The Editorial Style Guide is primarily adapted from The Associated Press Stylebook and However, adaptations have been made where needed. Note that this guide is intended for use in all print and electronic communications. Please contact Tom Hanrahan at with any questions or comments about the Editorial Style Guide.  

(**) Denotes website-specific exceptions. 


A- (academic degrees to athletic and recreational complex) N - (names to numbers)
B - (between/among to buildings/rooms/campus names O - (occupations to oval logo) 
C - (classes and courses to cyber)  P - (parentheses to pronouns) 
D - (data to due to/because of)  Q - (QR codes to quotations) 
E - (e.g. to expect/accept)  R - (race to Rev.) 
F - (Facebook to fundraising/fundraiser)  S - (search engine optimization/SEO to symposiums) 
G - (geolocation/geotagging to Google)  T - (telephone numbers to Twitter/tweet/tweeted)
H - (hashtag to hyphens/en dashes/em dashes) U - (unfriend to use/utilize)
I  (i.e. to its/it’'s) V - (vice president to VolP)
J - (junior/senior/II/III) W - (web to words not abbreviated)
L - (lay/lie to -ly)  Y - (YouTube)
M - (man/mankind to more than/over use)   

academic degrees

Academic degrees are only abbreviated after the use of a full name. They require periods after the letters in most cases, but no spaces after the periods: A.B.D., B.A., B.S., D.Ed., Ed.D., M.A., M.Ed., M.M.E., M.S.E., and Ph.D. “Degree” is not needed (and should not be used) after the abbreviation. An exception is made for MBA and DPT when it does not follow a full name. In all other cases, MBA or DPT may be used without periods.

  • John Smith, B.S., will lecture on computer crimes this week. 
  • She will receive a master’s degree in biology next month. 

Do not precede a name with a courtesy title for an academic degree and follow it with the abbreviation for the degree in the same reference. Do not use “a” in the title following a full name when it is part of a longer sentence.

  • Dr. John Smith is a professor of chemistry. 
  • Jane Smith, Ph.D., is a professor of biology. 
  • Dr. Jane Smith, professor of biology, presented her paper at a national conference. 

Lebanon Valley College awards the following regular degrees (no spacing between abbreviated letters):

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)

Bachelor of Music (B.M.)

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)

Bachelor of Science in Chemistry (B.S. in Chemistry)

Bachelor of Science in Communication Sciences & Disorders (B.S.)

Bachelor of Science in Medical Laboratory Science (B.S.)

Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT)

Master of Athletic Training (M.A.T.)

Master of Business Administration (M.B.A. or MBA)

Master of Music Education (M.M.E.)

Master in STEM Education (M.S.E.)

Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology (M.S.)

Honorary degrees awarded by the College are: 

Doctor of Divinity (D.D.)

Doctor of Humane Letters (L.H.D.)

Doctor of Laws (L.L.D.)

Doctor of Music (Mus.D.)

Doctor of Science (D.Sc.)

abbreviations —courtesy titles

The following titles may be abbreviated outside direct quotations: Dr., Gov., Lt. Gov., Rep., Sen., the Rev., Pfc., Cpl., Sgt., 1st Lt., Capt., Maj., Lt. Col., Col., Gen., Cmdr., and Adm. Spell out all the above, except Dr., when used before a name in a direct quotation.

In many cases, “the Rev.” is the designation that applies before a name on the first reference. Use the Rev. Dr. only if the individual has an earned doctoral degree. Use only the last name on a second reference to members of the clergy.

  • The Rev. Dr. John Smith organizes the annual student Community Service Awards Program. Smith tracks whether the students achieve Gold, Silver, or Bronze levels.


Use “around” to refer to physical proximity or surrounding. Use “about” to indicate an approximation.

  • I’ll look for you around the library.
  • The class will have about 10 students.

academic degrees

Lowercase when referring to a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degree or to a doctoral or doctorate program. Do not capitalize “degree” when referring to a non-specific degree. Use the possessive form.

  • Jane Smith earned a bachelor’s degree from LVC in 1965.
  • John Smith ’95 has a master’s degree in politics.

academic subjects

Capitalize an academic subject only when it is the name of a language, part of an official department name, or part of a course title.

  • The Spanish faculty will host the faculty picnic.
  • Dr. John Smith is chair of the Department of Athletic Training.
  • Dr. Jane Smith teaches Physics 110 this semester.
  • She plans to enroll in an introductory physics class.


To “accept” is to receive or to respond positively. To “except” is to leave out (verb) or with the exclusion of (preposition).

  • Will you accept the nomination for class president?
  • Except for one misspelled word, the paper would have been perfect.


On the first reference, give the full name followed by the acronym in parentheses only when referring to the organization later in the text, usually without periods. Use only the acronym in subsequent references.

  • The Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) forms should be filled out promptly so PHEAA can evaluate your financial need.

active voice

In most cases, avoid using the passive voice; the active voice creates a more interesting sound.

  • Incorrect: Numerous contributions to the College have been received.
  • Correct: The College received numerous contributions.

address/telephone number/website

Lebanon Valley College

(Department or Office)

101 N. College Avenue

Annville, PA 17003-1400

website: or 


Use the abbreviations Ave., Blvd., and St., only with numbered addresses. Spell them out and capitalize when part of a formal street name without a number. Use lowercase and spell out when used alone or with more than one street name. All similar words, such as Alley, Drive, Road, Terrace, etc., are always spelled out.

  • The Bertha Brossman Blair Music Center is on the corner of Sheridan and College avenues.

Spell out and capitalize First through Ninth when used as street names; use ordinal numbers for 10th and above. Do not use superscript or leave a space between.

  • The bus will only stop at 7 Fifth Ave. and 100 21st St.

administrative departments and offices

Capitalize the names of departments and offices. Do not capitalize “department,” “program,” or “office” when they stand alone. Do not capitalize an incomplete office name.

  • The Athletic Department is in the Heilman Center.
  • The Business Office is in the Administration Building/Humanities Center.
  • The Center for Accessibility Services is in the Lebegern Learning Commons.
  • Contact public safety for more information.

