The Illinois Tech Editorial Style Guide exists to help everyone at Illinois Institute of Technology who writes or edits copy. This guide takes the guesswork out of writing according to Illinois Tech standards. What is the preferred term? Which words do we capitalize? What conventions should we follow?
The guidelines stem from three main sources: (1) The Chicago Manual of Style; (2) The Associated Press Style Book; and (3) Illinois Tech practices, preferences, and conventions. The Illinois Tech Editorial Style Guide is by no means a complete list of all editorial style rules, but rather a compilation of common issues that arise as well as Illinois Tech preferences.
Recommended resources for the study of correct usage include The Chicago Manual of Style (University of Chicago) and The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr. and E. B. White.
For spelling, rely on any major dictionary and your computer’s spelling and grammar checker.
Items in the Illinois Tech Editorial Style Guide are arranged alphabetically.
This guide is updated annually. For questions about editorial style at Illinois Tech, contact the Office of Marketing and Communications.
Last updated: May 2019
For treatment of numbers, including 2D and 3D, see the numerals entry.
An abbreviation is the shortened form of a word that may or may not be followed by a period, e.g., vol., etc., Ms., Ph.D. Acronyms and initialisms are subsets of abbreviations used in Illinois Tech's publications are either acronyms—formed from the first letters of the name of an organization or thing and pronounced as a word (NASA)—and initialisms—formed from the first letters of the name of an organization or thing and pronounced as letters (FBI). Refrain from including abbreviations in parenthesis in headlines.
[See academic majors list]
Capitalize formal names of degrees, e.g., Master of Science in Chemical Engineering. Do not capitalize general categories of degrees, e.g., master’s degree or doctorate. Use an apostrophe in bachelor’s degree, master’s thesis, or the like. Abbreviations are offset with periods, e.g., M.B.A., M.S., Ph.D., M.Des., etc. Degrees in the Professional Science Master's program are indicated by M.A.S., e.g., M.A.S. DSC (Master of Data Science).
[See degrees offered list]
Capitalize and spell out formal titles such as professor or dean when they precede a name. Lowercase when the title follows the name, e.g., Former President John Anderson—John Anderson, former president of Illinois Institute of Technology; Dean Christine Himes—Christine Himes, dean of Lewis College of Human Sciences. However, generic titles that do not include a proper noun are lowercase, e.g., Bob Smith, dean of libraries or dean of libraries Bob Smith. A lowercase title does not indicate disrespect; it simply follows The Chicago Manual of Style.
Capitalize academic titles when they follow names in a list (e.g., a donor list) unless the list is part of running text, in which case the above rule applies.
Preliminary titles, as in Dean Jones or Professor Smith, should be reserved for very formal documents.
Do not use the abbreviation Dr. when referring to faculty, as it is often confused with the title used for medical doctors. Most Illinois Tech faculty hold doctorate degrees.
The title of Distinguished Professor should be treated as would an endowed chair or endowed professorship title and is capitalized. The Office of the Provost maintains the listing of Distinguished Professors.
Capitalize when using the formal name of a unit, such as Department of Civil and Architectural Engineering. Do not capitalize when approximating the name or using it informally, as in the architectural engineering department.
[See academic units list]
In running copy, list the full name of the acronym and then shorten to the acronym form on second reference. Do not include the acronym in parenthesis at first reference, e.g., Wanger Institute for Sustainable Energy Research conducts studies that join together WISER researchers from throughout campus. Exceptions would be Interprofessional Projects (IPRO) Program, in which case the acronym is part of the official name, or instances in which the acronym is not intuitive or appears much later in body copy after its first reference. Do not add periods in acronyms, initialisms for any with three or more letters, e.g., U.S., FBI, CEO, U.K. Refrain from using acronyms to begin sentences.
On envelopes and in publications, addresses should be written with the content organized top to bottom, most specific to least specific. Except for the state, do not abbreviate other words in the address. For example:
Office of Marketing and Communications
Illinois Institute of Technology
10 West 35th Street, 13th Floor
Chicago, IL 60616
If using the intersection of two identically named throughways in body copy, lowercase and form the plural of the throughway as follows, e.g., the corner of 35th and State streets.
In most cases for consistency, use adviser. An exception is Board of Advisors.
Hyphenate only when using as an adjective, not as a noun, e.g. He is African American. The African-American art was on exhibit. Use the hyphen similarly for Asian-American, Hispanic-American, Polish-American, and the like when used as adjectives.
Hyphenate when used as an adjective and spell out when nine years old or younger, e.g., He is nine years old. He is a nine-year-old student. She is 11 years old. She is an 11-year-old actress.
alumnus, alumni, alumna, alumnae
Use alumnus (alumni in the plural) when referring to a male graduate of Illinois Tech or other institution. Use alumna (alumnae in the plural) for similar references to a woman. Use alumni when referring to a group of men and women. Note: Chicago-Kent College of Law uses alumnae/i to describe groups of its graduates.
Use only when part of an official name, e.g., Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, John & Mae Calamos Endowed Chair in Philosophy.
Use the article an, not a, to precede works that begin with vowel sounds, e.g., an historic building, an island. Use a for words that begin with a vowel but that have a consonant “u” sound, e.g., a eulogy.
Anderson, John L.
Formal title and name is President Emeritus John L. Anderson. On second reference, use Anderson.
End-quote apostrophes are used in alumni graduation years and other instances to indicate missing text, e.g., ’50s, rock ’n’ roll. Take caution to make sure apostrophes face the correct direction (toward the missing characters).
[See smart/“curly” quotes for proper keying]
architecture or architectural
Architecture is a noun ; architectural is an adjective meaning "relating to architecture," e.g., He established his architecture talents … (about an architect, talents in architecture), a church of architectural interest.
Capitalize large-scale exhibitions; do not place in italics or quotations. Italicize individual works of art and smaller exhibitions, such as those at museums.
[See African American]
Athletics plural describes the Illinois Tech Department of Athletics. Also note Director of Athletics.
The beamlines run by Illinois Tech or its affiliated collaborative access teams at Argonne National Laboratory.
Bedford Park, Illinois
The name of the town where Illinois Tech’s Moffett Campus and Institute for Food Safety and Health are located. Do not use Summit-Argo.
