University of Montana Style Guide

Style Guide Index:



saint Abbreviate as St. with names of saints, cities and other places. Exceptions: Saint John, New Brunswick; Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.; and Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.

St. Patrick Hospital is now Providence St. Patrick Hospital St. Patrick Hospital is acceptable on second reference; St. Pat's may be used informally.

scholar Capitalize formal names: Rhodes Scholar, Watkins Scholar, Fulbright Scholar, Presidential Scholar, Truman Scholar.

scholarships See awards, fellowships, scholarships entry.

School District 1 Includes grades K-12 in Missoula.

School of Extended & Lifelong Learning at UM Use ampersand. SELL is acceptable on second reference. Formerly Continuing Education at UM.

School of Fine Arts Now known as the College of Visual and Performing Arts. Schools within the College of Visual and Performing Arts include: the School of Theatre & Dance (formerly the Department of Drama/Dance); the School of Art; the School of Media Arts; the School of Music. The people who head these departments are directors, not chairs.

School of Education Now the Phyllis J. Washington College of Education and Human Sciences.

School of Law Alternatives: the law school, the University of Montana School of Law. Located in the Law Building.

School of Theatre & Dance at UM Use ampersand.

schools See departments, offices, programs, schools entry.

Schreiber Gymnasium

seasons of the year In general, lowercase. Winter came early last year. 

section Capitalize and use with figures when referring to a course: Education 495, Section 1; Political Science 456, Section 80. See course titles entry.

self- Always hyphenate: self-assured, self-defense.

-self The -self pronouns (himself, myself, themselves) always refer to a noun or pronoun already stated in the sentence: I hit myself. The students themselves did the work. Wrong: The award was presented to Tom, Dick and myself. See me, myself entry

semester Lowercase: autumn semester 2010, spring semester, summer semester. Monday, Aug. 29, marks the beginning of autumn semester 2011. The course is only offered during spring semester. More than 2,000 students took classes during summer semester at UM. Use wintersession when referring to the three-week semester UM offers during winter break. The student took two credits during wintersession. As of fall 2010, use autumn semester, not fall semester, per registrar's request. 

semi- See prefixes entry, but in general, no hyphen: semifinal, semiofficial, semi-invalid.

semicolon See Appendix A.

senior See junior, senior entry.

senior citizens Not "seniors." Use the term sparingly.

shutdown, shut down "Shutdown" is a noun: The factory shutdown put 1,000 employees out of work. "Shut down" is a verb: The engineer shut down the boilers to conserve fuel.

Skaggs School of Pharmacy

Sleven's Island Part of the University-owned property at Fort Missoula.



south campus Lowercase. Refers to the area along Maurice and South avenues that includes University Villages, the University Golf Course, Dornblaser Field and other playing fields.

South Campus Stadium The UM playing field for women's intercollegiate soccer. Located on South Avenue near its intersection with Higgins Avenue. 

SprinTurf Used in Washington-Grizzly Stadium.

Star Gazing Room UM’s planetarium is housed in the Star Gazing Room in the basement of the Payne Family Native American Center. 

states Spell out a state's name in copy. The conference will be in Denver, Colorado. He is from Indiana. After living in San Diego, California, she moved to Montana.  AP Style change of 2014. Adopted by UM in 2015. See ZIP codes entry.

sub- See prefixes entry, but, in general, no hyphen: subculture, subtotal, subzero.

subjunctive mood Most often a change of "to be" verb to express a wish or a hypothetical, improbable or contrary-to-fact condition, commonly in "if" or "as if" clauses: I wish I were (not was) in Arizona. If I were (not was) you, I'd get that job done first.

Also used in "that" clauses after such verbs as "demand," "recommend," "move" and "suggest": I move that the minutes be (not are) approved. John demanded that he be (not is) reinstated as president.

When used with verbs other than "to be," the -s is dropped in the third-person singular present tense: Carrie suggested that James see (not sees) the film before passing judgment.

Some common expressions use subjunctive mood: far be it from me, be that as it may, as it were, God bless you.

suffixes Follow Webster's for words not in this style guide. If a word combination isn't listed there, use two words for the verb form and hyphenate adjective and noun forms.

summer session Two five-week semesters held during May, June and July at UM.

super- See prefixes entry, but in general, no hyphen: supercharge, superhighway.

Superfund site