Armstrong Atlantic State University Savannah Georgia.

Armstrong Publication Style Guide

The Office of Marketing & Communications uses the AP style guide as the basis for all university publications. The following edited guide is provided for your use.

Top ten style points

  1. Do not use a comma before the words and or or in a series.
    The bookstore has a large supply of college wear, text books and stationery.
  2. Spell out numbers less than 10.
  3. One space should follow a period.
  4. When stating a time do not use zeros on the hour.
    The meeting is set for 2 p.m.
  5. Do not say 12 noon. Use noon to avoid redundancy.
  6. When not using the full name, Armstrong Atlantic State University, lower case university in all other references.
    The university library is a good place to do research.
  7. Use an apostrophe when referring to the generic degrees that Armstrong offers.
    Armstrong offers associate's, bachelor's and master's degrees.
  8. Only the formal name of a department should be capitalized.
    The Department of Biology offers a wide variety of courses.

    Many courses are offered by biology.
  9. It is assumed that most professors hold doctoral degrees, therefore, the title Dr. is not used before names.
    Merril Shepro has taught biology for almost 15 years.
  10. Form the plural of letters used as words, invented words and numbers by adding only an s (no apostrophe).
    the three Rs

Usage of Armstrong Atlantic State University

  1. After the first formal reference, you may refer to Armstrong Atlantic State University as:
    • Armstrong
    • the university


When in doubt, do not capitalize.

  1. Proper nouns, months, days of the week, but not the seasons.
  2. All words, except articles, conjunctions and prepositions in the titles of books, plays, lectures, musical compositions, etc., including A and The if at the beginning of the title.
    The Man Who Came to Dinner
  3. All conferred and traditional educational, occupational and business titles when used specifically in front of the name or in lists and programs; do not capitalize these titles in the text when they follow the names, unless the title is a name or distinguished professorship.
    Frederick R. Ford, executive vice president and treasurer, or Vice President Frederick R. Ford

    Professor Alice Jones is head of the Department of Physical Science or Alice Jones, a professor in the Department of Physical Science

    Samuel Brown, Oglethorpe Professor of Engineering and professor of civil engineering
  4. The word university only when part of an institution's formal name; not when making a second reference to any university.
    Armstrong Atlantic State University

    The university is located at 11935 Abercorn Street.
  5. The words association, building, center, club, conference, department, division, hall, office, senate, street, university, etc., when used as part of a title; thereafter, do not capitalize these or similar words when used alone to refer to that specific place or group.
    the Department of Physics or the physics department

    the Armstrong campus or the campus

    the Armstrong Atlantic State University Foundation Board or the board
  6. A specific course or subject, but not a generic subject name
    Contemporary Spanish Literature

    mathematics or chemistry
  7. Geographical regions of the country, but not points of the compass.
    the South, the Midwest, the East, the Northeast

    southeast Georgia
  8. Names of athletic clubs and teams.
    the Pirates

    the Atlanta Braves
  9. Names of all races and nationalities
    Caucasian, Nigerian, Irish, Japanese
  10. The word room when used to designate a particular room.
    Room 158 of University Hall
  11. Official names of college degrees when spelled out
    Bachelor of Science in Nursing

    associate's, bachelor's, master's

    Doctor of Philosophy
  12. Names of academic degrees and honors when following a personal name, distinguished and similar professorships.
    Clyde M. Habersham, Ph.D.

    Albert Hill, Eminent Professor of Geology

Do not capitalize:

  1. Designations based on color, size, or local usage.
    black, white, pygmy
  2. Titles standing alone or in apposition.
    The dean of the College of Education must approve all research projects.

    Contact the dean of students for further information.
  3. Names of school or college studies, fields of study, options, curricula, major areas, major subjects, or programs, except names of countries and languages, unless a specific course is being referred to.
    He is studying philosophy and English.

    Each student must meet core requirements in science and the humanities.

    Armstrong offers a curriculum in biology.
  4. Organized groups or classes of students in a university or high school, or the words freshman, sophomore, junior, senior, or graduate, when they refer to the year in which a course is to be taken or to the classification of the student.
    ENGL 101 should be taken in the freshman year.