Official Names

Center for Accessibility Resources

Center for Global Education

Center for Writing and Tutoring Resources (individually, Center for Writing Resources and Center for Tutoring Resources)

Commuter Center

Edward and Lynn Breen Center for Graduate Success (acceptable to use Breen Center in following references)

Lebegern Learning Commons (lower level of Allan W. Mund College Center)

Leedy Theater

Academic Departments

Athletic Training


Business Administration and Economics

Chemistry and Physics

Communication Sciences and Disorders/Speech-Language Pathology

Design, Media, and Technology


Exercise Science



Mathematical Sciences


Physical Therapy


Social Sciences

Academic and Administrative Departments, Offices, and Programs

Academic Affairs



Alumni & Parent Programs

Audiovisual Technology



Edward and Lynn Breen Center for Academic Success

Vernon and Doris Bishop Library

Business Office

Center for Accessibility Resources

Center for Global Studies

Center for Writing and Tutoring Resources (Center for Tutoring Resources, Center for Writing Resources)

Community Service and Volunteerism

Counseling Services

Dining Services

Facilities Services (Grounds Department, Housekeeping Department, Maintenance Department)

Financial Aid Office

Graduate and Online Studies

Health Services

Human Resources and Payroll and Benefits

Information Technology

Intercultural Affairs and Inclusive Programs

Marketing and Communications


Public Safety

Registrar’s Office

Residential Life

Spiritual Life

Student Activities

Student Affairs

Vernon and Doris Bishop Library


not adviser 


not advisery 


not esthetic 


Affect is primarily a verb, meaning to have an influence on. Effect as a noun means result or consequence; as a verb, it means to bring about.

  • How did the pills affect you?
  • The effect of the pills was easy to see.


afterward, not afterwards 

all right 

all right, not alright 


An “allusion” is an implied or indirect reference. An “illusion” is a false impression or image.

The allusion was to the student’s ability to read her mind. The professor created an illusion of lightning and thunder.

Allwein Scholars 

The official name of the program is “John Bowman Allwein Scholars Program.” It is acceptable to use “Allwein Scholars” when referencing these students. 

alma mater 

Capitalize and italicize alma mater in reference to LVC’s song; use lowercase without italics in all other references.

  • In honor of our alma mater, the College choir will sing the Alma Mater.

alumni identification 

Identify alumni by giving their year of graduation with an apostrophe before the year. If the person has more than one degree from LVC, include both years separated by a comma. If there is no letter before a class year, the degree is assumed to be a bachelor’s degree. Letters should be used for all other degrees awarded by LVC as follows: DPT (doctor of physical therapy, D’21); H.D. (honorary doctorate, H’21); M.A.T. (master of athletic training, M’21); M.B.A. (master of business administration, M’21), M.M.E. (master of music education, M’21); M.S. (master of speech-language pathology, M’21); and M.S.E. (master of STEM education, M’21). LVC affiliation should also be noted for parents of students and graduates (P’21).

  • John Smith ’99 is the assistant director of financial aid at Lebanon Valley College.
  • Jane Smith ’19, D’21 was hired by WellSpan as a physical therapist.

Identify alumni with advanced degrees from other institutions by stating their name, the advanced degree offset by a comma, and their LVC class year.

  • John Smith, Ph.D., ’99 enjoys playing golf.

alumna/alumnae/alumnus/alumni An alumna is a female graduate. Alumnae are a group of women graduates. “Alumna” refers to one woman, “alumnae” refers to a group of women, “alumnus” refers to one man, and “alumni” refers to a group of men or a group of men and women. It is rare to see the feminine plural form, “alumnae.” Most often the form “alumni” is used for any group of graduates.

alumni awards

Lebanon Valley College presents the following alumni awards:

Alumni Citation

Creative Achievement Award

D. Clark Carmean Award in Admission

Distinguished Alumni Award*

June Herr Outstanding Educator of the Year Award

Young Alumni Award*

*Note: The name of the above awards must be gender-specific when it precedes or follows the name of the award winner.

  • Jane Smith was awarded an Alumna Citation in 2010.


Do not capitalize “a.m.” or “p.m.” Use periods without intervening spaces. 


Use “among” to show the relationship between three or more objects. Use “between” to show the relationship between two objects. Any pronouns that follow “among” or “between” must be in the objective case: among us; between him and her; between you and me.

  • He divided the task among his students.
  • She divided the task between her two students.

ampersand (&)

For print and electronic communications, do not use ampersands (&) except in some formal corporate names and titles. Some campus exceptions exist (Alumni & Parent Engagement; Biochemistry & Molecular Biology; Computer & Data Science; Communication Sciences & Disorders, Track & Field) as well as exceptions for the College website as noted below.

  • Jane Smith is the director of the Office of Graduate and Online Studies at Lebanon Valley College.
  • **Ampersands are acceptable on the College website for use in titles and navigational listings.


Short for application. App is acceptable on second reference. 


not appendixes 

apostrophes, single and double quotation marks 

Always use true apostrophes and quotations—sometimes called “curly” or “smart” quotes. Macs and PCs can be set to automatically use this style. Contact IT Services if you need assistance in locating this option on your computer.


Use “around” to refer to physical proximity or surrounding. Use “about” to indicate an approximation.

  • I’ll look for you around the library.
  • Let’s meet for lunch about 12:30 p.m.

athletic awards

Lebanon Valley College presents the following athletic awards:

Chuck Maston Memorial Award

Honorable John A. Walter Outstanding Scholar-Athlete Award

John Zola Memorial Award

Lebanon Valley College Athletic Service Award

Lou Sorrentino ’54 Outstanding Male Athlete Award

Outstanding Woman Athlete Award

Student-Athlete Advisory Council Team of the Year

Woman’s Sportsmanship Award

athletic and recreational complex

Edward H. Arnold Sports Center or Arnold Sports Center

Heilman Center

Henry and Gladys Arnold Field or Arnold Field

Herbert Field (soccer pitch)

Lebanon Valley College Softball Park

Louis A. Sorrentino Gymnasium or Sorrentino Gymnasium

LVC Sports Center (entire building complex)

LVC Sports Complex or LVC Athletic Complex (when encompassing several athletic areas of North Campus)

McGill Baseball Park

Rohland Fields

Shankroff Tennis Center

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Use “among” to show the relationship between three or more objects. Use “between” to show the relationship between two objects. Any pronouns that follow “among” or “between” must be in the objective case: among us; between him and her; between you and me.

