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Liberty University Editorial Style Guide

Editorial style guide for university publications and websites.

If the AP or university style guides do not address an issue, please see Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary.

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Academic Commons Garage

academic degrees
Degrees are capitalized only when using the full formal name.

Use an apostrophe in bachelor’s degree, a master’s, etc., but there is no possessive in Bachelor of Arts or Master of Science. Associate degree is not possessive.

Bachelor of Arts: B.A., Bachelor of Fine Arts: BFA, Bachelor of Music: B.M., Bachelor of Science: B.S., Bachelor of Science in Nursing: BSN, RN-BSN, Master of Arts: M.A., Master of Business Administration: MBA, Master of Arts in Teaching: M.A.T., Master of Divinity: M.Div., Master of Fine Arts: MFA, Master of Science: M.S., Master of Science in Nursing: MSN, BSN-MSN, Juris Doctor: J.D., Doctor of Business Administration: DBA, Doctor of Osteopathy: DO, Doctor of Philosophy, Ph.D., Doctor of Ministry: D.Min. Plural form: Ph.D.s, M.A.s. See AP Stylebook for full description.

Programs that stand alone in context without being used as an official degree title should always be lowercased, e.g., degree in communication studies, a student studying mathematics. School of ______ should be capitalized when referencing a specific school within the university.

Common errors when referencing degrees and departments:

  • Online: The B.S. in Business Administration offers a specialization in communications (plural)
  • Bachelor of Science in Sport Management (not sports)

academic departments
The official format includes department before the name of the program and should be used on first reference in most instances. Capitalize all words except prepositions in this instance, e.g., Department of History. Also capitalize for the more informal title, e.g., History Department. 

See office for treatment of other university units.

Academic Success Center
Formerly the Bruckner Learning Center. Provides university-wide academic support services for all students and faculty in general and special needs students in particular.

academic year
Drop digits on second year, e.g., 2022-23. See also years.


administrative titles
Use lowercase unless the title precedes the name, e.g., President Dondi E. Costin.

Lowercase and spell out titles when they are not used with an individual’s name, e.g., “The president issues a statement” or “Dondi E. Costin, Liberty University president” (where Liberty University is the proper noun, uppercase).

President Dondi E. Costin or President Costin, but Costin is the president.

See president. Also see faculty.

Admissions is always plural when referring to the Admissions Office or the Office of Admissions. Capitalize as part of the full, official name; lowercase otherwise. When referring to admission to the university and not to the department, keep singular (e.g., admission status).

Not adviser.

Always use figures. Use hyphens for ages expressed as adjectives before a noun or as substitutes for a noun. A 5-year-old boy, but the boy is 5 years old. The race is for 3-year-olds. The woman, 26, has a daughter 2 months old. The woman is in her 30s.

Alluvion Stage Company, Liberty University’s Broadway-quality professional theatre company. Alluvion may be used on second reference.

alma mater
A school, college, or university which one has attended or from which one has graduated.

Use alumnus (alumni in the plural) when referring to a man who has attended a school.
Use alumna (alumnae in the plural) for similar references to a woman. Use alumni when referring to a group of men and women. Only shorten to alum in very informal text. Capitalize alumni as part of an official title, i.e., Alumni Relations Office, otherwise lowercase.

a.m., p.m.
See time.

American Bar Association
ABA is acceptable on second reference. Also: the bar association, the association.

Use among instead of amongst.

ampersand (&)
Do not replace “and” with an ampersand in text unless the ampersand is part of an official name.
Wordmarks will use an ampersand in the place of “and” due to space restrictions. Ampersands may be used in text messages or sparingly in designed pieces.

This is an acceptable reference to applications loaded on smart phones or other devices. In a deviation from AP, we do NOT require an explanation in the body of the text to explain that this is a shortened form of application.

area code
See phone numbers.

Unless the context would make it look like a spelling error; then use A.S.I.S.T. This is a web app, not an account. 

Although there are some exceptions, in general the plural form is the appropriate form to use when referring to anything that is programwide, e.g., Liberty University Athletics Department, athletics director, football is part of our athletics program, the athletics administration, the athletics facilities. When making a more generic or stand alone statement about our participation in NCAA, use singular (e.g., bullet point or infographic blurb: 20 NCAA Division I athletic programs). Individual sports within the program are not capitalized (in running text) unless they are preceded with Flames, Liberty, or Liberty University. 

Coach titles receive the same treatment as other administrative titles. Lowercase unless the title precedes the name or is coupled with Liberty University to create the full and formal title. The head football coach called the play. The play was called by Coach Chadwell. Head Football Coach Jamey Chadwell held a press conference. The Liberty University Head Football Coach was announced today.

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B.A., B.S., etc.
See academic degrees.

Barnes & Noble Bookstore
Normally referred to on first reference as Liberty University Barnes & Noble Bookstore. Liberty University Bookstore is appropriate on second reference.

In instances when the full first reference name is not practical due to spacing and size, it is acceptable to use Liberty University Bookstore alone.


Bible, biblical
Capitalize when referring to the Scriptures. Also capitalize Gospels, Gospel of Mark, the Scriptures, the Holy Scriptures, and Word when it refers to the entire Bible. Lowercase biblical in all uses. Lowercase bible as a nonreligious term, e.g., My dictionary is my bible. Our classes are founded on a biblical worldview.

One word, no hyphen.

The Black Box Theater
A black box theater located in Green Hall. Please refer to as The Black Box Theater.

Block Party
Annual event hosted by the Student Activities Office to kick off the new academic year. The event features food, games, prizes, and musical entertainment.

board / board of trustees
Capitalize only when an integral part of a proper name, e.g., Liberty University Board of Trustees or the board of trustees. The board of trustees will have their annual meeting.