    John Smith is a junior in the College of Arts and Sciences.

    The senior class will conduct its annual election tomorrow.
  5. Unofficial titles preceding the name.
    flutist Julian Bream
  6. Designations of officers of a class, social organization, etc.
    Paula Smith is president of the Armstrong Atlantic Student Government Association.

    She was elected freshman class secretary.
  7. Designations of officers when the title follows the name of the individual.
    Ernest A. Lowe was the first president of Armstrong Junior College of Savannah.

    Dwight D. Eisenhower was a great general.
  8. These words or abbreviations:
    • bachelor's degree
    • baccalaureate
    • master's degree
    • state and federal government
    • state of Georgia
    • federal Judge John J. Armestad
    • honors
    • page
    • paragraph
  9. The words offices, schools and departments when referring to more than one individual office, school or department.
    colleges of Education and Health Professions


When in doubt, spell the word out.

  1. The following titles when they precede a name: Dr., Mr., Mrs., the Rev., Fr. and all military titles.
  2. Other titles, such as professor, only when they precede the first name or initials; spell out titles when they are used before the surname alone.
    Prof. E. B. Smith

    Professor Smith

    Profs. E.B. Smith and J.T. Jones

    Professors Smith and Jones
  3. Page to p. or pp. in footnotes or bibliographical material; spell out when used in text material (page not Page).
  4. Eastern standard time as EST, without periods.
  5. The word and as an ampersand (&) only in corporate titles.
  6. The word saint when used to refer to such cities as St. Louis, St. Paul, etc.
  7. Complimentary titles, such as Mr., Mrs. and Dr., but do not use them in combination with any other title or with abbreviations indicating scholastic or academic degrees.
    Paul Huston, Ph.D., not Dr. Paul Huston, Ph.D.
  8. The degrees bachelor of science, master of arts, doctor of philosophy and educational specialist, to B.S., M.A., Ph.D. and Ed.S. with periods.
  9. The department name of a course when it is followed by the course number.
    Besides an elective course in English, MA 333 should be selected by the student.
  10. Spell out all numbers less than 10. Numbers may be used in statistical listings.
    Last spring, seven students graduated from the program.

    The results of the survey were 28.7 percent in favor; 39.4 percent against; and 31.9 percent not sure.

    Use percent when the statistics are embedded in an otherwise non-statistical context. Use % in a technical document.
  11. Use standard abbreviations for names of states when following names of cities and towns.
    Savannah, Ga.; Miami, Fla.; Los Angeles, Calif.

    State abbreviations

Do not abbreviate:

  1. Names of countries, other than U.S.A.
  2. Given names, such as George, William and Charles.
  3. The words association, avenue, boulevard, department, institute, street, etc.
  4. Names of months.
  5. Christmas in the form of Xmas.
  6. The word percent.
    In general use the word percent, but in scientific, technical and statistical copy use the symbol %.

    Of this year's student enrollment, 60 percent are men and 40 percent are women.

    Reports of spirocercosis in dogs vary from 2% to 100% of the canine population examined.
  7. Parts of geographic names, except Saint as in St. Louis, St. Paul, etc., unless they are used in tabular matter.
    Fort Wayne

    North Dakota
  8. Assistant and associate when used in a title, such as assistant professor of education. Abbreviations may be used more freely in tabular matter.


  1. Do not use a comma before the words and and or in a series.
    The annual Celebrate Armstrong Day will include booths by foreign language classes, physical therapy classes, student clubs and many other campus groups.
  2. Place a comma after digits signifying thousands: 1,150 students; except when reference is made to temperature:
    4600 degrees.
  3. Follow a statement that introduces a direct quotation of one or more paragraphs with a colon. Also use a colon after the phrase "as follows."
  4. Introductory words such as, namely, i.e., e.g. and viz should be immediately preceded by a comma or semicolon and followed by a comma.
  5. When listing names with cities or states, punctuate as follows: George Andrews, Columbus, president; Carol Green, Savannah, vice president; etc.
  6. When abbreviating years of college classes, punctuate with a closing apostrophe.
    Class of '76

