Santa Clara University

Office of Marketing and Communications

SCU Editorial Style Guide



Abbreviation for the Latin id est or that is and is always followed by a comma. Not to be confused with e.g., which means for example and is also always followed by a comma.


Second reference to Inter-Greek Council, a group of recognized men’s and women’s fraternities.

Ignatian, Ignatius
Immaculate Conception

Do not use as a verb.

  • The program has an impact on a lot of lives.
  • The program affects a lot of lives.
  • not The program impacts a lot of lives.
in spite of

Despite means the same thing and is shorter.

in, into

In indicates location whereas into indicates motion.

  • He was in a room.
  • She walked into a room.

No comma preceding

  • Google Inc.



Use periods and spacing for multiple initials.

  • H. L. Mencken

For single initials, use a period and a space following.

  • Edward R. Murrow
  • F. Lee Bailey

inquire, inquiry

Not enquire, enquiry.


In general, do not hyphenate. But use a hyphen if the word that follows is capitalized.

Some examples:

  • inter-American   
  • interstate
  • interracial
  • interreligious

Uppercase. Lowercase Internet addresses unless entries are case-sensitive. Lowercase intranet. Avoid use of ’Net. Do not italicize Web and e-mail addresses within blocks of text.

  • Santa Clara University’s website is
  • Joe Smith can be reached via e-mail at

Do not break a Web address if possible in a line; if unavoidable, break following a forward slash (/).

There is no need to precede a URL with “http://”. See webpage, website.


Introduce the speaker by the full name or organization for the first quote, by an abbreviation thereafter.

  • Santa Clara Magazine: When did you first decide to pursue…?
  • Joe Smith: I got interested in physics when I was nine…
  • SCM: Tell us more about…
  • J.S.: My parents were farmers in the….

Do not use. It is a double negative. Regardless is correct.


An abbreviation for “information technology.” Spell out on first reference; IT is acceptable on second reference.


Italicize names of books, magazines, newsletters, and other publications. Also italicize titles of movies, TV shows, and albums. Although individual episodes and songs are placed in quotation marks. See titles.

  • Santa Clara Magazine
  • The Redwood
  • Who can forget "City on the Edge of Forever" from the original Star Trek series?

Italicize foreign terms as a rule.

  • au contraire
  • laissez faire

Punctuation following an italicized word is also italicized. But open and close quotes and parentheses always match, even if the last word is in italics.

  • “Where are the putti?” she asked.
its, it's

its (possessive, belonging to “it”), it’s (contraction of “it is” or “it has”)

  • Santa Clara University is proud of its graduates.
  • It’s up to the deans to make that change.
  • It’s been a long time since the class of ’59 visited campus.
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