Editorial Style Guide | Springfield College

This guide has been created to formalize and standardize editorial practices for communications at Springfield College.

This set of style guidelines should be used as the first reference and are supplemented by The Associated Press Stylebook and The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language.

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Publication Guidelines 




As a rule, avoid abbreviations. See “states” entry for accepted state abbreviations. Do not use postal abbreviations, except in addresses that include zip codes.

academic abbreviations

Use the degree only on the first reference and never precede a name with a courtesy title when following with an academic degree abbreviation. Only utilize terminal degrees as academic abbreviations. Do not include periods in degree abbreviations. Use only after full name and offset with a comma. Do not use “Dr.” unless the individual holds a doctoral degree in medicine, dental surgery, optometry, osteopathic medicine, podiatric medicine, or veterinary medicine.

YES: Mimi Murray, PhD, is a professor of exercise science and sports studies.

Academic Rank

It is usually best to avoid the unmodified title “professor” in reference to faculty who have not attained full professorial rank. If specification of rank is not desired, expressions such as these may be used. 

YES: George A. Smith, a faculty member in engineering 

YES: Mary Clark of the English faculty


In general, avoid acronyms, unless universally recognized. Do not refer to Springfield College as “SC,” and spell out names of programs, schools, groups, majors, and campus organizations every time. The “NCAA” is the only exception to this rule.


Refer to the offices separately.

YES: Office of Undergraduate Admissions, Office of Graduate Admissions

NO: Office of Admissions


Use the abbreviations Ave., Blvd., St., only with numbered addresses. Always use numerals for an address number. Use numerals for buildings, highways, and room numbers. Capitalize "room" when used with a figure.

YES: 263 Alden St. She was staying in Room 5.

Lowercase and spell out when used with more than one street name.

YES: Alden and King streets

Spell out street numbered from 1-10.

YES: 245 Fifth St.

Use figures with two letters for 10th and above

YES: 139 53rd St.


Not adviser.

African American

Do not use a hyphen whether as a noun or adjective. 

All-America, All-American

all-time, all time

Use “all-time” when referring to a record.

YES: All-time high

Use “all time” for all other statements.

YES: He was the greatest running back of all time.


Alumna is feminine singular. Alumnae is feminine plural. Alumnus is masculine singular. Alumni is unisex plural. “Alum” is singular and may be used in informal work.

YES: Megan is an alumna of Springfield College. Jillian and Patricia are alumnae of Springfield College. Mark is an alumnus of Springfield College. Steven and Kayla are alumni of Springfield College.

ampersand (&)

Never use “&” unless part of an official name.

Asian American

Do not use a hyphen whether as a noun or adjective. 


Capitalize name of award, but do not capitalize the term "award" unless it is part of the official title. Do not italicize or put in quotation marks. 

YES: Lorelai Gilmore received the Innovative Entrepreneur award for her work on The Dragonfly Inn.


Birthplace of Basketball®

Capitalize, always include a registered trademark.


When speaking of a culture, ethnicity, or group of people, the name should be capitalized. If you are including someone's race in the content you're creating, be sure it is necessary to mention it and ask the person how they prefer to be identified, if possible. Use specific racial or ethnic identities. For example, Afro-Latino or Haitian American, whenever possible. 


Blogs can be written in first person. It is acceptable to refer to those as they would be referred to in casual conversation. Courtesy titles are permitted.

YES: Dr. Barkman and I had a conversation about the class. Mr. Hunter gave us a tour of the Office of Marketing.

Board of Trustees

The Springfield College Board of Trustees is capitalized in either its full title or as “Board of Trustees.” “Board” and “Trustee,” when used as courtesy title, are capitalized. Boards of trustees for other organizations are lowercase.

YES: The Springfield College Board of Trustees is chaired by Trustee Gregory Toczydlowski. The Board has been instrumental to the College. Toczydlowski also serves on the Mercy Medical Center board of trustees.

Building Names

Official Springfield College building names are as follows.

Abbey-Appleton HallAdministration Building
AdmissionsAlumni Hall
Athletic Training/Exercise Science FacilityCheney Hall
Brennan CenterFuller Arts Center
Flynn Campus UnionHarold C. Smith Learning Commons
Graduate VillageHealth Sciences Center
Herbert P. Blake HallHickory Hall
International HallJudd Gymnasia
Kakley Graduate AnnexLakeside Hall
Living CenterLoveland Chapel (Child Development Center)
Locklin HallMarsh Memorial
Massasoit HallPhysical Education Complex
President's ResidencePueblo (East Campus)
Reed HallSchoo-Bemis Science Center
Senior SuitesTowne Health Center
TownhousesWeiser Hall
Wellness & Recreation Complex 

Official names of commonly used Springfield College rooms, facilities, and athletics fields are as follows.