See entry for “organizations and institutions” in AP Stylebook for further clarification.

Book Dollars
See New Student Book Dollars.

book titles
See composition titles.

One word, lowercase, unless part of establishment’s name, e.g., Liberty University Bookstore. First reference is Liberty University Barnes & Noble Bookstore. 

The past tense is broadcast, not broadcasted.

Capitalize building names. Can omit “hall” or “building” in informal writing on second reference. Never abbreviate.

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Campus East

The section of campus directly across U.S. 460 that includes residence halls and athletic facilities. Please note the difference between Campus East and the greater area referred to as Liberty Mountain.


Candlers Mountain
The land where Liberty University is located. Also referred to as Liberty Mountain. Note: No apostrophe on Candlers.

Candlers Station Shopping Center
Candlers Station Shopping Center, adjacent to the Liberty University campus, was purchased by Liberty in 2010. Liberty Mountain Conference Center and The Journey radio station are located there.

Carter Glass Mansion
Built in 1923, was the home of Senator Carter Glass. Please refer to as The Montview.

Carter Tower
Previously known as Williams Stadium West Tower. Formal name is Worth Harris Carter Jr. Tower; Carter Tower is acceptable on both first and second references.

College of Applied Studies & Academic Success. Can use CASAS on second reference.

Center for Medical and Health Sciences
Always capitalize. Do not abbreviate. Refers to the structure that will house the College of Osteopathic Medicine and the most closely related School of Health Sciences programs. See medical school for instances when this might be an acceptable subsequent reference.

Center for Music and the Worship Arts
Refers to the structure that houses the School of Music.

Center for Music and the Worship Arts, Concert Hall

Center for Natural Sciences
Refers to the structure previously known as the Science Hall.

Central Virginia
As a designated region, Central Virginia is capitalized.

College For A Weekend. Can use CFAW on second reference.

chairman, chairwoman, chair
Preferably use chair. Capitalize when part of full official title; lowercase otherwise.

One word used to describe seats in both the Liberty Baseball and Softball Stadiums, as well as in the LaHaye Ice Center.

Champion, the Liberty
Student-run university newspaper. Full name is Liberty Champion. In selected instances, The Champion may be an acceptable subsequent reference.

Only capitalize if before full name, e.g., Chancellor Jonathan Falwell, Chancellor Falwell, but Falwell is the chancellor. The chancellor spoke at Convocation today.

One word, no hyphen.

Capitalize as part of the formal name of a building, a congregation, or denomination. Also capitalize when referring to the universal Church. Lowercase in all other uses.


Cinematic Arts, Zaki Gordon Center
A film school that reaches beyond the traditional model of film education. This film school relies heavily on experiential learning and features state of the art technology in order to equip students for the technology and equipment that will be used in their field. It is part of the School of Communication & the Arts.

Capitalize city if part of a proper name, or a regularly used nickname: Kansas City, Windy City, Fun City. Lowercase when used generically.

Clarkson Clubhouse 
Liberty University’s golf facility.

class year
When referring to alumni in text, include the last two digits of his or her class year after the name with an apostrophe and parenthesis, e.g., Charles Lyon (’90) is head of the company.

Class of 2022, 2023, etc.
Treat as a proper noun and capitalize “Class.”

Club Sports
Liberty University has 41 Club Sports teams. Most uses of this term in the context of Liberty’s program will be capitalized, as Club Sports is treated as the official name of a department. Any use that is clearly a reference to Liberty’s Club Sports, whether coupled with “Liberty” or not should always be capitalized. Any reference that is clearly generic such as referring to Liberty’s participation in another school’s club sports event should be lowercase. The vast number of instances that fall in between will require writer and quality control judgment, but Marketing will err on the side of capitalizing if the instance is not completely clear.

Do not refer to as coronavirus.

co-worker; co-working
In a deviation from AP Style, please hyphenate.

Do not use. Please substitute “areas of study” or “specialization.”

College of Osteopathic Medicine
Always capitalize. “School of Osteopathic Medicine” is never correct. The College of Osteopathic Medicine is housed in the Center for Medical and Health Sciences. See medical school for instances when this might be an acceptable subsequent reference. LUCOM is an acceptable second reference if it is established on first reference: Liberty University College of Osteopathic Medicine. (LUCOM).

The use of the Oxford comma (serial comma) is to be used in all materials to prevent ambiguity. The Oxford comma is the comma that precedes the conjunction before the final item in a list of three or more items, e.g., This course covers ethics, law, and the media.

For dates: Friday, March 30, 2018. When used in a sentence follow year with a comma. On Friday, March 30, 2018, he went to school.

For locations always put comma after city and state: Her home in High Point, N.Y., is getting old.
No comma in company names before Inc. or Co., e.g., Ted works for Bluesky & Greengrass Inc.

Capitalize when referring to a university graduation exercise. Each unit of the university has its own Commencement Exercises. Commencement Weekend, Commencement Ceremonies, Commencement Exercises, Commencement Check-In, and Degree Presentation Ceremonies.

community group leader

composition titles
In a deviation from AP Style, italics are permitted in place of quotation marks. For any other questions regarding formatting, consult entry titled “composition titles” in AP Stylebook.

compound adjectives
Hyphenate compound adjectives made up of a noun and an adjective when it might be unclear which of the two nouns the adjective modifies, e.g., free-trade agreement, inner-city school, primary-care provider, but not for civil rights law, nuclear power plant, 20th-century art, second-highest mountain, once-in-a-lifetime chance.

compound predicate
A sentence structure in which the reader is told two things about the same subject. Do not use a comma in these instances.

computer programs
Capitalize the principal words in the names of computer programs. Do not use italics or quotation marks, e.g., Microsoft Word, Excel.