  • He divided the task among his students.
  • She divided the task between her two students.


Originally a shortening for weblog/video log, blog and vlog are now accepted. Use lowercase letters except when either word is used in a title or as the first word of a sentence. 

Blue & White Club 

Always use an ampersand for the Blue & White Club. Donors can give to specific teams or to the Blue & White Club to support all student-athletes. 

board of trustees 

The “board of trustees” should be capitalized only when referring to Lebanon Valley College’s board, but “board” by itself is not capitalized, nor is “trustees.”

  • The Board of Trustees meets in May and November.
  • The board will meet in November with most trustees attending.

building, room, and facility names (accepted use in parentheses) 

Administration Building/Humanities Center

Allan W. Mund College Center (Mund College Center; upper level; entire building)

Benjamin Cantor Entrance

Bertha Brossman Blair Music Center (Blair Music Center)

Bollinger Plaza

Campbell and Attick Learning Resource Center (lower level technology classroom in Blair)

Carmean Plaza

Carnegie Building

Clyde A. Lynch Memorial Hall (Clyde A. Lynch Memorial Hall)


Elaine Frock Conference Room

Emmett C. Roop Management Department Wing

Fasick Bridge

Fencil Building

Frank Aftosmes House

Frock Conference Room

Humanities Center: official name is Administration Building/Humanities Center. However, the Administration Building or Humanities Center is acceptable.

High Family Terrace

Jeanne and Edward H. Arnold Health Professions Pavilion

Kiyofumi Sakaguch '67 Mathematical Sciences Suite


Maud P. Laughlin Hall (Laughlin Hall)

Lebanon Valley College Arboretum

Lebegern Learning Commons (lower level of Mund)

Leedy Theater

Lehr Dining Room

Leon and Ethel Yeiser Rose Garden

Lewis Health Performance Lab

Louis A. Sorrentino Gymnasium (Sorrentino Gymnasium)

Lutz Hall

Frederic K. Miller Chapel (Miller Chapel)

Neidig-Garber Science Center (always hyphenate Neidig-Garber)

Peace Garden

Phillips Dining Room

Presser Gillespie Keyboard Lab

Reinhart Board Committee Room

Shroyer Health Center

Suzanne H. Arnold Art Gallery*

Suzanne H. Arnold Gallery**

Zimmerman Recital Hall

Synodinos Commons

The Underground

Tweedie Meeting Rooms

Vernon and Doris Bishop Library

Wagner House

Wengert Living Room

William H. Lodge Mathematical Sciences Center

Williams Woods

Wood Thrush Research Preserve at Rohland Farm

Rosemary Yuhas Commons (Yuhas Commons)

Zimmerman Recital Hall: should always be referred to as Zimmerman Recital Hall of the Suzanne H. Arnold Gallery

*Suzanne H. Arnold Art Gallery is used only in reference to the art gallery.

**Suzanne H. Arnold Gallery is used for references to the building.

***Capitalize “Gallery” whenever referring to the Suzanne H. Arnold Gallery.

  • The exhibit in the Suzanne H. Arnold Art Gallery will end this week.
  • Student performances are sometimes held in the Zimmerman Recital Hall of the Suzanne H. Arnold Gallery.

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Spell out the first through ninth centuries. Use numerals for the 10th century and above. Do not use superscript for “nd,” “st,” “rd,” or “th,” and do not capitalize “century” unless it is part of a proper name or used in a title.

  • The College was founded in the 19th century.


Place a comma between the city and state name, and another comma after the state name, unless ending a sentence.

  • Lebanon Valley College is in Annville, Pa.
  • Hershey, Pa., is the site of this year’s conference.

State Abbreviations 

  • 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., and Wyo. Use Washington, D.C. Do not abbreviate to D.C. or DC.

classes and courses 

Use lowercase when referring to academic classes and courses unless the specific and complete title is used or the name carries a proper noun or numeral.

  • She is taking an introductory biology class.
  • This semester, she is taking General Biology II.


“The” must precede “Reverend” or “Rev.” as a title when the person also has a doctorate, “Dr.” comes after “Rev.” 

  • The Rev. John Smith and the Rev. Dr. Jane Smith gave a joint sermon in Frederic K. Miller Chapel last week. 


Always hyphenated. 

collective nouns 

Nouns such as class, committee, crowd, faculty, family, group, jury, orchestra, staff, and team denote a unit and require singular verbs and pronouns. To create a plural construction, add “members” for clarity.

  • The staff is meeting to set goals for the next fiscal year.
  • The staff members are happy with their progress to date.


Capitalize “College” in all references to Lebanon Valley College.

  • Lebanon Valley College was founded in 1866.
  • The College is affiliated with the United Methodist Church. 

College awards

Lebanon Valley College presents the following awards:

Founders Day 

Howard Anthony Neidig 

Nevelyn Knisley Award for Inspirational Teaching 


Student Government Educator of the Year

Thomas Rhys Vickroy Award for Teaching

Student Government Educator of the Year

College Store 

It is the LVC College Store and capitalized. It is never referred to as the bookstore or college bookstore. For marketing purposes, the Office of Marketing and Communications will sometimes refer to it as the Barnes & Noble LVC College Store.

colons and semicolons 

Use a colon toward the end of a sentence to introduce lists, tabulations, texts, etc. Capitalize the first word after a colon only if it is a proper noun or the start of a complete sentence.

  • The professor promised two things: The class will require hard work and total dedication.
  • They invited everyone: students, faculty, and staff. 

A semicolon connects an independent and a dependent clause with a connecting word like “therefore” or “however” and to clarify a series. Use semicolons to separate elements of a series when the items in the series are long or when individual segments contain material that also must be set off by commas. Note that the semicolon is used before the final “and” in such a series or final conjunction.

  • We received the report; therefore, the follow-up mailing is unnecessary.
  • He is survived by a son, John Smith, of Chicago; three daughters, Jane Smith, of Wichita, Kan., Mary Smith, of Denver, and Susan Smith, of Boston; and a sister, Martha Smith, of Omaha, Neb.


