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NOVA Style Guide

The AP Stylebook is the official standard the NOVA website follows. The NOVA Style Guide serves as a customized supplement to AP. All content published on NOVA's website must adhere to these references. (The NOVA home page and Events Calendar are exceptions.)

Achieving the Dream:
When used in abbreviated form ATD is all uppercase.
Example: ATD

Capitalization of Campus:
When used with a specific location the term "campus" is a formal designation and should be uppercase.
Example: Alexandria Campus

Capitalization of College:
When used alone "college" should be lowercase unless it is part of a proper noun.
Examples: he is going to college, the College, Northern Virginia Community College

Capitalization of Words in Headlines and Headings:
All words should be uppercase except: a, an, and, as, at, but, by, for, if, in, of, on, or, the, to

Case Style:
When referencing these college services use the following case style – NOVA all uppercase, one word:

  • eNOVA
  • myNOVA
  • NOVAaccess
  • NOVACard
  • NOVAConnect
  • NOVATrak

Name of College:
Never use "NVCC" when referring to the college; use "NOVA" or "Northern Virginia Community College"

Commas in a Series:
Do not put a comma before the conjunction in a simple series.

Spell out days of the week, abbreviate months

Lowercase, no dash

All uppercase, it’s considered a reference not an actual word

Faculty and Staff Web Pages Categories to Include:
Name (hyperlink to their personal NOVA website if they have one) | Discipline | Phone | Email
* Group people by Discipline

FAQ not FAQs:
It is an abbreviation for Frequently Asked Questions (the "s" at the end is implied)

Guaranteed Admission Agreements:
Accepted form with an -s on the end of Agreements, NOT on the end of Admission

home page:
Two words, not one

More Than vs. Over:      
AP lifted the ruling on the use of more than versus over; choose whichever term you prefer as long as it’s used consistently throughout the same story 

Do not use titles like Mr./Mrs. in front of names, except for Dr. and do not use middle initials

All uppercase; an abbreviation for Portable Document Format. It is a file format that allows a document to be shared among several types of computers without losing its formatting.
Example: Faculty Handbook (PDF); File requires Adobe Reader to open.

Example: Fall Semester 2009; Spring Semester 2009; exception Summer Session (not Semester)

Use single spaces after punctuation. The practice of using two spaces after punctuation was a technique used when text was written on a typewriter. Computers have made the use of two spaces unnecessary.

Student ID:
Use in place of the term EMPLID

Telephone Number:
Use periods between the numbers, not dashes
Example: 703.323.3000

Time Reference:
Use noon and midnight, not 12 noon, 12:00 p.m. or 12:00 a.m. Do not use "o'clock." Lowercase and use periods with a.m. and p.m. Use a single dash between times.
Monday - Thursday: 9:00 a.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Friday: Noon - 5:00 p.m.

Wait List:
Two words

One word, all lowercase