Substantive Writing with a Lot of Style
Part of our strategy with the web project is to have all our sites speak with one voice. One way to do that is to follow Mason's Editorial Style Guide.
We established a Style Guide for a variety of reasons.
- To maintain consistency in our digital and print ecosystems through the consistent use of abbreviations, capitalization, numbers, punctuation, titles, and terms. Not sure whether something should be capitalized or not? The Style Guide should provide an answer.
- To improve our credibility with readers; they see that we've thoughtfully and carefully compiled information about Mason and are presenting it in a way that meets their needs.
- To enable us to spend more time developing clear, effective content and less time debating about how to present it.
Our baseline references are:
- The Chicago Manual of Style (15th edition).
- The Associated Press Stylebook.
- Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary (11th edition).
Our Style Guide supplements these references and addresses points on which Mason style may vary. In some cases, it indicates which of several options presented by Chicago or Merriam-Webster should be used in Mason publications, including our websites.
The News Desk in Strategic Communications only follows the Associated Press Style Guide, in part because we want to share our stories with the national media. By following AP style, we make it easier for the media to pick up our stories with a minimum of editing on their part.
Proofread, Proofread, Proofread
We’re a major university, trying to persuade students and parents that they can get a stellar education here. We won’t do that with typos, spelling errors, grammatical errors, or factual errors. Everyone needs an editor. If there is no one in your office to give your text a second read, call someone in Communications and Marketing. We’ve got your back!