Academic Success Center (Harold C. Smith Learning Commons)Amos Alonzo Stagg Field
Appleton Auditorium (Fuller Arts Center)Appleton Tennis Courts
Berry-Allen FieldBistro (Flynn Campus Union)
Blake ArenaBlake Track
Career Center (Flynn Campus Union)Carlisle Foyer (Alumni Hall)
Cheney Hall Dining Rooms A and BCleveland E. and Phyllis B. Dodge Room (Flynn Campus Union)
Dana Gymnasium (Physical Education Complex)Doggett International Center (Flynn Campus Union)
Douglas Parker Wrestling Room (Physical Education Complex)Father Leo Hoar Meditation Room
Field HouseHarold C. Smith Room (Judd Gymnasia)
Helen Davis Blake Conference Room (Marsh Memorial)Irv Schmid Sports Complex
James Naismith CourtJohn M. Wilson Lounge (Flynn Campus Union)
Kresge Gym (Physical Education Complex)MacLean Terrace
Marsh Memorial ChapelMedical Simulation Lab (Blake Hall)
Naismith GreenPotter Field
Rugby FieldStitzer Welcome Center at Judd Gymnasia
Townhouse Conference RoomUnion Station
Visual Arts CenterWellness Center
William Blizard Gallery (Blake Hall) 

bullet list

Do not use punctuation in a bulleted list, unless the bullet contains two or more sentences. Capitalize the first word in each bullet.


campus, campuses (plural), campuswide


Capitals should be used grammatically, not graphically or for emphasis, with the exception of offices and departments. 

YES: I drove down Main and State streets. 

captions (see "Photography" section)

certificate of advanced study (CAS) or certificate of advanced graduate study (CAGS)


Only capitalize “championships” when using the official title.

YES: Kevin Coyle won the long jump at the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships.

“Championship” is used when there is just one title at stake. “Championships” is used when both a team and individual can win a title at an event.

YES: The men's basketball team will be vying for the New England Men’s and Women’s Athletic Conference Championship on Sunday. Springfield hosts the New England Men's Indoor Track and Field Championships this weekend.

check-in, check in

Check-in is to be used as a noun or adjective. Check in is to be used as a verb.

YES: Sam went to check in for the conference. Sam met Sally at check-in.

Chinese American


Describe the advantages or lack of advantages, rather than assigning attributes to people. Instead of under class, lower class, poverty class, or disadvantaged. Suggestions: people with low incomes, people who are poor, people iving under poverty conditions, or people with socio-economic disadvantages.

Class of

Capitalize “Class of.”

YES: Class of 2015

Class Year

Refer to students as first-year students, sophomores, juniors, seniors, and graduate students. Do not use the year of graduation prior to a student completing his or her degree. For current students, for example, use Class of 2023, not John Smith '23.

Class Year (in student quotes)

Note: the direction of the apostrophe is a singular closed quote mark: ’ 
…said Bryan Hunter, Class of 2024,… (Write out the expected year of graduation for current students.)
…said Bryan Hunter ’79 (for those who graduated/note no comma after the name)
…said Bryan Hunter, G’88, (for graduate students use comma after the name AND after the year)


Lowercase in all uses as a job description. Do not use as a courtesy title. When referring to an individual’s title, utilize the guidelines listed under “Titles (of people).”

YES: Men’s Football Coach Mike Delong has a great record. Delong graduated from Springfield College.

NO: Coach Delong showed me how to run that play.



colleges and universities (multiple campuses)

For other, non-Springfield College college and university names, consult with the college or university website to determine whether its flagship campus requires a reference to its location. 

YES: Judith Kelliher graduated from the University of Massachusetts. 

NO: Judith Kelliher graduated from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.


When introducing a list, try to avoid using a colon. One way to avoid the colon is to make the introducing statement a complete sentence.

YES: The instructions include the following.


Include the Oxford commas in a simple series.

YES: The flag is red, white, and blue.


Only capitalize when using proper nouns and in formal names.


When comparing amounts, always use “more than.” Do not use “over.”

YES: There were more than 5,000 people in attendance.

NO: He was stung by over 100 bees.



When referring to something occurring multiple years in a row, use “consecutive.” Do not use the word “straight.”

YES: The men’s team won the tournament for eight-consecutive years.



Two items or people.

course names

Capitalize official registrar course names.




