights laws of the State of Colorado. Accordingly, equal opportunity of employment and admission shall be extended to all persons and the University shall promote equal opportunity and treatment through a positive and continuing affirmative action program. The Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity is located in 101 Student Services. In order to assist Colorado State University in meeting its affirmative action responsibilities, ethnic minorities, women and other protected class members are encouraged to apply and to so identify themselves.

  • The short statement may be used whenever the long statement would appear awkward, such as on calendars or fliers or when the nature of the publication does not warrant using the long statement, such as in conference programs.

Nondiscrimination Statement

Colorado State University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action institution and complies with all Federal and Colorado State laws, regulations, and executive orders regarding affirmative action requirements in all programs. The Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity is located in 101 Student Services. In order to assist Colorado State University in meeting its affirmative action responsibilities, ethnic minorities, women, and other protected class members are encouraged to apply and to so identify themselves.

  • An abbreviated statement must be used for journal and newspaper advertising where space is extremely limited.

Nondiscrimination Statement

CSU is an EEO/AA employer. EO-AA Office: 101 Student Services Building.

nonrestrictive clauses (See essential,nonessential clauses.)
numbers, numerals, figures (See also also million, billions.)

Note: These guidelines apply to general interest writing and not to scientific, statistical, technical, and mathematical writing.

  • Spell out whole numbers one through nine and use figures for 10 and above. Always use figures for specific quantities such as dimensions, percentages, ages, weights, distances, addresses, computer-storage capacities, and room numbers. Spell out grade levels one through nine.

4 inches
2 megabytes
4-year-old girl
3 credits
a score of 4-3
a 20:1 ratio
ninth through 12th grades (but Grades 9-12)

  • Always use figures for the ages of people and animals but not for inanimate objects less than 10 years old.

The girl is 15 years old.
She has a 3-month-old puppy.
The law is eight years old.
Our 25-year class reunion is next month.

  • Spell out numbers when they begin sentences, except for years. Hyphenate only numbers between twenty-one and ninety-nine, and do not use and between the parts of a number. Use Roman numerals as appropriate to the source or context. Never spell out dates or other serial numbers.

One hundred twenty-one students registered for the ninth grade.
(Not: One hundred and twenty-one)
1976 was the year of the United States' bicentennial.

  • When mixing numbers of more than 10 and less than 10, adhere to the guidelines above.

The count is eight meerkats, 56 puff adders, 75 ocelots, and six grouse.

  • Spell out ordinal numbers first through ninth and use figures with appropriate letter suffixes for 10th and above. Do not use superscripts such as 21st (see century.)

first semester
second place
11th grade
seventh grade
10th sample
53rd anniversary
60 degrees

  • Use a comma for figures in the thousands and greater.

1,025
125,463

  • Use figures and words for quantities in the millions and greater. Avoid line breaks that separate the figure from the word.

14.3 million
1.3 billion

  • When approximating figures, use more than and less than (or fewer than or nearly) instead of over and under.

More than 50 students attended the event, but fewer than 10 stayed.
Not: Over 50 students attended the event, but under 10 stayed.

  • About may be used in place of approximately in all references.

The march attracted about 950 people.

  • Do not use about or approximately when the amount is exact.

The march attracted 956 people.
Not: The march attracted about 956 people.

  • Use figures for identifying numbers and capitalize the preceding word. Use Roman numerals as appropriate to the source or context.

Chapter 23
Highway 5
Pages iv-x
Route 66
Grades 9-12
Chapter XIV


O

offices (See also departments.)
  • Capitalize office only when part of the official name of an office.

The Office of Admissions
the dean's office
the Oval Office

ordinal numbers
  • Ordinal numbers indicate order in a series.

first page
second in line
third chair

  • In general use, spell out ordinal numbers less than 10 and do not capitalize. For ordinals 10 and larger, use figures and do not superscript the suffix – instead, place the suffix (-st, -nd, -rd) in the same size and on the same baseline as the running text. (To override the autoformat superscript function of the word processing program, check the program's users manual or help menu.)

first place
First Amendment
21st century (Not: 21st century)

  • Use figures in ordinals when the sequence has been used in forming names.

1st Congressional District
322nd Battalion
23rd Psalm

  • Hyphenate an ordinal phrase when used as a compound adjective.

19th-century literature
first-place trophy

over, greater than, more than
  • Over refers to spatial relationships; greater than or more than is preferred when using figures and quantities.

The plane flew over the city, where more than 500,000 people live.


P

page numbers
  • Use numerals and capitalize Page when used with figure(s).

Page 3
Pages 2-5
Pages iv-xii

  • Use an en dash enclosed in spaces to separate a range of page numbers that already includes hyphens.

Pages 9-3 – 9-11
Better: Page 9-3 through Page 9-11

paired conjunctions (ee also parallel structure and plurals – agreement.)
  • Paired conjunctions consist of two elements that should be used in pairs such as both … and; either … or; neither … nor; not only … but also; whether … or.

Neither a borrower nor a lender be.
International exchange programs provide students opportunities not only to gain direct experience in cross-cultural communication but also to learn to think critically and comparatively.

  • Omitting also in not only…but also constructions intensifies the meaning.

I received not only one but two job offers.

parallel structure, parallel construction (See also also lists.)
  • Be consistent in the parts of speech in series.

Preregistration is both necessary and worthwhile. [both adjectives]
Not: Preregistration is both a necessity and worthwhile. [noun, adjective]

  • Parallelism is important in lists, whether in paragraph or bulleted form.

Not:
Topics will include: Topics will include:
- communication skills - how to improve communication skills
- customer service - customer service
- crisis management - dealing with crises
Topics will include communication skills, customer service, and crisis management.

parentheses
  • In general, avoid the use of parentheses. Use commas or dashes to set off incidental information, or rewrite the sentence or break it down into one or more additional sentences. Use parentheses to insert background or reference information.
  • Place the period inside the parentheses when the matter enclosed is an independent sentence and is not included in the preceding sentence; otherwise, place the period outside the end parenthesis.

