Writing Standards

Apply the writing standards found here to all university publications.

If you can't find what you're looking for, please consult the Associated Press Stylebook and/or contact Institutional Marketing at identity@gvsu.edu or (616) 331-2525. 

For questions concerning donor named spaces or programs, please contact Rachel Hull in University Development at hullrach@gvsu.edu  or (616) 331-5703.

Clear

Numbers

General

  • 50th anniversary

    Not 50th Anniversary.

  • alumni graduation year

    When including the graduation years of alumni in sentences, commas are placed after the person’s name and after the year (Jane Doe, ’99, now owns her own company.)

    For multiple graduation years use an & (Jane Doe, ’99 & ’02, said she is glad... or Jane Doe, ’99, ’00 & ’02, said she is glad...")

    When including the graduation years of alumni in lists, pull quotes, or internal email signatures, use Name ’XX. For example:

           Jane Doe ’99
           John Doe ’00 & ’01

           "I love Grand Valley with all my heart."
           - Jane Doe '17

          John Doe '16
          Manager
          ABC Department

    A closing apostrophe (’), not an opening apostrophe (‘), appears in front of the date. You may need to copy and paste a closing apostrophe from another place in your document to ensure the proper usage.

    When using a class year for a current student, use the term "Class of XXXX." For example:

    Jane Doe, Class of 2020, is a math major from Allendale, Michigan.

    The class year can be established by checking Banner and then confirming with the student.

  • class year

    When using a class year for a current student, use the term "Class of XXXX." For example:

    Jane Doe, Class of 2020, is a math major from Allendale, Michigan.

    The class year can be established by checking Banner and then confirming with the student.

    For alumni graduation year usage, see alumni graduation year.

  • dates

    Use Arabic numerals without st, rd, nd, or th. (The event will take place on May 13, 2011.)

  • dollars

    Use Arabic numerals and the $ sign in all cases. ($5, $25, $500, $5,000, $550,000)

  • Eastern Time/ET

    Grand Valley campuses are all on Eastern Time. Do not specify Eastern Standard Time or Eastern Daylight Time. (When visiting Grand Valley, remember that the university is on Eastern Time.) May be abbreviated as ET. (The event will take place in California at 1 p.m. (10 a.m. ET).)

  • fiscal year

    Uppercase when followed by a year, no comma (Fiscal Year 2000). Lowercase when used as an adjective (during the fiscal year). Also, FY2000 is acceptable. Not FY00.

  • numbers

    Spell out whole numerals below 10 and use Arabic numerals for 10 and above, except with percentages (every 30 minutes; the last 2,000 years; three credits; nine hours at the 300 level; 4 percent). No superscript on ordinal numerals (30th not 30th). Spell out a numeral at the beginning of a sentence, unless the numeral identifies a calendar year (1976 was a very good year.).

  • percent

    Always spell out in sentences, including in bullet points, unless space absolutely does not allow. Use % in charts and graphs.

  • phone numbers

    Put area code in parentheses (616) 331-2221, including toll free numbers (800) 748-0246.

  • time

    6:30 p.m. or 7 p.m. Not 7:00 or 7pm or 7 PM.

  • years

    Use a hyphen in a non-continuing year, such as an academic year (2012-2013, not 2012–2013). Use an endash to indicate ranges (1900–1950, not 1900-1950).

A

General

  • academic degrees

    B.A., M.A., M.B.A., Ph.D., bachelor's degree, master's degree, doctorate. The preferred form is to say somebody has a bachelor's degree in journalism or a Bachelor of Arts in journalism. Not has a B.A. in journalism, although it is correct.

  • acronym

    No periods between capital letters (SE, SW, NE, NW) except when referencing degrees (M.B.A.).

  • addresses

    When listing an address or contact information, follow the below order. When using SE, SW, NE, NW in an address, do not use periods.

    Person's name
    Department name
    Grand Valley State University
    Office # and building name
    Street address
    City, state zip code
    Phone
    Fax
    Email address
    Web address

  • alma mater

    Lowercase except when referencing it as a composition title. (He is proud to call Grand Valley his alma mater.) or (They will sing the Alma Mater at commencement.)

  • alumni graduation year

    When including the graduation years of alumni in sentences, commas are placed after the person’s name and after the year (Jane Doe, ’99, now owns her own company.)