Spell out months in all uses. If there is text after the year, add a comma after the year.

YES: Basketball was invented in December 1891. September 11, 2011, was a tragic day. Labor Day is September 5 this year. The Hoophall Classic takes place every January.

When referring to a month and year, do not use the word “of” (e.g., “March of 2009”). You can use “of” for seasons (e.g., “summer of 1969”).

Use a hyphen for range of dates, including years.

YES: August 3-5, 1996, 1994-99

NO: 1986-92


Dashes should be set tight (no space on either side of the dash). Use an em dash (insert two hyphens and then begin typing next word without a space).

YES: Rick ordered a salad—a rarity for this steak lover—at Casa Palmero.



Use decimals for scores where appropriate. Be consistent.

decision maker (n); decision making (n); decision-making (adj)


Refer to The Associated Press Stylebook entry “academic degrees” when utilizing degree titles. Refer to “academic degrees,” 15.21-22 in The Chicago Manual of Style for abbreviations of academic degrees. Lowercase and use an apostrophe in bachelor’s degree, a master’s, etc. Capitalize and do not use an apostrophe in Bachelor of Arts, Master of Science, etc. When writing out degrees, they should be listed by year received, with most the most recent degree last. Do not use pronouns preceding the degrees. If a person has their doctorate, they should be listed with that acronym following his or her name. Do not use “Dr.” preceding a name unless the individual holds a doctoral degree in medicine, dental surgery, optometry, osteopathic medicine, podiatric medicine, or veterinary medicine.

YES: Mimi Murray, PhD, earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Springfield College. Mimi Murray, PhD, earned a Master of Science degree in physical education.

departments and offices

Capitalize. Refer to specific departments as “Department of” and specific offices as “Office of.”

YES: Kathy Mangano chairs the Department of Physical Education and Health Education. Amy Doyle works in the Office of Marketing.            

Department of Public Safety

Not “campus safety.” Campus safety should be used when discussing being safe on campus.

directions and regions

Lowercase compass direction. Capitalize words that denote specific regions.

YES: He drove west.

YES: He moved from the South and went to school in the Midwest.


Refer to a person’s disability or mental illness only when pertinent to the story. Refer to a person’s specific condition whenever possible. Do not use “handicapped.” Tell what a person has or does, not what s/he is (e.g. Instead of She is disabled, say She uses a wheelchair.) When referring to a person who does not have a disability, use non-disabled or person without a disability.  Some communities prefer to use identity-first language. Whenever possible, ask which approach the person prefers. If unsure, use person-first language.

Distinguished Springfield Professor of Humanics

Use DSPS or distinguished professor on subsequent references.


The College has six divisions. These are to be acknowledged as divisions and not offices or departments. The names of divisions are as follows:

  • Division of Academic Affairs
  • Division of Development and Alumni Relations
  • Division of Enrollment Management and Marketing
  • Division of Finance and Administration
  • Division of Inclusion and Community Engagement
  • Division of Student Affairs

Division III

dos and don'ts

doctoral; doctorate

Doctoral is an adjective; doctorate a noun. A student is someone completing studies leading to the degree. A candidate is someone who has fulfilled all the requirements, including the comprehensive exam/DQE, for the degree except the dissertation. A person with a doctorate has earned a doctoral degree.


The title “Dr.” is only used for individuals who hold a doctoral degree in medicine, dental surgery, optometry, osteopathic medicine, podiatric medicine, or veterinary medicine. All others should have the degree listed after their name on first reference and be referred to by last name alone subsequently. 


East Campus

Eastern College Athletic Association (ECAC)


emeritus, emeriti, emerita, emeritae

Always italicize. Emeritus and emerita are honorary designations and do not simply mean retired. Use emeritus (or emeriti in the plural) when referring to a man who has received this honor. Use emerita (or emeritae in the plural) for similar references to a woman. Use emeriti when referring to a group of men and women.  Note: Emertii faculty are only listed in the directory on the web with special permission from the dean.

ex officio

Always italicize.

exclamation points (!)

Try not to use them. If use is absolutely necessary, use only one.



When encouraging people to connect with you on Facebook in text, ask them to like your page. Do not use a URL to refer individuals to your Facebook page. Instead, ask them to like the name of your page.

When outlining your Facebook page contact information in print or Web pieces, use the social media icon and name of the Facebook page. Do not use the link.


In plural usage it stands alone. For singular, use faculty member.

YES: The faculty celebrates Founders Day each year.