Board of Advisors
As of 2015, the former term Board of Overseers is no longer used. Always lowercase board or advisor when used alone or in a general reference.
Capitalize in all references to Illinois Tech’s governing body. Capitalize trustee when it precedes a name, e.g., Trustee Bob Smith. Lowercase otherwise. Always lowercase board or trustee when used alone or in a general reference (exception: formal documents such as the Board of Trustees Bio Book).
In most cases, punctuation following boldface text should not be similarly bolded. The same rule applies when text is in italics.
Italicize titles of books, movies, magazines, plays, journals, works of art, and albums (but not songs, which are capitalized and placed in quotation marks).
Capitalize in all uses. Bronzeville is a neighborhood community that is generally described as between 26th and 51st streets and between the Dan Ryan Expressway and Cottage Grove Avenue.
Do not add a period at the end of items in a bulleted list unless the individual items form a complete sentence, in which case periods are optional. Do not use commas or semicolons at the end of each bulleted item in a series, as would be used in body copy. The first letter of each word in a bulleted sentence should be capitalized. Make sure to use a full sentence leading into the list, set off with a colon. Example:
Illinois Institute of Technology is composed of eight colleges:
- Armour College of Engineering
- Chicago-Kent College of Law
- College of Architecture
- College of Science
- Institute of Design
- Lewis College of Human Sciences
- School of Applied Technology
- Stuart School of Business
John & Mae Calamos Endowed Chair in Philosophy
Note the use of the ampersand.
Capitalize Mies Campus, Conviser Law Center, Daniel F. and Ada L. Rice Campus (also known as Rice Campus), and Moffett Campus. Never use the expression Downtown Center. Lowercase general references to a campus, as in Illinois Tech’s campus in Wheaton.
This is the full, formal name of the scholarship. Less formally, it is known as the Camras Scholarship. Recipients are known as Camras scholars (note lowercase). Camras is capitalized because this scholarship is named after a man—Marvin Camras.
In general, capitalize official names; use lowercase for unofficial, informal, shortened titles, or generic names. Therefore, phrases such as the university, the center, the institute, or the college are not capitalized.
Career Services (Office of)
Do not use the former name Career Development Center.
Capitalize the exact names of centers, as in the Center for Financial Markets. Note: The McCormick Tribune Campus Center. In subsequent references, use lowercase for the center. The same rule applies to institutes.
Spell out both the number and century when used as a noun and an adjective, e.g., twentieth century, twentieth-century discovery, twenty-first-century innovation.
Preferred to chairman, chairwoman, or chairperson, although the latter is acceptable. This rule applies to both chairs of departments and chairs of corporations.
Chicago-Kent College of Law
Never Kent. Use Chicago-Kent or the law school in subsequent references. The use of the College of Law is prohibited. In branding and recruitment materials exclusive to Chicago-Kent, can use IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law.
Do not use this antiquated term. Instead, use Chicago area (noun) or Chicago-area (adjective), e.g. Chicago-area transit system.
Always capitalize. A number of United States and foreign cities do not require state or country names in datelines or copy.
[See list of city designations]
Avoid the terms freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior when referring to current Illinois Tech students; instead use the gender-neutral and more flexible first-year, second-year, etc. In some undergraduate recruitment materials, the terms freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior may be used when referring to prospective high schools students. Illinois Tech freshmen may be described as the incoming class of XX [year]. Because students in the College of Architecture follow a five-year course of study, they should always be described as first-year, second-year, etc. Also, it is not unusual for students to take more than four years to finish an undergraduate degree.
Student classes should be hyphenated and spelled out, e.g., All first-year students live on campus. The only exception is when classes appear as alumni affiliations, as in Illinois Tech Magazine, in which case the ordinal is used, e.g., Tom Smith (ME 4th year) attended a chemistry course; note the absence of a superscript. In headlines and header copy, capitalize the word year, e.g., Tom Smith (ME 4th Year).
Graduate students should be referenced per the example Maxx Webber (M.S. BIOL candidate) in running text; in headlines and header copy, capitalize the word candidate, e.g., Maxx Webber (M.S. BIOL Candidate). Note that there is a difference between a candidate and a student.
In Ilinois Tech Magazine, Class Notes are organized 1) chronologically by graduation year, then 2) alphabetically by the alumni’s last name, then first name.
Do not use cofounder.
Not Lewis unless specifically requested. His title as of August 2007 is president emeritus. Capitalize if it precedes his name in copy.
Keystroke one space after a colon. Capitalize the first word after a colon only when it is a proper noun, the start of a formal quote, or two complete sentences. Also, use colons only at the end of independent clauses, never after a linking verb, e.g., The winners are: Jonathan, faculty, and students Marisa, Mark, and Emily. (Note: There should be a noun following the linking verb; therefore, you may correctly write it this way: There were four winners: Jonathan, Marisa, Mark, and Emily.) Colons may also be used with introductory phrases, such as To Whom It May Concern: etc. Colons should be placed outside quotation marks; when quoting text that ends in a colon, replace the colon with an ellipsis. Avoid colons in headlines unless the headline consists of only one line.
Use commas if the introductory clause is dependent, e.g., If they want to eat healthy, students must eat vegetables daily or if the introductory phrase is long (five or more words) and begins with a preposition. Commas also should be used if a sentence consists of two independent clauses connected with a coordinating conjunction (and, but, for, or, nor, so, yet); otherwise, connect independent clauses with semicolons. Use commas to separate two or more coordinate adjectives that describe the same noun, e.g., It was a red, furry cat but not It was a red, rescue cat. Use a pair of commas in the middle of a sentence to offset clauses, phrases, and words that aren’t essential to the meaning of the sentence, e.g., That Friday, on the other hand, we went out for lunch. Offset the names of single individuals or entities, e.g., Marian’s son, Tim, is an avid runner (but not, for example, if Marian has more than one son).
Capitalize when referring to Illinois Tech Commencement.
Capitalize the formal names of committees, as in the Campaign Executive Committee. Lowercase when approximating the name of a committee, as in Johnson’s committee.
Names of conferences are placed within quotation marks.
Conviser Law Center
Effective April 22, 2020, the name of the Downtown Campus is officially "Conviser Law Center."
Hyphenate a co-op experience, but the term cooperative does not take a hyphen.