    For multiple graduation years use an & (Jane Doe, ’99 & ’02, said she is glad... or Jane Doe, ’99, ’00 & ’02, said she is glad...")

    When including the graduation years of alumni in lists, pull quotes, or internal email signatures, use Name ’XX. For example:

           Jane Doe ’99
           John Doe ’00 & ’01

           "I love Grand Valley with all my heart."
           - Jane Doe '17

          John Doe '16
          Manager
          ABC Department

    A closing apostrophe (’), not an opening apostrophe (‘), appears in front of the date. You may need to copy and paste a closing apostrophe from another place in your document to ensure the proper usage.

    When using a class year for a current student, use the term "Class of XXXX." For example:

    Jane Doe, Class of 2020, is a math major from Allendale, Michigan.

    The class year can be established by checking Banner and then confirming with the student.

  • and vs. &

    Using "and" is preferred over using "&" unless space is an issue in a headline. An "&" is also acceptable if it is part of a proper name (Johnson & Johnson).

Proper Names

  • A. Robert Kleiner Commons

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kleiner Commons is acceptable.

  • Alexander Calder Fine Arts Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Calder Fine Arts Center and Calder Arts Center are acceptable.

  • Allendale Campus

    Or Grand Valley's main campus in Allendale.

  • Alumni House and Visitor Center

    Use on all references. Not Visitor's or Visitors.

  • Annual Schedule

    Grand Valley State University Annual Schedule on first reference. Following first reference, Annual Schedule is acceptable.

  • Arend D. Lubbers Stadium

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Lubbers Stadium is acceptable.

  • Arnold C. Ott Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Ott Living Center is acceptable.

  • Arthur C. Hills Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Hills Living Center is acceptable.

  • AuSable Hall

    Use on all references.

  • Robert B. Annis Water Resources Institute

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, AWRI and Annis Water Resources Institute are acceptable.

Titles

  • advisor

    Not adviser.

B

Proper Names

  • Barbara and Stuart Padnos International Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference Padnos International Center is acceptable.

  • Beckering Family Carillon Tower

    Use full name on all references. Use Beckering Family carillon when referring to the actual instrument within the tower.

  • Bill and Sally Seidman Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Seidman Living Center is acceptable.

  • Board of Trustees

    Not Board of Control.

  • Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studies

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Brooks College is acceptable.

C

General

  • campus organizations

    An official list of campus organizations (along with formal names) can be found at www.gvsu.edu/orgsync/.

  • capitalization

    In general, avoid unnecessary capitals. Words that are always capitalized include:

    • Proper nouns (Grand Rapids, Thomas J. Haas, Poland).
    • Proper names (Grand Valley State University, Grand River, Fulton Street). Lowercase general terms (the university, the river, the foundation, or the street).
    • Composition titles (titles of books, movies, songs, televisions programs, lectures, speeches, etc.). 
    • Titles when used immediately before a name (President Thomas Haas). Lowercase titles when separated from the name or when they come after the name (John Engler, governor of Michigan).
    • Names of schools and formal department names (the Department of Music). Lowercase when used as a common noun or adjective (a psychology major, economics department).
  • catalog

    Grand Valley State University Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog on first reference. Following first reference, Grand Valley catalog or catalog are acceptable.

  • class year

    When using a class year for a current student, use the term "Class of XXXX." For example:

    Jane Doe, Class of 2020, is a math major from Allendale, Michigan.

    The class year can be established by checking Banner and then confirming with the student.

    For alumni graduation year usage, see alumni graduation year.

  • composition titles

    Capitalize and italicize composition titles such as the titles of journals, essays, books, chapters, movies, albums, songs, plays, televisions programs, radio programs, lectures, speeches, works of art, etc. (Tracy Howard, professor of writing, published an article in The Journal of Good Writing.) Quotation marks may be used for the smaller part of a greater work when referencing both. For example, if referencing both an essay title and a journal title, place the essay title in quotation marks instead of italics. (Tracy Howard, professor of writing, published the article "Punctuation is Fun" in The Journal of Good Writing.)

  • Convocation

    Capitalize when referring to an event. (Incoming freshmen will fill the fieldhouse at Convocation on Tuesday.) Lowercase elsewhere. (Schools around the area will be holding their convocations soon.)