Many students bike to class. (Many also walk.)
Many students bike to class (even more when the weather is nice).

  • If the parenthetical phrase is a complete sentence but is dependent on the rest of the sentence, do not capitalize or use end punctuation within the parentheses.

Many students bike to class (many also walk), especially when the weather is nice.

  • Use parentheses if inserting a state name into a proper name.

The Loveland (Colo.) Reporter Daily Herald carried the story.

  • If all words within parentheses are italicized, italicize the parentheses also. Otherwise, do not italicize the parentheses.

My favorite book (A Tale of Two Cities) is my child's favorite too.
My favorite book (Dickens' A Tale of Two Cities) is my child's favorite too.

per, a
  • Do not use a in place of per.

Americans generate millions of tons of waste per year.

percent
  • Always spell out percent in running text. Use the % symbol only in technical matter or where space is limited.
  • In citing percentages, always use figures expressed in whole numbers and/or decimals (not with fractions). If the figure is less than 1, precede the decimal with a zero.

5 percent
10.5 percent
0.5 percent

  • For a range of percentages, use to instead of a hyphen and repeat percent for each figure.

They found that 10 percent to 15 percent of the students attended the event.

  • Use a singular verb with a percentage when the percentage is followed by a singular word or phrase. Use a plural verb with a percentage when the percentage is followed by a plural word or phrase.

Nearly 40 percent of the total was profit.
Nearly 40 percent was profit.
About 10 percent of the members were women.
About 10 percent were women.

  • Use percent with figures but percentage in all other uses.

What percentage of the students are seniors?

periods (See also ellipsis.)
  • In U.S. English, commas and periods always go inside single or double quotation marks. (In the United Kingdom, they always go outside the marks.)
  • Use only one space after any punctuation anywhere, including periods at the end of sentences.
  • Use periods with initials with no space between two or more consecutive initials.

J.S. Smith

  • Use a.m. and p.m. with periods and without spaces.
  • In general, use periods with abbreviations (a shortened version of a word or phrase) but not with acronyms (a word formed from the first letter or letters of a series of words).

CWRRI
NREL
Colo.
Sept.
USGS (for United States Geological Survey)
But: U.S. (for United States when used as an adjective; spell out as a noun)
et al.

  • Do not use periods when commonly known rates of measurement are abbreviated or when used in technical or scientific text or where space is limited.

mph
ppm
psi

Ph.D. (See academic degrees.)
phrases (See also essential, nonessential clauses.)
  • Avoid splitting verb phrases with adverbs unless the results sound awkward or unnatural.

They recently were awarded a grant.
Or: Recently, they were awarded a grant.
Rather than: They were recently awarded a grant.

  • Be sure that a phrase immediately precedes or follows the word it refers to.

The farmer watched the cattle grazing in a large field.
Not: Grazing in a large field, the farmer watched the cattle.
Inflicting death and destruction, the hurricane headed for me.
Not: Inflicting death and destruction, I ran from the hurricane.

places (See also buildings and places and states.)
  • Enclose a state, province, country, or larger entity or jurisdiction with commas if it follows a city, town, or smaller jurisdiction or entity.

Fort Collins, Colo., is the county seat of Larimer County.
Melbourne, Australia, is the first stop of the trip.

  • In U.S. place names, do not abbreviate Fort, Point, Mount, or Port.

Fort Collins
Fort Carson
Mount Rainier

  • In U.S. place names, abbreviate Saint.

St. Louis

plurals
  • Form plurals of proper nouns by adding s or es. Do not use 's (which denotes possession) to create the plural of a proper noun. (See also possessives.)

The Johnsons arrived late last night.
The Jameses, including both Toms, will perform the next three Mondays.

  • With acronyms and decades, add only s without an apostrophe. (The apostrophe creates a possessive. See also possessives.)

The CEOs met to discuss the local economy.
The CEOs' main concern was the local economy.
Student activism peaked during the late 1960s.
Ben-Hur was 1960's top-grossing film.
Candidates for Ph.D.s entered the auditorium first.

  • When creating plurals, add 's if adding only s leads to confusion.

p's and q's
cross your t's and dot your i's

  • When a choice of plurals exists, consult Webster's New World Collegiate Dictionary for the first, preferred form (though either is correct and may be used).

appendixes rather than appendices
symposiums rather than symposia
memorandums rather than memoranda
millenniums rather than millennia
data rather than datums
indices (mathematical term) rather than indexes
indexes (as in a book) rather than indices

  • Use alumnus (alumni in the plural) when referring to male graduates. Use alumna (alumnae in the plural) for female graduates. Use alumni when referring to a group of men and women. Do not use the term alum.
  • Use freshman (singular) when referring to an individual or the class. Use freshmen (plural) when referring to more than one individual.

Incoming freshmen should register for freshman English during their first semester.

plurals – agreement
  • Subjects and their verbs, as well as pronouns and the words they refer to, should agree in number (singular or plural). Do not be misled by words or phrases that are placed between a subject and its verb.

The sound of drums stirs the crowd.
The sounds of the band stir the crowd.
The manager along with the employees was invited to the seminar.

Tip: To be sure agreement is correct, "remove" intervening words or phrases, then re-read the sentence.
The manager [along with the employees] was invited to the seminar.

  • Treat multiple subjects joined by and as plural unless the subjects refer to a single person or thing.

Red and yellow are my favorite colors.
His best friend and companion is his dog.

  • Multiple subjects that are singular and are joined by or, neither ... nor, not only … but also, and either ... or usually are treated as singular; when one subject is singular and one is plural, the verb should agree with the subject closest to it.