[See legal entities]
Capitalize the formal names of courses. Do not italicize or place in quotes. Avoid the term class when referring to an academic course.
Use of courtesy titles such as Mr. or Ms. is discouraged except in very formal documents.
Cramb, Alan W.
Write as President Alan W. Cramb or Alan W. Cramb is the president of Illinois Tech. On subsequent references, use Cramb or, less formally, the president.
S. R. Crown Hall
Use S. R. Crown Hall on first reference to avoid confusion. Note the space between S. and R., which appears as such because S. R. is an abbreviation of beginning and middle names. Crown Hall is acceptable for subsequent references. It was designated a National Historic Landmark (note capitalization) in 2001.
Italicize the name of the university's podcast.
Do not use as two words, e.g., cybersecurity, cyberattack, cyberanalytics, and others. Exceptions: Degree programs in the School of Applied Technology use cyber security as does the Center for Cyber Security and Forensics Education. Also, Cyber Monday, because Monday is a proper noun.
There are no spaces around dashes: Illinois Institute of Technology—a university with a national reputation. Two hyphens are often used to represent a dash, but this should be avoided. Note the difference between an en dash and an em dash.
En dashes are used between two numbers in place of “through” or “up to and including” to illustrate the passage of time or absence within a sequence of numbers, e.g., 1942–43, 1–4 p.m. However, if "from" or "between" is used before the first of a pair of numbers, the en dash should not be used, e.g., from 75 to 110, from January 1, 2013, to December 8, 2018, between about 13.
Em dashes are used between words in place of commas and must be used in pairs for middle-position modifiers, e.g., Chemistry 101—a requirement for all students—is best taken during the first year. (Note: To insert an en or em dash in Word for PC, go to Insert-Symbol-Special Characters. For Mac, use command+num-hyphen to insert an en dash; use command+option+num-hyphen to insert an em dash.)
Treat as a singular noun, e.g., the data indicates. The same rule applies to other words that refer to more than one person who act as a single group (e.g., rock band, movie cast, research team).
Write dates as Arabic figures, without the ordinal number suffixes such as st, rd, etc. Do not place commas between months and years, e.g., October 1997; but October 12, 1997. Use commas after years that appear mid-sentence, e.g., He had a test on October 12, 1997, during his freshman year. Include day of the week for future dates but not dates that have passed. When including dates in body copy, keep in mind that not every date will need to include the current year, depending upon the publication and surrounding text.
day of the week
If preparing copy that will be used in advance of an event, list the day of the week along with the date; if the event has passed, do not include the day of the week, e.g., Grad Salute will be held on Wednesday, May 1; the 150th Commencement Exercise was held on May 18, 2019.
Degree and graduation years should follow the names of alumni whenever possible, e.g., Bob Smith (CHE ’55). Note the use of parentheses, the space after the major abbreviation, and the direction of the apostrophe. There is no need to use B.S. to note a bachelor’s degree because it is assumed, although Illinois Tech post-graduate degrees should be noted. (Note: The undergraduate INTM and ITM programs award “bachelor of” degrees that are not the same as bachelor of science degrees, therefore they require separate designation. See degrees offered list.) For alumni with more that one degree in the same major, e.g., Tom Smith (CHE ’65, M.S. ’68); with more than one degree in different majors, e.g., Fred Jackson (ARCH ’85, M.S. PSYC ’90). For clarity, do not abbreviate the graduation years of alumni who graduated in the 1800s and early 1900s (preceding the current century), e.g. Weymouth Kirkland (LAW 1901).
Capitalize the name of a department, program, and administrative office. In the case of a department, begin with Department of … e.g., Department of Biomedical Engineering, Department of Psychology. Capitalize program if it is part of the formal name; lowercase, if it is not, e.g., Business Law program, Interprofessional Projects (IPRO) Program. Unless an office's title indicates otherwise, precede with Office of …, e.g., Office of Marketing and Communications, Office of Financial Aid. On second reference, do not capitalize the name of the department, program, or administrative office, particularly if used in a generalized form, e.g., biomedical engineering department, psychology department, undergraduate admission office (from Office of Undergraduate Admission). See lists of departments and administrative offices in appendix.
director, executive director
[See academic titles]
Lowercase north, northeast, etc., when referring to compass directions. Capitalize these words when they refer to regions: the Midwest, the South Side.
Avoid the title Dr. before the names of academics who have earned a doctorate. Dr. may be used in reference to a medical doctor. Caution: Not all professors hold doctorates, and not all medical doctors hold Ph.D.s.
Use the $ sign with figures; do not spell out the word dollar, which would be redundant, e.g., Bagels cost $2. For amounts of $1 million or more, do not link numerals and words with a hyphen, e.g., The $20 million building will open today.
Per the Chicago Manual of Style, do not use spaces between the periods that precede and follow the ellipsis, e.g., It was a long day…a very long day. Use four periods to note an ellipsis at the end of a sentence, with no space before the first point, e.g., It was a three-month course.... These same recommendations apply to material within quotation marks. Also, do not use ellipsis at the beginning of sentences even if words have been deleted.
Lowercase unless at the beginning of a sentence, and do not use a hyphen. Email addresses in copy should not be broken between two lines. If line breaks cannot be avoided, break after the @ symbol. Capitalize all words in an email subject line, following the same rules for headlines.
Capitalize the formal name in all uses whether before or following a person’s name, e.g., Bob Smith is Max McGraw Professor of Energy and Power Engineering and Management. Listings of Endowed Chairs and Distinguished Professors are maintained by the Office of the Provost.
Use Energy/Environment/Economics (E3) in first reference to this program, E3 thereafter.
For hyphenation, see African American.
Do not italicize. Hyphenate when used as an adjective, e.g., the ex-officio member.
[See academic titles]
Do not capitalize unless in a formal context or unless the word appears as a title preceding a person’s name, e.g., Please welcome Fellow of the AAAS Bob Smith; He is a fellow of the AAAS.
In all grammatical usage, a hyphen is not preferable.
Use italics for foreign words that will not be familiar to most readers, upon first use. Do not italicize thereafter. Foreign words that most readers will know and that are listed in a dictionary are not italicized, e.g., a priori, pro bono, ad hoc, in vitro, recherché, et al, etc.
fraternities and sororities
Spell out names and capitalize them. Do not use Greek letters.
