- Avoid overuse of bold, italics, capitalization and colons.
- Use one space between sentences.
- Ensure consistency within a document regarding all style formats.
- Geographical locations take periods except if occurring without them as part of a proper noun or brand.
- British Columbia is abbreviated as B.C. unless in a name such as BC Open Textbook Project or BCcampus.
- Serial commas should be used consistently throughout BCcampus documents. This means putting commas between the elements of a series and before the final AND, OR, or NOR.
- Commas should always follow “e.g.,” and “i.e.,” as well as, “for example,” and “for instance,”.
- Capitalize all proper names, universities, agencies, ministries, associations, places and addresses.
- Where a reasonable choice exists use lowercase.
- Use lower case for “open education resources” (OER) and generic use of “open textbooks”.
- Use lowercase for descriptive Internet terms such as “email”, “website”, and “online”. Uppercase for proper names such as “Internet”.
- Capitalize all letters in abbreviations and acronyms: HTML, URL and RAM.
- Use lower case for file extensions as appended to a file name: .pdf, .docx.
- In main headings/titles capitalize the following:
- The first and the last word of the title
- Principal words such as nouns, pronouns (such as “you”), adjectives, verbs and adverbs
- Prepositions and conjunctions of four letters or more
- Lowercase the “to” in an infinitive (e.g., I want to play guitar)
- In sub headings use sentence case (only capitalize the first word).
- Pressbooks sections (parts, chapter, main body, front and back matter) are not capitalized unless the term is used as a name (e.g. ‘Part 1’) or is referred to as a selected menu item (e.g. “Add New Front Matter”).
- Pressbooks Views and Dashboard items are capitalized.
Lists / Bullets
- Introductory phrase: If the statement introducing the list is not a complete sentence* (a dependent clause) then a colon at the end should be used. Otherwise end a complete sentence with a period.
- List item punctuation:
- If list items are complete sentences* use normal terminal punctuation (period, question mark etc.).
- If items are sentence fragments or single words do not use terminal punctuation.
- Start each point in the list with a capital.
- Be consistent within a bulleted list for language and tense. All items should be syntactically and conceptually parallel. For example, start each bullet with a verb in present tense.
- Do not use hanging indents.
- Use a numbered list if documenting steps in a specific sequence otherwise use bullets.
*Note: Complete sentences require a subject, verb and complete thought. If one of these components is missing then it is a sentence fragment.
- Bold the first use of a new key term and add it to the glossary.
- Define the term upon first mention within the text.
- Generic e-anything should be written with a lower case “e” and a hyphen before the word (e.g., e-reader) with exception for “email”.
- “Post-secondary” is always hyphenated.
- Limit the use of screen captures.
- Make the steps as brief as possible.
- Write in the present tense.
- Use boldface only upon first use of key terms that will be defined in the glossary.
- Use quotations to highlight names of menus, drop down selections and buttons.
- Use italics for fields or items that will be replaced with user text.
- Set off the text the user will insert with single quotes.
- Avoid using characters such as angle brackets (<>) or square brackets ([ ]) to designate text substitutions.
Example: From the “File” menu, select “Open”. In the “Open” text box, enter the URL below, substituting either ‘disk.dallas.utexas.edu’ for server-address, and your UT EID for eid.