An indefinitely small number of persons or things (typically three to 10).

fewer or less

Fewer should be used with individual items, less for quantity or bulk. Refer to “fewer, less” entry in The A.P. Stylebook for details.

field goal


Flynn Campus Union

foul shot


Avoid. Use “first-year student” or “rookie” for athletics stories.

Friends of Springfield College Athletics

Use as a plural, collective term.

full time (noun), full-time (adjective)

fundraising, fund-raising, fundraiser

When using as noun, use one word. When using as a compound modifier, hyphenate (fund-raising).

YES: Kelly will make a schedule for the fund-raising campaign. Bill is organizing the fundraiser.


gender-inclusive language

Do not use “he” when referring to an unspecified single person. Instead, rewrite the sentence, using the plural form or avoid the use of pronouns entirely.

NO: Each student completed his survey.

YES: All students completed the survey.

Avoid gender-specific language whenver possible.

YES: chair (rather than chairman/chairwoman)

YES: police officer (rather than policeman)

YES: humankind (instead of mankind)

Use the updated guidance from the Associated Press Style Guidelines in stories about people who identify as neither male nor female and who ask not to be referred to as he/she/him/her. Use the person’s name in place of a pronoun or otherwise reword the sentence, whenever possible. If the use of they/them/their is essential, explain in the text that the person prefers a gender-neutral pronoun. Be sure that the phrasing does not imply more than one person.  

When “they” is used as a singular, it takes a plural verb. Be sure it’s clear from the context that only one person is involved. (example: Taylor said they need a new car.) Always use “they” when referring to persons who do not use gendered pronouns for themselves, unless specifically requested otherwise.  


Acceptable in all references for grade-point average.

grades (academic)

Capitalize (A, B-, C+). Use an apostrophe when plural. Do not use quotation marks.

YES: Malcolm got a B+ on his paper. Gina got straight A’s.

grades (school years)

When describing a range of grades, use numerals and a dash. When talking about a single grade, write out the numeral.

YES: The study focuses on grades 5-8. Amelia could play chess in first grade.

Graduate Student Organization

Abbreviate as GSO. Spell out on first reference and use the abbreviation in subsequent references. 

graduation years

Following name, use a backwards apostrophe (’) and the last two numerals of the graduation year. For graduates from the 1800s or from before 1920, write “Class of,” followed by the full year. For advanced degrees, put a capital G before the apostrophe. For honorary degrees, put a capital H before the apostrophe. Do not put a space after the G (for advanced degrees), the H (for honorary degrees), or the doctoral acronym when denoting a graduation year. Use a comma between degrees for multiple degree recipients. Use a comma before the G when advanced degree information follows an individual’s name. Include degree, certification, or licensure before graduation years when relevant.

  • Bachelor’s degree: Kerri Vautour ’07
  • Bachelor’s and master’s degree: Richard Veres ’95, G’97
  • Master’s degree: Jane Vottero, G’10
  • Terminal degree from Springfield College: Irene Cucina, DPE’99
  • Terminal and undergrad/grad degrees from Springfield College: Lynn Couturier ’81, DPE’86
  • Terminal degree not from Springfield College: Shawn Ladda, EdD, G’85;
  • Lynn Johnson, EdD, ’77, G’85
  • Bachelor’s and master’s degree with other professional designation: Michael Boyle, ATC, ’81, G’82
  • Honorary degree: Sally Griggs H’12
  • Earned degrees and honorary degree: Timothy Mutphy ’78, ’79, H’12
  • Certificate of advanced graduate study: Bob Mackie, G’09, CAGS’11
  • For current students, use Class of 2023, not '23.

Triangle class notes

Class notes are listed by year. Bachelor’s degree recipients are listed under the year with no year after their name:

Kerri Vautour’s dog was voted “best dog ever” by Dog Fancy magazine.

Postgraduate degree recipients (with no Springfield College bachelor’s degree) are listed with a (G) in parentheses to denote degree:

Jane Vottero (G) has an impressive collection of chickens.

Graduates with both bachelor’s and postgraduate degrees are listed under their undergraduate year, with their graduate year in parentheses:

Charlie Brock (G’80) has coached the basketball team for many years.

Graduates with a terminal degree from the College (with no Springfield College bachelor’s or other advanced degree) are listed under their graduation year with their academic abbreviation following their name in parentheses:

John Smith (DPT) is a physical therapist in Maryland.

Graduates with a terminal degree and a bachelor’s or advanced degree from Springfield College should be listed under their undergraduate or advanced degree graduation year, with the terminal degree and year in parentheses:

Michelle Moosbrugger (PhD’06) teaches at Springfield College.