Either a parent or legal guardian is required to sign the document.
Neither the professor nor the students were surprised by the results.
Not only the students but also the professor was surprised by the results.

  • When a sentence contains both positive and negative subjects, the verb should agree with the positive subject. The negative subject should be enclosed in commas unless it is preceded by and or but.

Test scores, not attendance, determine the final grade.
Test scores but not attendance determine the final grade.

  • When used as a subject, words such as each, anyone, everybody, nobody, nothing, and anything take singular verbs.

Anything is better than nothing.
Everyone was assigned a number.
Each of the students has an adviser.

  • Words such as none, any, most, some, and more may be either singular or plural depending on the context.

Most of the class was prepared for the exam.
Most of the students were prepared for the exam.

  • Collective nouns such as staff and faculty take singular verbs and pronouns. However, faculty members is preferred.

The faculty has determined its agenda for the meeting.
Several staff members recently have retired.

  • Collective nouns such as couple and group can be singular or plural. A phrase that denotes a quantity or is regarded as a unit is treated as singular.

That couple likes to dance.
Be sure that couples are seated together.
The group meets every month.
The groups meet annually to discuss the issues.
One hundred participants was considered a good turnout.
One hundred participants have enrolled for the seminar.

  • Sometimes plurals can be treated as singular.

American politics is today's topic.

p.m., a.m.
  • Always lowercase with periods and no spaces.
political parties, movements
  • Capitalize terms that refer to a specific party or its members. Capitalize the word party if it is customarily used as part of the organization's name.

Democratic Party
Republican Party
Communist Party
Communist
Conservative
Democrat
Liberal
Republican
Socialist

  • Generally, lowercase the name of a philosophy in noun and adjective forms unless it is the derivative of a proper name: communism, communist, fascism, fascist. Do capitalize Marxism, Marxist, Nazism, Nazi.

The liberal Republican senator and his Conservative Party colleague said they believe that democracy and communism are incompatible.
The Communist said he is basically a socialist who has reservations about Marxism.

  • The word politics usually takes a plural verb. However, as a study or science it takes a singular verb.

His politics are liberal.
Politics is a demanding profession.

  • Identify U.S. House members by party and state. In contexts where state affiliation is clear and home city is relevant, identify representatives by party and city.

U.S. Reps. Robert Jones, D-Cambridge, and Mary Smith, R-Wellesley, supported the bill.

  • Identify state legislators by their party affiliation of Republican or Democrat. Use a short-form listing only (such as D-Fort Collins) if the legislator's home city is relevant.

Democrat Mary Smith sponsored the bill
Mary Smith, D-Fort Collins, sponsored the bill.

possessives (These guidelines differ from the AP Stylebook.)
  • In general, add 's to make a word possessive.

child's play; children's books
woman's voice; women's rights
mouse's ear; mice's cage
the boss's office
a business's assets

  • If a noun is a plural ending in s, form the possessive by adding only an apostrophe.

bosses' offices
my parents' car
the Joneses' yard
businesses' assets (Better: the assets of the businesses)

  • Add just an apostrophe if adding ‘s makes a word difficult or clumsy to pronounce or if the final letter is silent.

the Grand Prix's history

  • To show joint ownership, make only the last noun possessive. To show separate ownership, make both nouns possessive.

John and Mary's house
John's and Mary's shoes

  • Do not use an apostrophe if a word ending in s is used in a descriptive rather than possessive sense. However, if the phrase involves a plural word that does not end in s, add ‘s.

users manual
writers guide
Rams cheerleaders
savings account
women's center
men's basketball
children's hospital

  • Be careful not to confuse contractions with possessive pronouns – contractions have apostrophes; possessive pronouns do not. Tip: To test if a contraction is used correctly, spell out the contraction.

Who's [Who is] going to the game?
Whose book is this?
Not: Who's [Who is] book is this?
It's [It is] the dawn of a beautiful day.
The dog lost its bone.
Not: The dog lost it's [it is] bone.
They're [They are] going to the game.
Their mission is threefold.
Not: They're [They are] mission is threefold.
You're [You are] in trouble!
Your comments are important to us.
Not: You're [You are] comments are important to us.
The decision was theirs to make.
There's [There is] still time to decide.
There are too many cooks in the kitchen.
Not: There's [There is] too many cooks in the kitchen.

precede, proceed, proceeds
  • Precede means to go before; proceed means to begin; proceeds are net profits.
prefixes, suffixes
  • In general, do not use a hyphen either after a prefix or before a suffix.

nontraditional
nondiscrimination
nonprofit
nonexistent
nonminority
campuswide
Universitywide
bilingual
biannual

  • Use a hyphen to prevent a word from being mistaken for another word, such as co-op. Hyphens also should be used if a prefix or suffix is being added to a compound word (such as pre-groundbreaking ceremony or common sense-wise) or is otherwise confusing or difficult to comprehend. Better yet, rework the sentence to make the meaning clear.
  • Hyphenate if the word following the prefix is capitalized or a number.

pre-Victorian
mid-December
post-1980s
non-University

  • Hyphenate co- words that indicate occupation or status.

co-worker
co-author
co-editor
co-chairman

  • In general, use a hyphen if the prefix ends in a vowel and the following word begins with a vowel: co-exist, pre-eminent. Do hyphenate co-op, but never hyphenate coordinate or cooperate.
prepositions
  • It no longer is considered incorrect to end a sentence with a preposition; it is more a matter of emphasis, tone, and desired effect. Often, it may be better to rewrite the sentence.

Informal: Be careful that clauses immediately follow the words they refer to.
Formal: Be careful that clauses immediately follow the words to which they refer.
Rewritten: Be careful that clauses immediately precede the words they reference.

