- Do not capitalize the words page and pages in running text.
- Avoid abbreviations: p. for page, pp. for pages except in tables.
- Use figures for references to pages of a book, tables, illustrations and figures: page 2.
- When referring to a publication’s volume number, use volume lowercase.
- Italicize titles of paintings and exhibitions. See composition titles.
- Used as an adjective and is hyphenated. Capitalize both Pan and Arab, not just Arab. Having Pan-Arab satellite channels is a step forward. The Pan-Arab committee works to foster regional relations.
- See Punctuation.
part time (n.), part-time (adj.)
- She works part time at the news agency. He is a part-time professor.
- Do not capitalize. Separate with a slash, not a hyphen.
- Do not use fail/pass.
- Always try to use an active, not a passive, voice. The passive voice weakens the sentence and hides the subject.
- Passive: The decision was made as to who will be the keynote speaker.
- Active: The committee made the decision as to who will be the keynote speaker.
- Stands for personal computer.
- Abbreviation for Portable Document Format. Abbreviation is acceptable in all references.
- Capitalize when part of a formal name: Arabian Peninsula, Florida Peninsula.
- Use people, not persons, unless writing a direct quotation.
people, peoples, persons
- Use people as the plural of person. Avoid persons, which is largely confined to formal or legal contexts. Peoples refers to a body of people sharing a common religion, culture or language: the peoples of Asia.
- See numbers, percentages.
- Capitalize and italicize titles of periodicals: Egypt Today, The Cairo Review of Global Affairs.
- Write issues of periodicals in the following way: Spring 2012 issue of AUCToday.
- If the word ‘the’ is not part of the formal title of the periodical, do not capitalize or italicize it: the Financial Times, but The Washington Post.
- In first reference, include the name of the city of publication of a newspaper, even if it is not part of the official title: New York Daily News.
- Also see capitalization.
- Use without periods. Doctorate is preferred. See doctorate.
- Capitalize philosophical movements of specific historical periods: Enlightenment, Renaissance, Marxist, Communist.
- Do not use Xerox unless referring to the brand name.
- Avoid the abbreviation PE.
- Generally, an ‘s’ is added at the end of words to form plurals.
- Add an apostrophe in abbreviations: MBA’s, single letters: A’s, C’s and acronyms that end in ‘s:’ SOS’s.
- Otherwise, acronyms: POWs, hyphenated words: hi-fis, follow-ups and numbers used as a nouns: sixes and sevens take an ‘s’ alone to form the plural.
- Apostrophes are never used to form the plural of proper nouns.
- Incorrect: The Michelle’s will take part.
- Correct: The Michelles will take part.
- No apostrophe is used to form the plural of years: 1980s.
- See decades.
- Use only in adding units. Do not use plus as a substitute for besides, and, also, or in addition.
- Do not capitalize and do not use periods: 7 pm.
- Avoid redundancy: 8 pm this evening.
- Use periods in the abbreviation P.O. for P.O. Box numbers.
- See addresses.
- Names of political parties, movements and alliances are capitalized, but the words party and movement are not unless they are part of the official name: Freedom and Justice party, Egyptian Social Democratic Party.
- Do not italicize names of political parties or movements.
- Adjectives for political parties are lowercased: the leftist Tagamu’ party.
- Politics is always singular, not plural: Politics is an ever-changing field.
- For singular and plural nouns that do not end in ‘s’, form the possessive by adding an ‘s’: Smith’s computer, women’s celebration.
- For singular proper nouns that end with an ‘s,’ the possessive is formed by adding an apostrophe only: Jones’ house.
- The apostrophe is omitted with official names that have plural nouns ending in an ‘s’: Visitors Center, Founders Day, Graduate Students Association.
- For singular common nouns ending in ‘s,’ add an ‘s’ unless the next word begins with an ‘s’: the hostess’s invitation but the hostess’ seat, witness’ stand but witness’s chair.
- Do not italicize the apostrophe or the ‘s’ after an italicized noun: Time's editor.
- Means doctoral, not master’s, studies. Use graduate for master’s.
- No hyphen. Used as an adjective only.
- Incorrect: She is a postgraduate in engineering.
- Correct: She is a postgraduate student in engineering.
prefixes (co, multi, mini, pre, post, un, under, non)
- Generally, do not hyphenate when using a prefix with a word.
- Exceptions are:
- When the prefix precedes a proper noun: anti-Islamic.
- When the prefix ends in a vowel and the word that follows begin with the same vowel: pre-emptive. Exceptions to that rule are cooperate and coordinate.
- When joining doubled prefixes: sub-subparagraph.
- Words that contain ex- (meaning former) and self- as prefixes: self-evaluation, ex-husband.
- With the prefix quasi-, hyphenate when used as an adjective: quasi-judicial. Do not hyphenate when used as a noun compound: quasi corporation.
- In general, consult The American Heritage Dictionary. If the word is not listed, hyphenate.
- Premier is the title of an individual who is the first minister in a national government that has a council of ministers. It is also an adjective meaning chief or foremost.
- Premiere means a first performance.
- Not presentor.
- Uppercase only before the name: President Lisa Anderson.
- Lowercase when used without a name: The president announced a new policy at the University Forum.
- For tickets or admissions, list the price to the general public first, followed by that for students or staff: Public: LE 10; AUC community: LE 5.
- See currency.
- Principal can be used as a noun or adjective. As a noun, it means someone first in rank or authority: school principal. As an adjective, it means important or major. She was the principal force behind the movement. Politics is the principal problem.
- Principle is a noun that means a basic truth, law or moral value: She fought for her principles. Their main aim was upholding the principle of equality.
- One word.
- Capitalize the official name of the diploma. Lowercase in generic use: She acquired the International Advertising Association diploma. He has a diploma in management.
professor, doctor, titles
- Use professor, not doctor. Professor is an academic title. A doctor (in academia) is a holder of a doctorate. Not all professors have doctorates, nor are all those who have a PhD professors.
- Professor of, not professor in.
- Use the faculty member's exact title: assistant professor, associate professor, professor, professor of practice, associate professor of practice, instructor, lecturer.
- Use professorship, not chair, when referring to endowed positions: the Abdulhadi H. Taher Professorship in Comparative Religion.
- See endowed professorships.
- See names, programs.
- Avoid the use of awkward or unpronounceable pronoun combinations:
- his or her (not his/her).
- him or her (not him/her).
- he or she (not he/she).
- However, always try to use the plural form to avoid such constructions.
- Not preferred: Every person will choose what to study according to his or her preferences.
- Preferred: Students will choose what to study according to their preferences.
- Reflexive pronouns (myself, yourself, ourselves, yourselves, himself, herself, itself) refer to people or things already mentioned or implied in the same sentence: I wrote the book myself. Hand in the paper to the professor yourself.
- Prospectus is singular; prospectuses is plural.
- Add “with” when provide is used with an object: We will provide you with the needed information tomorrow.
publications, presentations, reports
- See titles, composition.
Pulitzer Prize winner
- But Pulitzer Prize-winning author.
pull up (v.), pullup (n.)
- Capitalize Great Pyramids and Sphinx when referring to the monument by its official name; lowercase other references: pyramids of Giza, Giza pyramids.