If a class note includes more than one alumnus, and they have different graduation years, choose one (usually the submitter) to list the note under. Graduation years for others are listed after their names, with no parentheses.

Kathy Mangano (G’88) heads the physical education department. Ted France '91, G’93, also teaches in the department.

Gymnastics Exhibition Show

On second reference, the "home show" is acceptable.



Keep hashtags lowercase. If utilizing a hashtag in reference to the College, use #springfieldcollege.


In headlines, the first letter of each word should be capitalized, unless it’s a preposition and not the first word.

headlines (for hyphens)

Keep the second word of a hyphenated phrase lowercase, unless the second word is a proper noun.

health care

high school sports

When referring to a specific team comprised of one gender, use boys or girls. 

YES: The boys basketball team won the championship. 


Whenever possible, use specific racial or ethnic identities instead of collecting different groups under a general heading. Example: Cuban Americans, Mexican Americans, and Puerto Ricans.


Capitalize Humanics in all uses.

YES: Springfield College is driven by the Humanics philosophy.

Humanics in Action Day

Springfield College initiated Humanics in Action Day in September 1998. It was the idea of Distinguished Springfield Professor of Humanics Peter Polito and leaders of the New Student Orientation program to revive and expand an event described in the 1918 Springfield College yearbook. In the college’s early years, student work groups volunteered to improve the developing campus. Since 1998, Humanics in Action Day has been a day of service to the local community.

hyphens (adjectives)

Hyphenate two-word combinations that serve as adjectives. 

YES: He is a full-time employee. He works full time.


i.e. vs e.g.

i.e. is an abbreviation for “that is to say,” or “in other words"

e.g. means “for example"

Both are always followed by a comma.


Identification card. Do not use “I.D.”

Illegal immigrant

Do not use. Use "undocumented immigrant" when appropriate. 


Include a comma before “Inc.” This is an exception to Associated Press style.


Capitalize when used in reference to original inhabitants of a place.

Indigenous Peoples

Whenever possible, use an individuals specific Indigenous community or nation of people. 

Indigenous Peoples Day


When encouraging people to connect with you on Instagram in text, ask them to follow you. Keep your username lowercase and utilize the @ symbol before the username.

When outlining your Instagram account contact information in print or Web pieces, use the social media icon and handle of your Instagram account. Do not use the link.

YES: @springfieldcollege

NO: Follow us on Instagram at instagram.com/springfieldcollege.



James Naismith

Instructor, not professor or student. Do not refer to him as Dr. James Naismith.

junior, senior

Abbreviate as Jr. and Sr. only with full names. Do not precede with a comma.


Latina, Latino


Use instead of Latina or Latino when a gender-neutral term is preferred.


The acronym is an umbrella term used for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual, and other sexual or gender minorities. 

Lifelong Learning

Formerly Learning in Later Life



majors, minors, and concentrations

Capitalize in all uses. 

YES: He is in the Physical Therapy major. She is minoring in Psychology.

MacLean Terrace

MassMutual Center


Not 12 a.m.


Avoid using "minority." Try using "marginalized."


Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame


Use only last names on subsequent references. Exception: First names may be used after first reference in testimonial or profile pieces, with deliberate intention.


Not NCAA’s.

New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC)

Use full name in first reference. Do not use “NEWMAC conference.” The “C” in NEWMAC stands for “conference,” so adding another “conference” makes it redundant.


Not 12 noon or 12 p.m.


Spell out numbers one through nine. Use numerals for 10 and above. Exception: Graphically, the number rule does not apply. For example: “#1 in Massachusetts” or “8% of incoming first-year students” can be used.

YES: The department welcomed three new faculty members. The faculty consists of 24 professors. Bob Billups is 5 years old. Twelve drummers are in the band. 2014 was a great year.


off-campus, on-campus

Both are adjectives.

YES: The event will be on the campus. Let’s go to the on-campus event.


See “departments and offices” entry.


Not “okay” or “O.K.”


Capitalize all references to the international athletic contests.


ordinal numbers

Spell our ordinal numbers (first, second, tenth), except when the numerals are 10 or higher. In these instances, ordinal indicators (st, nth, nd, rd) should be written as superscripts.

YES: The students came in first place in the competition. This is the director’s second year leading the event. Mary-Beth Cooper, PhD, DM, is the 13th president of Springfield College. This year, the club will celebrate its 25th anniversary.

Oxford comma

Use a comma after “and” in a series. (The flag is red, white, and blue.) 


Pacific Islanders

people of color

The term is acceptable when necessary in broad references to multiple races other than white. Do not capitalize. 