A specific grouping of 18 or more credit hours that may be offered within the requirements for an undergraduate major or graduate program. Use “and.” (Majors and minors use the ampersand.)


Conditional Enrollment

Confirmation Deposit

During regular fall and spring semesters, two times weekly, Wednesday and Friday; normally held in the Vines Center. Does not need to be Convocation service, just Convocation. Convocation should be capitalized in all instances.

Capitalize the specific course. Lowercase when describing in general.

Example: I took Organic Chemistry, Ancient Greek and Roman Mythology, General Physics Lab, and Elementary Calculus. Next semester I will take my last calculus course.

One word, not hyphenated.

cross country (the sport)
Although the AP Stylebook includes a hyphen, it is the NCAA standard for collegiate sports to NOT include the hyphen.


Preferred acronym for Conference USA

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See em-dash and hyphen.


  • When a month is used with a specific date, abbreviate only Jan., Feb., Aug., Sept., Oct., Nov., and Dec.
    • Jan. 2 was the coldest day of the month. His birthday is March 8.
  • Spell out when using alone or with a year alone.
    • It was cold last January.
  • When a phrase refers to a month, day, and year, set off the year with commas.
    • Feb. 14, 1987, was the target date
  • When a phrase refers to a day of the week, month, and day, set off with two commas.
    • She testified that it was Friday, Jan. 3, when the accident occurred.
  • When a phrase lists only a month and a year, do not separate the year with commas.
    • January 1972 was a cold month.
  • Always use Arabic figures, without st, nd, rd, or th.
  • For decades, use Arabic figures and an apostrophe to indicate numerals that are left out. Show plural by adding the letter s without an apostrophe.
    • e.g., the 1890s, the ’90s, the mid-1930s

days of the week
Capitalize them; do not abbreviate, except when needed in tabular format. Abbreviate in informal copy including letters, calendars, schedules, etc. with repeated listings of days. 
If an abbreviation is needed due to the nature of the piece (and an exception is approved), use standard abbreviations followed by a period (Sun., Mon., Tue., Wed., Thu., Fri., Sat., Sun.).

Use lowercase unless the title precedes the name, e.g., Frank is dean of the college. Dean Frank Carey will be at the party.

dean’s list
Lowercase in all uses.

Dear {%%FIRSTNAME%%},
Use the above introduction for non-print pieces requiring variable data. Always capitalize the noun following “Dear” when using a generic intro, such as Students, Parents, Alumni, etc., e.g., Dear Student, Dear Parent, etc.


Degree Completion Plan (DCP)
Document detailing the courses required for each major. An exhaustive list of DCPs is available on the website of the Registrar’s Office.

See academic degrees.

degree types
Use as adjectives followed by degree: associate degree, bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, doctoral degree.

See religious references.

DeMoss Hall
Originally erected in 1985, DeMoss now spans 500,000 square feet over four floors and is the primary academic building on campus, where most general education classes are held. May use DeMoss on second reference. Formerly the Arthur S. DeMoss Learning Center.

See academic departments or office.

directions and regions
In general, lowercase north, south, northeast, northern, etc. when they indicate compass direction. For regions, capitalize: Midwest, East Coast, Northeast. He drove north. The North was victorious. The Northeast depends on the Midwest for its food supply. He is from Northern Virginia. The East is opening its doors to Western businessmen.
With nations: Lowercase unless it is part of proper name: northern France.
With states and cities, lowercase unless part of the title: western Texas.

Use quotation marks for dissertation titles

distance learning, distance education
Use the term online learning, rather than distance education. The term distance education was previously used rather than distance learning to avoid confusion with Liberty University Online Programs’ predecessor — the Distance Learning Program (DLP). When speaking historically, use distance education instead of online education, as the school existed before online education was available. 

Doctor of Nursing Practice. In general, this program is referred to using the industry standard, which does not include periods. However, if it is included in a list of other doctoral programs, do include the periods so that it conforms to the standards for that listing.

Former dining facility located on Campus East known as Doc’s Diner and now referred to as Slim Chickens. The parking lot is still known as Doc’s parking lot.

doctor: see academic degrees.

Doctoral is used as an adjective while doctorate is used as a noun. (e.g., He received a doctorate from Liberty, He is a doctoral candidate.)

Always lowercase. Use figures and $ except in casual references, e.g., The book costs $4. Dad, please give me a dollar.


double major
Hyphenate when used as a verb, e.g., She double-majors in history and chemistry. She is pursuing a double major in history and chemistry.

dual enrollment
Do not hyphenate as compound modifier.

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East Campus
Do not use. Please refer to as Campus East.

ellipsis ( … )
An ellipsis is three dots used to indicate omission of a word, phrase, line, etc. There is always a space on both sides of each series of three dots. If the omitted material is at the end of the sentence, an ellipsis follows the last word, then a space as usual, followed by ending punctuation.
“If she is over there … tell her to wait.” “She is over there … .”

But, e-book, e-commerce, e-business.

em-dash ( — )
Em-dashes are used to denote sudden changes in sentence structure. They are also used instead of commas to set off an explanation or emphasis. Always use a space on either side of the em-dash. Use in place of commas sparingly. (e.g., Mark — unable to handle the pressure — began to cry.)

Enrollment Deposit

everyday (adj.), every day (adv.)
He wears everyday shoes.
She goes to work every day.