First-year student is preferred. The terms freshman or freshmen may be used in specific recruitment materials when referring to prospective Illinois Tech students who are in high school. Use freshmen when referring to a group of freshmen students (male and/or female).
Hyphenate when used as an adjective.
Capitalize in all uses. Do not capitalize the unless it starts a sentence, e.g., The area known as the Gap lies between Michigan Avenue and Martin Luther King Drive and between 31st and 35th streets.
Capitalize in all uses, e.g., Greater Grand Boulevard is between 26th and 39th streets and between State Street and Cottage Grove Avenue.
Preferred style is to capitalize all words except articles, prepositions, and improper words of two letters or fewer. Capitalize all words if the headline consists of three words or fewer. Do not use periods. Subheads, a- and b-heads, cover lines, and pull quotes can vary (in Illinois Tech Magazine, only the first word and proper names are capitalized). Unless widely known, refrain from using acronyms (NASA) or initialisms (FBI) in headlines.
Not Hermann Union Building or HUB.
In most instances no hyphen is needed when used as an adjective.
Honorary doctoral degrees should be noted in running text for individuals who received such degrees from Illinois Tech and placed in parentheses following the recipient’s name, per Illinois Tech style. The proper abbreviation is Hon. Ph.D. If a specific discipline or major/degree area follows this abbreviation it should be abbreviated according to Illinois Tech degree abbreviation standards, e.g., Robert Pritzker (IE ’46, Hon. Ph.D. ENG ’84).
Do not use hyphens with adverbs that take an -ly form, e.g., It was an extremely hard test. In headlines, the second word in a hyphenated phrase should not be capitalized unless it is a proper noun, although this is discretionary; note that this rule does not apply to cover lines. Consult a dictionary or The Chicago Manual of Style when determining whether to spell a compound word as two words or one hyphenated word; many commonly appearing examples do not use hyphens but rather combine words (e.g., online). The movement in editorial style nationwide is toward less hyphenation in favor of compound words; however, hyphenate words with "co-" prefix, such as co-founder, co-editor, and others.
Idea Shop TM
In internal publications, the trademark symbol should appear after Idea Shop on first reference.
Not I.I.T. Use Illinois Institute of Technology on first reference for most publications. If the tone of the material is light, Illinois Tech may be used on first reference, particularly for undergraduate admission and Athletics materials. Illinois Institute of Technology and Illinois Tech are never preceded by “the.” Illinois Tech possessive should precede the individual schools of the university, e.g., He attended Illinois Tech's Stuart School of Business. The College of Architecture brands itself per the example IIT Architecture. Illinois Institute of Technology and its logo should be used prominently on covers of brochures and in advertising headlines. Note: In branding and recruitment materials exclusive to Chicago-Kent College of Law and the Institute of Design, can use IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law and IIT Institute of Design.
[See Illinois Tech]
IIT Research Institute
Not Illinois Institute of Technology Research Institute. In first reference use IIT Research Institute (IITRI) and IITRI thereafter. The name of the main IITRI facility is IIT Tower; can use The Tower on second reference.
Illinois Institute of Technology
Never preceded by “the.”
Illinois Tech Global Leaders Program
Not IIT Boeing Scholars Academy.
Illinois Tech Microgrid
Formerly referred to as Perfect Power System or the smart microgrid, Illinois Tech Microgrid is the preferred term per Galvin Center Director Mohammad Shahidehpour (August 2016). The word smart preceding microgrid also should be avoided.
Always hyphenate in all uses, e.g., brother-in-law, mother-in-law. Plural follows the example brothers-in-law.
Illinois Institute of Technology should always be referred to as a university, or as an institution, never as an institute. Lowercase institute and center when generally referring to Illinois Tech’s research groups or as a second reference.
Institute for Science, Law, and Technology
ISLAT is acceptable on second reference. Do not use ampersand.
Institute of Design
If making more than one reference, use Illinois Tech's Institute of Design in the first, and ID thereafter. In branding and recruitment materials exclusive to ID, can use IIT Institute of Design.
Not International Cultural Center.
No longer capitalized.
Noted as Interprofessional Projects (IPRO) Program; use IPRO or IPRO Program on subsequent references. The word interprofessional is used to describe the academic aims of Illinois Tech, although not all academic projects are officially IPRO projects. Note that IPROs are required undergraduate academic courses and not independent student-research projects.
Jr. and Sr.
Do not use a comma to offset this suffix, e.g., Bob Smith Jr. The same rule applies to II, III, etc., but not to M.D. or Ph.D., although the use of the latter is discouraged.
[See doctor, Dr.]
Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship
Always use full name on first reference. On subsequent references Kaplan Institute or KI are acceptable.
The Chicago Transit Authority’s elevated train line. It is in quotation marks because it is a nickname, with the “L” referencing elevated, per the AP Style Guide.
Use the word to describe only buildings or sites that have been officially declared landmarks. S. R. Crown Hall has been designated a landmark; the official designation should be capitalized, e.g., National Historic Landmark. The entire Mies Campus is on the National Register of Historic Places, which is not the same designation.
Capitalize the name of a lecture series. Use quotations only for titles of individual lectures, e.g., At the Ralph Peck Lecture, the speaker delivered the lecture “Toward a Greener Planet.”
Do not use legal entity references such as LLC, Ltd., or Co. in body copy, e.g., Microsoft (not Microsoft Corp.). Commonly used proper names are sufficient, and acronyms or abbreviations denoting a legal entity often add unnecessary length. Any commas that may precede an acronym/abbreviation also may create perceived inconsistencies. The exception is in some formal Chicago-Kent College of Law publications, for which the legal name must be used, regardless of inconsistencies between spellings or legal references or punctuation.
Life Sciences Building
After fall 2016 the name Life Sciences Building should no longer be used. The building should be referred to as the Robert A. Pritzker Science Center.
In printed publications, avoid more than two subsequent lines that end (break) with hyphens or dashes. When two lines break at an en dash or em dash, the dash should appear on the previous line. Avoid auto-hyphenation in narrow columns. Avoid justified copy, which often can result in odd line breaks and spacing, unless stylistically motivated.
