I would choose to check out a post around capitalization, such as as soon as is it ideal to capitalize people’s titles, and also when would you capitalize the surname of a group (i.e. Plank of Directors) – is “Board” always capitalized as soon as you space referring to the group?

A person’s title is capitalized when it precedes the name and also is as such seen as component of the name:

President LincolnBishop Sheen

Once the title occurs, further references come the person holding the title show up in lowercase:

the presidentthe bishop

The name of a team is capitalized once it is the full name:

the department of compare Literaturethe plank of directors of Acme markets

Further references will be composed in lowercase:

the departmentthe board

Promotional materials frequently capitalize words prefer University and also Board every time they occur.

Generally speaking, the usage of capitals should be lessened as lot as possible. In the lack of a company style guide, the finest practice is to pick a layout guide because that yourself. I describe several, consisting of the AP Stylebook and also the Chicago hand-operated of Style.

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11 Responses to “Capitalizing titles of People and Groups”

kircon September 01, 2010 1:51 am

Another an excellent topic covered, Maeve! great job!

How around when we’re handling college courses? perform we constantly capitalize the surname of the course? because that instance, Bachelor of science in business Administration significant in Marketing

Eleanor K. Sommeron September 01, 2010 9:12 am

You forgot to mention my pet peeve together an editor! civilization capitalizing professional positions or titles after a name, e.g., jane Smith, chairman of abc company; or Joe Brown, Secretary. This title have to be reduced case.

And I have actually a associated question: World vast Web is a proper noun, and also as together I have for years as an editor honored that together with many of mine colleagues, correcting internet to Web, and maintaining “site” separate from “Web,”i.e., “Web site.”

However, I now perceive this is a shedding battle and also I am about ready to succumb and let my clients (many that them university professors) usage “web” and also “website.” One actually insists i make this adjust in her work.

Any thoughts on this?

Precise Editon September 08, 2010 12:28 pm

Great reminders, Maeve. This echoes the principle the words offered as appropriate names, or parts of suitable names, room capitalized. This is why we compose “President Obama speaks clearly” and also “the president speaks clearly.”

This also applies to “mom,” “dad,” and other names for relations, as discussed in “Capitalizing Mom and Dad”. Capitalization rules room consistent, for this reason we create “I provided Mom a flower” and “My mother loves flowers.” To check this, we have the right to substitute a person’s name for “mom” to watch if “mom” is being offered as a ideal name.


EleanorWe usage “website” (one word, lowercase) and “the Web” or “the World broad Web” (capitalized as a suitable noun). We additionally use “Internet” or “Interweb” (both capitalized) as the proper name because that the digital data infection network. My pet peeve is “internet” (lowercase). The conflict on this continues….


Kirk: I would capitalize the surname of a course, together in “I am teaching ‘The Essentials of creating Mechanics’ ~ above Thursday.” top top the other hand, I would certainly not capitalize the name for a subject, topic, or field of study, together in “I am teaching a food on writing.” However, if the subject name is a appropriate name, I would certainly capitalize it, as in “I am teaching English courses for the university,” however I wouldn’t capitalize “physics” in “I am teaching physics courses for the university.”

This is a fashionable topic! ideal now, I’m mentioning with a customer the capitalization of “Union” and also “Confederate” together they describe the opposing sides in the polite War. For example, the client prefers “the Union soldiers” and “the confederate army.”

Big Steveon September 08, 2010 2:33 pm

I choose your site, however your explanation is a little unclear. You speak “President Obama” must be capped, and you to speak “further references” need to not. What does that mean? Your instances are no enough. Does “further references” only refer to your example, “the president?” Or does it refer to all situations, even “President Obama?” How around if the very first instance is “the president?” must that be capped? How around if the 2nd instance is similar to the first? need to both it is in capped — or no — or just the first one?

Joanneon September 11, 2011 8:19 pm

Anyone desire to weigh in on this:

In my job-related of fiction, I have actually a father and also son. I want to use “senior” to describe day, but all references to exactly how to capitalize this are an ext along the lines of the correct means to create the name on a document, letter, etc. I want to know exactly how to capitalize/punctuate the “senrio” in sentences. Because that example,

“Surely George, Sr. Had actually stashed a flashlight or a few candles…”

vs.

“Surely George senior had stashes a flashlight or a couple of candles…”

Any opinions? I’m leaning toward “a”. My just discomfort v that is even if it is it will reason the leader to stumble.

Joanneon September 11, 2011 8:20 pm

Er, to describe the DAD (not day). A pox upon me.

Joanneon September 11, 2011 8:21 pm

And “senior” (not “senrio”). Sorry – over there is other happening down the hall the is totally distracting me.

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marianneon respectable 19, 2013 2:02 pm

I am running throughout a government agency that advert to world in positions, and I don’t recognize whether come capitalize their positions. Because that example, “As Director, you…” ns don’t capitalize it as soon as it is provided as follows: “As a director, you…”

Are these instances the correct means to capitalize the place held?

michelleon January 24, 2014 4:36 pm

I recognize you are not an alleged to capitalize titles once they follow a name, but is this tho true once you room listing things out? the looks strange.

Here’s one example:John Smith, president, abc InternationalJane Smith, an elderly director, DEF Corporation

Thanks!

Mary woman Cummingson April 14, 2015 6:23 pm

I disagree v “Precise Edit” around initialing capitalization. Regarding “President” versus “the president”. As soon as referring to a specific president, it would be, because that example, president Obama or the president or ours President. When referring come a president whose surname you don’t know, it’s lowercase. Basically, the determination is even if it is it’s a general president or a details named individual . The same rule uses to “state” versus “state”. Friend capitalize “State” as soon as you are referring come a details state as in State of California also when it doesn’t speak California–everywhere you refer to the State of California, you at first capitalize “State”. This differentiates that from some various other state. However, when referring to the commonwealth government, over there is only one, so “federal” is lowercase. Example: California has a law versus child abuse. The State passed this legislation long after it passed a law versus animal abuse, and federal federal government laws have been enacted as well. A many of world don’t understand this principle and also write “State and Federal Government” together. Remember, the English language and also its rules readjust all the time. Ns think we have to do away with apostrophes since most human being don’t gain when to usage them. Happy writing!

Jody GIbsonon September 11, 2015 1:08 pm

Second references, once still introduce to a singular human such as President Obama, requires the use of chairman and/or chairman Obama with complying with references. Lot of this counts upon who your audience is, for example, if you’re creating for publishing by the media, get an AP style handbook and also follow their title and punctuation, etc. Guidelines. Businesses might lean more toward Chicago’s hand-operated of Style.

For the many part, much less is more. Much less capitalization, punctuation, etc. Once writing because that the media. Most “titles” room really just the surname of the person’s job. Only actual titles favor Governor So-and-so or Reverend Marshall space capped; “job” space not — farmer Joh Brown. If the referral to one’s place comes after ~ the name, the is seldom if ever before capitalized in AP Style, but your agency might have a format guide on how titles should be written and also when they room capitalized. It’s daunting when you edit for a multitude that departments, as the interactions department likely complies with AP style while the occasions staff and also company foundation if you have one more than likely follow Chicago MOS. Again, take into consideration your audience and also then select what functions best. I google frequently to decision what word come use, or once to capitalize, or how to punctuate other I’m unsure about, and there are a couple of great sites for recommendation online the I generally agree with, but the style manuals space invaluable guides.