  • Sometimes, prepositions are understood or unnecessary.

Where are you going [to]?
What size [of] shoe do you wear?

  • However, do not omit essential prepositions.

A couple of students led the discussion.
Not: A couple students led the discussion.
What's the use in trying?
Not: What's the use trying?

  • In a series of prepositional phrases, be sure to use the correct prepositions.

The project will study animals on the land, in the air, and on the sea.
Not: The project will study animals on the air, land, and sea.

  • Use the correct preposition for the intended meaning. Examples of commonly confused combinations follow.

agree on (reach an understanding): They agreed on the price.
agree to (accept): I agree to your plan.
agree with (concur): I agree with your conclusions.

angry about (something): I am angry about the decision.
angry with/at (someone): I am angry with you.

argue for/against/over/about (something): They argued against the proposal.
argue with (someone): I don't want to argue with you.

compare to (assert similarities): He compared the comfort of the sedan to that of a luxury vehicle.
compare with (analyze similarities and/or differences): He compared the black car with the red one.

differ from (to be unlike): He differs from her in age and temperament.
differ with (to disagree): I differ with you on that point.

different from, preferable to different than (not alike): My opinion is different from yours.

independent of, not from: The project is independent of special-interest funding.

retroactive to, not from: The salary increase is retroactive to last July.

speak to (tell someone): I will speak to her about her tardiness.
speak with (discuss with): I will speak with her about our options.

president
  • Capitalize president only when used as a title before a name:

President William E. Morgan
William E. Morgan, president

principal, principle
  • Principal is the most important, the chief figure or leader, or sum to repay. Principle is a fundamental law, truth, or standard.

elementary school principal
principal goals
principal of a loan
values and principles

program
  • Capitalize program only when it is part of an official name; do not enclose program names in quotation marks.

International Programs offers various study abroad programs.
The Graduate Degree Program in Ecology is an interdisciplinary program.

pronouns (See also that,which, who and who, whom.)
  • Use me, not I, following prepositions.

The president wants to speak with me.
The president wants to speak with John and me.
John and I spoke with the president.

  • Do not use an apostrophe with possessive pronouns its, hers, ours, yours, whose, and theirs. Its is the singular possessive form of it; theirs is the plural possessive.

The decision was theirs to make.
The dog lost its bone.
The dogs lost their bones.

proofreading marks (See [link])
punctuation (See also commas; dashes; ellipses; hyphens; periods; semicolons.)
  • Use only one space after any punctuation mark, anywhere.
  • Punctuation marks following emphasized text such as book titles should appear with the same emphasis (bold, italics, underlined, etc.). (See also parentheses.)

Have you read War and Peace?
Warning: Objects in mirror are closer than they appear.


Q

question mark
  • Question marks go inside or outside quotation marks depending on the context.

Did you hear him say, "Class is dismissed"?
Did you hear him ask, "Is class dismissed?"
He asked, "Is class dismissed?"

  • Do not use a question mark after an indirect question.

He asked what was the question.
They demanded to know who was responsible.

quotations, quotation marks
  • When possible, use typographic (also called "curved" or "smart") quotation marks ( "&.aspx#8194;" ) instead of "straight" quotation marks ( "&.aspx#8194;" ). Check your software users manual or help menu for how to do this.
  • Use double quotation marks to enclose full and partial quotations. Use single quotation marks to enclose quotations within quotations.
  • Always put commas and periods inside single or double quotation marks. (In the United Kingdom, they always go outside the marks.) Other punctuation marks go inside the quotation marks when they are a part of the quoted matter. Otherwise, they go outside.

Who said, "I have a dream"?
The sergeant ordered, "Attention!"
"Attention!" the sergeant ordered.
He said my attitude is a "reflection of my commitment."
He said my attitude "reflects my commitment," but I disagree.

  • ­Insert a space (a "thin" space, if available) between consecutive single and double quotation marks (for example, when there is a quotation within a quotation).

"I was told, ‘Children should be seen and not heard,' " she said.
 

  • When a sentence continues beyond a quotation that ends in a question mark or an exclamation mark, do not add a comma.

The sergeant ordered, "Attention!" and the soldiers quickly obeyed.
Not: The sergeant ordered, "Attention!," and the soldiers quickly obeyed.

  • Capitalize the first word of a direct or complete quotation. Do not capitalize the first word of an indirect or partial quotation. Indirect or partial quotations also do not require commas before or after quotation marks. Do not use quotation marks to report ordinary words that a speaker has used.

He said, "I am pleased by the progress they are making."
He said he was pleased by the progress they were making.
Not: He said he was "pleased" by the progress they were making.

  • Do not put a question mark at the end of an indirectly quoted question.

He asked who read the assignment.

  • Superscript numbers and symbols that refer to footnotes follow any punctuation marks (except a dash) and are placed outside a closing parenthesis­. If the entire reference goes within parentheses, the superscript goes inside as well.

In Elements of Style,3 William Strunk says, "Write with nouns and verbs, not with adjectives and adverbs."
In Elements of Style (Strunk and White, 19993), William Strunk says, "Write with nouns and verbs, not with adjectives and adverbs."

  • When a quotation from the same source runs more than one paragraph without interruption, insert opening quotation marks at the beginning of each paragraph and closing quotation marks only at the end of the final paragraph in the quotation.

 
He said, "The vehicle should not be driven until the necessary repairs can be made.
"Once these repairs are completed," he continued, "the vehicle should run like new."
 

  • On interrupted quotations, insert a comma and an ending quotation mark where the interruption occurs, a comma at the end of the intervening phrase, and a beginning quotation mark where the quotation resumes. Do not capitalize the first word of the resumed quotation unless it is a new sentence. End the entire quotation as usual.

