names and places

  • People's names do not require ordinary titles such as 'Ms' 'Mrs' 'Miss' or 'Mr'. See Terms of address
  • People's names with initials should not have a space between the initials and no punctuation, eg CS Lewis and JRR Tolkien.

See Capitalisation

Countries and places

  • Use the UK (not ‘Great Britain’ or ‘Britain’) when referring to England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. (See also Britain, Great Britain, England
  • Use British as an adjective to describe ‘of the UK’, eg She is the only British person to have broken that record.
  • Specify individual countries where it’s not the whole UK, eg Research in England and Wales shows...
  • Use the United States or the USA (not ‘US’), eg You may study abroad in Europe, Canada or the United States.
  • Points of the compass are lower case: ‘south’, ‘north’ etc but use upper case when referring to a recognised geographical area the Middle East, London’s West End, the West Country.
  • Hyphens in points of the compass, eg south-east, north-west, but there are exceptions, as in southeasterly.

National Student Satisfaction Survey

  • in full first time then NSS survey


Print only

  • Write out whole numbers one to ten only, 11 or more in figures. However if numbers above and below ten appear close together standardise, eg You will attend small group sessions of about 10 or 12 students.
  • Where using percentages, always use figures, eg The survey showed that 7% of students did not agree.
  • Only write out whole numbers, use figures where the number has one or more decimal places, eg The answer to the question is 6.5 (not six point five).
  • Within general text, don’t start a sentence with a figure, use the word or turn around the sentence. Fine to use the figure for a stand out fact or statistic, eg 30,000 students live in Oxford.
  • Spell out first, second and third up to ninth, then 10th, 21st, 50th.
  • Use a comma to denote thousands, eg 1,000.
  • Use m instead of million, eg £220m is being invested in our campuses over the next 10 years (no spaces between figure and ‘m’).
  • Percentages - always use % symbol whether in fact boxes or general text.

Digital only

Use numerals rather than words even for numbers between one to ten. Use the % symbol not ‘per cent’.