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Faculty titles are lowercase, e.g., Jones, professor of history, unless the title precedes the name. Professor of History Davie Jones authored the study. Do not use the abbreviation prof. when referring to faculty. Always check for assistant, associate, professor, instructor; these are not interchangeable.

Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Can use FAFSA on second reference.

Hyphenate as an adjective, not as an adverb.

Frequently Asked Questions. Can use this abbreviation on first reference in print or electronic media.
Do not use FAQs.

Lowercase, e.g., a university fellow, a research fellow, a Nieman fellow, but a Nieman Fellowship.

Capitalize as part of a full official name; lowercase otherwise.

This is the preferred adjective, not woman. Women’s would be appropriate as an adjective.

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act. Can use FERPA on second reference.

One word, no hyphen.

Financial Check-In (FCI)
Always capitalized in all circumstances. Use FCI on second reference.

first come, first served
No hyphens.

The Liberty Flames is a nickname for Liberty University’s sports teams. Always capitalize, even if Liberty is not included: They cheered loudly for the Flames.

Flames Nation
Always capitalize. Refers to the Liberty fan base.

Please use Liberty Football Center. Previously known as Football Operations Center. 

Spell out amounts less than 1 in stories, using hyphens between the words: two-thirds, four-fifths, seven-sixteenths, etc. Use figures for precise amounts larger than 1.

Freedom Tower
Houses the John W. Rawlings School of Divinity. 

First-year student; singular/plural.

full time, full-time
Hyphenate when used as a compound modifier: He works full time. He has a full-time job.

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game day
Two words. Do not hyphenate as a compound modifier.

Consider using broad terms versus specific terms, e.g., businessperson or executive, chair or chairperson, council member, firefighter, police officer. See he/she.

See religious references.

Google Play
The Android/Google equivalent of the Apple App Store. Do not refer to it as Google Play Market or Android Market.

Gospel(s), gospel
Capitalize when referring to any or all of the first four books of the New Testament or the message of salvation. Lowercase in other references. She is a famous gospel singer. Students were exposed to the Gospel message daily in his class.

Grade point average. No periods.

Follows the rules of numbers. One through nine is spelled out. First-grade student, 10th-grade student, grade six, grades 10-12. First-grader, 10th grader. However, keep consistent when spanning multiple years (e.g., grades 9-12). 

Always lowercase.

Green Hall
See Marie F. Green Hall.

Guillermin, Dr. A. Pierre
Liberty University’s founding president. 

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Hancock Welcome Center
The Jeffersonian-style, 32,000-square-foot center features private meeting rooms for prospective students and their families, a theater, university board room, dining rooms, student lounges, mountain views, and the Visitors Center. The welcome center is staffed with representatives from Financial Aid, Academic Counseling, and other departments. May use welcome center on second reference.

Reword sentence to avoid using, e.g., A student may pick up his or her materials tomorrow can be re-written as students may pick up their materials tomorrow.

In a deviation from AP Style, please write as one word with no hyphen.

Use figures. She is 5 feet, 2 inches tall. He is a 6-foot, 4-inch man.
Athletics may use a different format.

Helms School of Government
Established in the fall of 2004. Named after former North Carolina Senator Jesse Helms.

Hill City
Nickname for Lynchburg.

home page
Two words.

In a deviation from AP style, Liberty materials use the closed (non-hyphenated) form for all uses: homeschool, homeschooling, homeschooled, homeschooler.

honorific titles
Use the honorifics Miss, Mr., Ms. only in quotes. When it is necessary to distinguish family members from one another, use first names rather than honorifics.

Honors Program
Capitalize when referring to the program; however, honors student would be lowercase.

hyphen (-)
Hyphenate the following:

    A fraction when it is used as an adjective, e.g., two-thirds majority.

    X-to-Y combinations, e.g., 16-to-32-year-olds.

    Invented verbs, e.g., Woods three-putted on the ninth green.

    Suspended hyphens, e.g., They climbed the third- and fourth-highest peaks.

    Compound adjectives, e.g., Small-business owner.

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Ice-skate, Ice-skating, Ice skating
As a sport, activity, or other noun usage, use ice skating or ice skate. Also use ice skating for the adjective form. Per Merriam-Webster hyphenate the verb form (ice-skate).

  • Ice skating will be open to the public on Saturday at the LaHaye Ice Center.
  • Bring your pair of ice skates to the training session.
  • New flooring was installed around the ice skating rink last summer.
  • He ice-skated yesterday. He was ice-skating when the incident occurred.

Abbreviate and capitalize; do not set off with commas.

Indoor Crew Facility
Located at the River Ridge Mall, former Macy’s location, second floor.

Use periods and no space when an individual uses initials instead of a first name: H.L. Mencken.

Intramural sports
Always refer to it as intramural sports or intramurals, e.g., We have a thriving intramurals program.

Institutional Review Board. Can use IRB on second reference.

Use sparingly for effect in running text. For formatting of written publications/composition titles, see composition titles.

its, it’s
It’s is a contraction of it is or it has: It’s up to you. It’s been a long time. Its is the possessive form of the neuter pronoun: The company lost its assets.

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Do not set off with commas. 

Jerry Falwell Center
Set to open in 2024, the Jerry Falwell Center will be an interactive facility for guests to experience the vision of our founder Dr. Jerry Falwell and learn about our mission of Training Champions for Christ.

Jerry Falwell Library
The 4-story, 170,000-square-foot building represents the largest investment by Liberty in any structure on campus and was opened to students on Jan. 15, 2014. The word “the” is NOT part of the official name.

Second reference:

  •  JFL is an approved second reference for internal audiences only. For all materials created for an external audience, use the generic ‘library’ when a shorter subsequent reference is needed.
  •  Even on internal pieces, however, Marketing reserves the right to require that the name not be shortened if the nature of the event or the project is determined to not be appropriate for this informal “JFL” reference.