 
"Once these repairs are completed," he continued, "the vehicle should run like new."
"The repairs have been completed," he said. "The vehicle should run like new."

  • A colon may be used to introduce longer quotations. If the entire quotation is indented, do not use quotation marks.
  • Use an ellipsis to indicate that words are missing within a direct quote. Ellipses are not necessary at the beginning or end of a quotation – quotation marks indicate that material has been excerpted. (See ellipsis)
  • Words being introduced to readers may be placed in quotation marks on first reference, but do not put subsequent references in quotation marks.


The board unveiled a series of "stretch goals" to establish Colorado State University as a world-class comprehensive research university. Next month, the president will meet with the board to discuss those stretch goals at length.

  • Sometimes when a quotation must be used as is with a misspelling or error, the foreign word [sic] (meaning so) is inserted after the error, italicized and within nonitalic brackets, to indicate that the error occurred in the original text. Do not use when it is more appropriate to simply correct the error or to paraphrase without using quotation marks.

He then wrote, "You know what they say, ‘The pin [sic] is mightier than the sword.'&.aspx#8197;"


R

race (See nonbiased language.)
radio programs, radio station
  • Enclose in quotation marks the titles of radio programs and stories.
  • The call letters alone are generally adequate and don't require periods. Lowercase radio station if used. If AM or FM is used, place after the call letters with a hyphen between.

The students planned programming for the radio station KCSU-FM.

  • If used, enclose nicknames for radio stations in quotation marks.

The game will be broadcast on 107.9 FM, "The Bear."

rooms (See buildings and places)

S

scholarships (ee fellowships, medals, prizes, scholarships.)
school districts
  • Capitalize only when preceded by a township or county name.

Poudre School District has named a new superintendent.
She has been named superintendent of the school district.

scientific terminology
  • For technical and scientific papers and journal and refereed articles, check with the publisher for the preferred style conventions and usage. When writing for the general public, the following guidelines are suggested.
  • On first reference, italicize the genus and species (Latin name) of a plant, animal, or microorganism name, and capitalize the genus name but not the species name. On subsequent reference, abbreviate the genus name. Do not capitalize or italicize English versions except for proper nouns.

Echinacea purpurea; E. purpurea; purple coneflower
Festuca arizonica; F. arizonica; Arizona fescue
Mycobacterium tuberculosis; M. tuberculosis; tuberculosis
Dendroctonus ponderosae; D. ponderosae; mountain pine beetle

  • Capitalize but do not italicize division names larger than genus (i.e., kingdom, phylum, class, order, and family). Do not capitalize English versions of scientific names.

Animalia; animal
Primata; primate

  • Capitalize animal breeds and types based on Webster's New World College Dictionary.

American eagle
golden retriever
peregrine falcon

  • When referring to vitamins, do not capitalize vitamin but do capitalize the letter of the vitamin, and use a hyphen followed by a figure for the type.

vitamin A
vitamin B-12

  • Do not capitalize names of diseases or other medical terms except for proper nouns.

Alzheimer's disease
West Nile virus
Down syndrome
influenza

  • Do not capitalize names of laws or theories except for proper names.

Einstein's theory of relativity
laws of motion

  • Capitalize the names of planets, stars, constellations, asteroids, galaxies, satellites, etc., but not the generic terms.

The Milky Way Galaxy is one of billions of galaxies in the universe.
The North Star, which is in the constellation commonly called the Little Dipper, is one of the brightest stars in the night sky.

  • Do not capitalize or italicize northern lights or aurora borealis.
  • Do not capitalize earth unless it is used as the proper name of the planet. Do not capitalize sun or moon.

The astronauts returned to Earth.
The Earth's resources are finite.
He has a down-to-earth attitude.

seasons
  • Do not capitalize spring, summer, fall, or winter or derivatives such as springtime. Capitalize only when part of a specific time or name.

Fall 1993
spring semester
Winter Olympics

second or subsequent references (See also acronyms and names.)
  • On second reference, an acronym may be used if its reference is obvious. If it is not obvious, the acronym should not be used.
  • On second reference, use only a person's last name without a courtesy title. If more than one person shares the same surname, use the first and last name in subsequent references.
semesters
  • Do not capitalize unless citing a specific term and year:

next fall
fall semester
Fall Semester 2007
Fall 2007

semicolons
  • Use a semicolon to separate elements in a series in which commas are used within one or more of the elements in the series.

The rooms share a living room; kitchen, complete with refrigerator, stove, and oven; and bathroom.
The new officers are Terry Johnson, president; Pat Ellis, vice president; and Sandy West, secretary.

  • Use a semicolon to separate independent clauses that are not joined by a conjunction.

Registration begins at 8:30 a.m.; the program follows at 9 a.m.

  • Use a semicolon to separate clauses joined by transitional words such as however and therefore.

We agree with the general terms of the contract; however, we disagree on a few minor points.

  • Semicolons always go outside quotation marks.

My favorite song is "Feelings"; however, "Boogie Nights" runs a close second.

Sept. 11, 2001
  • Use on first reference to the terrorist attacks that occurred on that date. On subsequent reference, Sept. 11 or 9/11 may be used.
series (See also lists.)
  • Use commas to separate a series of items within sentences and before concluding conjunctions. (This differs from the AP Stylebook.)

The collection will be on display today, tomorrow, and next month.
The lecture is sponsored by the departments of Accounting, Management, and Finance and Real Estate.
Note: Without the final comma in the above example, readers unfamiliar with the departments would not know if the second and third departments are Management and Finance and Real Estate or Management and Finance and Real Estate. Use of the final comma expedites writing, ensures consistency, and clarifies meaning. The examples of departments above are formal names and therefore capitalized (the departments of is not capitalized because it goes with all the departments, like College and Mountain avenues).

  • Use a/an or the before each item in a series, unless the series is a single concept.