  • courseware

    Not course ware.

  • coursework

    Not course work.

Proper Names

  • Alexander Calder Fine Arts Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Calder Fine Arts Center and Calder Arts Center are acceptable.

  • Calder Residence

    Use on all references.

  • Center for Adult and Continuing Studies

    Use on all references. Replaces "Continuing Education."

  • Central Utilities Building - South

    Use on all references.

  • Central Utilities Building

    Use on all references.

  • Charles W. Loosemore Forum

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Loosemore Forum is acceptable.

  • Children's Enrichment Center

    Use on all references.

  • College of Community and Public Service

    Use on all references.

  • College of Education

    Use on all references.

  • College of Health Professions

    Use on all references.

  • College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

    Use on all references.

  • Cook Carillon Tower

    Use full name on all references. Use Cook carillon when referring to the actual instrument within the tower.

  • Cook-DeVos Center for Health Sciences

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, CHS and Center for Health Sciences are acceptable.

  • Cook-DeWitt Center

    Use on all references.

  • James M. Copeland Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Copeland Living Center is acceptable.

  • The Commons

    Use on all references.

Punctuation

  • colon (:)

    Don't introduce a list with a colon unless what precedes the colon is a complete sentence. If it's not a complete sentence, don't use any punctuation before the list.

  • comma (,)

    Use serial comma (a, b, and c) if the piece has a marketing or academic purpose. Do not use serial comma (a, b and c) if the piece is news writing.

Titles

  • chair

    Use chairman, chairwoman, or chair.

D

General

  • dates

    Use Arabic numerals without st, rd, nd, or th. (The event will take place on May 13, 2011.)

  • decision making

    Not decision-making, unless being used as an adjective or adverb to modify a noun or verb.

  • degree-seeking student; nondegree-seeking student

    Not degree seeking student or nondegree seeking student.

  • dollars

    Use Arabic numerals and the $ sign in all cases. ($5, $25, $500, $5,000, $550,000)

Proper Names

  • D.J. Angus

    Should be italicized with no quotation marks (D.J. Angus).

  • Charles W. Loosemore Auditorium

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Loosemore Auditorium is acceptable.

  • Dale Stafford Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Stafford Living Center is acceptable.

  • Deans Council

    Not deans council.

  • Detroit Center

    Use on all references.

  • Director's Cup

    Not Directors Cup.

  • Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Johnson Center is acceptable.

  • Richard M. and Helen DeVos Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation

    Use full name on first reference. Note the use of "and" and then "&". Following first reference, DeVos Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation is acceptable.

  • Richard M. DeVos Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, DeVos Center is acceptable.

  • Richard M. DeVos Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, DeVos Living Center is acceptable.

  • The Depot

    Use on all references.

Titles

  • department name

    Capitalize official department names (Institutional Marketing). Lowercase modifiers such as department in a phrase (I wonder what department is organizing the event).

E

General

  • e-mail or email

    Use either, but make sure that usage is consistent throughout your publication(s). Capitalize the "E" when used as the first word in a sentence.

  • e-waste

    Not ewaste. Capitalize the "E" when used as the first word in a sentence.

  • Eastern Time/ET

    Grand Valley campuses are all on Eastern Time. Do not specify Eastern Standard Time or Eastern Daylight Time. (When visiting Grand Valley, remember that the university is on Eastern Time.) May be abbreviated as ET. (The event will take place in California at 1 p.m. (10 a.m. ET).)

Proper Names

  • Edward J. Frey Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Frey Living Center is acceptable.

  • Ella Koeze-Weed Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Koeze-Weed Living Center is acceptable.

  • L.V. Eberhard Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Eberhard Center is acceptable.

Punctuation

  • emdash ( — )

    Place space on both sides of the emdash ( — ). Use to show an interrupted thought or a sudden break.

    An emdash ( — ) or an endash ( – ) may be used before the name of a speaker or writer at the end of a quotation.

  • endash (–)

    Leave no space on either side of the endash (–). Use to indicate ranges. (pages, p.20–p.30. times, 10 p.m.–10:30 p.m.. dates, May 11–May 12. years, 1900–2000.) They can usually be read as "to" or "through."

