Editorial Style Guide

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(Laurie Smith-Frailey)

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ID, IDs, ID card


The abbreviation for the Latin id est or that is, i.e. should always be lowercase and confined to parenthetical use—separated by commas, em dashes, or parentheses. See also e.g.

imply, infer

See Troublesome pairs.

in regard to

Not in regards to (i.e., no s). You may also use as regards.

incorporated, Inc.

Abbreviate incorporated and capitalize as shown when used as part of a company name. Do not set off with commas.

Independent Activities Period, IAP

Infinite Corridor

Since this is the name of a specific place on campus, just like a building, always capitalize both words.


There is no space between the first two initials used in a name. See Acronyms.

  • Professor A.J. Anderson retired last August.

Institute (the)

When referring to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology by its shorthand name, always capitalize Institute.

  • Through its need-blind admissions and financial aid policies, MIT ensures that any qualified student is able to attend the Institute.

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Institute Professor

“The title of Institute Professor is an honor bestowed by the Faculty and Administration of MIT on a faculty colleague who has demonstrated exceptional distinction by a combination of leadership, accomplishment, and service in the scholarly, educational, and general intellectual life of the Institute or wider academic community,” according to the MIT Policies and Procedures manual. *

Thus, the designation “Institute Professor” is reserved only for the few who have earned this honored title.

* “MIT Policies and Procedures:A Guide for Faculty and Staff Members.” <http://web.mit.edu/policies/2.2.html> Accessed 21 June 2006.

Institute-wide (adj., adv.)

Similar to campus-wide.

insure, ensure

See Troublesome pairs.


international students

Use instead of foreign students.

Internet (the), the ’Net

Internet is the proper name for a network of networks and gateways that communicate using TCP/IP protocols. As such, it is always capitalized.

The Internet is made up of several utilities, only one of which is the World Wide Web. Other Internet utilities include e-mail, Gopher, Usenet, IRC Telnet, and FTP. When writing an Internet address, always include the http:// prefix.

Try to avoid use of the shortcut term “the ’Net,” but if you must, insert a backwards apostrophe to indicate that the first part of the word is missing.

The word internet (lowercase “i”), incidentally, is a generic term representing two or more connected networks, and is something completely different!

Internet addresses

See Internet (the) and URL.


… is not a word! Use regardless.

it’s, its

See Troublesome pairs.

italics or quotes?

See Titles of things.

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology

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