Format and Style Guide
Please see the Binghamton University Style Guide for more in-depth information. You may also wish to review the Binghamton University Brand Guide for additional information.
- All Web homepages housed on University-based servers should contain an identifying reference to Binghamton University and a link to the University homepage.
- The "State University of New York," should be noted on the opening page of a website.
- Official University information such as that contained in the Bulletin, the University calendar, University descriptions, etc., should not be duplicated on departmental or unit pages. Links should be made from these pages to the relevant University pages.
- The e-mail address and a direct e-mail link to the person responsible for the page (e.g., a member of the faculty or administrative staff) must be included on each page.
- The date of the last update should be posted on the opening page.
- Pages should adhere to the guidelines on accessibility established for all public Web sites by New York state.
- Only the official University logo may be used and must not be modified.
- The logo should be used in the official color only.
Use of graphics
- Pages should provide text-only alternatives (e.g. by using the ALT= ‘text alternative’ parameter of the IMG html tag). Not all browsers display graphics.
- Images should be in GIF or JPEG format.
- Images should be designed to be under 100K where possible. Larger versions should be made available as an option.
- "Binghamton University" should be used in all written communications, particularly those intended for an off-campus audience and materials written for prospective students.
- "Binghamton" iis acceptable as a secondary reference, but it must be clear that Binghamton refers to the University, not the city.
- Avoid the abbreviation/nickname "BU" in external communications, except those for Binghamton alumni or athletics.
- "State University of New York at Binghamton" remains the official and legal name of the University and is used on all legal documents, but not on the cover or in the text of most publications. Our state affiliation should be included when identifying University offices, academic units, people or places for external audiences.
- The abbreviation "SUNY" for State University of New York, should be spelled out for external publications on first reference, but is acceptable on second reference. Don’t use periods or spaces.
- "SUNY-B/SUNY-Binghamton" are no longer used.
- "University" is acceptable as a secondary reference to Binghamton University. Note the capital U.
- The University’s schools should always be referred to by their full names on first reference. Thereafter, the short forms shown below are acceptable:
- Harpur College of Arts and Sciences (Harpur College)
- College of Community and Public Affairs (CCPA)
- Decker School of Nursing (the Decker School, DSON)
- School of Management (SOM)
- Graduate School of Education
- Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science (the Watson School)
- Avoid unnecessary capital letters. Use a capital letter only if you can justify it.
- Please refer to the "capitalization" entry in the Binghamton University Style Guide for more information.
- In a list or series with commas, don't use a comma before the conjunctions "and" and "or" unless the material is confusing without the comma.
- Use semicolons in a series only if one of the elements contains its own commas or other punctuation.
- For abbreviations composed of initial letters don’t use periods: NYS, BA, MA, MFA, PhD, NCAA, USA.
- Periods and commas always appear inside quotation marks.
- Omit hyphens after most prefixes, unless they precede a capitalized word or end with the same letter that begins the next word: nonmatriculated, but non-University and non-negotiable.
- Always hyphenate with the prefix "self-."
- Hyphenate compound adjectives when they come before the noun: on-campus residence halls. Do not hyphenate adverb-adjective constructions before the noun: lightly seasoned tacos.
- Avoid using the abbreviation "prof." for professor.
- On first reference, alumni should always be identified with the class year(s) after the name. For undergraduate degrees, list the year only; if the person earned a graduate degree at Binghamton, use commas to set off its abbreviation and year.
- Following common usage around the University, "faculty" and "staff" may be singular or plural. Each of these examples is correct:
- Three faculty members team-taught the course.
- Three faculty team-taught the course.
- Our faculty enjoys interdisciplinary teaching.
- Two notable Binghamton aberrations to standard hyphenation rules:
- Off Campus College (not hyphenated)
- College-in-the-Woods (hyphenated)
- In prose, spell out numbers from one through nine; use numerals for 10 and up.
- Use commas in numbers greater than 999.
- Avoid gender-specific language-most commonly, the use of a male pronoun ("he," "him," "his") in reference to such general terms as "the student," "the applicant" or "the professor." One approach is to make everything plural, so plural pronouns can correctly be used. In the few cases when singular forms must be used, indicate both male and female pronouns (in either order) and separate them with "or" rather than a slash.
- When writing about an ethnic or racial group, use the term widely preferred by members of the group. Do not hyphenate group identities: black or African American ; white or Caucasian; Asian American or Asian; Hispanic or Latino; Native American
Affirmative action statement
University policy requires that the following affirmative action statement be included verbatim in recruitment literature, catalogs or bulletins, and other official University publications with a substantial off-campus audience. Any pages on the Web primarily intended to recruit students, faculty, or staff should also include this statement:
The State University of New York at Binghamton is strongly committed to affirmative action. We offer access to services and recruit students and employees without regard to race, color, sex, religion, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or national origin.