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This Editorial Style Guide is intended to be a quick-reference for writers, editors, and members of the Endicott community. This resource should help guide communications about the College and provide a consistent voice for both internal and external audiences. The guide follows conventions of The Associated Press Stylebook. Another great resource can be found at the Purdue Online Writing Lab.

For spelling, style, usage, and foreign geographic names not mentioned in The Associated Press Stylebook, use Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary.

The guide addresses many of the editorial questions that are encountered most frequently regarding our eight undergraduate schools, departments, faculty, centers, and alumni. This guide will be updated annually.
  • Academic Degrees

    The preferred form is to spell out degrees on first mention and avoid abbreviations.

    Capitalize an academic degree when it is given in full:

    Bachelor of Arts
    Bachelor of Science
    Bachelor of Fine Arts
    Master of Arts
    Master of Business Administration
    Master of Education
    Doctor of Education
    Doctor of Philosophy

    Capitalize a major field within a school:

    Bachelor of Arts in History
    Bachelor of Arts in English

    When to use periods with degree abbreviations:
    Formal Use
    General Use
    General Use
    Abbreviated Use
    Associate in Science
    associate degree
    Bachelor of Arts
    bachelor's degree
    bachelor's B.A.
    Bachelor of Science
    bachelor's degree
     Bachelor of Fine Arts
    bachelor's degree
    bachelor's B.F.A.
     Master of Arts
    master's degree
    master's M.A.
     Master of Science
    master's degree
     Master of Business Administration
    master's degree
     Master of Education
    master's degree
     Doctor of Education
    doctoral degree
     Doctor of Philosophy
    doctoral degree

    Do not use an apostrophe (possessive) with associate degree or doctoral degree. The word “degree” should not follow an abbreviation.

    She has a B.A. in history.
    She has a bachelor’s degree in English literature.

  • Acronyms

    Spell out the first reference followed by the acronym or abbreviation in parentheses; the acronym or abbreviation may be used for subsequent references.

    Acronyms and initialisms may be used for the first reference if they are widely recognized.

    Example: CIA, FBI, SAT, NASA, NASDAQ.

    Endicott College Television (ECTV) is a student-managed television channel. ECTV also serves as a bulletin board for the latest happenings at the College.

  • Alumni

    Use the correct word for the gender: alumna is feminine singular; alumnae is feminine plural; alumnus is masculine and non-gender singular; alumni is masculine and non-gender plural.

    Preferred styles for persons who earned undergraduate degrees at Endicott:

    Elizabeth Jones ’56 (or Elizabeth Jones, Class of 1956)

    Preferred style for persons who earned master’s degrees at Endicott:

    Karen Brown M’06

    Preferred style for persons who earned undergraduate and graduate degrees at Endicott:

    Kyle Blake ’09 M’13

  • Capitalization

    In general, avoid unnecessary capitals.

    Capitalize official name of all forms.

    Professional & Academic Titles
    Professional titles and formal academic titles should be capitalized when they immediately precede an individual’s name. Lower case titles when they are used after a name; offset with commas.

    Endicott College Interim President, Katie Barnes,
    Dean of the School of Arts & Sciences, Gene Wong,
    Katie Barnes, interim president of Endicott College,
    Gene Wong, dean of arts & sciences,

    Departments & Offices
    Capitalize office, department, division, program, institute, center, etc., when they are part of official titles. Otherwise use lowercase.

    Department of Environmental Science
    the environmental science department
    Gull2Gull Mentoring Program
    Office of the Dean
    dean’s office
    the Office of Admission
    the admission office
    the office
    Office of Communications & Marketing
    communications & marketing

    Majors & Programs
    Lowercase names of programs (with the exception of English) and majors except when with a degree or a department.

    Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science
    environmental science program
    psychology major

    Course Names
    Capitalize official course names, followed by course abbreviation in parenthesis. Include space after letter and before numbers in abbreviation.

    Financial Accounting (ACC 175)

    Buildings & Places
    Capitalize the word “College” whenever referring to Endicott College, even when the word “Endicott” does not precede it. Capitalize the formal names of buildings, places, and centers. Use the formal name referenced on the campus map and, in most cases, use lowercase, generic name on second reference.