    Use in lists. In this case only, put a space after the endash. Bullets are equally acceptable for lists, but the hyphen and the emdash are not.

    An endash ( – ) or an emdash (— ) may be used before the name of a speaker or writer at the end of a quotation. In this instance only, place space on both sides of the endash.

F

Gender-fair Language

  • first-year student(s)

    Use instead of freshman/freshmen.

  • freshman/freshmen

    Use first-year student(s) instead.

General

  • fieldwork

    Not field work.

  • fiscal year

    Uppercase when followed by a year, no comma (Fiscal Year 2000). Lowercase when used as an adjective (during the fiscal year). Also, FY2000 is acceptable. Not FY00.

  • fund

    Capitalize when part of a formal title. (Please give to the Grand Valley Fund.) Lowercase otherwise. (Please give to the Annis Water Resources Endowment fund.)

  • fundraising

    Not fund raising or fund-raising.

Proper Names

  • Edward J. Frey Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Frey Living Center is acceptable.

  • Faculty Academic Senate

    Not faculty academic senate.

  • Farmers Market

    Not Farmer's Market or Farmers' Market.

  • Fieldhouse

    Not field house.

  • Football Center

    Use on all references.

  • Founders Day

    Not Founders' Day.

  • Fred M. Keller Engineering Laboratories

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Keller Engineering Laboratories is acceptable.

  • Frederik Meijer Honors College

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Meijer Honors College is acceptable. (Meijer Honors College curriculum, not Honors curriculum.) (Meijer Honors College classes, not Honors classes.)

  • Grand Valley University Foundation

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, the foundation is acceptable. Not Grand Valley State University Foundation.

Titles

  • faculty

    is a collective noun, naming a group of people, so therefore singular in form. Use a singular verb when indicating that the group acts as a unit. (The Grand Valley faculty is nationally recognized.) Use a plural verb and the term "faculty members" when indicating that the individual members of the group act separately. (Many Grand Valley faculty members are nationally recognized.)

  • Fellow

    Capitalize Fellow when referring to a person being named a Fellow of a professional organization.

  • formal titles

    Capitalize and spell out formal titles such as president, professor, chairman, etc. when they precede a name (President Haas). Lowercase elsewhere (The president of the university will speak).

G

Gender-fair Language

General

  • catalog

    Grand Valley State University Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog on first reference. Following first reference, Grand Valley catalog or catalog are acceptable.

  • G-number

    Not Gnumber, G number, G Number, or G-Number.

  • general education

    Not General Education.

  • GPA

    Not G.P.A.

Proper Names

  • Annual Schedule

    Grand Valley State University Annual Schedule on first reference. Following first reference, Annual Schedule is acceptable.

  • General Education Program

    Not general education program.

  • Glenn A. Niemeyer Learning and Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Niemeyer Learning and Living Center is acceptable.

  • Grace Olsen Kistler Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kistler Living Center is acceptable.

  • Graduate Bulletin

    Grand Valley State University Graduate Bulletin on first reference. Following first reference, Graduate Bulletin is acceptable.

  • Grand Valley Apartments

    Not Grand Valley apartments.

  • Grand Valley Lanthorn

    Use on all references.

  • Grand Valley State University Arboretum

    Use on all references.

  • Grand Valley State University

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Grand Valley is acceptable. GVSU is only acceptable if there are so many references to Grand Valley that the writing becomes tedious, and it is obvious in the text that GVSU refers to Grand Valley State University. Use lowercase "university" when not using proper name.

  • Grand Valley University Foundation

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, the foundation is acceptable. Not Grand Valley State University Foundation.

  • GVSU Laker Store

    Use on all references. Previously the University Bookstore.

H

General

  • health care

    Not healthcare.

  • homepage

    Not home page.

Proper Names

  • Arthur C. Hills Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Hills Living Center is acceptable.

  • Haas, Thomas J.

    Grand Valley's fourth president, named in 2006. Refer to as President Thomas J. Haas or Thomas J. Haas, president as appropriate. Do not use Ph.D. or Dr.

  • Health Hill

    Also referred to as Medical Mile.

  • Henry Hall

    Use on all references.

  • Holton-Hooker Learning and Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Holton-Hooker Center is acceptable.

  • Icie Macy Hoobler Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Hoobler Living Center is acceptable.

