A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z


   Capitalize only when using the school's formal name.

           The JMU School of Music presented the program.
           The music school presented the program.

      Because JMU has departments as well as schools and programs, when you use school in a generic sense, check to
         see if you also need to say department and program to be inclusive.

             Students are accepted by the department, school or program on the basis of their academic records.

   Always hyphenate when used in conjunction with another word.

            self-esteem, self-examination, self-inflicted

   Always lowercase

   Twice a year, a synonym for biannual.  No hyphen

smart quotes 
   For print applications, turn on the smart quote setting. Do not use inch marks or foot marks.

   For Web applications, turn off the smart quotes setting, and use inch marks for quotations and foot marks for
   apostrophes to ensure that characters will not be changed or lost when transferred to the Web.

   • Lowercase in all "state of" constructions.

           state of Maine, state of Vermont
           states of Maine and Vermont
           New York state
           state of Washington or Washington state

   •  Four states — Kentucky, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Virginia — are legally commonwealths. The distinction is
        necessary in formal uses. 

      when part of a "Commonwealth of" construction. (MadisonStyle)

             The Commonwealth of Virginia filed a suit. 
             They filed a suit against the commonwealth.

state abbreviations 
   Never use U.S. Postal Service abbreviations to refer to states in text. Use them only when followed by a ZIP Code. Eight states are never abbreviated. 
               Alaska                Hawaii               Idaho               Iowa
               Maine                 Ohio                  Texas               Utah
   Abbreviate the remaining 42 state names when used within text as follows:

         Alabama - Ala.
         Arizona - Ariz.
         Arkansas - Ark.
         California - Calif.
         Colorado - Colo.
         Connecticut - Conn.
         Delaware - Del.
         Florida - Fla.
         Georgia - Ga.
         Illinois - Ill.
         Indiana - Ind.
         Kansas - Kan.
         Kentucky - Ky.
         Louisiana - La.
         Maryland - Md.
         Massachusetts - Mass.
         Michigan - Mich.
         Minnesota - Minn.
         Mississippi - Miss.
         Missouri - Mo.
         Montana - Mont.
         Nebraska - Neb.
         Nevada - Nev.
         New Hampshire - N.J.
         New Jersey - N.J.
         New Mexico - N.M.
         New York - N.Y.
         North Carolina - N.C.
         North Dakota - N.D.
         Oklahoma - Okla.
         Oregon - Ore.
         Pennsylvania - Pa.
         Rhode Island - R.I.
         South Carolina - S.C.
         South Dakota - S.D.
         Tennessee - Tenn.
         Vermont - Vt.
         Virginia - Va.
         Washington - Wash.
         West Virginia - W.Va.
         Wisconsin - Wis.
         Wyoming - Wyo.

   Use the ZIP code state name abbreviations only when followed by a ZIP code in an address.

         Alabama - AL
         Alaska - AK
         Arizona - AR
         Arkansas - AK.
         California - CA.
         Colorado - CO
         Connecticut - CT
         Delaware - DE
         District of Columbia - DC
         Florida - FL
         Georgia - GA
         Hawaii - HI
         Idaho - ID
         Iowa - IA
         Illinois - IL
         Indiana - ID
         Kansas - KS
         Kentucky - KY
         Louisiana - LA
         Maine - ME
         Maryland - MD
         Massachusetts - MS.
         Michigan - MI
         Minnesota - MN
         Mississippi - MS
         Missouri - MO

         Montana - MT
         Nebraska - NE
         Nevada - NV
         New Hampshire - NH
         New Jersey - NJ
         New Mexico - NM
         New York - NY
         North Carolina - NC
         North Dakota - ND
         Ohio - OH
         Oklahoma - OK.
         Oregon - OR
         Pennsylvania - PA
         Rhode Island - RI
         South Carolina - SC
         South Dakota - SD
         Utah - UT
         Tennessee - TN
         Texas - TX
         Vermont - VT
         Virginia - VA
         Washington - WA.
         West Virginia - WV.
         Wisconsin - WI
         Wyoming - WY


   One word, no hyphen

   Abbreviate only with a numbered address. Spell out for all other uses.

Return to the top.