In a Series: Use commas to separate elements in a series. Put a comma before the conjunction in all series (both simple and complex):

  • The flag is red, white, and blue.
  • The main points to consider are whether the athletes are skillful enough to compete, whether they have the stamina to endure the training and whether they have the proper mental attitude.

With Equal Adjectives: Use commas to separate a series of adjectives equal in rank. If the comma could be replaced by “and” without changing the sense, the adjectives are equal:

  • a thoughtful, precise manner; a dark, dangerous street.

Use no comma when the last adjective before a noun outranks its predecessors because it is an integral element of a noun phrase, which is the equivalent of a single noun:

  • a cheap fur coat (the noun phrase is fur coat); the old oaken bucket; a new blue spring bonnet.

With Hometowns and Ages: Use a comma to set off an individual’s hometown when it is placed in opposition to a name (whether “of” is used or not):

  • Mary Richards, Minneapolis, and Maude Findlay, of Tuckahoe, N.Y., were there.

Names of States and Nations Used with City Names:

  • His journey will take him from Dublin, Ireland, to Fargo, N.D., and back.
  • The Selma, Ala., group saw the governor.

In Large Figures: Use a comma for most figures greater than 999. The major exceptions are street addresses (1234 Main St.), broadcast frequencies (1460 kilohertz), room numbers, serial numbers, telephone numbers, and years (1876).

Placement with Quotes: Commas always go inside quotation marks.

With Full Dates: When a phrase refers to a month, day, and year, set off the year with a comma:

  • Feb. 14, 2012, is the target date.

commas and names 

Do not use a comma before “Jr.,” “Sr.,” “II,” etc., after a person’s name.

  • His name was John Smith Jr.
  • John Smith III will be a sophomore next year.
  • John Smith III ’96 will receive Alumni Citation this year.  


Always capitalize “Commencement” and “Convocation” when used to reference LVC ceremonies. 


Only capitalize “committee” when it is part of the proper name of a group. Do not capitalize it on subsequent references even when referring to a specific committee.

  • The Curriculum Committee will meet tomorrow at noon; committee members should bring bag lunches.

company names 

Only use the abbreviations Co., Cos., Inc., or Ltd. if it is part of an official name or title of an organization. Do not use a comma before Inc. or Ltd. unless the company does so in its official title. Only use the ampersand if it is part of an official name or title.


“Compose” is to create or put together; “comprise” is to contain, to include all, or embrace; and “constitute” is to make up, to be the elements of.

  • The Office of Marketing and Communications is comprised of nine people.
  • The Office of Marketing and Communications comprises nine people.
  • Nine people constitute the Office of Marketing and Communications.

composition titles 

Apply the guidelines listed here to titles of books, computer games, movies, operas, plays, poem, albums and songs, radio and television programs, lectures, speeches, and works of art.

The guidelines, followed by a block of examples:

–Capitalize the principal words, including prepositions and conjunctions of four or more letters.

–Capitalize an article – the, a, an – or words of fewer than four letters if it is the first or last word in a title.

–Put quotation marks around the names of all such works except the Bible and books that are primarily catalogs of reference material. In addition to catalogs, this category includes almanacs, directories, dictionaries, encyclopedias, gazetteers, handbooks, and similar publications. Do not use quotation marks around software titles like Microsoft 360.

–Translate an international title into English unless the work is known by its foreign name. An exception to this is reviews of musical performances. In those instances, refer to the work in the language it was sung in, so as to differentiate for the reader. However, musical compositions in Slavic languages are always referred to in their English translations.

Examples: “The Star-Spangled Banner,” “Gone With the Wind,” “Of Mice and Men,” “For Whom the Bell Tolls”

Reference works: “Jane’s All the World's Aircraft,” “Webster’s New World Dictionary of the American Language, Second Edition”

**Names of most websites and apps are capitalized without quotes: Facebook

International works: Rousseau’s “War,” not Rousseau’s “La Guerre.” But: Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa.” Mozart’s “The Marriage of Figaro” if sung in English but “Le Nozze di Figaro” if sung in Italian.

– For other classical music titles, use quotation marks around the composition's nickname but not around a composition identified by its sequence.

Examples: Dvorak’s “New World Symphony.” Dvorak’s Symphony No. 9.


“Continual” is steady repetition. “Continuous” is uninterrupted. 

coursework or course work 

Always one word, coursework. 

courtesy/formal titles 

Do not use courtesy titles (Miss, Mr., Mrs., Ms.) before a name unless requested by the subject. Instead, use the first and last names with the middle initial on first reference and last name only on the following references. If the person is a married alumna who has taken her husband’s last name, substitute her middle initial with her surname at birth. On subsequent references, use the last name only.

  • The office of Jane Smith-Jones ’65 is in Laughlin Hall. Jones is the director of advancement.


Always one word. 


“Currently” and “presently” are not synonymous. “Currently” means now, and “presently” means for the time being, temporarily. In most cases, “currently” is unnecessary. Instead of writing, “We are currently revising the plan,” write, “We are revising the plan.”


Each is one word; do not hyphenate. 

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As a plural count noun, “data” usually takes a plural verb. When “data” is used as a collective noun, or when the group or quantity is regarded as a mass noun, it takes a singular verb.

  • Many of these data are useless because of their lack of specifics.
  • The data is sound. 


Do not use “nd,” “st,” “rd,” or “th” with dates. 

  • Instead of, “Room keys must be turned in by May 1st,” use, “Room keys must be turned in by May 1.”

Do not use “on” with a date unless it is needed to avoid confusion. See “months” for a list of official abbreviations and their usage.

  • The lecture will be held on March 24.
  • The seminar runs from Jan. 30 to Feb. 2.

days of the week 

Do not abbreviate the days of the week. Separate the day from the month with a comma. 

  • Classes begin Tuesday, Aug. 29, at 8 a.m. 


Do not use an apostrophe to form the plural when referring to a decade as an era.

