Grammatical Styling

Unless otherwise noted, we follow AP Stlye.

In all other cases refer to the Print Design Guidelines. (link to come from Becky)

Specific stylings to be aware of are noted below:

Oxford Comma

The "Oxford comma" - the comma used between the second last item in a list and the word "and" is NOT permissible in AP Style. Do not use the Oxford comma on the Hiram College website or official publications.

  • Correct: The students, faculty and staff attended the reception.
  • Incorrect: The students, faculty, and staff attended the reception.

Email Addresses

  • Always use all lowercase letters, unless at the start of a sentence.

Example: You can reach me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with any questions.

Time of Day

  • Use the full hour and minutes, unless it is on the exact hour (no :00 necessary).
  • Use periods with the a.m./p.m. designation.
  • When a span of time is used, the two should have a single hyphen with no spacing in between them.
  • When listing times, separate them with a comma after the period in the designation.
  • Use "noon" and "midnight" instead of 12 a.m. and 12 p.m.

Example:The meeting sessions will begin at 8 a.m., 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. with a short social gathering afterwards from 10:15 a.m.-11:15 a.m. At noon, all parties will be excused.

Phone Numbers

Use periods, not hyphens. When an area code is needed, do not write in the "1" or use parentheses.

Example: You can reach the College Relations department at 330.569.5286 with any questions.

Dates

The following rules apply:

  • When a date is written with only the month and year, do not use abbreviations.
    • ExampleClasses begin in August 2015.
  • When a day is included, the months of January, February, August, September, October, November and December shall be abbreviated into Jan., Feb., Aug., Sept., Oct., Nov. and Dec., respectively, with a comma between the day and year. March, April, May, June and July should never be abbreviated.
    • Examples:
      • Classes began this year on Aug. 31, 2015.
      • Alumni Weekend was June 19-21, 2015
  • Do not use a postscript ("st", "nd", "rd", "th") after the day.
  • When a year is written should contain all four digits.
    • ExampleClasses began earlier in the 1990s.
  • When referencing a decade, add an "s" without an apostrophe. (see example above)
  • Use the order TIME, DATE, PLACE when specifying the time, date and location of an event or other occurrence.
    • ExampleOpening Convocation will take place at noon on Sept. 1 in Hayden Auditorium.

Academic Titles

  • Capitalize titles when they immediately precede a personal name. 
  • Titles following a personal name or used alone in place of a name are lowercase.
    • Examples:
      • President Lori Varlotta, Ph.D., spoke at the event.
      • Lori Varlotta, Ph.D., president of Hiram College, spoke at the event.
      • The president of the College spoke at the event.
  • When not used within the context of a sentence (for example, an email signature or staff listing), it is permissible to capitalize titles. 

Academic Degrees

Degree names should be spelled out whenever possible and should be followed by the word degree.

  • Correct: The College offers a Bachelor of Arts degree.
  • Incorrect: The College offers a Bachelor of Arts.

Use an apostrophe in bachelor's degree, a master's degree, etc., but there is no possessive in Bachelor of Arts degree or Master of Science degree.

Include associate degree and bachelor’s degree in biographical context, but do not use when providing naming credentials - those are reserved for master level degrees and above.

  • Correct: John Snow, Ph.D., spoke at the event. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in biology from Hiram College and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in education from Kent State University.
  • Incorrect: John Snow, B.S., M.D., spoke at the event.

When listing an individual’s degrees, both degrees should be spelled out

  • Correct: John Snow, Ph.D., spoke at the event. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in biology from Hiram College and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in education from Kent State University.
  • Incorrect: John Snow, Ph.D., spoke at the event. He earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Hiram College and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in education from Kent State University.

Degree abbreviations require periods in all instances.

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