NAU editorial style guide
Version 6 — Updated June 2023
Why we need a university style guide
A clear, consistent writing style for all of our publications strengthens Northern Arizona University’s reputation, creates a cohesive brand experience, and is essential for effective communication. The writer must connect with the reader to convey NAU’s message. Inconsistent or inaccurate spelling, grammar, or punctuation can cause the reader to lose confidence in the writer’s credibility and mistrust or ignore the message.
The writing and editing team at NAU’s University Marketing department prepared this style guide for anyone writing university publications. Along with many other universities across the nation, NAU uses The Chicago Manual of Style, 17th ed., as the primary authority for style, grammar, and usage. Exceptions, such as the use of Associated Press style for numbering, are noted in this guide. We also recommend Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 11th ed., though any standard American dictionary is acceptable. Be sure to review the Brand Voice and Tone Guide for essential style considerations.
For guidance on the proper use of the university logo, font, and color palette, see the Visual Identity Guide.