While the Forum respects the different styles and different Englishes of its international contributors, there does need to be a certain amount of consistency and regulation within the publication. For this reason, the editors use a style sheet for the publication to note the standards, conventions, spellings, mechanics, etc. that they use. Style sheets are living documents that are updated regularly.
In general, the Forum editors follow the Chicago Manual of Style. The following are some excerpts from the Forums style sheet. Please click on a heading below.
Use serial commas in all articles.
EXAMPLE: Freds favorite sandwich is made with two slices of whole-wheat bread, butter, mustard, bologna, lettuce, and swiss cheese.
Use quotation marks in all articles around phrases if the phrase is meant to be spoken (e.g., the phrase "dont go there"); do not use quotation marks around words singled out as words (e.g., the word chocolate); use italics instead.
The controversial picture was removed from the page; in its place was put a typical family portrait.
Gloria said she is going to go to Turkey this summer; however, she has made no definite plans.
The three groups were comprised of the following people: Betty, Richard, Tom; Bill, Gloria, Ruth; Cindy, Paulette, Cathy.
Many teachers hold second jobs to make ends meet: The majority work as sales clerks in the department stores during the evenings and on weekends.
Many teachers hold second jobs to make ends meet: sales clerks, private tutors, editors.
Compound Words and Hyphenation To quote the New York Public Library Writers Guide to Style and Usage, "No dictionary can list all the possible combinations of adverbs, adjectives, participles, and nouns that can be used as modifiers .The U.S. Government Printing Office Style Manual offers 52 rules and a list of 9,000 words."
after fore meso post tri
ante hyper micro pre ultra
anti hypo mis pro un
bi in mono pseudo under
by infra multi re
co inter neo semi
contra intra non step
de intro off sub
demi iso out super
extra macro over trans
Words American and British spellings are accepted but only one convention should be used in an article, and it must be used consistently throughout the article. The following are some of the words that the editors have noted as problem words:
audiotape (one word)
audiovisual (one word)
audiocassette (one word)
videocassette (one word)
e-mail (used as a noun or a verb)
toward (do not use final "s")
data (is a plural noun)
Internet (always capitalized)
that is (i.e., abbreviation is used only in parentheses)
inservice (no hyphen)
preservice (no hyphen)
web site (two words)
web page (two words)
worksheet (one word)
online (one word)
practice (in American spelling serves as both noun and verb; in British spelling is the noun and practise is the verb form)
Numbers Generally the rule is to spell out the numbers between one and ten and to use the numerical representation for numbers greater than ten:
Fourth of July (if the number follows the month, use of the numerical representation is accepted: July 4th)
21st Century is becoming a trademark and so twenty-first century may be accepted
1998-99 (for years, but if the century changes use the full numerical representation 1999-2000)
pp. 267-287 (in references use full numerical representation, not 267-87)
percent (spell out except in tables, then use %; try not to use decimals with percentages)
Both which and that are relative pronouns. There appear to be differences of opinion on the distinction and use of these two relative pronouns. The Forums editors cite the reference grammar book reprinted and distributed by the English Language Programs Division, Reference Guide to English: A Handbook of English as a Second Language, and use the following distinction:
Which is used to introduce a clause containing informative but nonessential (nonrestrictive) information. Because the information in the clause is additional and therefore unnecessary to the meaning of the sentence, the clause is set off by commas. Many writers, including the Forum editors, do not use which to refer to people.
My cat, which is under the table right now, loves to pounce. [Meaning: I only have one cat and it is under the table.]
Which can also be used in a restrictive clause as long as the clause is punctuated correctly - that is, with no commas. Again, the Forum editors do not use which to refer to people.
The cat which is under the table loves to pounce. [Meaning: There is probably more than one cat]
That is only used to introduce a clause containing essential (restrictive) information. Because the information in the clause is essential to the meaning of the sentence, no commas are used.
The cat that is under the table loves to pounce. [Meaning: There is probably more than one cat.]
As noted in the examples above, the distinction between restrictive and nonrestrictive clauses lies in the meaning the writer wishes to convey. Therefore, it is sometimes difficult for editors to edit such sentences, unless, through the context, the meaning is obvious. Writers should be aware of the distinction and make sure that their sentences convey the correct meaning.
REFERENCES AND BIBLIOGRAPHIES
The Forums editors prefer listing only material directly cited in the articles. The following are the formats for the most common entries used in the Forums articles:
Name (last name, first initial). Year. Full title (only the first word of the title and the subtitle are capitalized). Volume number (if in a volume). Edition (if not the original). City of publication: Publishers name.
Crandall, J. 1987. ESL through content-area instruction: Mathematics, science, and social studies. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall Regents.
Author 1 (last name, first initial.), Author 2 (first initial. last name), Author 3 (first initial. last name). Year. Full title. Volume number (if in a volume). Edition (if not the original). City of publication: Publishers name.
Brinton, D., M. Snow, and M. Wesche. 1989. Content-based second language instruction. New York: Harper & Row.
Author (last name, first initial). Year. Title of chapter (only the first word is capitalized). In Title of book, edited by (if there is an editor). pp. xxx-xxx. City of publication: Publishers name.
Labov, W. 1972. The transformation of experience in narrative syntax. In Language in the inner city. pp. 354-396. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press.
Author (last name, first initial). Year. Title of article. Name of Journal, volume number, issue number, pp. xxx-xxx.
Carrell, P. 1984. The effects of rhetorical organization on ESL readers. TESOL Quarterly, 18, 3, pp. 441-469.