Lowercase in all uses unless part of a proper name, e.g., Mies Campus Master Plan.
McCormick Student Village
One of Illinois Tech’s residence hall complexes.
The McCormick Tribune Campus Center
Capitalize the formal name. Lowercase general references to the campus center, as in Rem Koolhaas designed Illinois Tech’s campus center. Note the use of “The” with a capital in the formal title. Do not use “The” when the formal name is preceded by an adjective, e.g., the new McCormick Tribune Campus Center. MTCC on subsequent references is acceptable.
M.D. and Ph.D.
Avoid using in running copy. Generally, Ph.D. is only used when designating a degree as part of alumni affiliation. When used, however, commas should precede both M.D. and Ph.D., e.g., Fred Smith, Ph.D. is the department chair.
[See doctor, Dr.]
Do not put a 12 in front of it or use 12 a.m.
[See time of day]
Always capitalize. It is no longer referred to as Main Campus. Do not precede with the.
Mies van der Rohe
Ludwig Mies van der Rohe is the full and preferred name in a first reference, though Mies van der Rohe is also acceptable. Use Mies for subsequent references. Possessive is Mies’.
Mies van der Rohe Society
Mies Society is used on second reference.
"Million Dollar Sermon"
Always capitalize. Lowercase modern.
Always capitalize. Moffett Campus is located in Bedford Park, Illinois (not Summit-Argo).
Italicize names of movies. Do not place in quotations.
Use a person’s first and last name in the first use. In subsequent references, use last name only, e.g., Martin Jischke is president emeritus of Purdue University; Jischke is an Illinois Tech alumnus. When two individuals with the same last name appear in articles of most publications, use the first names on second references or as needed for clarity. In some publications or advertisements, students’ first names may be used where appropriate or to evoke emotion or a particular tone, although last names are preferred.
For individuals whose last names begin with a lowercase van (e.g., van der Meer), capitalize the v on the second reference unless the individual specifies otherwise; capitalize when the last name begins a sentence.
Appear in quotations within the birth name, e.g., Alan “Bud” Wendorf. In rare cases, primarily in lists of names, parentheses can be used in place of quotations for visual clarity.
Do not put a 12 in front of it or use 12 p.m.
[See time of day]
Spell out whole numbers below 10. Use figures for 10 and above. Place a comma in four-digit numbers such as 1,243 (exception: SAT scores). Use numerals but not zeroes for large numbers, e.g., 4 trillion. In a series containing numbers of 10 or above, use numerals for all amounts, e.g., There were 4 students, 10 faculty, and 3 staff. Use numerals with percent for all numbers, e.g., 8 percent, unless the figure is scientific data, in which case the % symbol should be used, e.g., 8%. For uses not covered by these guidelines, follow The Chicago Manual of Style.
The same rules apply to ordinals, e.g., eighth or 124th.
Write the abbreviations for two dimensional and three dimensional as 2D and 3D, respectively. This follows the AP Style Guide convention.
Office of Admission
No “s” on the official title of this office. More specifically, one can use the Undergraduate Office of Admission.
Do not hyphenate.
Research papers and the like should be capitalized and placed in quotations.
parentheses or brackets
Parentheses are used to enclose a student's major and class year, an alumnus's major and year of graduation, and an uncommonly used acronym. They are also used to set off material from the surrounding text, oftentimes as a literary "aside." Examples: Scott McGee (PSYC 2nd year), Suzie Chong (LAW ’88), Alexa Skills Kit (ASK), (see 6.123).
Brackets are used for directionals in photo captions (see photo captions entry). They are also used to elaborate on material, especially quoted material, e.g., "Many CF [cystic fibrosis] patients have been helped by the new therapy." Brackets are also useful for parentheses within parentheses, e.g., (For further discussion, see Mayer's excellent analysis .)
Hyphenate when used as an adjective.
Patents are cited under the names of the creators and dated by year of filing, e.g., Iizuka, Masanori, and Hideki, Tanaka. Cement admixture. U.S. Patent 4,586, 960.
Most of the patents we cite do not have an application or issue date. For those that may have these dates, use the following format: Iizuka, Masanori, and Hideki, Tanaka. Cement admixture. U.S. Patent 4,586, 960, filed June 26, 1984, and issued May 6, 1986.
Spell out in copy. In charts, graphs, and tables, and when referring to scientific data, the % sign is acceptable.
Italicize names of periodicals. Do not place in quotations.
Any person who prefers not to use gendered pronouns, such as he/she or her/him, may use they/them/their in its place.
Plural is Ph.D.s. Generally, Ph.D. is not used unless designating a degree as part of alumni affiliation. When referring to a medical doctor, use only Dr. Do not use Dr. to indicate a Ph.D. who is not a physician.
[See doctor, Dr. for usage]
Preferred Illinois Tech style for phone numbers follows the example 312.567.3104.
Use brackets and not parentheses for indicating directionals; if class year or graduation year is part of name, list directional after year, e.g., Jake Digiorgio (CHE 4th year) [left] goes up for a shot during a game against Carthage College. If directionals begin the caption, uppercase the first directional. Also, not every caption will require closing punctuation, e.g., [Left to right] Hiram Johnson (DSGN ’89) and Sam Unsicker (DSGN ’87) outside of Big Monster Toys
Use two-letter postal abbreviations only for mailing addresses on postal correspondence. In all body copy spell out state names except in lists (e.g., Illinois Tech Magazine class notes or when referencing a mailing address in a publication), in which case follow the state abbreviations as designated by AP style. (Exception: formal invitations, in which case all abbreviations should be avoided.)
[See list of state name abbreviations]
In Illinois Tech Magazine, postscript copy (generally, web urls, contact information, etc.) should be italicized.
The possessive of most singular nouns is formed by adding ’s (e.g., a bass's behavior, that person's shirt). The possessive of most plural nouns is formed by adding an apostrophe only (e.g., puppies' barks). These general rules apply to proper nouns as well (e.g., Illinois's laws, the Lincolns' wedding). When the singular form of a noun ending in s is the same as the plural form, the possessives of both are formed by the addition of an apostrophe only (e.g., humanities' forerunners, economics' true meaning).
Premier is usually an adjective to describe something that is first in position, rank, or importance. It can also be a noun for the head of a government. Premiere is a noun or verb to describe being the first, especially in regard to a public performance.