The lecture will describe the goals, the methodology, and the outcome of the research.
Each report should include an introduction, a final summary, and a bibliography.
A news article should include the who, what, where, why, when, and how of an event.

  • To ensure clarity, do not combine separate phrases into one series. (In the following example, president of begins the first phrase and member of the second.)

He was president of ASCSU and the debate team and a member of the chess club.
Not: He was president of ASCSU, the debate team, and a member of the chess club.

  • Use semicolons to separate elements in a series in which commas are used within one or more of the elements in the series.

New members are Terry Vitas, president; Pat Ellis, vice president; and Sandy West, secretary.

[sic]
  • A foreign word (meaning so) sometimes inserted in a quotation after a misspelling or error to indicate that the error occurred in the original text. Italicize sic but not the brackets. Do not use when it is more appropriate to simply correct rather than draw attention to the error.

"The beetle is crawling toward the door."
Rather than: "The beatle [sic] is crawling toward the door."

spaces following periods (See also typography.)
  • Use only one space following any punctuation, anywhere.
speech titles (See also composition titles.)
  • Enclose titles of speeches in quotation marks.
spelling (See entries of specific words or word pairs.)
split infinitives (See verbs.)
state board (See Board of Governors of the Colorado State University System.)
state names
  • The correct term for a person from Colorado is Coloradan (not Coloradoan).
  • Spell out the names of states when they stand alone (without a city). When used with the name of a city, enclose the state in commas and use the standard state abbreviations (see list that follows).

Recreational opportunities abound in Colorado.
Fort Collins, Colo., is home to Colorado State University.

  • Use Washington state or state of Washington when the context requires distinction. Do not abbreviate Washington in Washington, D.C.

State abbreviations
  • Use a two-letter postal abbreviation only in an address and only with a ZIP code. On all Colorado State University business forms, stationery, and publications, spell out Colorado in the return address. (See the Communications Toolbox at graphicstandards.colostate.edu)
State Standard Abbreviation Postal Abbreviation Term for Resident
Alabama Ala. AL Alabamian
Alaska Do not abbreviate AK Alaskan
Arizona Ariz. AZ Arizonan
Arkansas Ark. AR Arkansan
California Calif. CA Californian
Colorado Colo. CO Coloradan
Connecticut Conn. CT Connecticuter
Delaware Del. DE Delawarean
Florida Fla. FL Floridian
Georgia Ga. GA Georgian
Guam Do not abbreviate GU  
Hawaii Do not abbreviate HI Hawaiian
Idaho Do not abbreviate ID Idahoan
Illinois Ill. IL Illinoisan
Indiana Ind. IN Indianian
Iowa Do not abbreviate IA Iowan
Kansas Kan. KS Kansan
Kentucky Ky. KY Kentuckian
Louisiana La. LA Louisianian
Maine Do not abbreviate ME Mainer
Maryland Md. MD Marylander
Massachusetts Mass. MA Massachusettsan
Michigan Mich. MI Michiganian
Minnesota Minn. MN Minnesotan
Mississippi Miss. MS Mississippian
Missouri Mo. MO Missourian
Montana Mont. MT Montana
Nebraska Neb. NE Nebraskan
Nevada Nev. NV Nevadan
New Hampshire N.H. NH New Hampshirite
New Jersey N.J. NJ New Jerseyite
New Mexico N.M. NM New Mexican
New York N.Y. NY New Yorker
North Carolina N.C. NC North Carolinian
North Dakota N.D. ND North Dakotan
Ohio Do not abbreviate OH Ohioan
Oklahoma Okla. OK Oklahoman
Oregon Ore. OR Oregonian
Pennsylvania Pa. PA Pennsylvanian
Puerto Rico Do not abbreviate PR Puerto Rican
Rhode Island R.I. RI Rhode Islander
South Carolina S.C. SC South Carolinian
South Dakota S.D. SD South Dakotan
Tennessee Tenn. TN Tennessean
Texas Do not abbreviate TX Texan
Utah Do not abbreviate UT Utahn
Vermont Vt. VT Vermonter
Virginia Va. VA Virginian
Virgin Islands Do not abbreviate VI Virgin Islands
Washington Wash. WA Washingtonian
Washington, D.C. Do not abbreviate Washington, DC  
West Virginia W.Va. WV West Virginian
Wisconsin Wis. WI Wisconsinite
Wyoming Wyo. WY Wyomingite
streets (See addresses.)
student designations
  • Do not capitalize freshman, sophomore, junior, senior, graduate, transfer, or first-year student unless part of a formal designation or title.

The Senior Class sponsored the lecture.
She is a senior economics major.
All freshmen are invited to attend the Freshman Premier activities.

subject-verb agreement (See plurals – agreement.)
suffixes (See prefixes, suffixes.)
superscript
  • Do not include a space between the superscript and the preceding word. If a punctuation mark follows the word, place the superscript immediately after the punctuation mark.

Superscript marks should look like this.1

Here's an example of too much space. 2

  • Do not use superscripted suffixes with ordinals.

12th (Not: 12th)

T

telephone numbers (See also numerals)
  • Use area codes with all phone numbers. Place the area code in parentheses and use hyphens, not periods, without spaces to separate numbers.

(970) 555-6565
(800) 555-6565

  • If extensions are needed, use a comma to separate the main number from the extension and abbreviate and lowercase extension.


Call (970) 555-6565, ext. 426, for more information.

television
  • Italicize the titles of television programs. (This differs from the AP Stylebook.)

Her favorite television show was The Dick Van Dyke Show.

  • Use quotation marks for the title of an episode.

"Laura's Little Lie" was her favorite episode.

  • Program and episode titles may be combined within quotation marks.

An all-time favorite TV show is "I Love Lucy: Job Switching."