Elements / Rooms with approved non-standard names:

  • ASRS (Automated Storage and Retrieval System)
  • ClassSpot
  • Curriculum Library
  • Esbenshade Atrium
  • InterLibrary Loan
  • LibAnswers
  • LibChat
  • Main Lobby
  • Perceptive Pixel Table
  • Scholars Commons (no apostrophe)
  • TeamSpot
  • Terrace Conference Room

Jerry Falwell Memorial Garden
Burial park housing Dr. Jerry Falwell’s grave. Located behind The Montview.

Jerry Falwell Sr.
Liberty’s founder. Can also be referred to as Dr. Jerry Falwell. In general, do not use both “Dr.” and “Sr.” in the same reference. Upon second reference, please refer to as Falwell Sr. 

John W. Rawlings School of Divinity
See: School of Divinity.

Capitalize before a name when it is the formal title for an individual who presides in a court of law. Do not continue to use the title in second reference.

Juris Doctor (J.D.)
Not Juris Doctorate. Refers to a three-year law degree.

Juris Master (J.M.)

Kamphuis Field at Liberty Softball Stadium
May be referred to as Liberty Softball Stadium.

kickoff vs. kick off
One word if used as an adjective or noun. The kickoff party is on Saturday. Kickoff will be at 7 p.m.
Two words if used as a verb. The player will kick off at 7 p.m. The celebration kicked off with a party.

Never hyphenate within American publications.

kindergarten, kindergarteners

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LaHaye Event Space

LaHaye Ice Center
Home to the men’s and women’s hockey teams as well as synchronized and figure skating teams, the LaHaye Ice Center is available to students during open-skate sessions for free.

LaHaye Multipurpose Center

LaHaye Recreation & Fitness Center
Fitness center housed within the LaHaye Recreation and Fitness Center.

LaHaye Recreation and Fitness Center
Formerly the LaHaye Student Union. Named in honor of Tim and Beverly LaHaye, the facility houses an intercollegiate-size swimming pool, five basketball courts, fitness center, and more. Renovated in 2014.

Liberty Christian Academy. Can use LCA on second reference.

Liberty Athletics Center

Liberty Arena               
Facility for men’s and women’s basketball and women’s volleyball with a seating capacity of 4,000.

Liberty Football Center
Formerly known as Williams Football Operations Center (FOC).

Liberty Home Bible Institute 
Can use LHBI on second reference. Part of Willmington School of the Bible.

Liberty Indoor Track & Field Complex

Liberty Journal magazine
Published by the News Office and Marketing Department under the president’s direction. Full name is Liberty Journal. 

Liberty Mountain
The preferred name of Liberty’s campus that lies east of U.S. 460. Do not refer to as Candlers Mountain or East Campus.

Liberty Mountain Conference Center
Located in Candlers Station Shopping center, adjacent to the Liberty University campus.

Liberty Mountain Gun Club
Liberty’s off-campus shooting range; located on Liberty Mountain near Hydaway Outdoor Recreation Center.

Liberty Mountain Hydaway Outdoor Center
May refer to as Hydaway Outdoor Center. Previously known as Camp Hydaway and Hydaway Outdoor Recreation Center.

Liberty Mountain Medical Group

Liberty Mountain Snowflex Centre
Facility on Liberty Mountain featuring artificial snow material for year-round skiing and snowboarding. It is the first of its kind in North America. May use Snowflex on second reference.

Liberty Natatorium

Liberty University
Always capitalize when used as full title. Can use Liberty on second reference. Do not capitalize university when used alone. See LU.

Liberty University Baptist Theological Seminary (LBTS)
Now part of the John W. Rawlings School of Divinity. Do not reference as seminary or LBTS.
Do not reference as its own entity.

Liberty University Bible Resource Center
An online resource that includes Dr. Harold Willmington’s S.W.O.R.D. project (Scripture Wisdom Organized and Rightly Divided).

Liberty University Indoor Practice Facility

Liberty University Online Academy
Can use Liberty Online Academy or LUOA on second reference. Online program for kindergarten through 12th grades.

Liberty University Online Programs
Formerly known as the Distance Learning Program and Liberty University Online.

Liberty University School of Law
Can use School of Law or Liberty Law on second reference.

Liberty University School of Lifelong Learning
Liberty’s first distance education initiative, predecessor to DLP and LUO. Only use in historical references.

Liberty Way, the
Refers to Liberty University’s code of conduct.

See Jerry Falwell Library.



login, logon, log into
Logon and login are nouns. As a verb, use log into. Log into ASIST. Note: This is different from AP.

LU is an option on subsequent references for selected uses.

LU Send
The sending arm of the university that facilitates student group travel. 

LU Serve
The serving arm of the university that facilitates local, domestic, and international engagement opportunities.

LU Serve Now 
Subset of LU Serve that mobilizes students to provide disaster relief.

LU Shepherd
The spiritual arm of the university that provides peer mentorships, pastoral care, and life skills training.

LU Stages
Coordinates campuswide events and ministry experiences such as Convocation and Campus Community.

LU Student Health Center
Previously Liberty University Health Services.

Liberty University Police Department. Can use LUPD on second reference. See police department.

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M.A., M.D., master’s degree
See academic degrees

Master of Laws (LL.M.)

Majors and Minors
Use “&.” (Concentrations use “and”.)