    Events are only capitalized when referring to a specific Endicott College event (e.g., Commencement, Senior Week).

    Capitalize the word “Class” when referring to a specific year.

    Class of 1976

    Colleges & Schools
    Capitalize the names of the colleges and schools within the College. Use ampersand in place of “and.”

    School of Education
    School of Arts & Sciences

    Board of Trustees
    Capitalize Board of Trustees in formal mentions. Capitalize the first “T” in “Trustee(s)” only if this is before a name, otherwise it should be lowercase (trustee(s)).

    Academic Standing
    Do not abbreviate, and do not capitalize unless beginning a sentence.

    Example: freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior.

    Capitalize certificate when referring to official certificate.

    Certificate of Cybersecurity

  • Digital Terminology

    The www prefix should always be eliminated.

    Hashtag Usage

    #ThisIsEndicott is the official hashtag for the College.

  • Endicott College Terminology


    Official College mascot
    Always capitalize the G in Gull.
    It’s a Great Day to be a Gull.
    Go Gulls

    Miscellaneous Troublesome Terms

    Fifth Year instead of Fifth-year or Fifth-Year
    “Says” rather than “said” and have says precede the name of the person/pronoun.
    Use last name on second and further references.

    Spots on campus:

    Klebanoff Auditorium versus LSB Auditorium
    The Lakes versus The Ponds
    Use lobby for the Curtis L. Gerrish School of Business & Ginger Judge Science Center not atrium.

    Buildings on Campus:

    Use Samuel C. Wax Academic Center on first mention and Wax Academic Center on following mentions. 
    Use Callahan Center on first mention and Callahan on following mentions.
    Use Center for Nursing on all mentions.
    Use Curtis L. Gerrish School of Business & Ginger Judge Science Center on first mention and Business & Science Center on following mentions.
    Do not refer to the Business & Science Center building as LSB as that acronym does not apply to the entire building.
    Use Diane M. Halle Library on first reference and Halle Library on following references.
    Use Walter J. Manninen Center for the Arts on first mention and Center for the Arts on following mentions.
    The former Rose Performance Hall is now Rose Theater.
    Do not use the acronym VPAC in any materials as this applies to only the school name.
    Use Raymond J. Bourque Arena on first mention and Bourque Arena on following mentions.
    Use Endicott College Boston on first reference. Endicott Boston may be used on subsequent references.
    Use Peter Frates Hall on first mention and Frates Hall on following mentions. 
    The former Van Loan School at Endicott College (VLS) building is now Myrt Harper Rose Hall. 
    Use Post Sport Science & Fitness Center on first mention and use Post Center on following mentions.

  • Inclusive Language

    Avoid reference to gender unless it’s relevant to the topic of the piece.

    Use chair instead of chairman.
    Use business executive instead of businessman.
    Use police officer instead of policeman.

  • Numbers

    When to use numerals:
    Spell out numbers one through nine; use numerals for all that follow. If a sentence is started with a number, it must always be written out.

    Spell out the month at all times. When referring to month, date, and year, offset year with commas.
    For web copy and calendars, include the day of the week when previewing an event. Always omit the ordinal designations of nd, rd, st, th.

    Use a.m. and p.m. to designate day or evening times. Use midnight or noon instead of 12 a.m. or 12 p.m. For full hour times, use only the first number and omit zeros. Always include a space between numerals and the a.m. or p.m. designation in lower case.

    Example: 8 a.m. not 8:00 a.m., noon–1:30 p.m.

    Centuries and Decades
    Use Arabic figures to indicate spans of decades or centuries (1920s, 1900s). Use an apostrophe to indicate numerals that are left out (’20s). The apostrophe should face the direction of the omitted numerals. Show plural by adding an “s,” with no apostrophe, to the end (1920s).

    Example: The 1990s, the ’90s, the mid-1990s.

    Express all percentages as figures. Do not use the % sign except in charts or graphs.