  • The 1960s was a time of radical change. 

department chair titles (official title; title to use in text)

  • Clark and Edna Carmean Distinguished Professor of Music; Dr. Mark Mecham, chair and Clark and Edna Carmean Distinguished Professor of Music
  • Eugene C. Fish Distinguished Chair in Business; Dr. David V. Rudd, Eugene C. Fish Distinguished Chair of Business and professor and chair of business and economics
  • Newton and Adelaide Burgner Endowed Professor of Instrumental Music; Dr. Johannes Dietrich, Newton and Adelaide Burgner Professor of Instrumental Music
  • Vernon and Doris Bishop Distinguished Professor of Chemistry; Dr. Owen Moe, chair and Vernon and Doris Bishop Distinguished Professor of Chemistry

different from 

Use “different from,” not “different than.” 


When mentioning whole dollar amounts, simply use a dollar sign and the numbers; do not use a decimal point and zeroes. For amounts over $999, use a comma to separate digits. For amounts over a million dollars, use the dollar sign and the numerals up to two decimal places.

  • Tickets to the play cost $10 each. She estimates that repairs will cost $1,500.
  • This year's campaign netted $5.2 million.  


“Dot-com” is always hyphenated. 

due to/because of 

“Due to” is adjectival, and in proper usage, you should be able to substitute it with “attributable to,” “caused by,” or “resulting from.” “Because of” is adverbial and means “as a result of.” Do not use “due to” to mean “because of.”

  • His failure to win reelection was due to his lackluster campaigning.
  • Because of a badly sprained ankle, she had to drop out of the race.

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Meaning “for example.” It is always followed by a comma. 

ellipsis (...) 

In general, treat an ellipsis as a three-letter word, constructed with three periods and two spaces. Use an ellipsis to indicate the deletion of one or more words in condensing quotes, texts, and documents. Be especially careful to avoid deletions that would distort the meaning.


“Email,” without a hyphen, is acceptable in all references for electronic mail. “ePayment,” without a hyphen, is the official name for LVC’s online payment system. In those instances, capitalize the “P.” Use a hyphen with other e-terms: e-book, e-business, e-commerce, e-communications. Use lowercase letters except when the word is used in a title or as the first word of a sentence.

  • Email is the most efficient communication for conducting e-commerce.
  • I sometimes receive more than 50 emails in a day.


Emerita (for a woman) and emeritus (for a man) should follow a person’s name and formal title. Emeriti is used for a mixed group. All three words should be italicized.

  • Dr. John Smith is a professor emeritus of economics at LVC.
  • There are 15 faculty emeriti registered for the concert.
  • Dr. Jane Smith, professor emerita of English, was the guest speaker.


“Ensure” means to guarantee an event or condition. “Insure” has a context of limited financial liability for a person, place, or thing. “Assure” is done toward a person or animal to remove anxiety or doubt.

  • Steps were taken to ensure the accuracy of the scores.
  • The policy will insure the property in case of a natural catastrophe. 


“Entitled” means a right to do or have something. It is optional to use “titled” to introduce the name of a publication, speech, musical piece, etc.

  • The professor is entitled to an explanation regarding the student’s tardiness.
  • The students are required to read the book, titled “The Bedford Handbook.”
  • Dr. John Smith, professor of sociology, will give a lecture, “The State of Africa.” 


Abbreviation for et cetera, a Latin expression meaning “and other things” or “and so on.” A single period should follow in all cases. 


Ethernet is always capitalized. 


Hyphenate compound words beginning with “ex-” and meaning former. 

  • The committee’s ex-chair will be the featured speaker at our next meeting. 


To “accept” is to receive or to respond positively. To “except” is to leave out (verb) or with the exclusion of (preposition).

  • Will you accept the nomination for class president?
  • Except for one misspelled word, the paper would have been perfect.
  • He assured officials that he would arrive early.

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Always capitalized.


The collective nouns “faculty” and “staff” are singular nouns. To create a plural construction, use “members of the faculty/staff” or “faculty/staff members.” 

  • The faculty is meeting to set its agenda 
  • The faculty members are happy with the decision. 

faculty/student innovation funds 

Breen Technology Fund

Edward H. Arnold and Jeanne Donlevy Arnold Program for Experiential Education

High-Impact Experience Fund

Inclusive Excellence Fund

President’s Innovation Fund

Student Innovation Fund

faculty titles 

The title of “professor” may be used for persons with the rank of professor, assistant professor, associate professor, or adjunct professor, but not for those with the rank of lecturer or instructor. Do not abbreviate “professor” as “prof.” The title “Dr.” is proper to use only for persons who have earned doctoral degrees and should not be used for faculty members who have not earned one of these degrees.


“Farther” refers to physical distance. “Further” refers to an extension of time or degree.

  • She ran farther into the woods.
  • He will look further into the matter. 


Generally, “fewer” is used with nouns that can be counted and “less” with nouns that cannot be counted individually. However, “less” is idiomatic in certain constructions where “fewer” would occur according to the traditional rule. “Less than” is used before a plural noun that denotes a measure of time, amount, or distance: less than three weeks; less than $400; less than 50 miles. “Less” is sometimes used with plural nouns in the expressions “no less than.”

  • No less than 30 of his peers signed the petition.
  • We had fewer attendees than anticipated.
  • Give your reasons in 25 words or less.
  • If there was less noise, it would be a great place to study. 

Flying Dutchman/Flying Dutchmen 

The Flying Dutchman has traditionally been the athletic mascot of Lebanon Valley College, although in recent years it has been used throughout campus and in some admission communications. “Dutchman” should only be used when referring to the actual mascot. “Dutchmen” is the recommended reference in all other use. When referring to LVC athletic teams or the athletic program, the plural, “Flying Dutchmen” or “Dutchmen,” should always be used. The Flying Dutchman logo should primarily be used for athletics, though it may also be used for campus spirit events. 

Founders Day 

The plural form of “founder,” without the possessive, is used when referencing to LVC’s “Founders Day.” 


Spell out fractions in written material. Hyphenate them when they are used as adjectives or adverbs.

  • One-fourth of the students live in apartments.
  • The renovation is three-fourths completed.


Acceptable as nouns and verbs and describing actions by which users connect to other users on social networks. “Friend” and “like” are typically used on Facebook, while Twitter users “follow” or “have followers.” 

full time/full-time

Hyphenate when “full time” is used as a compound modifier.