Marie F. Green Hall
Acquired in 2004 as a gift from Hobby Lobby. The building is named in honor of Marie Green, the mother of Hobby Lobby’s president. Formerly known as North Campus. First reference is Marie F. Green Hall, but may use Green Hall on second reference or on internal pieces.

medical school
This can be used as an informal reference to the College of Osteopathic Medicine or the Center for Medical and Health Sciences after the formal name has been introduced. Although this term is not preferred, it is an option when there are many references and a simpler term is needed. Consider using “osteopathic medical school” for clarity if needed. This is an option for materials that reference these two entities, but should not be used in the formal materials produced for these clients to recruit students.

For Liberty publications, this idea is hyphenated (e.g., Liberty is a military-friendly school). However, when working with an external publication that does not hyphenate, adjust if needed to be consistent with their style.

military titles
Capitalize a military rank when used as a formal title before an individual’s name. On first reference, use the appropriate title before the full name of a member of the military. In subsequent references, do not continue using the title before the name. Only use the last name. See AP Stylebook for more.

  • general – Gen.
  • lieutenant general – Lt. Gen.
  • major general – Maj. Gen.
  • colonel – Col.
  • major – Maj.
  • captain – Capt.

monetary units
Use figures for sums of money, except when they begin a sentence. They are usually treated as singular. $4; $450; $4 million; 4 cents.

Capitalize in all uses. Abbreviate Jan., Feb., Aug., Sept., Oct., Nov., and Dec. Always abbreviate month if only listed with a day, e.g.,
Jan. 2 was the coldest day on record. Spell out when used alone, e.g., January is a cold month.

See dates for additional details and examples.

Montview Mansion
Please refer to as The Montview.

Montview Student Union
Student union located behind DeMoss Hall. 

Montview Student Union, Alumni Ballroom

Portal through which students can access on-campus announcements, Blackboard, etc. Please refer to as: myLU portal. Do not place quotation marks around myLU (e.g., log into myLU) unless used in web directions (e.g., click on “myLU”).

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In general use last names only on second reference. When it is necessary to distinguish between two people who share a last name, use the first and last name.

nation, national
Capitalize as part of a full official name; lowercase otherwise.

New Student Book Dollars
Scholarship for prospective students. Capitalized as the proper name of one of Liberty’s scholarship programs.

Use as the abbreviation for number in conjunction with a figure to indicate position or rank: No. 1 man, No. 3 choice.

Liberty University is a nonprofit online university.

Per AP style, this is preferred over 12 p.m. Do not use “12 noon.”

In a deviation from AP Style, all numbers may be written as numerals. When any number begins a sentence, spell it out. Any number over 1,000 needs proper commas. See AP Stylebook for more details and exceptions. One notable exception is ages (see entry above).

off-campus vs. off campus
Use off-campus as a modifier, e.g., Students attended an off-campus event.
Use off campus to denote location that is not a modifier, e.g., Commuter students live off campus.

Capitalize the names of university offices when the official title is used or a derivation that is equally official based on university culture, e.g., Office of the Registrar, Registrar’s Office. Lowercase otherwise.

In general, avoid referring to most offices in a shortened form in external promotional materials.

Some examples:

Right: The Office of Development announced a new scholarship.
Right: According to the Development Office, many donations have been received.
Wrong: Contact Development for more information.

Old-Time Gospel Hour

on-campus vs. on campus
Use on-campus as a modifier, e.g., Students enjoyed the on-campus activity.
Use on campus to denote location that is not a modifier, e.g., They were walking around on campus.

Overton School of Business
The Graduate School of Business is known as the Overton School of Business. When writing about a residential M.B.A., or any resident master’s program under business, this is the appropriate school to reference.

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p.m., a.m.
See time.

page numbers
Use figures and capitalize the word “page,” e.g., “See Page 23.

parentheses ( )
Place a period outside a closing parenthesis if the material inside is not a sentence (such as this fragment). An independent parenthetical sentence takes a period before the closing parenthesis. Use for first reference of acronyms.

parking lot
Always lowercase when used in conjunction with official names. E.g., Fincher parking lot.

part time, part-time
Hyphenate when used as a compound modifier, e.g., She works part time. She has a part-time job.

Pate Chapel
Chapel at Thomas Road Baptist Church, located on Liberty Mountain.
The Old Pate Chapel is located at 701 Thomas Road.

Use % or percent, depending on the need of the piece.

Ph.D.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         See academic degrees.

phone blast/voice blast
Recorded telephone communication with a parent, student, alumnus, etc. Phone blasts may use a more casual tone at times.

phone numbers
Place the area code in ( ), e.g., (434) 582-2020. Do not use 1 in front of area code.
Exception for Flames ticket office since ( ) are used at the end as well:  434-582-CLUB (2582) and 434-582-SEAT (7328).

Copy produced for radio ad and voice blasts are written as they are read and do not have to follow AP style.

police department
Capitalize only if using full title, e.g., Lynchburg Police Department, Liberty University Police Department (LUPD).

For plural nouns ending in s, add only an apostrophe, e.g., Charles can take care of the four churches’ needs. Please buy the girls’ toys.

Always hyphenate.

Always hyphenate.

Always hyphenate.

Only capitalize if before full name, e.g., President Dondi E. Costin, President Costin, but Costin is the president. The president spoke at Convocation today.

See administrative titles.

president emeritus
Only capitalize if before full name, e.g., President Emeritus Jerry Prevo, President Emeritus Prevo, but Prevo is the president emeritus. The president emeritus spoke at Commencement.

See faculty.

Capitalize as part of a full official name, or when used as a title before a name; lowercase otherwise. The provost led Convocation. Convocation was led by Provost Dr. Scott Hicks.