  • Meijer Campus in Holland

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Holland Campus is acceptable.

  • Thomas J. and Marcia J. Haas Center for Performing Arts

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Haas Center for the Performing Arts or Haas Center is acceptable.

Punctuation

  • hyphen (-)

    Leave no space on either side of the hyphen (-). Use to join words and break syllables.

    When two or more nouns that express a single concept are used as an adjective or adverb link them together with a hyphen. Do not use a hyphen to link the word "very" or adverbs that end in "ly."

    Some words which are hyphenated when used as adjectives should not be hyphenated when used as nouns. (decision-making process, decision making. on-campus students, students who live on campus.) The only exception is to retain the hyphen when a modifier follows the verb "to be." (The students are involved in service-learning.)

    Use in non-continuing numbers. (phone, 331-2221. academic year, 2010-2011.) Use in numerals such as odds, ratios, scores, and fractions.

I

Gender-fair Language

Proper Names

  • Icie Macy Hoobler Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Hoobler Living Center is acceptable.

J

Proper Names

  • Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Johnson Center is acceptable.

  • James H. Zumberge Hall

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Zumberge Hall is acceptable.

  • James L. Stevenson Center for Higher Education

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference Stevenson Center for Higher Education or Stevenson Center are acceptable.

  • James M. Copeland Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Copeland Living Center is acceptable.

  • John C. Kennedy Hall of Engineering

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kennedy Hall of Engineering is acceptable.

  • Paul A. Johnson Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Johnson Living Center is acceptable.

K

Proper Names

  • A. Robert Kleiner Commons

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kleiner Commons is acceptable.

  • Ella Koeze-Weed Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Koeze-Weed Living Center is acceptable.

  • Fred M. Keller Engineering Laboratories

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Keller Engineering Laboratories is acceptable.

  • Grace Olsen Kistler Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kistler Living Center is acceptable.

  • John C. Kennedy Hall of Engineering

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kennedy Hall of Engineering is acceptable.

  • Kelly Family Sports Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kelly Center is acceptable.

  • Kenneth W. Robinson Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Robinson Living Center is acceptable.

  • Kirkhof College of Nursing

    Use on all references.

  • Linn Maxwell Keller Black Box Theatre

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Keller Theatre is acceptable.

  • P. Douglas Kindschi Hall of Science

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kindschi Hall of Science is acceptable.

  • Russel H. Kirkhof Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kirkhof Center is acceptable.

  • William A. Kirkpatrick Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kirkpatrick Living Center is acceptable.

L

General

  • Lakers

    The use of the word "Lakers" alone is unacceptable. The following verbiage is permitted: "Grand Valley State Lakers," "Grand Valley Lakers," "GVSU Lakers," or "Grand Valley State University Lakers."

  • liberal arts

    Specific disciplines (the humanities, social sciences, and sciences).

  • liberal education

    Grand Valley State University offers this. General education and an expectation of in-depth study in at least one field normally comprise liberal education.

  • living centers

    Not dorms or residence halls.

Proper Names

  • Arend D. Lubbers Stadium

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Lubbers Stadium is acceptable.

  • Charles W. Loosemore Auditorium

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Loosemore Auditorium is acceptable.

  • Charles W. Loosemore Forum

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Loosemore Forum is acceptable.

  • L. William Seidman Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Seidman Center is acceptable.

  • L.V. Eberhard Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Eberhard Center is acceptable.

  • Lacks International Plaza

    Use on all references.

  • Lake Huron Hall

    Use on all references.

  • Lake Michigan Center

    Use on all references.

  • Lake Michigan Hall

    Use on all references.

  • Lake Ontario Hall

    Use on all references.

  • Lake Superior Hall

    Use on all references.

  • Laker Effect

    Laker Effect is the university's current marketing campaign. Always capitalize both words when used together, i.e, "My Laker Effect is making my community a better," or "I feel that is my Laker Effect," or "What is your Laker Effect?"

  • Laker for a Lifetime

    Laker for a Lifetime is the proper name of a university program. Always capitalize Laker and Lifetime.

  • Laker Village Apartments

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Laker Village is acceptable.

  • Linn Maxwell Keller Black Box Theatre

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Keller Theatre is acceptable.