  • There are more than 1,600 full-time undergraduate students at LVC.
  • They attend college full time. 


One word in all cases.

  • They planned a fundraising event for Homecoming Weekend. 

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Geolocation is the association of your virtual location with your physical location. Geotagging is the act of adding geographical metadata to pieces of media or social media updates. Use lowercase letters except when the word is used in a title or as the first word of a sentence and do not hyphenate.


Google is a trademark for a web search engine. Google, Googling, and Googled are used informally as a verb for searching for information on the internet, and each term should always be capitalized.

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To hashtag is to use a number sign (#) in a tweet to convey the subject a user is writing about so that it can be indexed and accessed in other users’ feeds. Use lowercase letters except when the word is used as the first word of a sentence and do not hyphenate.


“Homepage” is constructed as a single word. Use lowercase letters if it is not the first word in a sentence. 

honorary degrees 

Lebanon Valley College awards the following honorary degrees (no spacing between abbreviated letters): 

Doctor of Divinity (D.D.) 

Doctor of Humane Letters (L.H.D.) 

Doctor of Laws (L.L.D.) 

Doctor of Music (Mus.D.) 

Doctor of Science (D.Sc.)


Use lowercase and italicize cum laude, magna cum laude, and summa cum laude. 

hot spot 

Two words, for the description of the area where computers can connect wirelessly among others. Use lowercase letters except when the word is used as the first word of a sentence. 

hyphens/en dashes/em dashes 

Hyphens are the shortest dashes used to hyphenate words.

  • She teaches 12th-grade physics.
  • He has a happy-go-lucky attitude. 

En dashes are longer hyphens and are used to separate ranges of numbers. If “to” can be substituted in place of the dash, then an en dash is the preferred punctuation to use. En dashes are also used instead of hyphens in compound adjectives when one of the items is two words or a hyphenated word.

  • The North Carolina–based firm sent a representative to the LVC Career Fair.
  • He used 14–16 pages to write his essay.
  • He attended Lebanon Valley College from 2006 to 2010.

Em dashes are the longest dashes. They are used to indicate breaks of thought within sentences.

  • Jane stopped abruptly on her way across the Quad—she had heard her professor’s voice calling her name.

Contact IT Services or the Office of Marketing and Communications if you need help locating the en- and em-dash options on your computer.

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Always followed by a comma. 


Abbreviation for instant messaging; sometimes used as a verb IM’ing, IM’ed is acceptable on second reference for instant messaging. 


Use periods and no space when an individual uses initials instead of a first name.

  • E.H. “Ed” Arnold H’87 is a trustee emeritus of Lebanon Valley College. 

in regard to 

Use “regarding” instead.


Neither word is capitalized unless starting a sentence or in a formal title (i.e. Voice over Internet Protocol).

  • Access to the internet is available on all College computers.
  • Employees can access benefit information via the company’s intranet.


Do not confuse “its” with “it’s.” “Its” is the possessive form of “it.” “It’s” is the contraction of “it is.”

  •  It’s time to act to help LVC achieve its goals.

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Abbreviate “Junior” and “Senior” after a person’s name. Do not use a comma after the name or after the generational.

  • John Smith Jr. ’22 was elected class president.
  • John Smith III ’22 was elected class president.

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“Lay” means to place or deposit, and requires a direct object (forms: lay, laid, laid, laying). “Lie” means to be in a reclining position or to be situated; it does not take an object (forms: lie, lay, lain, laying).

  • The professor asked the student to lay the book on the table.
  • The students were tired, so they went to lie down in their rooms. 

Lebanon Valley College 

The formal title of our institution is Lebanon Valley College; this name and the College website ( is to be used in all public-oriented communications. The abbreviated forms LVC and The Valley are acceptable in succeeding references only after the formal title of the College has been stated. Also, use “an LVC” rather than “a LVC” where appropriate.

  • Lebanon Valley College is in Central Pennsylvania. At LVC, students enjoy personal attention and receive a quality education.
  • **The formal title of Lebanon Valley College should be used when possible on social media or other informal web entities associated with the College. Any exception should be included as part of the initial social media account proposal.


A speaker stands behind a lectern or on a podium. 


To “let alone” means to leave something undisturbed. To “leave alone” means to depart from or cause to be in solitude. 


Form plurals of letters, numbers, symbols, abbreviations, and words used as words by adding an apostrophe and an “s.” Mind your P’s and Q’s. Do not use an ampersand (&) in place of “and” in printed work.


Likable, not likeable. 


The L and I are always capitalized.


Livable, not liveable. 


In most cases, “located” is not necessary to the construction of a sentence. Instead of writing, “The bookstore is in the Allan W. Mund College Center,” write, “The bookstore is in the Allan W. Mund College Center.” Do not use, “Where are you located?” Instead, use “Where are you?”


“Login,” “logon,” and “logoff” are single words when used as nouns. They are two words when used as verbs. The login consists of a user name and password. A user name and password is necessary to log in to the computer.


An approved College logo may be used on material that is less formal than that requiring the official seal. All College stationery, brochures, and publications should carry an approved College logo and official College web address (


“Lowercase” is one word when referring to the absence of capital letters. “Uppercase” is one word when referring to capital letters. 


Do not hyphenate compound modifiers with an adverb ending in “-ly.”

  • The recently completed Allan W. Mund College Center was dedicated during Homecoming 2013.

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“Man” has come to mean an adult male rather than a general term for men and women. To avoid sexist language, use “humanity,” “human beings,” “people,” or “the average person” instead of “mankind” or “the common man.” 


Always one word. Use lowercase except when metadata is used in a company title or the first word of a sentence. 


Spell out inches, feet, and other units of measurements. 


Always one word. Use lowercase except when microsite is used in a company title or the first word of a sentence. 


“Midnight” and “noon” should stand alone; do not put “12” in front of either one. 


The months March, April, May, June, and July should not be abbreviated. Abbreviate the names of other months only if stating a specific date. Do not abbreviate a month used alone or with the year only.