Pritzker Center is acceptable on second and subsequent references.
Capitalize full names in all uses.
Capitalize when used as a formal title before a full name. Lowercase when used after a name. Do not abbreviate. Avoid using the title on second references. Note the importance of using the accurate professorial rank, e.g., associate professor should be used over the more general reference to professor, which also is a higher rank.
Capitalize the words program or unit only when used as part of the official program or unit name.
[See academic units]
Closing double and single quotation marks always follow a comma and period (even though this may defy conventional wisdom). They precede a colon and semicolon. Do not confuse a single quote with a final apostrophe, which always precedes the period or comma. Television and radio shows are capitalized and placed in quotations, as are book chapters, individual lecture titles, journal articles, papers, dissertations, and theses. Make sure that the quotation marks are in fact quotations and not the symbol for inches.
[See smart/“curly” quotes for proper keying]
In keeping with current federal guidelines, cite the necessary information on any research awards from federal agencies by inserting it in italics at the end of both print and web stories, videos, and press releases. It is a good idea to contact Domenica Pappas in the Office of Research and Sponsored Programs about your intent to cover a research item so that she relay any added requirements for the piece, such as a review by the funding organization. This also applies to articles that include awards to Illinois Institute of Technology Research Institute (IITRI) researchers. Information needed is the person/people receiving the award, the title of the project, agency providing the award, how much the award is for, and how much of the award Illinois Tech provides, e.g., David Minh and Oscar Juarez, “Entropy for End-Point and FFT-Based Binding Free Energy Calculations,” National Institutes of Health ($331,629; Illinois Tech: $25,000)
Never refer to residence halls as dormitories. In rare occasions the informal dorm may be used in undergraduate recruitment materials only.
John T. Rettaliata Engineering Center
As of 2015 the name of the building is John T. Rettaliata Engineering Center. It is no longer referred to as Engineering 1 Building or E1. Rettaliata Center or simply the center are acceptable on subsequent references.
Daniel F. and Ada L. Rice Campus in formal references, Rice Campus in casual and subsequent references.
School of Applied Technology
Its former name, Center for Professional Development, should not be used.
Lowercase unless part of a formal name, e.g., They went to the Spring Fling dance. But spring semester. Note: There is no comma when used with a year, e.g., spring 2000. Prefer spring 2000 as opposed to spring of 2000.
second and subsequent references
Do not capitalize approximated or shortened second references to entities (including colleges or institutes), organizations, or places within a story or document, e.g., Illinois Tech’s Mies Campus is large; the campus covers 120 acres. The College of Architecture educates students; the college also prepares professionals for success.
M. A. and Lila Self Leadership Academy
Always use M. A. and Lila Self Leadership Academy on first reference. In second references Leadership Academy or the informal academy are acceptable. Note the space between M. and A., which appears as such because M. A. is an abbreviation of beginning and middle names.
Always use for maximum clarity, e.g., We ate toast, cereal, and bacon for breakfast; She packed her green, yellow, red and white, and blue dresses.
Oftentimes text copied from an email message or from a website and pasted into another document will not include quotation marks or apostrophes (“ ‘, ’ ”) but rather the symbols for feet and inches (', ''), also referred to as minute and second marks, or prime or double prime marks. These should be corrected manually. To correct in Mac, simply type in the smart quote (one or two apostrophes, for foot or inch, respectively) and then select the command to undo formatting (command-Z, or alternately select Undo AutoFormat under the Edit menu).
[See cell phone]
Capitalize in all uses.
Keystroke one space after periods (including sentences), colons, and semicolons.
Spell out state names in body copy. This rule reflects the most recent AP style guidelines. Special abbreviations should used when state names are paired with most cities or towns in lists, such as in the class notes of Illinois Tech Magazine [see state names abbreviations list]. Use two-letter postal abbreviations only in addresses in correspondence or when referencing addresses in a publication. A number of recognizable United States and international cities do not need to be identified by their state or country names in body copy, e.g., Chicago, Philadelphia, Moscow, Paris, etc.
[See city designations list]
Capitalize street when it is part of the street name: 10 West 35th Street. Uppercase Street(s) when used generically or referring to more than one street in a sequence, e.g., IITRI sits on the corner of 35th and State Streets.
[See Greater Grand Boulevard]
In running copy, student names are typically designated by name (major abbreviation and year of study) as in this example: Florence Hark (BME 4th year). Note that the superscript is not used. If a graduate student, follow name (major abbreviation and type of graduate student) as in this example: Francis Crick (CHE Ph.D. student). Note that a Ph.D. "candidate" is an individual who is at the level of presenting his or her dissertation.
Be careful to avoid superscripts, as many document programs will automatically convert text to numerical superscripts, e.g., 15th, not 15th.
Capitalize and place in quotation marks.
That does not require punctuation; it is used where there is more that one possibility, e.g., Choose an option that meets your needs. A comma should precede which; which is used to add information on to something that has already been identified, e.g., He completed the survey, which was sent to him via email.
Do not put this definite article before Illinois Institute of Technology. In most cases, "the" is not needed before any term beginning with a proper noun as it a unique entity, e.g., Allstate Insurance Company, IIT Tower.
8 p.m., not 8:00 p.m. Use noon and midnight and not 12 p.m. or 12 a.m.
times of day
Follow this order in the notice of events: day of the week, date, time, and, place, e.g., Friday, October 13, 1988, 7:30 a.m., Perlstein Hall Auditorium.
Unless absolutely necessary, refrain from using trademark symbols.
Do not capitalize when used generally in conjunction with a person, e.g., Bob Smith, an Illinois Tech trustee, has been one of the most active supporters of the university. In general, do not capitalize titles that follow the name of a person, but capitalize trustee and titles that precede names.
[See Board of Trustees]
Spell out when used as a noun. Use U.S. only as an adjective. The acronym is acceptable on second references. Similarly, U.K.
Illinois Tech is a university, not an institute or college. In second or subsequent references, use the university or, alternately, the institution, not the University. The latter reflects the movement in journalism style toward eliminating excessive capitalization.
varsity sports teams
Capitalize Scarlet Hawks or Lady Scarlet Hawks but lowercase name of team, e.g., men's basketball, baseball, women's lacrosse.
