UIP General Style Sheet

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Preferred Reference Materials

Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 11th edition (first example), for spelling.

The Chicago Manual of Style,15th (CMOS-15) or 16th edition, for most other matters.

If you follow another, discipline-specific manual (AAA, APA, MLA) for your manuscript, indicate that style on the Final Submission Checklist (https://www.press.uillinois.edu/authors/finalsubmissionchecklist.html).

If you follow a hybrid style, provide examples or explanations of documentation style, number style, heading style, special treatment of words, and extract rules.


If you use bibliographical notes (not parenthetical citations) and also have a comprehensive bibliography or list of works cited, use short versions of citations in all notes.

Alphabetize your bibliography letter-by-letter (CMOS-15 18.57); ignore punctuation up to the final mark (period, or comma between inverted elements).

Change ampersand to “and” in titles and publishers names.

Use the first city of publication only in citations and bibliography entries. Do not include the state in publication data where it is obvious from the publisher’s name or where the city is well known.

Avoid “passim” and “ff.”; cite pages.


Treat prose quotations of more than one hundred words and verse quotations of more than four lines as extracts (indented, without quotation marks).

General Grammar and Punctuation

Use a comma after most opening adverbial phrases of three words or more, to avoid ambiguity.

Use a comma before the conjunction in series of three or more items (known as the serial comma, series comma, Harvard comma, or Oxford comma).

In general, use a comma between independent clauses in compound sentence.

Do not use a comma before or after Jr., Sr., and similar abbreviations unless the name is inverted (Howell, Thurston, III).

In general, do not use a comma between verbs in compound predicates.

Compound words are hyphenated, closed, or open per CMOS-15 7.90.
Use ellipses according to CMOS-15 11.57–61.

Follow CMOS-15 11.54.

Relative pronouns
Use that and which according to CMOS-15 5.202.
After a colon, capitalize the first letter only if more than one complete sentence follows.
Display Style (Titles and Headings)
Use initial capital or lowercase letters according to CMOS-15 8.167.

Use these rules for titles in notes and bibliography as well.

Spell out or use numerals per CMOS-15 chapter 9.

Use arabic, not roman, numerals for volume, chapter, verse, act, scene, etc.

Our preferred style for inclusive numbers is CMOS-15 9.64 (e.g., 3-10, 71-72, 96-117, 100-104, 101-9). If you have consistently followed another style, however, let us know.

Dates should be expressed in month-day-year order (e.g. December 2, 1984).

Do not use a comma between month and year (e.g. January 2000).

Decades do not use an apostrophe before the s: (e.g. 1890s).

Use for words used as words and letters as letters.

Use sparingly for emphasis.

Do not use italics for the word the in periodical titles; the is lowercase and roman in text (e.g. He worked for the New York Times.).

Use apostrophe plus s for singular words that end in a sibilant unless the word ends in the sound “eez”:



Spelling and Terms
acknowledgments, not acknowledgements
African American (N, adj)
folksong, folksinger
U.S. (adj only), United States (N)
W. E. B. Du Bois (maintain space between “Du” and “Bois”)--to follow style in Levering-Lewis’s biography
Web site

Remove superfluous numbers from short lists unless a step-by-step procedure is described or numbers are essential for in-text references to the list items.
Avoid using abbreviations such as e.g., i.e., and etc. in narrative text.

Do not use cf. (“compare”) where you mean See or See also.

Keep URLs as short and simple as possible (tiny URLs are good), and supply an access date. Do not enclose URLs in angle brackets or parentheses; do not italicize.

Names of Native American tribes form their plural by adding s (the Hopis).

Create a list of discipline-specific terms and any treatments that vary from CMOS/Webster’s style.