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Alphabetical List of Style Preferences

A | B | C |D | E | F | G | H | I | J | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V - Z

academic courses
(see courses, academic)

academic degrees
(see degrees, academic)

academic departments/programs
(see department, names)

In running text, spell out in first usage with the acronym or abbreviation in parenthesis.

The football team's grade point average (GPA) of 3.6 is the highest in the conference. The team's captain has a 3.99 GPA.

Admission, Office of Admission, admission
Preferred usage does not include "s" in name. Capitalize when referring to office and lowercase when referring to the process.

advisor, adviser
The college uses "advisor"

addresses, college

Your Name
Saint Anselm College
100 Saint Anselm Drive
Manchester, NH 03102

Also include your e-mail address and the college's Web address when appropriate (e.g., business cards, e-mail signature)

affect, effect

  • affect (verb): to influence
  • effect (verb): to cause
  • effect (noun): a result

African American (no hyphen)
Capitalize; use instead of Black

Afterward is American English, afterwards is British English

ages, periods of history

  • Spell out 1-9, use figures for 10 and above.
  • Hyphenate ages used before nouns (e.g., My two-year-old can recite the pledge.). Do not hyphenate after a noun (e.g., My girl is two years old).
  • Many historical or cultural periods are capitalized (e.g., Stone Age, Bronze Age, the Renaissance). More general period designations are not capitalized (e.g., the golden age).

aid (verb); aide (noun)

  • The discovery will aid in finding a cure for cancer.
  • The aide plans to speak to the senator about the issue.

all right, alright
Use the two-word version.

a lot
Always written as two words

alum, alumni, alumnus, alumna, alumnae

  • alum(s) informal use for alumnus/a/i
  • alumni (plural all, or a group of unknown gender)
  • alumnus (masculine singular)
  • alumna (feminine singular)
  • alumnae (plural feminine)

a.m., p.m.

  • Lowercase with periods; no caps
  • Avoid 12 noon and 12 midnight; noon and midnight are sufficient and both are in lowercase
  • Avoid including :00 for times at the top of the hour (use 10 a.m. and not 10:00 a.m.)

America (see also U.S. [link to 33.2.5 Alphabetical List Of Style Preferences - U])
When referring to the country, use United States

ampersand (&)

  • Generally not used in running text; okay in charts, tables, or lists.
  • Okay to use in running text if it is part of an official name, e.g., U.S. News & World Report

Annual Giving, annual giving, The Saint Anselm Fund
Capitalize the reference to the program, lowercase when referring to the act. The Saint Anselm Fund is the proper name for the college's annual fund.

anyone, any one, everyone, every one

  • The compound pronouns anyone or everyone mean "any person" and "all the people," respectively.
  • The non-compound modified pronoun any one or every one put a greater emphasis on the word one and mean "any single person or thing" and "every single person or thing."

anyway, any way

  • The compound word anyway is an adverb meaning "regardless."
  • Any way is simply the word way modified by the word any. It means "any manner" or "any method."

See punctuation section

Asian American
Capitalize; avoid using Oriental

assure, ensure, insure: All mean "to make sure or certain"

  • Assure is used to "set the mind at rest." They assured me my check was in the mail.
  • Ensure means to make certain to do something
  • Insure is to issue an insurance policy
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