Avoid allowing web addresses (URLs) to break at the end of a line or placing punctuation immediately after them (except for URLs that end a complete sentence). To avoid bad line breaks, editors and writers may wish to refer to the websites in copy without giving the address; an accompanying sidebar or chart can list addresses for any sites mentioned in the story or document. Bit.ly conversions are also acceptable. In many cases you can omit "http" or "www" from the address.
In body copy of printed publications, be careful to avoid one-word lines. Also avoid instances where one or two lines of text begin a new column, or where one or two lines of text end a column above or beneath an image.
Use the plural “s” without an apostrophe to indicate spans of decades or centuries, e.g., the 1980s, the 1900s. Also ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s (note direction and use of closed apostrophe). Use an en dash to indicate a span of years, and use the full, unabbreviated years when a span of time crosses more than one decade, e.g., 1942–45 but 1942–50 and 1942–1955.
- Illinois Tech Armour College of Engineering
- Illinois Tech Chicago-Kent College of Law
- Illinois Tech College of Architecture
- Illinois Tech College of Science
- Illinois Tech Institute of Design
- Illinois Tech Lewis College of Human Sciences
- Illinois Tech School of Applied Technology
- Illinois Tech Stuart School of Business
Academic majors are identified in university-wide publications by the college or unit name, not always by the specific area of study (e.g., an aerospace engineering graduate would be cited as MMAE, not Aero Eng). A list of the appropriate major abbreviations follows.
Major codes reflect current official university codes from the Office of the Registrar per summer 2019.
|ABBREVIATION||NAME OF MAJOR|
|ALA2||Advanced Architecture/Landscape Architecture Dual Degree|
|AIN2||Advanced Architecure/Integrated Building Delivery Dual Degree|
|ASD||Advanced Software Development|
|AMD||Analytical Method Development|
|ARC2||Architecture Advanced Program 2|
|ARC1||Architecture Post-Professional Program 1|
|ARC3||Architecture Profession Program 3|
|AINB||Architecture/Integrated Building Delivery Dual Degree|
|ALN1||Architecture/Landscape Architecture Dual Degree|
|BEHW||Behavioral Health and Wellness|
|BHPR||Biology for Health Professions|
|BMI||Biomedical Imaging and Signals|
|BASX||Business Administration 16|
|IOM||Characteristics of Inorganic and Organic Materials|
|CHCE||Computer Science/Chemical Engineering Dual Degree|
|CPP||Compliance Pollution Prevention|
|CDOR||Computational Decision Science and Operations Research|
|CPEC||Computer Engineering Dual Degree|
|CIS||Computer Information Systems|
|CIDM||Computer Integrated Design and Manufacturing|
|CNT||Computer Networking and Telecommunications|
|CM||Construction Engineering and Management|
|CRES||Consumer Research, Analytics, and Communication|
|CEI||Current Energy Issues|
|CYF||Cyber Forensics and Security|
|CYM||Cyber Security Management|
|CYT||Cyber Security Technologies|
|DCOM||Data Center Operations and Management|
|DMA||Data Management and Analytics|
|BADS||Business Administration/Design Dual Degree|
|DVDC||Digital Voice and Data Communication Technology|
|DCC||Distributed and Cloud Computing|
|EWED||Earthquake and Wind Engineering Design|
|EDSE||Economic Development & Social Entrepreneurship|
|ECE||Electrical and Computer Engineering|
|EECP||Electrical Engineering/Computer Engineering Dual Degree|
|EGC||Engineering Graphics and CAD|
|EWB||Ethics Workplace Business Engineering Government|
|FMC||Financial Markets Compliance|
|FPE||Food Processing Engineering|
|FPSP||Food Processing Specialist|
|FSIM||Food Safety and Industrial Management|
|FST||Food Safety and Technology|
|FUNF||Fundamentals of Finance|
|HWE||Hazardous Waste Engineering|
|IAQ||Indoor Air Quality|
|INTC||Industrial Technology and Management|
|INTM||Industrial Technology and Management|
|ISAS||Information Security and Assurance|
|ITM||Information Technology and Management|
|ITMF||Information Technology and Management|
|IILE||Information Technology Innovation, Leadership, and Entrepreneurship|
|IEM||Infrastructure Engineering and Management|
|IEE||Innovation and Emerging Enterprises|
|INBD||Integrated Building Delivery|
|IPMM||Intellectual Property Management and Markets|
|ICLP||International and Comparative Law|
|IP||International Intellectual Property|
|ITC||International Technical Communication|
|LAN2||Landscape Architecture Advanced Standing|
|MFMS||Manufacturing Engineering (Materials)|
|MFGM||Manufacturing Engineering (Mechanical)|
|MAC||Marketing Analytics and Communications|
|BAMA||Marketing Analytics/MBA Dual Degree|
|MCS||Materials and Chemical Synthesis|
|MSE||Materials Science and Engineering|
|BAFI||MBA/Finance Dual Degree|
|BAPA||MBA/Public Administration Dual Degree|
|MAE||Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering|
|MBB||Molecular Biochemistry and Biophysics|
|NPMD||Nonprofit and Mission-Driven Management|
|PHRD||Personnel and Human Resource Development|
|PSE||Polymer Science and Engineering|
|POM||Process Operations Management|
|PQRA||Product Quality and Reliability Assurance|
|REHC||Rehabilitation and Mental Health Counseling|
|RET||Rehabilitation Engineering Technology|
|SSRM||Security Safety and Risk Management|
|CECD||Social and Economic Development Policy|
|BASM||Sustainability Management M.B.A. Dual Degree|
|SIM||Synthesis and Characterization of Inorganic Materials|
|SOM||Synthesis and Characterization of Organic Materials|
|TCIA||Technical Communication and Information Architecture|
|TCID||Technical Communication and Information Design|
|THUM||Technology and Humanities|
|TSEC||Telecommunications and Software Engineering (Computer Science)|
|TSEE||Telecommunications and Software Engineering (Electrical Engineering)|
|TSP||Transportation Systems Planning|
|UNDH||Undecided Human Science|
|USTL||US, International, and Transnational Law|
|VME||VLSI and Microelectronics|
|WWT||Water and Wastewater Treatment|
|WDAD||Web Design and Application Development|
|WIRE||Wireless Communications Engineering|
- Bachelor of Architecture
- Bachelor of Industrial Technology and Management
- Bachelor of Information Technology and Management
- Bachelor of Science
- Master of Applied Mathematics
- Master of Artificial Intelligence
- Master of Architecture
- Master of Biology
- Master of Biological Engineering
- Master of Biomedical Imaging and Signals
- Master of Business Administration
- Master of Chemical Engineering
- Master of Chemistry
- Master of Computational Engineering
- Master of Computer Science
- Master of Cyber Forensics and Security
- Master of Cyber Security Engineering
- Master of Cybersecurity
- Master of Data Science
- Master of Design
- Master of Design Methods
- Master of Electrical and Computer Engineering
- Master of Electricity Markets
- Master of Engineering
- Master of Engineering Management
- Master of Food Processing Engineering
- Master of Food Safety and Technology
- Master of Health Physics
- Master of Industrial Technology and Operations
- Master of Information Technology and Management
- Master of Intellectual Property Management and Markets
- Master of Landscape Architecture
- Master of Laws
- Master of Mathematical Finance
- Master of Network Engineering
- Master of Pharmaceutical Engineering
- Master of Power Engineering
- Master of Public Administration
- Master of Public Works
- Master of Science
- Master of Telecommunications and Software Engineering
- Master of Technological Entrepreneurship
- Master of VLSI and Microelectronics
- Juris Doctor
- Doctor of the Science of Law
- Doctor of Philosophy
- Daniel F. and Ada L. Rice Campus
- Conviser Law Center
- Mies Campus
- Moffett Campus
Research at Illinois Tech
Research at Illinois Tech is delineated by the following categories: institute; center; and service, education, and outreach center.