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Q-and-A, Q & A
In a deviation from AP style, either of the above expressions is acceptable.

quotation marks
Commas and periods with quotation marks always go inside the closing quotation mark (single or double). Question marks and exclamation points go inside the closing quotation mark when they apply to the quoted matter only. They go outside when they apply to the whole sentence.

For formatting of written publications/composition titles, see composition titles.

radio station
Use lowercase, e.g., She listens to the radio station WRVL-FM.

Use figures and hyphens: the ratio was 2-to-1, a 2-1 ratio.

Reber-Thomas Dining Center
Liberty’s dining facility built in 2023.

religious references
Capitalize the proper name of the monotheistic Deity: God, the Father, the Son, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, etc. Also capitalize pronouns referring to the Deity: He, Him, His, Me, My, Thee, Thou, etc. (Note: Capitalizing the pronouns is a deviation from the AP Stylebook, but an intentional show of respect by Liberty University’s style guidelines. Capitalize the pronouns referring to the Deity, even when the original translation does not.)

Lowercase such words as godlike, godly, godliness, godsend. Note that Christlike is always capitalized, per Merriam-Webster.

religious titles
The first reference to a clergyman or clergywoman normally should include a capitalized title before the individual’s name on first reference, e.g., the Rev. Jonathan Falwell, pastor of Thomas Road Baptist Church, on second reference Falwell. The Rev. Billy Graham, on second reference Graham.

residence hall
On-campus housing. It is acceptable to use the word “dorm” instead.

resident shepherd
Previously known as student life coach (SLC) or student life director (SLD).

Residential Commons
High-rise residence halls on Liberty’s Champion Circle. Residential Commons I was completed in 2014, Residential Commons II was completed in 2016, and Residential Commons III was completed in 2017. 


When this title is used before a name, always precede with the, e.g., the Rev. Jonathan Falwell. See religious titles.

Do not abbreviate. See addresses. For all university road names, please reference the most up-to-date campus map. See AP Stylebook for further formatting guidelines.

room numbers
Use figures and capitalize room when used with a figure, e.g., Room 100, Room 2.

Reserve Officers’ Training Corps. Use ROTC on second reference.

runner-up, runners-up

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This is the official acronym for second reference to Liberty’s accrediting body. On first reference, spell out: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. Note that the acronym does not have a hyphen. The school as a whole is accredited by SACSCOC, not individual degree programs.

Scholastic Aptitude Tests. May be abbreviated on first reference when the context is clear.

Student Advocate Office. May use SAO on second reference.

Always capitalized as a proper name. Sponsored by the Center for Youth Ministries at Liberty University.

Science Hall
Please refer to as the Center for Natural Sciences.

Always lowercase. Rhodes scholar.

Capitalize as part of a full official name; lowercase otherwise.

Capitalize as part of a full official name; lowercase otherwise, e.g., School of Business, business school.

School of Divinity
First reference: John W. Rawlings School of Divinity. Second reference: School of Divinity. Formerly the School of Religion and Liberty University Baptist Theological Seminary (LBTS). Do not use SOD, Liberty Divinity, or divinity school on second reference. Always capitalize unless discussing in generic context.

Scripture, Scriptures
Capitalize when referring to writings in the Bible. Also see Word.

The seasons of the year are always lowercase. Capitalize when referencing a semester or sub-term with a year or specification, e.g., Fall 2023, Spring A/B sub-term, but fall courses, etc.

General semesters are lowercase, but dated semesters are capitalized, e.g., fall semester, spring semester, but Fall 2023 semester, Spring 2024 semester, and Fall 2023, Spring 2024. He will graduate next semester.

Semicolons can be used in compound sentences. I went home; she stayed at the party. Use to separate elements of a series when the items in the series are long or when individual segments contain material that also must be set off by commas. The missionaries traveled to Lima, Peru; Oaxaca, Mexico; and Ghana, Africa.

service member(s)
Two words; service member; One word: serviceman, servicewoman.

sign-up (n. and adj.) sign up (verb)

Second reference of Liberty Mountain Snowflex Centre. May be used on first reference for internal audiences only. Please see Liberty Mountain Snowflex Centre.

Capitalize as part of a full official name; lowercase otherwise.

Liberty University’s dining services provider.

Liberty University’s mascot. He is a male eagle. His identity is not to be made public.

Spirit of the Mountain
Liberty University’s marching band.

Do not set off with commas.

Spell out the names of the 50 states when they stand alone. Spell out or abbreviate as listed in the AP Stylebook, following with a comma, when paired with the name of a city, county, town, village, or military base in text. Spell out the names of the 50 states when they stand alone in textual material. Note that the postal code abbreviation is often different from the AP Stylebook; postal abbreviations should be used on any materials seen by the U.S. Postal Service. 

Always hyphenate.

Always hyphenate. 

student-to-professor ratio
Always hyphenate as above. Use the combined ratio in materials that are not specifically targeted to residential or online.

Always hyphenate; can be used as a noun and adjective. Sub-term deadline is Aug. 24. Enroll today for the Fall 2018 sub-term.

Plural of syllabus. (This is a deviation from AP.)

Symposium is singular; symposia are plural. Capitalize when part of a full official name; lowercase otherwise.

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701 Thomas Road Campus
Previous location of Thomas Road Baptist Church and formerly referred to as “Old TRBC.” Old Pate Chapel, The Bottling Co. Reception Hall (or just The Bottling Co.), and Carter Building are located on this campus.

Capitalize title, but not the word team when using full official team name. Liberty University Women’s Basketball team. All teams are known as the “Flames.” Women’s teams are known as the “Lady Flames.”

teen, teenager, teenage
Do not use teenaged.

The Box Theater
A black box theater located in Green Hall. Please refer to as The Black Box Theater.