  • Louis Armstrong Theatre

    Use on all references.

  • Loutit Lecture Halls

    Use on all references.

  • Lubbers Stadium Press Box

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Press Box is acceptable.

  • Lubbers, Arend D.

    Grand Valley's second president, serving from 1968 to 2001. Current title is president emeritus, capitalized if used before his name (President Emeritus Lubbers) and not capitalized if used after his name (Arend D. Lubbers, president emeritus). May also be referred to as Arend (Don) D. Lubbers.

  • Milton E. Ford LGBT Resource Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, LGBT Resource Center is acceptable.

Punctuation

  • lists

    Do not use a colon between a verb and its preposition or object. (Incorrect = The ground rules are:...) (Correct = The ground rules are... and The ground rules are as follows...)

    If a vertical list is introduced by a sentence that gets completed by the list, use semicolons within the list and end the list with a period or other appropriate punctuation. Begin bulleted, numbered, or dashed points (use an endash) with lower case letters. For example: 

    The mission of the departments is to

    • support the development of its programs;
    • empower students; and
    • provide valuable research.

    If the vertical list does not complete the introductory sentence, do not use punctuation to separate the points. Capitalize the first word of each point. For example:

    The biology experiment included the following components:

    • A sealed reservoir
    • An aquarium pump
    • A plant container
M

General

  • majors

    Majors are lowercase except for English and foreign languages.

Proper Names

  • Frederik Meijer Honors College

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Meijer Honors College is acceptable. (Meijer Honors College curriculum, not Honors curriculum.) (Meijer Honors College classes, not Honors classes.)

  • Linn Maxwell Keller Black Box Theatre

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Keller Theatre is acceptable.

  • Mackinac Hall

    Use on all references.

  • Manitou Hall

    Use on all references.

  • Mary Idema Pew Library Learning and Information Commons

    Use full name on first reference. Following the first reference, Mary Idema Pew Library is acceptable.

  • Maxine M. Swanson Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Swanson Living Center is acceptable.

  • Meadows Club House

    Use on all references.

  • Meadows Learning Center

    Use on all references.

  • Medical Mile

    Also referred to as Health Hill.

  • Meijer Campus in Holland

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Holland Campus is acceptable.

  • Meijer Public Broadcast Center

    Use on all references.

  • Meijer

    Not Meijer Inc. or Meijer, Inc.

  • Michigan Alternative and Renewable Energy Center (MAREC)

    Former name of the Muskegon Innovation Hub. See Muskegon Innovation Hub.

  • Michigan Small Business Development Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, MI Small Business Development Center or MI-SBDC is acceptable.

  • Michigan's West Coast

    Not Lake Michigan's West Coast. Another term for West Michigan. Includes Grand Rapids, Muskegon, Holland, and the Lake Michigan coastline.

  • Milton E. Ford LGBT Resource Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, LGBT Resource Center is acceptable.

  • Murray, Mark A.

    Grand Valley's third president, serving from 2001 to 2006.

  • Muskegon Campus

    Or Grand Valley's campus in Muskegon.

  • Muskegon Innovation Hub at Grand Valley State University

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Muskegon Innovation Hub is acceptable. Formerly known as Michigan Alternative and Renewable Energy Center (MAREC).

  • Muskegon Regional Center

    Use on all references.

  • The Marketplace

    Use on all references. Not Laker Market Place, Laker Marketplace, or GVSU Marketplace.

  • The Meadows

    Use on all references. Includes golf course, club house, and academy.

N

General

  • degree-seeking student; nondegree-seeking student

    Not degree seeking student or nondegree seeking student.

  • non-scientists

    Not nonscientists.

  • Non-Western

    Not NonWestern, Non-western, or nonwestern.

  • nonbusiness majors

    Not non-business majors.

  • nonprofit

    Not non-profit.

  • nonresident

    Not non-resident.

  • nonstatistical

    Not non-statistical.

  • nonteaching

    Not non-teaching.

  • nontraditional

    Not non-traditional.

  • numbers

    Spell out whole numerals below 10 and use Arabic numerals for 10 and above, except with percentages (every 30 minutes; the last 2,000 years; three credits; nine hours at the 300 level; 4 percent). No superscript on ordinal numerals (30th not 30th). Spell out a numeral at the beginning of a sentence, unless the numeral identifies a calendar year (1976 was a very good year.).