  • Capitalize the call letters and abbreviations of television stations and networks, but do not use periods.

CBS
MSNBC
KWGN-TV or television station KWGN

temperature (See measurements.)
than, then
  • Than means in comparison with; then means at that time or soon after.
that
  • Use that to introduce dependent clauses if the sentence sounds or looks awkward without it. It often can be omitted, but if in doubt, leave it in.

Be careful you don't fall.

  • That usually can be omitted immediately following verbs such as say or said.

She said she really has to study.

  • Include that when a period of time falls between the verb and phrase that follows.

She said yesterday that she really has to study.

  • That usually is necessary after such verbs as assert, contend, state, propose, etc.

She asserted that she really has to study.

  • Use that before clauses beginning with conjunctions such as until, before, after, while, and although. (Note there is no comma after that.)

She said that although she would like to go, she really has to study.

that, which, who (See also essential, nonessential phrases
  • Use that to introduce essential phrases and which to introduce nonessential phrases that refer to inanimate objects and animals without a name.

The dog that lives at the end of the block barks at squirrels.
Our car, which is parked in the driveway, won't start.

  • Use who to introduce essential or nonessential phrases that refer to people or animals with names.

Fido, who lives at the end of the block, barks at squirrels.
The man who lives next door has a damaged car.

  • Use that or who to introduce a phrase essential to the meaning of the sentence. Do not enclose essential phrases in commas.

The dancers who were dressed in white entered the stage. [implies more than one color of costume and differentiates which dancers are referenced]
The laboratory contains refrigerators that maintain constant temperatures.

  • Use which or who to introduce a nonessential phrase, which adds information to the sentence but which can be deleted without changing the meaning of the sentence. Enclose nonessential clauses in commas.

The dancers, who were dressed in white, entered the stage. [implies all dancers were dressed in white, information which is not essential]
The Morrill Act of 1890, which created the nation's first land-grant universities, was a significant piece of legislation for the Agricultural College of Colorado.

theater, theatre
  • Use theatre only as preferred in an official name or title. Otherwise, use theater in the general sense.

Lory Student Center Theatre
the theater in the Lory Student Center
Department of Music, Theatre, and Dance
the University's theater program

time
  • Do not capitalize a.m. or p.m.; use with periods and without spaces.
  • For time references, use figures with a.m. and p.m. and do not capitalize. Eliminate the :00 in 5 p.m. (not 5:00 p.m.), although use of :00 is acceptable in formal use, such as invitations.
  • Avoid redundancies such as 10 a.m. this morning and 10 p.m. tonight.

The concert begins at 8 p.m. and ends at 10:30 p.m.
The concert begins at 8:30 Friday evening.

  • Use noon and midnight in place of 12 p.m. and 12 a.m. respectively.
  • When stating a range of times, be sure to include a.m. and p.m. as needed, but do not repeat if the times are in the same part of day – that is, morning or afternoon.

9-11 a.m.
9 a.m.-5 p.m.
9 a.m.-noon
midnight-6:30 a.m.

title capitalization (sometimes called title case)

When capitalizing titles and subtitles:

  • capitalize the first and last words.
  • capitalize the principal words and proper names.
  • capitalize all words four or more letters long.
  • capitalize both words in a hyphenated word.
  • capitalize verb forms such as are and is but not to in verb phrases such as to Believe.

To Kill a Mockingbird
A Farewell to Arms
Gone With the Wind
Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl
"The Star-Spangled Banner"
"We Are the World"

titled (See entitled, titled.)
titles of people (See also names.)
  • Enclose professional designations and degrees such as C.P.A. and D.V.M. following a full name in commas.

Richard Anderson, C.P.A., will be the keynote speaker.

  • Courtesy titles such as Mr. and Ms. generally are not used in either first or subsequent references, except in formal contexts. Dr. may be used for medical doctors (M.D., D.D.S., etc.) and veterinarians (D.V.M.) in first and/or subsequent references (but generally not for Ph.D.s).
  • When a title is part of a name in an address or in display type, capitalize the title even if it appears after the name.
toward, towards
  • The preferred use is toward rather than towards.

trademarks
  • Use generic names instead of trademark names unless the trademark name is essential to the meaning.

adhesive bandage instead of Band-Aid
cellophane tape instead of Scotch Tape
cotton swab instead of Q-Tip
elastic bandage instead of Ace Bandage
fabric fastener or hook-and-loop fastener instead of Velcro
facial tissue instead of Kleenex
gelatin dessert instead of Jello
lip balm instead of Chapstick
photocopy or photocopier instead of Xerox
plastic foam instead of Styrofoam
portable media player instead of iPod

  • When used, capitalize trademark names but do not use ™ or ® symbols. Check with the manufacturer for preferred company name usage.
truly
  • Truly is the correct spelling (not truely).

TV (See also television.)
  • TV is capitalized; television is preferred.
typography

Use the following typesetting conventions and tips when possible in formatting text. Consult the software users guide or help menu for procedures.