    John White, '39
  7. When referring to a period of time such as centuries or decades, they should be punctuated as follows:

  8. Call letters of radio stations and alphabetical abbreviations of groups, organizations, or institutions such as ROTC, USDA, NCAA, or SACS, should be capitalized and written without periods or space; but letter symbols of degrees, B.S., M.S., Ph.D. and of the U.S. should be capitalized and written with periods.
  9. Bachelor's and master's degrees should always be written with an 's.
  10. Do not hyphenate the word vice president and words beginning with non, except those containing a proper noun.

  11. Do not place a hyphen between the prefixes pre, semi, anti, etc. and nouns or adjectives, except proper nouns. Avoid duplicated vowels or triple consonants.
    predentistry reapply bell-like

    pro-American pre-enroll
  12. Do not place a hyphen between the prefix sub and the word to which it is attached.
  13. Use a hyphen to avoid ambiguity.
    Small-business profits, rather than small business profits.
  14. Hyphenate part-time and full-time when used as adjectives, and hyphenate any modifying word combined with well, when preceding a noun.
    well-built engine

    well-grounded in mathematics
  15. Hyphenate the word X-ray and use a capital X.
  16. Use the nonhyphenated spelling of a word if either spelling is acceptable.
  17. When writing a date, place a comma between the day, if given, and the year.
    December 25, 1987.
  18. Do not place a comma between the month and year when the day is not mentioned.
    December 1987
  19. Italicize the titles of books, essays, long musical compositions, motion pictures, pamphlets, periodicals, etc. Place in quotation marks the titles of book series, radio and television programs (when part of a series), songs, lectures and parts (chapters, titles of papers, etc.) of volumes.
  20. Use single quotation marks for quotations printed within other quotations.
  21. Use single quotation marks in headlines.
    JFK Invokes a 'New Frontier'
  22. If several paragraphs are to be quoted, use quotation marks at the beginning of each paragraph, but only at the end of the last paragraph.
  23. Set quotation marks outside periods and commas and inside colons and semicolons. They should be set inside of exclamation points and interrogation marks that are not part of the quotation.
  24. No quotation marks are necessary in printing interviews when the name of the speaker is given first, or in reports of testimony when the words question and answer or Q and A are used, such as:
    Q: Who will benefit from the plan?
    A: Full-time staff, students...

    Jones: How do you plan your curriculum?
    Smith: A committee does that.


Use figures for:

  1. Numbers 10 and above.
  2. Days of the month, omitting rd, th, st, nd: April 6, June 1, etc.
  3. Degrees
    longitude 67 03' 06" W.

    21.5°F below zero. (Omit the degree sign only in engineering and technical publications.)
  4. Numbers within a series in order to maintain consistency if more than half of the numbers are 10 and above; otherwise spell out numbers within a series.
    23 hours, 12 minutes, 6 seconds.

    Twelve hats, five purses, five umbrellas, seven sweaters and sixteen pairs of shoes were sold yesterday.
  5. Sums that are cumbersome to spell out, but spell out the words million and billion.
    5.75 million 17.9 billion
  6. Write phone numbers as follows:
    44123 for on-campus publications

    344.0000 for publications going off campus
  7. Hours of the day are usually spelled out in text matter.
    He left the office at four.

    The group worked until after midnight.
  8. Hours of the day are always numerical when specific information is being communicated.
    The class will be held on Thursdays from 7 to 9:30 p.m.
  9. Amounts of money with the word cents or with the dollar sign: $3 (not $3.00), $5.09, or 77 cents, unless tabulated in columns.
  10. Do not begin a sentence with numerals: supply a word or spell out the figures.


  1. Always include the first name or initials of persons the first time they appear in an article.
    President George W. Bush - thereafter, the president or Bush
  2. One initial should never be used; use both initials, the first name, or the first name and middle initial:
    T.H. Foran, Thomas Foran, or Thomas H. Foran, but not T. Foran.
  3. Never use Mr., Mrs., Miss, or Ms. unless the person is deceased.
  4. The word the should be supplied before Rev. in formal publications. The abbreviation Rev. should not be used without the first name or initials.
    NOT: Rev. Lehman, Reverend Lehman, J.T. Lehman or Lehman.