- IIT Research Institute (IITRI)
- Institute for Food Safety and Health
- Pritzker Institute for Biomedical Science and Engineering
- Wanger Institute for Sustainable Energy Research (WISER)
For a list of Illinois Tech institutes and centers, visit the website for the Office of Research.
Use the below abbreviations, per the AP Style Guide, for states that accompany their cities in lists such as the classnotes of Illinois Tech Magazine. Do not confuse these abbreviations with postal abbreviations, which are used only in address lines in correspondence or in publications when referencing an address. Do not abbreviate state names that stand alone in copy, are used in running copy, or that appear in formal invitations; in those cases, state names should be spelled out. Also note in table below that Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Texas, and Utah are never abbreviated.
The following United States and Canadian cities stand alone and do not use state/province designations in body copy.
New York (not New York City, but New York state if it aids in clarification)
Salt Lake City
Washington, D.C. (always include D.C. when referencing the city)
No cities in Canada should be followed by province names, only Canada spelled out. (This is counter to AP style, which says to include province names.)
The following 49 international capitals and cities stand alone, without country designations in body copy.
Rio de Janeiro
Armour College of Engineering
- Department of Biomedical Engineering
- Department of Chemical, and Biological Engineering
- Department of Civil, Architectural, and Environmental Engineering
- Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
- Department of Mechanical, Materials and Aerospace Engineering
Chicago-Kent College of Law
- There are no department designations; use program designations:
- J.D. programs:
- Business Law
- Criminal Litigation
- Environmental and Energy Law
- Financial Markets Compliance
- Intellectual Property Law
- International and Comparative Law
- Labor and Employment Law
- Legal Innovation + Technology
- Litigation and Alternative Dispute Resolution (LADR)
- Praxis Program
- Public Interest Law
- Workplace Litigation and Alternative Dispute Resolution (Workplace LADR)
- LL.M. programs:
- Financial Services Law
- U.S., International, and Transnational Law
- International Intellectual Property Law
- Trial Advocacy for International Students
- Family Law
- Legal Innovation + Technology
- Doctor of the Science of Law
- J.D. programs:
College of Architecture
- There are not department designations; use program designations:
- Architecture (B.ARCH.; M.ARCH.; M.ARCH + M.L.A.; M.S.ARCH.)
- Landscape Architecture and Urbanism (M.L.A.; M.ARCH + M.L.A.)
College of Computing
- Department of Applied Mathematics
- Department of Computer Science
- Department of Industrial Technology and Management
- Department of Information Technology and Management
Institute of Design
- There are not department designations; uses program designations:
- Design + MBA
- MDM (Design Methods; ID prefers MDM as its designation)
- Ph.D. in Design
Lewis College of Science and Letters
- Department of Psychology
- Department of Social Sciences
- Department of Humanities
- Department of Food Science and Nutrition
- Department of Physics
- Department of Biology
- Department of Chemistry
Stuart School of Business
- Does not use department designation; uses program designations:
- Business Administration
- Public Administration
- Environmental Management and Sustainability
- Management Science
- Marketing Analytics
- Mathematical Finance
- Technological Entrepreneurship
- Access, Card, and Parking Services
- Office of Advancement
- Controller’s Office
- Office of Campus Life
- Career Services
- Center for Disability Resources
- Office of Community Affairs and Outreach Programs
- Office of Event Services
- Facilities Operations and Maintenances
- Planning, Design, and Construction
- Office of Campus Energy and Sustainability
- Office of Financial Aid
- Office of the General Counsel
- Graduate College
- Grant and Contract Accounting department
- Office of Human Resources
- Office of Digital Learning
- Office of International Affairs
- International Center
- Jules F. Knapp Entrepreneurship Center
- Office of Marketing and Communications
- Office of the President
- Office of the Provost
- Office of the Registrar
- Office of Institutional Information and Research
- Office of Technology Services
- Office of Undergraduate Academic Affairs
- Office Services
- Payroll Office
- Department of Public Safety
- Research at Illinois Tech
- Office of Residence Life
- Student Accounting Office
- Office of Student Affairs
- Student Employment Office
- Office of Sponsored Research and Programs
- Office of Undergraduate Admission
- Office of Graduate Admission
Supplementary Resources and Authorities
The Chicago Manual of Style (University of Chicago)
The Elements of Style Strunk and White
Diversity Style Guide Society of Professional Journalists
The SPJ website includes the section Diversity: The Whole Story, which is a list of tips, tools, and guidelines for terms and usages pertaining to diversity, including a link to the Disability Language Style Guide from the National Center on Disability and Journalism.