  • Replace all double spaces with single spaces. If more space is needed, use em or en spaces or tab stops.
  • Use extra space before and after headings and subheadings and between paragraphs rather than double spacing.
  • It is not necessary to indent and put extra space between paragraphs. Only one or the other is needed.
  • In tabulated matter or tables, set specific tab stops instead of using multiple spaces or multiple tabs.
  • Set up hanging indents rather than inserting multiple spaces or tabs in text.
  • Use "straight" typographers quotation marks ( " ) and apostrophes/single quotation marks ( ' ) only for inch and foot marks, respectively.
  • Use &.aspx#8220;curly &.aspx#8221; ( &.aspx#8220;smart &.aspx#8221;) typographers quotation marks ( &.aspx#8220; &.aspx#8221; ) and apostrophes/single quotation marks ( &.aspx#8216; &.aspx#8217; ) in all other instances.
  • When eliminating the century in a year, use a single closing quotation mark

Class of '65

  • With ordinals 10 and larger, as in 21st century, use figures and do not superscript the suffix – instead, place the suffix (-st, -nd, -rd) in the same size and on the same baseline as the running text. (To override the autoformat superscript function of the word processing program, check the program's users manual or help menu.)
  • Convert underlined text to italics.
  • Use all caps sparingly – they are difficult and tiring to read if there are more than just a few words.
  • When fully justifying text (both left- and right-justified margins), especially on short line lengths, allow/turn on hyphenation. Without hyphenation, large gaps of white space may appear, which is more difficult to read and more distracting than hyphenation.
  • In languages in which text is read left to right, left-justified text is more readable than centered or right-justified text.
  • Whenever possible, use special characters as appropriate for diacritical marks (also called diacritics or accent marks), in foreign names and words. Check the software users manual or help menu for how to insert special characters or symbols. (See also foreign names, words.)
  • Do not hyphenate or justify headlines, callout quotations, and other display type.
  • Use an en dash [ – ] with a space before and after to replace all double hyphens [ -- ] and single hyphens [ - ] intended as dashes. (See also dash.)
  • Avoid line breaks that would separate the dollar sign and figure from million, billion, etc.

A grant was awarded to fund the
$14 million research project.
Not: A grant was awarded to fund the $14
million research project.


U

under, less than, fewer than
  • Under refers to spatial relationships; less than is preferred with amounts or quantities, and fewer than is preferred with individual items.

The dog slept under the table.
Vehicles on the road travel at speeds of less than 20 mph, especially when they are traveling under the overpass.

University (See Colorado State University.)
United States
  • Spell out United States when used as a noun. Abbreviate using periods with no spaces only as an adjective.

U.S. economy
the economy of the United States (This differs from the AP Stylebook.)

  • Do not use America instead of United States or American instead of U.S.
upon
  • Considered archaic. Use on in most cases.
URL (See also World Wide Web.)
  • URL is the abbreviation for Uniform Resource Locator, the global address of documents and other resources on the World Wide Web.
  • Avoid underlining URLs since some URLs contain underscores, which the underlining obscures. Do not emphasize URLs in running text.
utilize, utilization
  • Avoid the bulky word utilize. Use says the same thing.

We use 100 percent canola oil in our car.
Not: We utilize 100 percent canola oil in our car.

V

verbs
  • Avoid splitting verb phrases, compound verbs, and infinitives (to plus a verb). (Underlining denotes verb phrases.)

They usually do not attend the meeting.
Not: They do not usually attend the meeting.

He also will play the violin.
Not: He will also play the violin.

He felt the seminar would teach him to listen more effectively.
Not: He felt the seminar would teach him to more effectively listen.
Not: He felt the seminar would more effectively teach him to listen.

  • In some cases, it may be awkward not to split a phrase. Splitting a phrase may be necessary to convey the intended meaning.

He is passionately committed to scientific exploration and discovery.
She wanted to really help the hurricane victims.

videotape is one word.

W

Web (See Internet.)
Web page
  • Capitalize and use as two words.
website, webcam, webcast, webmaster
  • These terms are now commonly accepted as one word and are not capitalized. (The spelling of website differs from the AP Stylebook but is consistent with Webster's New World College Dictionary.)
weekdays (See days of the week.)
which (See that, which, who.)
white, Caucasian (See also nonbiased language.)
who, whom
  • Use who when referring to people or animals with names and who are subjects of a sentence, clause, or phrase.

Who is going to the game?
Students who are going to the game should purchase tickets early.
Dogs that bark can be a nuisance.
Fido, who barks at strangers, is a good watchdog.

  • Use whom when someone is the object of a verb or preposition.

With whom are you going to the game?
Informal: Who are you going to the game with?

-wide (See prefixes, suffixes.)
World Wide Web (See Internet.)

XYZ

years (ee also also numerals; century; dates.)
  • Use an s without an apostrophe to indicate decades or centuries; use an apostrophe when omitting the century. To avoid confusion, leave in the century when context could include other than the current century.

the 1920s
the 1800s
the '90s
Class of '78
the 1990s and 2000s

  • When your context refers to dates in other than the current year, include the year with the dates to eliminate confusion. If it is obvious the reference is to the current year, omit it.

The seminar will be held Sept. 12, 2007, and again Feb. 17, 2008.
This year's event begins Oct. 3.

  • Use a comma after the year when complete dates (month, date, and year) are used.

The seminar is scheduled Sept. 12, 2007, and I intend to go.

  • Use a single hyphen to link two years that represent a continuous sequence. Single hyphens, and, to, or through also may be used between years if the sequence is introduced by the words from or between. (This differs from the AP Stylebook.)

Elijah Edwards served as president from 1879 to 1881.
Charles Ingersoll served as president between 1882 and 1891.
Alston Ellis served as president from 1892-1899.
Barton Aylesworth served as president during the years 1899-1909.

  • In a span of years within the same century, the second year may be expressed without the century figures. Only use this style for sequences of years when they occur frequently and only after initial reference. In isolated cases, do not abbreviate.

This is the only reference to the period 1997-1998; thus, the reference is an isolated case.
Multiple references to the period 1997-1998 may be abbreviated as 1997-98 after the first reference.
Do not abbreviate the second year in reference to the period 1992-2002 since the centuries are not the same.

  • When citing a specific fiscal year, capitalize and include both years, Fiscal Year 2006-07, or, when space is limited, FY06-07. The form FY07 should be used only if the time span – FY06-07 – is clear in the context. (See also fiscal year.)
ZIP codes (See also addresses.)

© 2012 Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado 80523 USA  |  T.O.P.S.