    Example: 3 percent; 130 percent.

    For very large sums of money, use figures with a dollar sign; spell out million or billion: $1.8 million between $1 and $2 billion. Use $1 not $1.00.

    Do not use a comma when referring to a temperature or year: 2200 degrees Fahrenheit.

    Telephone Numbers
    Use area code with hyphens for all telephone numbers. Do not use parentheses around area code.

  • Punctuation

    Use ampersand to replace “and” in College programs, departments, and schools.

    School of Visual & Performing Arts
    Office of Communications & Marketing
    Autism & Applied Behavior Analysis

    Also use ampersand to replace and in stand-alone headings or titles on posters, flyers, etc.

    Per AP style, for possessives ending in the letter s, add an apostrophe (not ’s).

    Dr. Jones’ report (not Dr. Jones’s report).

    Use a colon, sparingly, to introduce additional information or to convey the sense of “as follows.”

    Use the semicolon to set off a series that includes commas.

    Oxford Comma
    The use of the serial comma—a comma placed before the final item in a series of three or more items (typically preceding an and, an or, or a nor) is encouraged.

    Em Dash
    One or two em dashes (—) to highlight an explanatory element in a sentence. There are no spaces before or after the em dash.

    The motto of the force—To Protect and Serve—was emblazoned on the squad car.

    En Dash
    An en dash (–) is used with number ranges and to indicate “to” or “through.” Use an en dash to describe a timeframe.

    Chapters 18–25 will provide the basis for class discussions next week.
    The art exhibition will run March 28–May 18.
    From 7–9 p.m. in the Post Center.

    A hyphen is the shortest dash (used in compound words and compound adjectives).


    Bullet Points
    Do not use the word “including” or the phrase “as follows” before a bulleted list. If the list is a part of the previous sentence, do not capitalize. If the list includes full sentences capitalize with punctuation. For single words capitalize with no punctuation.

    • Backpacks
    • Books
    • Linens
    • You will make new connections.
    • Our industry professionals are top-notch.
    • Endicott’s esteemed faculty is always engaged.

    Quotation Marks
    Include all punctuation inside of quotation marks. For a quote within a quote, use single quotation marks.

    “When I say ‘immediately,’ I mean some time before the end of the semester,” says the dean.

  • Schools

    Undergraduate Schools (8)

    School of Arts & Sciences
    School of Business
    School of Communication
    School of Education
    School of Hospitality Management
    School of Nursing
    School of Sport Science & Fitness Studies
    School of Visual & Performing Arts

    Graduate School

    Van Loan School at Endicott College (VLS)

    Van Loan School at Endicott College on first mention. Van Loan on second reference and all other mentions. For shorthand on social, you may use VLS as an abbreviation but preferred way is to write it out.

  • State Abbreviations

    Use AP style state abbreviations in copy.

    Ala., Ariz., Ark., Calif., Colo., Conn., Del., Fla., Ga., Ill., Ind., Kan., Ky., La., Md., Mass., Mich., Minn., Miss., Mo., Mont., Neb., Nev., N.H., N.J., N.M., N.Y., N.C., N.D., Okla., Ore., Pa., R.I., S.C., S.D., Tenn., Vt., Va., Wash., W.Va., Wis., Wyo.
    Note: The names of eight states are never abbreviated in datelines or text: Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Ohio, Texas, and Utah.

    Spell out the names of the 50 U.S. states when they stand alone (no city or town listed) in textual material. Use two-letter state abbreviations with full addresses and zip code.

    Use periods in the abbreviation for United States within text.


  • Titles of Works

    Italicize titles of:

    Art exhibitions
    Blog names
    Law cases
    Long poems
    Podcast series
    Radio shows
    Record albums/CDs
    Television shows
    Web publications
    Works of art

    Use quotation marks without italics around titles of:

    Articles and papers
    Individual lectures
    Podcasts and individual videos
    Short poems
    Short stories
    Single TV episodes

    Use neither quotation marks nor italics for titles of:

    Lecture series
    Unpublished works, such as thesis and dissertations