Use the percent sign in all instances (print and web). Unless beginning a sentence, always use numerals in front of the percent sign. 

YES: The pass rate is 60.7%.


Use one space after a period or other form of punctuation.

phone numbers

Put the area code in parenthesis: (413) 748-3333. 


Identification: Individuals within images should be properly identified within photo captions.


  • The people in the photo want to be recognized and acknowledged for their work.
  • It is proper journalistic style to identify people in photos.
  • It tells the complete story. Without it, something is missing.
  • Research shows photo captions with identification are actually viewed at longer than those without.

Captions: Photo captions should properly identify each individual listed in the image, and note their location, from left to right. Only use “from left.” The “above” and “below” reference only has to be used when there are images in close proximity on the page.

YES: Amy Doyle, from left, Anne Fischer, and Chris Evans cheer their colleague, Judy Kelliher, on tennis court as she trains for a match against Damon Markiewciz at the Appleton Courts.

NO: Shown above, from left to right, Melanie, Olivia, and John collect supplies to the event.

Most captions should be no more than two concise sentences, while including the relevant information. Try to anticipate what information the reader will need.

physical education

Not “phys. ed.” or “PE.”

Post Office Box

Spell out—don’t use P.O. Box—if there is no number. If it’s part of an address, P.O. Box is OK. Exception: Do not use periods in copy on the web. 



In general, hyphenate. Exception: In recognition of common usage and dictionary preferences, do not hyphenate double-e combinations with pre-. See the Associated Press Stylebook.

YES: preelection, preeminent, preempt



president’s title

Mary-Beth Cooper, PhD, DM, president of Springfield College. Cooper is the 13th president of Springfield College and took office on Sept. 1, 2013. Capitalize "president" when referring specifically to the College president. Example: The articulation agreement was signed by the President.

the Pride

Only use in reference to athletics teams after 1995. Use “Springfield College” or “the College” for teams before that period. The Pride is singular. See “team” entry.

program names

Capitalize program names in all uses.

YES: Chris Evans is studying is a Physical Education major. 

proper nouns

Proper nouns receive capitalization. In the case of a professional title, Springfield College Legal Counsel Chris Neronha would be correct, but "college legal counsel" is not a proper noun. In our style guide, we make exceptions for the five schools, departments, offices, and the words Board, Trustees, and College when they refer specifically to our own. So fall is not capitalized (it's a noun, but not proper; the Fall refers to the Fall of Adam and Eve), west is not capitalized (here it is an adjective, indicating place. It is capitalized when it refers to the West of the United States, the Occident--countries in the Western Hemisphere, etc.)

public schools

Capitalize when name of city or town precedes it and if it is the official name of the school department/district. 

YES: The program will target Springfield Public School students. She attended a public school.

NO: The program will target Springfield public school students. She attended a Public School.

Punctuation with a URL

Do not use a period if a sentence ends with a URL.


quotation marks

Punctuation goes inside the quotation marks. However, place semicolons outside of quotation marks. Refer to The Associated Press Stylebook punctuation guide.

YES: Anne said, “We need to increase the photo size.”



Use “No.” and numerals when providing a ranking or write out. The # symbol is acceptable for use on the web. 

YES: The Pride was No. 1 in the nation. They defeated second-ranked Amherst.

NO: The Pride was #1 in the nation. They defeated 2nd ranked Amherst.


Use figures and hyphens. Exception: It's appropriate to use a colon for ratio on web (e.g., 13:1).

YES: The student to faculty member ratio is 13-to-1.

residence halls

Not "dorm" or "dormitory."


Reunion Weekend*, Reunion 2012*, 50th reunion (*when referring to the Springfield College event).


On invitations, please use RSVP, not Rsvp. Never use “Please RSVP.” It is redundant.


School of Arts and Sciences

School of Physical Education, Performance, and Sport Leadership

School of Health Sciences

School of Social Work and Behavioral Sciences


school names

Capitalize school names, as well as the word “school,” in a specific reference.

YES: Rachel Rubinstein is the dean of the School of Arts and Sciences. The School offers an active visual and performing arts program.


Do not capitalize spring, summer, fall, and winter.


Place semicolons outside of quotation marks. Refer to The Associated Press Stylebook punctuation guide.

semifinals, semifinalists

Senior Leadership Team

This group is comprised of the Springfield College president, vice presidents, executive director of athletics, and chief of staff. Informally known as President's Leadership Team. 

sexist language

Avoid whenever possible. Avoid the use of freshman, coed, and chairman, as well as “fellow” when used as a synonym for other. Use first-year student, chair of the board, chairperson, etc. Exception for “fellow”: Fellow is appropriate if an institution uses that terminology to describe the position, e.g. in a faculty member's CV.


