Writing Style Guide

Material written by the Office of Communications & Marketing conforms to Associated Press writing style, while print publications and material written for the Web or print publications use a similar, but sometimes different, set of style guidelines. OUr style guide is meant to reinforce certain important aspects of AP style and to point out when we use a contrary style. Exceptions to AP style will be noted: This usage is contrary to AP style.

Entries in our online style guide, available via Quip, are arranged in alphabetical order with additional information contained in appendices. To learn more about Associated Press style, visit apstylebook.com.

The OCM style guide is just that — a guide, and not an iron-clad list rules. Writing styles differ, often in dramatic and noticeable ways, depending on the style guide preferred by a particular group or organization. Regardless of the style you follow, consistency is the key.

Please feel free to make use of our style guide to help you when you’re writing for the campus community or the general public. Also, note that these guidelines do not apply to technical or academic writing. Other sources, such as the Modern Language Association, provide guidelines for these specialized styles of writing.

Additional guidelines

Our style guide also includes style guidelines for writing for the Web, for pamphlets, brochures, etc., or for Bemidji State University magazine. As with news stories, the writing style for these publications occasionally differs from AP style.

When styles differ, the difference will be indicated with a separate sub-entry under the heading such as Bemidji State University magazine style or Web style.