The Food Court at Reber-Thomas
Name of Liberty’s previous dining facility. May be referred to historically.

The Montview
The preferred name for Montview Mansion; previously known as the Carter Glass Mansion.

Theatre when referring to the Department of Theatre Arts and theatre in general. Theater when referring to a building (e.g., Tower Theater). Theatre Arts is acceptable if the reference is included with other listings of departments within the School of Communication & the Arts where the “Department of” is understood. Also see Tower Theater.

Tilley Student Center
Opened in 2008 and provides numerous dining options for Green Hall.

Use figures for clock time and for hours, minutes, seconds, days, weeks, months and years greater than nine, e.g., 3 p.m.; 5:30 a.m.; 10-11 a.m.; 6 o’clock; 18 years. Per AP Style: there are no spaces around the en-dash between the numerals. A space comes between the numerals and a.m. or p.m. (8-9 a.m.)

When time lapse spans just morning or evening and not through both time frames, only use one reference to a.m. or p.m., e.g., 8-9 a.m. or 8-9 p.m. Exception may occur in pieces such as tables, charts, and schedules when required for design purposes.

time zones
Always use Eastern Standard Time or EST. Do not italicize or use parentheses around this abbreviation. We do not adjust times for Daylight Savings Time. Use of Eastern Time or ET is also acceptable.

See honorific titles, academic degrees, or administrative titles.

Not towards, e.g., He drove toward Kentucky.

Tower Theater
Officially opened in August 2010, the 85-foot tower in Green Hall provided Liberty with the perfect space to construct a performing arts theater. Home to Alluvion Stage Company.

Towns Auditorium
Located in the School of Business.

Thomas Road Baptist Church. Can use TRBC on second reference. If referring specifically to the main auditorium, that is the TRBC Worship Center.

track & field
Although the AP Stylebook spells out the word “and,” it is the NCAA standard for collegiate sports to use the ampersand instead.

Training Champions for Christ
This phrase should always be italicized when in complete form, whether that be Train Champions for Christ or Training Champions for Christ. When simplified to Champion(s) for Christ, it should be italicized unless the marketing team offers a reasonable argument for why the usage is not a standard reference to Liberty’s vision. All the words except “for” are always capitalized when the phrase is not spliced. 

After May 1, 2012, the branding tag line used on all marketing materials is: Training Champions for Christ since 1971. The word “since” is not capitalized.

When the verb is separated from “Champions for Christ,” the verb is not capitalized or italicized, e.g., This year the John W. Rawlings School of Divinity will train more than 500 Champions for Christ. Avoid prefacing “Champion for Christ” with other present participle verbs, i.e “teaching Champions for Christ” is not a preferred usage.

Do not capitalize trustee when it appears before a name, e.g., The invocation was given by trustee John Jones, but The Liberty University Board of Trustees formally announces…
Also see board.

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Only capitalize if part of full name. Liberty University, but he attends the university.


Always capitalize words within URL, e.g., LibertyU.com/Chat. (Do not use www.)

Spell it out in ordinary speech and writing. In short expressions, the abbreviation vs. is permitted. For court cases, use v.

vice president
Capitalize as part of a full official name, or when used as a title before a name; lowercase otherwise.

vice provost

Vines Center
With a seating capacity of 11,150, this entertainment and convention center is used to host concerts, church services, conferences, and weekly Convocation. Also known as the “The Furnace.”

Visitors Center
No apostrophe. Also see Hancock Welcome Center.

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white out
When referring to an athletic event where the home crowd wears white for effect, this is two words. 

Williams Stadium
Liberty University’s 25,000-seat football stadium. Also contains Liberty Football Center, formerly know as Williams Football Operation Center (FOC). The first name and initial of the donor (Arthur L.) are included on the facility, but not considered by athletics to be part of the formal name. The complex includes a field house, locker room, equipment room and training room. A five-story football tower complete with 18 luxury suites and a fully functional media center is located above the west bleachers.

Williams Stadium Club Pavilion
This is the official name of the third floor of Carter Tower. Additions to the official title or slight modifications are acceptable to fit the needs of the audience. Since the third floor is also known as the ‘club level,’ this is an acceptable reference, but it is not an official title and should not be capitalized. Third floor can be added to the description, but should not be capitalized as well. However, do not say, “on the third floor of the Williams Stadium Club Pavilion,” since this is the only floor it is on.  Some examples of acceptable revisions include:

  • Williams Stadium Club Pavilion (third floor)
  • Williams Stadium third floor Club Pavilion
  • …the third floor of Carter Tower (Club Pavilion)
  • …the third floor club level of Williams Stadium


Always capitalize when referring to the entire Bible.

One word.

Capitalize when referring to the Federal Work-Study Program. Lowercase when using in a generic manner (e.g., She applied for a work-study position.).

One word. Used in conjunction with biblical or Christian when referring to the foundation for Liberty classes or the perspective of Liberty professors. Christian is always capitalized with the term; biblical is lowercase with the term unless used in a title or subject, e.g., Liberty classes are founded on a biblical worldview.  Liberty professors teach from a Christian worldview.

Worley Prayer Chapel

Worthington Stadium
Built in 1979, named Al Worthington Stadium in honor of Liberty’s first baseball coach. The structure was demolished in 2013 and a new baseball field was built. Currently Worthington Field at Liberty Baseball Stadium.

Use figures, 1977, 1997-98, 1970s, ’70s, the 1900s, June 1988. An academic year encompasses two years, e.g., 2023-24 (see academic year). Jim Ayers (’86) is coming to the football game at Williams Stadium.

ZIP codes
Liberty’s ZIP code is 24515.

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