When encouraging people to connect with you on Snapchat in text, ask them to follow you. Keep your username lowercase. Posts on Snapchat are called "snaps" in the same way that posts on Twitter are called "tweets." 

When outlining your Snapchat account contact information in print or Web pieces, use the social media icon and handle of your Snapchat account. 

YES: spfldcollege

NO: Follow us on Snapchat at spfldcollege.

Social Media Guidelines

Springfield College has created its own Social Media Guidelines. It is important that these guidelines are followed to meet our branding and to ensure consistency across all platforms. 


Double spaces are no longer included after a period in a sentence. They were necessary when using typesetting or a typewriter because these both used monospace type. Now, however, word processing programs use proportional type, and double spaces no longer enhance readability. 

spirit, mind, and body

When possible, use this phrase in conjunction with “for leadership in service to others.”

Springfield College

Only refer to the College as Springfield College or the College. Capitalize “College” following the word “the” in specific reference to Springfield College. Do not personify the College. Instead, include the word “the” preceding “Springfield.” Be selective and mindful of multiple meanings of adjectives used before “Springfield College.” Do not refer to Springfield College using the "SC."

YES: Final exams are difficult for college students. The College has tutoring programs to help. He was part of the Springfield College Class of 2012.

NO: He was part of Springfield College’s Class of 2012.

Springfield College former names

Use only when necessary and relevant.

1885School for Christian Workers
1890YMCA Training School
1891-1911 International YMCA Training School
1912 International YMCA College
1954   Springfield College

Springfield College AmeriCorps Program

staff and faculty

"Staff" and "faculty" stand alone without the word “members.” Use those words with "member" to make singular.

YES: The faculty is invited. The staff is invited. The new staff member is named Olevia.


Shorten using guidelines below unless state name is part of larger name (e.g., Massachusetts Department of Corrections). Do not use postal abbreviations unless in address.




Include a hyphen in all uses.

students, faculty, staff, and alumni

When there is not a specific intended audience, students should come first.

Student Government Association

Abbreviate as “SGA.” Spell out in first reference, use abbreviation in subsequent references.



Watch agreement. Team is singular.

YES: The volleyball team won its game.

NO: The volleyball team won their game.


telephone number

Put area code in parenthesis. Do not use just the extension.

YES: (413) 965-0460, (800) 748-3124

NO: 413.965.0460, 800-748-3124


Show in numerals. Exact hours are solitary numbers. Times are expressed in a.m. or p.m. Noon and midnight are expressed with words. Do not repeat a.m./p.m. for like times. In these instances, use a hyphen to separate time span. When showing time span from a.m. to p.m. or vice versa, use “to.” 

Exception for the web: Use 2 PM or 2:00 PM, no periods for easier readability. Use uppercase AM/PM. Do not use 12 PM/AM. Noon and Midnight should be capitalized. For optimal readability, put spaces between the hyphens when showing a time duration   
(e.g., 2PM - 4PM)  

YES: The show begins at noon and ends at 2:30 p.m. A second seating begins at 4 p.m.

NO: The show begins at 12:00 and ends at 2:30PM. A second seating begins at 4:00 PM.

YES: 5-6 p.m., 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

NO: 5 p.m.-6p.m.

titles (general)

Do not capitalize general titles unless associated with a name (See “titles (of people”).

YES: Those who become program directors will get a raise. Elizabeth was an academic coach at the high school.

titles (of people)

Capitalize when the title comes before a name. Exception: When titles appear in an incomplete sentence such as contact information on a brochure, capitalize the title.

YES: Graphic Designer Anne Fischer won an award. Anne Fischer, graphic designer, won an award.

YES (brochure): Anne Fischer, Graphic Designer

titles (of publications)

Books, journal titles, plays, movies, and other freestanding works (e.g., sculpture titles) are italicized. Titles of articles, presentation titles, and other shorter works are in quotes.

Transfer and Online Admissions

Formerly Regional Online and Continuing Education

triathlon, triathlete


Avoid using the word "Tribe." Try using "people" or "nations."


When encouraging people to connect with you on Twitter, ask them to follow you. Keep your username lowercase and utilize the @ symbol before the username.

When outlining your Twitter account contact information in print or Web pieces, use the social media icon and name of the Twitter account. Do not use the link.

YES: @spfldcollege

NO: Follow us on Twitter at twitter.edu/spfldcollege


upper class vs. upper-class

Hyphenate when compound modifier. Do not use "upperclassman."