Proper Names

  • Glenn A. Niemeyer Learning and Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Niemeyer Learning and Living Center is acceptable.

  • North Living Center A

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, North A is acceptable.

  • North Living Center B

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, North B is acceptable.

  • Northwestern Michigan College University Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, University Center is acceptable.

O

General

  • campus organizations

    An official list of campus organizations (along with formal names) can be found at www.gvsu.edu/orgsync/.

  • on-campus students

    Not oncampus students.

  • online

    Not on line or on-line.

  • onsite

    Not on site or on-site.

Proper Names

  • Arnold C. Ott Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Ott Living Center is acceptable.

  • Office of the President

    Also, president's office is acceptable. Not President's Office.

  • Office of the Provost

    Also, provost's office is acceptable. Not Provost's Office.

P

General

  • percent

    Always spell out in sentences, including in bullet points, unless space absolutely does not allow. Use % in charts and graphs.

  • postconsumer

    Not post-consumer or post consumer.

  • postsecondary

    Not post-secondary.

  • predental

    Not pre-dental.

  • prelaw

    Not pre-law.

  • premed or premedical

    Not pre-med or pre-medical.

  • prepharmacy

    Not pre-pharmacy.

  • prephysical therapy

    Not pre-physical therapy.

  • preprofessional studies

    Not pre-professional studies.

  • Presidents' Ball

    The proper name for the annual event hosted by the university president and the Student Senate president. Not "President's Ball" or Presidents Ball."

  • preveterinary

    Not pre-veterinary.

Proper Names

  • Barbara and Stuart Padnos International Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference Padnos International Center is acceptable.

  • Lubbers Stadium Press Box

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Press Box is acceptable.

  • Office of the President

    Also, president's office is acceptable. Not President's Office.

  • Office of the Provost

    Also, provost's office is acceptable. Not Provost's Office.

  • P. Douglas Kindschi Hall of Science

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kindschi Hall of Science is acceptable.

  • Papa John's Pizza

    Not Papa John's.

  • Paul A. Johnson Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Johnson Living Center is acceptable.

  • Performing Arts Center

    Use on all references.

  • Peter F. Secchia Hall

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Secchia Hall is acceptable.

  • Robert and Mary Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center is acceptable.

  • Robert C. Pew Grand Rapids Campus

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Pew Grand Rapids Campus is acceptable.

  • Robert C. Pew Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Pew Living Center is acceptable.

  • Seymour and Esther Padnos College of Engineering and Computing

    Use full name on all references.

  • Seymour and Esther Padnos Hall of Science

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Padnos Hall of Science or Padnos Hall are acceptable.

  • Thomas J. and Marcia J. Haas Center for Performing Arts

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Haas Center for the Performing Arts or Haas Center is acceptable.

  • William F. Pickard Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Pickard Living Center is acceptable.

Punctuation

  • period after Web address

    When a Web address is the end of a sentence, it should be completed with a / and a period. (For more information about applying to Grand Valley, go to www.gvsu.edu/admission/.)

  • post as a prefix with an acronym

    Use a hyphen to connect the prefix with the acronym (post-B.S.N.)

Titles

  • professor

    Spell out professor and capitalize it only when immediately preceding a name (Professor Smith). Lowercase elsewhere (The professor was walking to class).

Q

Punctuation

  • quotation marks (" ")

    Place end-of-quote punctuation before the close-quote mark. (The student cheered, "Go Lakers!")

R

General

  • recordkeeping

    Not record keeping.

  • room-and-board rates

    Not room and board rates.

  • résumé or resume

    Not resumé.

Proper Names

  • Kenneth W. Robinson Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Robinson Living Center is acceptable.

  • Ravine Apartments

    Use on all references.

  • Ravine Center

    Use on all references.

  • Recreation Center

    Use on all references.

  • Richard M. and Helen DeVos Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation

    Use full name on first reference. Note the use of "and" and then "&". Following first reference, DeVos Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation is acceptable.

  • Richard M. DeVos Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, DeVos Center is acceptable.

  • Richard M. DeVos Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, DeVos Living Center is acceptable.

  • Robert and Mary Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center is acceptable.

