Style Guide Test

Table of Contents

Academic Degrees

Academic Departments

Academic Departments/Divisions

Acrynyms

Addresses

Administrative Offices

Alumni

Academic Degrees

  • Spell out and use the lowercase: bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, doctor’s degree or doctorate.
  • You can receive a doctorate OR your doctor’s degree, but NOT your doctoral degree.
  • If you prefer to abbreviate degrees, be sure to use periods after all the letters: B.A., M.S., Ph.D., M.S.I.A., B.F.A. (with the exception of MBA).
    • CORRECT
      • He received a master’s degree in engineering.
      • She received her master of science degree in engineering.
      • We awarded 99 doctor’s, 150 master’s and 900 bachelor’s degrees.
      • He earned a bachelor of architecture degree.
      • She has an M.S. degree in technical writing.
    • WRONG
      • He earned a bachelor’s of architecture degree.
  • Do not precede a name with a title of an academic degree and follow it with the abbreviation for that degree.
    • CORRECT
      • Larry R. Faulkner, Ph.D., was president of The University of Texas at Austin from 1998-2006.
      • Dr. Larry R. Faulkner was president of The University of Texas at Austin from 1998-2006.
    • WRONG
      • Dr. Larry R. Faulkner, Ph.D., was president of The University of Texas at Austin from 1998-2006.
  • Use Dr. in first reference as a formal title before the name of a person who holds a doctor’s degree. Do not use Dr. in the second reference, unless the person holds a doctor of medicine degree.
  • The preferred form for Ph.D. is to say a person holds a doctorate in (name their field of specialty). Second best is to say doctor’s degree.
  • Do not use Dr. before the names of those who hold honorary degrees only. References to honorary degrees must specify the degree was honorary.
  • The last name may be used with no titles at all, which is often preferable to maintain consistency.
  • Use lowercase when using bachelor’s, master’s or doctor’s degree. Use lowercase for doctorate or doctoral program.

Academic Departments

  • Capitalize the names of departments except when used in a person’s title.
    • CORRECT
      • She is a senior in the Department of Mechanical Engineering
      • The Department of Art and Art History redesigned its website.
      • The director of admissions is pleased with the applicants
  • Use lowercase for the word “department” when it stands alone.
    • CORRECT
      • She’s been with the department for three years.
      • The Department of Astronomy hosts weekly viewing nights on university telescopes.
  • Capitalize the field when it’s used to mean the department. Use lowercase for the field when it’s used in a general sense.
    • CORRECT
      • She’s a professor in the Department of Physics.
      • She’s a professor in the Physics Department
      • She’s physics professor.
      • She majored in physics.

Academic Departments/Divisions

  • Use lowercase for majors with the exception of languages, which are proper nouns.
    • CORRECT
      • Her major is physics.
      • He’s an English major.
  • Do not capitalize academic divisions.

Acronyms

Generally, it’s fine to use acronyms if you feel they’re commonly recognized or if it helps avoid repetition. But always spell out the full name, title or phrase the first time you refer to it in text, followed immediately by the acronym in parentheses. Then use the acronym for each and every subsequent use. It is not necessary to note the acronym in parentheses if there is only one reference.

  • CORRECT
    • The National Institutes of Health (NIH) awarded the grant to the research group. The NIH funded only three such centers in the nation.
    • Researchers received a $4.5 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to investigate the outcomes of computerized and individual language therapies with school-age children throughout the United States. With this NIH-funded project, researchers will test the theory that language impairments and learning disabilities are caused by inadequate brain mechanisms for processing speech sounds.
  • WRONG
    • The five-year research project is funded by the National Institute on Aging of the NIH.

Addresses

These rules apply to addresses within body copy, not to addresses on envelopes.

  • Use the abbreviations Ave., Blvd., Rd., Dr. and St. only when you can include a numbered address.
    • CORRECT
      • Send mail to 405 W. 25th St.
      • Our office is on 25th Street.
  • Spell out all street names and use lower case when you’re referring to more than one in a phrase.
    • CORRECT
      • The parking lot is on San Antonio and Nueces streets.
    • WRONG
      • The parking lot is on San Antonio and Nueces Sts.
  • Capitalize formal street names, but use lowercase when used with more than one street name in text. Use lowercase when nonspecific street words stand alone.
    • CORRECT
      • Walter Webb Hall is on Guadalupe Street.
      • The building is located on the corner of 21st and Whitis streets.
      • The avenue is a dangerous street to cross.

Administrative Offices

  • Capitalize the names of departments, divisions and offices.
  • Use lowercase for the words “department,” “division” or “office” when they stand alone.
  • Capitalize the field when it’s used to mean the department, division or office specifically. Do not capitalize the field when it’s used in general.
    • CORRECT
      • He works in the Registrar’s Office.
      • She works in student affairs (the field).
      • She works in the Student Affairs Office (the university office).
      • He works in Campus Planning (the university office).
    • WRONG
      • The Division will release its report

Alumni

  • This word construction is taken directly from its Latin origins. Therefore, the noun forms are gender specific: “alumna” refers to one woman; “alumnae” refers to women; “alumnus” refers to one man; “alumni” refers to men or men and women. It’s rare to see the feminine plural form, “alumnae.” Most often the form “alumni” is used for any group of graduates. Also, “alumnus” can refer to anyone who attended a school, not just one who graduated.
  • University of Texas at Austin alumni are most commonly known as Texas Exes. The university’s alumni association, the Ex-Students’ Association, prefers to be known as the Texas Exes.
    • CORRECT
      • The Distinguished Alumnus Award is given annually by the Texas Exes.
  • Identify past and current students by using the abbreviation for the alum’s academic degree with the graduation year. For College of Fine Arts graduates, identify the person with their academic degree, area of study and the graduation year.
    • CORRECT
      • Karen Elliott House, B.J. 1970, was recently named publisher of The Wall Street Journal.
      • Marcia Gay Harden (B.A., Theatre, 1980) participated in the university’s centennial celebration.
  • If a person received more than one degree from The University of Texas at Austin, use both years and put a comma between them.
    • CORRECT
      • Patricia Ohlendorf (B.A. 1974, J.D. 1977), is the university’s vice president for institutional relations and legal affairs.
  • On social media, degree years can be indicated with apostrophes to save space.It is important that the apostrophe points in the correct direction: down and to the left.
    • CORRECT
      • Joe Smith (B.A., Studio Art, ’77) received the Distinguished Alumnus Award this year.

Board of Regents

  • Upon first reference, use The University of Texas Board of Regents. Use lowercase when board and regents are used separately Capitalize a regent’s title only when used before the name.
    • CORRECT
      • He is a member of The University of Texas Board of Regents.
      • The board met at 9 a.m.
      • Regent Patrick Oxford addressed the issue.
      • She is a regent.
      • The Board of Regents will meet tomorrow
    • WRONG
      • The board of regents will meet tomorrow.