    INSTEAD: The Rev. J.T. Lehman will give the benediction.

    Rabbi Joseph Goldberg - thereafter Rabbi Goldberg

    Father Clarence O'Dowd - thereafter Father O'Dowd
  5. Do not use the title Dr. when referring to an academic doctor.
  6. When referring to Armstrong staff members, use the title or rank given to them by the university.
    Prof. Samuel Brown

    Dean Henry Frazier
  7. After referring to an individual by full name, use the spelled-out title and last name.
    Professor Smith
  8. Apply the title professor only before the name of a staff member of professional rank; professor, associate professor, or assistant professor.
  9. Do not qualify the title professor with associate or assistant before a person's name, but do qualify it after the name.
    Prof. Samuel Brown, Professor Brown

    Samuel Brown, associate professor of biology

    For distinguished professors:

    Samuel Brown, Ogelthorpe Professor of Engineering and professor of computer engineering
  10. Avoid using long titles before the names of people, such as: Superintendent of Public Instruction John H. Ward. Rather say, Superintendent John H. Ward, or John H. Ward, superintendent of public instruction.
  11. Do not identify individuals by race, religion, or national origin unless such identifications are essential to an understanding of the topic.


  1. Form the plural of letters used as words, invented words and numbers by adding "s" only (no apostrophe).
    ABCs, the three Rs, 1970s
  2. Use an apostrophe to form plurals of letters used as words, abbreviations with periods and capital letters that could be confusing if the s alone were added.
    P's and q's, Ed.D.'s, A's and B's


Subject-Verb Agreement

  1. The phrases number of, total of, variety of, majority of may take singular or plural verbs. In general, when number, total, variety, or majority is preceded by a, it takes a plural verb.
    A number of consultants are attending the meeting.
  2. In general, when number, total, variety, or majority is preceded by the, it takes a singular verb.
    The number of consultants attending is small.
  3. With percent, the "rule of attraction" prevails. In other words, if percent is followed by a singular word, it takes a singular verb; if followed by a plural word, it takes a plural verb.
    More than seventy-five percent of the employees are insured.

    More than seventy-five percent of the county is flooded.
  4. Data is always plural.
    These data are disturbing.
  5. A datum is a single fact.
    This datum is interesting.
  6. The decision to use a singular or a plural verb with the subject staff can be tricky. Use a singular verb if you are considering the group as a unit.
    Her staff is getting a raise.
  7. Use a plural verb if you are considering the individual members of the group separately.
    Office staff are notified annually about their status.

Ethnic Identification

  1. The terms black and white are not capitalized when used to refer to ethnic groups.
    We will be inviting two black teachers and two white teachers to serve on the panel.
  2. The following terms are capitalized: African American, American Indian (but native American), Anglo, Asian, Caucasian, Chicano, Hispanic, Latino.

Nonsexist Language

  1. Avoid using the generic he to cover both he and she (and the possessive his for both his and hers). Where possible, rewrite your sentence so the plural pronoun they can be used or so no pronoun is needed.
    NOT Each employee has received his own packet.
    INSTEAD All employees have received their own packets.
    Each employee has received a packet.
  2. If your context requires the use of a singular pronoun, the construction he or she is preferable to he alone, but should not be overused.
  3. Do not try to avoid the issue by using a plural pronoun to refer to a singular antecedent.
    NOT Everyone should bring their emergency guides.
    INSTEAD Everyone should bring a copy of the emergency guide.
    Everyone should bring his or her emergency guide.
  4. Avoid using occupational titles with the ending -man. Here are some common examples and suggested alternatives.
    Example Alternative
    fire fighter
    mail carrier
    police officer
  5. Be sensitive to other words and expressions that exclude females and try to find alternatives for them.
    Example Alternative
    work force
    chair or chairperson