  • Robert B. Annis Water Resources Institute

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, AWRI and Annis Water Resources Institute are acceptable.

  • Robert C. Pew Grand Rapids Campus

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Pew Grand Rapids Campus is acceptable.

  • Robert C. Pew Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Pew Living Center is acceptable.

  • Russel H. Kirkhof Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kirkhof Center is acceptable.

S

General

  • seasons/semesters

    Uppercase season when it refers to a semester followed by a year, no comma. (Fall 2003). Lowercase when used as an adjective (offered fall and winter semesters or spring/summer semester) or not relating to a semester (we voted in the fall of 2008).

Proper Names

  • Bill and Sally Seidman Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Seidman Living Center is acceptable.

  • Dale Stafford Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Stafford Living Center is acceptable.

  • James L. Stevenson Center for Higher Education

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference Stevenson Center for Higher Education or Stevenson Center are acceptable.

  • L. William Seidman Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Seidman Center is acceptable.

  • Maxine M. Swanson Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Swanson Living Center is acceptable.

  • Peter F. Secchia Hall

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Secchia Hall is acceptable.

  • Seidman College of Business

    Use on all references.

  • Seidman House

    Use on all references.

  • Senior Management Team

    Not senior management team.

  • Service Building

    Not service building.

  • Seymour and Esther Padnos College of Engineering and Computing

    Use full name on all references.

  • Seymour and Esther Padnos Hall of Science

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Padnos Hall of Science or Padnos Hall are acceptable.

  • Small Business Development Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, SBDC is acceptable. Not Small Business and Technology Development Center.

  • South Living Center A

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, South A is acceptable.

  • South Living Center B

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, South B is acceptable.

  • Steelcase Library

    Use on all references.

  • Student Senate

    Not student senate.

  • Student Services Building

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Student Services is acceptable.

Punctuation

  • spaces

    Use one space after all punctuation, except when using punctuation immediately before a close-quote mark or in the case of the hyphen and the endash.

T

General

  • theater/theatre

    Use theater when talking about the general term, use theatre when referring to Grand Valley's theatre major or Theatre when referring to the Louis Armstrong Theatre or Theatre at Grand Valley.

  • time

    6:30 p.m. or 7 p.m. Not 7:00 or 7pm or 7 PM.

  • trademark

    ™ and ® are only required on the first reference to a trademarked/servicemarked name.

Proper Names

  • Linn Maxwell Keller Black Box Theatre

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Keller Theatre is acceptable.

  • Traverse City Regional Center

    Use on all references.

U

General

  • username

    Not user name.

Proper Names

  • Northwestern Michigan College University Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, University Center is acceptable.

  • United States/U.S.

    Not US.

  • University Bookstore

    Now called the GVSU Laker Store.

  • University Guest House

    Use on all references.

  • University Health Services

    Use on all references.

  • University Policies

    Previously called University Regulations.

  • University Regulations

    Now called University Policies.

V

General

  • videocassette

    Not video-cassette or video cassette.

Proper Names

  • Van Andel Global Trade Center

    Not Trade Institute or Center for Global Trade. Note the space between Van Andel.

W

General

  • webpage

    Not web page or Web page.

  • website

    Not web site or Web site.

  • windpower

    Not wind power.

  • worksite

    Not work site or work-site.

Proper Names

  • W.G. Jackson

    Should be italicized with no quotation marks (W.G. Jackson).

  • West Living Center A

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, West A is acceptable.

  • West Living Center B

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, West B is acceptable.

  • West Michigan

    Not Western Michigan (to avoid confusion with the university in Kalamazoo). Use when referring specifically to the region comprised of Kent, Ottawa, Muskegon, and Allegan counties.

  • William A. Kirkpatrick Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Kirkpatrick Living Center is acceptable.

  • William F. Pickard Living Center

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Pickard Living Center is acceptable.

  • Winter Hall

    Use on all references.

Y

General

  • years

    Use a hyphen in a non-continuing year, such as an academic year (2012-2013, not 2012–2013). Use an endash to indicate ranges (1900–1950, not 1900-1950).

Z

Proper Names

  • James H. Zumberge Hall

    Use full name on first reference. Following first reference, Zumberge Hall is acceptable.

  • Zumberge, James H.

    First president of Grand Valley, served from 1963 to 1968.