YES: She is a member of the upper class. She is an upper-class student.


Do not capitalize any part of the URL. Do not precede a link with “www” or “http://.” All links should be concluded with .com, .edu, .gov, .org, etc.

YES: Visit springfield.edu for more information. Learn more at springfield.edu/academics.


vice presidents

When writing about a vice president, use the word “for” to indicate the area they oversee.

YES: As vice president for student affairs, she will be in charge of numerous offices.


Washington, D.C.

web, web address, web browser, webcam, webcast, webmaster, Web page, web server, website

"Website" refers to the overarching site structure, while "Web page" refers to the sub-sections. For example, springfield.edu is the website and springfield.edu/careercenter is a Web page.



Whenever possible, use specific racial or ethnic identities. Example: Italian American or Eastern European

widows and orphans

Eliminate widows and orphans. A widow is one word or less on a line. An orphan is one line from a paragraph stranded on the top or bottom of a column.


X (formerly Twitter)

When encouraging people to connect with you on X, ask them to follow you. Keep your username lowercase and utilize the @ symbol before the username. When outlining your Twitter account contact information in print or Web pieces, use the social media icon and name of the Twitter account. Do not use the link.

YES: @spfldcollege  





Use numerals when describing years. Do not put an apostrophe before the “s.” Apostrophes stand in for missing letters or express possessive only. Use hyphens when separating consecutive years within the same decade.

YES: He was born in the 1980s. She served in the military from 1992-95. Matthew prepared materials for the 2015-16 academic year.

NO: He was born in the 1980’s. 


When encouraging people to connect with you on YouTube in text, ask them to subscribe to your channel. When outlining your YouTube page contact information in print or Web pieces, use the social media icon and name of the YouTube page. Link to the profile page through the name of the account. 

YES: springfieldcollege

NO: Subscribe to us on YouTube at youtube.com/springfieldcollege.


ZIP code


Publication Guidelines


Accuracy: The Office of Communications checks submissions for accuracy. However, individuals who submit to Laurels are ultimately responsible for the veracity of their submissions. 

Article Titles: All journal articles should be written in sentence case. That is, the first letter of the title—as well as all proper nouns, and the first word after a colon—should be capitalized, while the rest of the letters should be lowercase.

Dates: Whenever possible, include the month and year for each submission. Do not include the full date. 

Degrees: Terminal degrees, such as PhD, DPE, PsyD, shall be listed after an individual's names. Master's or bachelor's degrees will not be included. 

Names: Names of faculty, staff, students, or departments should be bolded. Department names should be used only if no individual is named in the item. These items should also be boldface in names of scholarship and award titles.

YES: M. Susan Guyer was the recipient of the Athletic Trainers of Massachusetts District I Charles J. Redmond Scholarship.

Titles: Only official College titles will be used in the publication. Courtesy titles should not be used. For faculty members who have multiple titles, their academic (professor) title will be listed first, followed by other titles.


Titles and degrees: Refer to academic degrees and doctor entries in The Associated Press Stylebook. Academic and doctoral titles are not used in Class News and Notes.

Faculty and staff alumni: Names of faculty and staff members who are Springfield College alumni should always be followed by their class year.

Graduation years: In Class News and Notes and Memoriam, items are printed under chronologically listed class years for undergraduate degree recipients. See the “graduation years” entry.

Alumni of Springfield College graduate programs only are listed under the year they received their degree with a (G) following their name. (Applies to Memoriam, as well.)

YES: 1960  
Rod Stewart (G) was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

NO: Rod Stewart G’60 was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Alumni who have received two graduate degrees should have both listed after their name and be categorized under the earlier year.

YES: 1982  
Macie Carlisle (G’82, G’84) is the head coach of the Oceanview Seniors volleyball team in Naples, Fla.      

Alumni who have received a terminal degree and an undergraduate or master’s degree from the College should be categorized under the earliest degree’s year, with the terminal degree denoted by its abbreviation. If the terminal degree is the only one received, categorize the individual under the year received and place abbreviation after their name.

YES: 2000  
Michelle Moosbrugger (PhD’06) teaches at Springfield College.

John Smith (DPT) has the largest banjo collection in New England.

Births: List alumna/us first. If both parents are alumni, include only maiden name with wife’s name.

YES: A son, Christopher Michael (Nov. 15, 2012), to Jennifer (Bazin) ‘05 and Jason Marcott ‘04.

In Memoriam: List name, place of residence, and date of death.

YES: 1960  
Leslie Nielsen, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Nov. 28, 2010.