  • Fall classes begin Aug. 27, 2012.
  • The residence halls will be ready for use in August 2007. 

more than/over

“more than” to mean in excess of. Use “over” when referring to the physical placement of an object, an ending, or extent of authority.

  • Not: Over 100 students attended the lecture.
  • Instead: More than 100 students attended the lecture.

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Form plurals of family names that end in “s” by adding “es.”

  • The Woodses live in Annville.

nouns not ending in “s”

Form the possessive of singular or plural nouns that do not end in “s” by adding an apostrophe and an “s.”

  • The book’s cover was torn.
  • John’s paper was handed in on time. 


In general, spell out the numbers one through nine and use numerals for 10 and above. Ages, however, are always written with numerals. Spell out numbers for school grades and numbers that begin a sentence.

  • John is a 70-year-old man.
  • She teaches twelfth grade.
  • Eleven or 12 of her friends traveled five to 10 miles to attend the concert. 

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Avoid using masculine terms to describe occupations. Instead of “chairman,” use “chair” or “chairperson” or a similar, neutral term. Instead of businessman, fireman, or mailman, use business executive or manager, firefighter, or mail carrier.

off-campus locations 

Allen Theatre and Backstage Cafe

Quittapahilla Creek 

Quittie Park 

on campus/on-campus 

Hyphenate when “on campus” is used as a compound modifier.

  • Most LVC students live on campus all four years.
  • On-campus housing is available to all students. 


“Online” and “offline” are single words. 

oval logo

An official interlocking LVC logo is used on athletic publications, as well as on other less formal publications. See the LVC Visual Identity Guide for guidance on the appropriate use of College logos.

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Place the period inside the parentheses when the material inside the parentheses forms an independent sentence; otherwise place the period outside.

  • You may purchase concert tickets at the door (until they are sold out).
  • The concert begins at 8 p.m. (Refreshments will be served at 7:30 p.m.) 

Parents Council and Parents Guide

The plural “parents” is the correct form to use in reference to LVC’s “Parents Council” and “Parents Guide.”

part time/part-time

Hyphenate when “part-time” is used as a compound modifier.

  • She attends classes part time, and he is a part-time student. 

past experience

“Experience” stands alone. Using “past” and “experience” together is redundant.


Use numerals for percentages and always spell out “percent.”

  • Almost 50 percent of the students came to the luncheon.
  • Only 6 percent of the students scored a 90 or above on the test.


A form of internet fraud that aims to steal personal information such as credit cards, Social Security numbers, user IDs, and passwords. Use lowercase letters except when the word is used as the first word of a sentence. 

plural nouns

For plural nouns ending in “s,” form the possessive by adding an apostrophe after the “s.”

  • The books’ covers were torn.
  • The students’ papers were handed in on time.

For singular nouns, form the possessive of singular nouns ending in “s” by adding an apostrophe at the end of the word.

  • Some of the campus’ buildings are open to the public. 


See nouns not ending in “s,” pronouns, and singular nouns. 

Preferred Names and Pronouns

The College is committed to fostering an environment of inclusion and support, including all members forms of self-identification. LVC's Policy on Preferred Names and Pronouns provides uses of preferred first names and pronouns recorded for students, faculty, staff, and alumni. 


The possessive of indefinite pronouns, but not of personal pronouns, is formed by adding an apostrophe and an “s.” The possessive forms of personal pronouns—his, hers, its, theirs, ours, and yours—do not have apostrophes.

  • Somebody’s book had a torn cover.
  • Everybody’s papers were handed in on time.
  • His book had a torn cover.

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QR code

Abbreviation of quick response code, the QR is always capitalized and code is always lowercase.


Periods and commas go inside quotation marks; colons and semicolons go outside quotation marks. Place exclamation points and question marks inside the quotation marks when they are part of the quotation; otherwise, place them outside. In long quotations, each new paragraph should begin with an open quotation mark.

  • I am reading “The Lottery”; it’s a short story by Shirley Jackson.
  • “Where is my copy?” he asked.
  • Where is my copy of “The Lottery”? 

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Capitalize the names of races such as “African-American,” “Asian,” “Caucasian,” and “Hispanic.” 


An abbreviation for Really Simple Syndication, which is a protocol for subscribing to and distributing feeds that notify people of new entries on news sites, blogs, podcasts, or other online information sources. RSS is acceptable in all references.


In general, lowercase “north,” “south,” “northeast,” “northern,” etc., when they indicate compass directions; capitalize these words when they designate regions. 

residence halls

Always refer to campus housing as residence hall(s); dormitory or dormitories is no longer applicable.

Centre Hall 

38 College Avenue

44 College Avenue

104 College Avenue

118 College Avenue 

136 College Avenue 

138 College Avenue 

144 College Avenue

150 College Avenue 

Dellinger Hall 

Derickson A Hall Apartments 

Derickson B Hall Apartments 

Friendship House 

Funkhouser Hall 

Hammond Hall 

Keister Hall 

Maple Hall East 

Maple Hall West 

Marquette Hall 

Mary Green Hall 

North College

20 West Sheridan Hall

22 West Sheridan Hall

24 West Sheridan Hall 

73 East Sheridan Hall 

79 East Sheridan Hall

81 East Sheridan Hall 

Silver Hall 

Stanson Hall 

Vickroy Hall 


The practice, on Twitter, of forwarding a message or link from someone else to your followers. Used without a hyphen and lowercase except when the words are used in a title or as the first word of a sentence.

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search engine optimization/SEO

Never hyphenated; SEO is acceptable on second reference.


Do not capitalize the names of seasons unless they are part of a proper name.

  • In the fall, we can go to the Bedford County Fall Foliage Festival. 


Hyphenate compound words beginning with “self-.”

  • The professor showed self-restraint after the student arrived late to class for the fifth day in a row. 

singular nouns

Form the possessive of singular nouns ending in “s” by adding an apostrophe at the end of the word.

  •  Some of the campus buildings are open to the public.


Always one word.

social media

Online tools that people use to connect with one another, including social networks. Used without a hyphen and lowercase except when the words are used in a title or as the first word of a sentence.

social network/social networking

A practice by which people meet, interact, and share information online through the use of such sites as Facebook or Twitter.

spaces between sentences 

Use only one space between sentences. 


