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Academic Degrees

  • Capitalize academic degrees when used following a name.
    • Jacqueline E. Huntoon, PhD
  • Capitalize academic degrees and disciplines in full, complete use. Abbreviations are also capitalized when used with the full, complete degree.
    • Associate in Applied Science in Engineering
    • Associate in Humanities
    • Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences
    • BS in Mechanical Engineering
    • PhD in Physics
    • Master of Engineering with an environmental engineering concentration
  • Note the full degree names: Master of Engineering; Master of Forestry, but
    • He is majoring in materials science and engineering.
    • She has a master's in physics and an associate's in humanities.

Boards and Committees

  • Board of Trustees (Board on second reference)
  • University Senate
  • University committees and subcommittees do not require capitalization
  • The State of Michigan

Alma Mater

  • Hail Alma Mater (the song)
  • Michigan Tech is my alma mater.


  • 9 p.m., not 9:00 p.m.
  • a.m., not AM (or small upper case)
  • 9 a.m.-3 p.m. (with a hyphen)
  • 8-11 a.m.
  • 10:30 a.m.-1 p.m. (not 10:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.)
  • But, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

College and School

  • The College and the School are capitalized when referring to the College of Engineering, College of Sciences and Arts, College of Business, and the College of Forest Resources and Environmental Science
    • He was appointed dean of the College.
    • The School has seen significant enrollment increases.

Co-op Program

  • Capitalize Cooperative Education Program but not co-op program


  • They are referred to as Spring Commencement and Midyear Commencement. Don't capitalize commencement in the general sense

Course Titles

  • Course titles are capitalized with or without course numbers.
    • Introduction to Film; but, in a general sense, introductory film class
    • CM3230 Thermodynamics for Chemical Engineers

Department and Office

  • Department and Office are capitalized in the full, formal use.
    • Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics; but not in ME-EM department or mechanical engineering-engineering mechanics department
    • The Registrar's Office
    • Admissions Office

Enterprise Program

  • Enterprise Program for the overall program.
  • An Enterprise program for an individual one.


  • Capitalize headlines, but not articles, prepositions, or to-be verbs.
    • John Gagnon Makes Trouble
    • The End is Near 

Named Professorships and Chairs

  • He created the Jimi Hendrix Professorship in Music. (Notice it is not professor.)
  • Jane Smith, Jimi Hendrix Professor and chair, music department.
  • She holds the Jimi Hendrix Professorship and is chair of the Department of Music.

Principal Investigator (PI) and Co-Principal Investigator (Co-PI)

  • Principal Investigator and co-Principal Investigators spelled out without parenthetical abbreviation upon first reference. PI or co-PI on second reference.


  • Capitalize when it precedes a name.
    • President Richard Koubek*
    • Martha Sloan, president of the Senate
  • *Note: Michigan Tech President Richard Koubek is the preferred title for our president


  • Capitalize as part of formal name, but programs otherwise.
    • Summer Youth Programs
    • There are many youth programs available.

Regions of the Country

  • Capitalize specific, named geographical areas.
    • Midwest
    • midwestern states


  • Unless the semester comes at the beginning of a sentence, semester names should be lowercase
    • It's time to register for spring 2018 

Student ID Number

  • Michigan Tech ID numbers are referred to as the M number.


  • Capitalize all academic titles when used before a name.
    • Professor Patty Sotirin; but: Patty Sotirin, professor of communication
    • Dean Dean Johnson; but: Dean Johnson, dean of the School of Business 
  • Do not capitalize if used in the general sense.
    • She had risen to the rank of professor.
    • He was appointed vice president.
    • She has a master's degree in physics.
  • Italicize and capitalize Newsletter, Magazine, or Newspaper when it appears as the name of the publication


  • University is capitalized when referring to Michigan Tech, but not university or universities in the general sense unless part of a formal title

Vice President, Vice Provost

  • Do not hyphenate. Capitalize before a name; otherwise leave them lowercase

ZIP Code

  • All capital letters, as it is an acronym for Zone Improvement Plan