Abbreviations and Acronyms
We all know acronyms can build up. It's a wise rule of thumb to remember that all caps, even in acronyms, tends to seem like shouting, which can create a problem we call INYIJUALOA—I'm Not Yelling, I'm Just Using A Lot Of Acronyms.
Here are the abbreviation rules:
- Use periods after a shortened version of a person’s name: A. W. Birmingham
- Writing about the United States (the TPO's guidelines):
- Spell out "United States" when it is a noun: I live in the United States.
- Abbreviate "United States" as "U.S." (with periods) when it is an adjective: U.S. foreign policy.
- Spell out acronyms the first time they appear, followed by the acronym in parentheses, like so:
- The Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) is located in Monterey, California.
- Leadership requires that staff submits documents by close of business (COB) on Friday.
- Use periods surrounding Latin abbreviations (stylistic suggestion: I spell out et cetera when I use it): e.g., a.m., p.m., i.e., et. al.
- No periods for state names or acronyms: NPS needs no periods.
Here are the acronym tips:
- Spell out the name and then put the acronym in parentheses the first time you use it. Subsequent spellings-out are unnecessary; sometimes, however, thesis writers will re-spell key ones at the beginning of a new thesis chapter.
- Avoid acronym overload. Please.