Do not abbreviate Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Ohio, Texas, or Utah. Always spell out the name of any state when it is used alone. When the name of the state follows the city, use the Associated Press abbreviations given below, not the postal service abbreviations.

State Abbreviations

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., and Wyo. Use Washington, D.C. Do not abbreviate to D.C. or DC.


Use “student” or “students,” not “student body.”

student classifications

Use “first-year,” instead of “freshman/freshmen.” Do not capitalize “first-year,” “sophomore,” “junior,” and “senior.” Capitalize “class” only when it is part of the name of a specific group or program title.

  • The first-year class had its orientation in August.
  • The Class of 2015 will meet in Frederic K. Miller Chapel tomorrow.
  • The Senior Class Gift Drive has started.


not symposia 

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telephone numbers

If a communication is used only on campus, the area code and prefix may be omitted, using the four-digit extension number preceded by the abbreviation “ext.” in lowercase. Call the Office of Marketing and Communications at ext. 6030 if you have any questions. If a communication may or will be sent off campus, include the area code and hyphens (no periods or parenthesis) between the area code, prefix, and four-digit extension. If the communication will be used on- and off-campus, include the area code and use hyphens between the area code, prefix, and four-digit extension, followed by the extension in parenthesis.

  • Call the Office of Marketing and Communications at 717-867-6030 for more information.
  • Call the Office of Marketing and Communications at 717-867-6030 (ext. 6030) for more information. 

text/texting/texted/text messaging

Acceptable in all usages: to send a text message.


“Than” is a conjunction used in comparisons; “then” is an adverb indicating time. The new gym is bigger than the old one. The students studied hard for the exam, and then it was postponed. 


Use that and which in referring to inanimate objects. Use that for essential clauses, important to the meaning of a sentence, and without commas. Use which for nonessential clauses, where the pronoun is less necessary, and use commas. A simple test: Once the sentence is written, try reading it without the clause. If the sentence still means about the same thing, the clause should be introduced with “which.” If taking out the clause changes the meaning drastically, it should be introduced with “that.”

  • I remember the day we met.
  • The team, which finished last a year ago, is in first place.


Use “theater” unless the British spelling, “theatre” is part of a proper name, as in “Allen Theatre.”

The Valley

When referring to Lebanon Valley College, capitalize the “t” in “The” when referencing "The Valley." The “v” in “valley” is always capitalized. Only refer to the College as "The Valley" after using the complete title in the initial reference.

  • The Lebanon Valley College alumni magazine, The Valley, is published bi-annually.
  • Lebanon Valley College will host its annual Homecoming Weekend on Oct. 28. A record number of alumni are expected to return to The Valley for the festivities. 

The Valley Fund

The Valley Fund is the official title of Lebanon Valley College’s annual fund and is always capitalized.

  •  The College had 5,000 individual donors give to The Valley Fund this year.


When stating a time, use lowercase with periods for “a.m.” and “p.m.”; do not use “:00.” Do not put the number 12 in front of either noon or midnight. Use either “noon” or “12 p.m.”; “midnight” or “12 a.m.” Never use 12 noon or 12 midnight. Use an en-dash, rather than a hyphen, between time ranges.

  • We will discuss the proposal at the 12 p.m. meeting.
  • We will discuss the proposal at our noon meeting.
  • The meeting will run from 3 to 5 p.m. on Friday.
  • The meeting will run from 3–5 p.m. on Friday.
  • The College Store is open weekdays from 10 a.m.–4 p.m.
  • The College Store is open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.


“Entitled” means a right to do or have something. It is optional to use “titled” to introduce the name of a publication, speech, musical piece, etc. 


Capitalize and spell out formal titles only when they immediately precede a name. Do not capitalize titles that follow a name. (The exception to this rule is “president,” which is always capitalized when it refers to the President of the United States.) The preferred method is to have the title follow the formal name.

  • Professor Smith is chair of the English Department.
  • Dr. John Smith, professor of physics, has an office on the fourth floor of the Neidig-Garber Science Center.


Toward, not towards 


Do not use without context and explanation.

  • Dr. John Smith’s lecture is trending on Twitter today. 


Do not capitalize “trustee” before a name.


A message-distribution system that allows users to post continual updates of up to 140 characters detailing their activities for followers or provide links to content. The verb is to tweet, tweeted. A Twitter message is known as a tweet. Capitalize Twitter when referring to the company; lowercase all other variants.

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To remove someone from a list of friends, usually on Facebook. Use lowercase letters except when the word is used as the first word of a sentence.


Do not use “utilize.” It is the awkward verb form of the obsolete adjective “utile.”

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vice president 

not vice-president

video conference

Video conference is always two words.


Voice over Internet Protocol is a method of transmitting sound as data over the internet, allowing for inexpensive phone conversations. VoIP is acceptable on second reference.

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Web is never capitalized unless starting a sentence or in a formal title. 

  • When surfing the web, you may come across many websites that you will find interesting. 

website/webcam/webcast/webinar/webmaster/Web page/Web/Web feed 

website, not web site; webcam, webcast, webinar, and webmaster. However, in short form and in terms with separate words, use the web, web page, and web feed. The official College website is All College e-communications, advertisements, stationery, brochures, and publications must include the official College website and the approved College wordmark.  


If a sentence has an objective clause referring to a person or animal with a proper name, “whom” should be used. 


Software that allows a group of users to add, delete, edit, and share information on an intranet or internet website. Use lowercase letters except when the word is used in a title or as the first word of a sentence. 

widows and orphans 

In typesetting terminology, an “orphan” is a short word or part of a word that ends a paragraph. A “widow” is a short line or a single word that ends a paragraph on the first line of a column. They should be avoided because they impair legibility.


Always capitalized.


An approved College wordmark and the College website ( should be used on all public communications. See the LVC Visual Identity Guide for guidance on the appropriate use of the College wordmark. All College e-communications, advertisements, stationery, brochures, and publications should carry the approved wordmark.

words not abbreviated 

Do not abbreviate the following words: assistant, associate, association, attorney, building, district, government, president, professor, or superintendent.

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The Y and T are always capitalized.

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Updated August 23, 2019