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Division Name

On first reference, the division of Human Resources and Equal Opportunity and Compliance

On subsequent references, UNC-Chapel Hill HR and EOC or HR and EOC

University Name

For press releases and other formal instances, use the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on first reference. UNC-Chapel Hill, Carolina or the University is preferred for subsequent references.

For websites, UNC-Chapel Hill or Carolina is acceptable for first reference. Capitalize the University.

University System Name

The informal system name is University of North Carolina SystemUNC System can be used on subsequent references.

The official, legal system name is University of North Carolina. The official name should be reserved for legal documents, formal agreements, and proposals, as the first reference. For all subsequent references, UNC alone can be used for informal documents.

As we build equity in the University of North Carolina System name, the word “System” should be used in all text.

Individual schools within the System are referred to as “institutions” or “universities.”

Capitalize the “S” in System when referencing the 17 institutions. Capitalize the “U” in University when it stands alone and refers to the 17 institutions; lowercase it when it refers to an individual institution.

University Style Guidelines

Carolina generally follows Associated Press style, but we do make some exceptions. Below are some exceptions and University-specific references. See also: UNC-Chapel Hill Editorial Style

Academic Titles
Teaching faculty ranks include: professor, professor of the practice, associate professor, assistant professor, instructor, teaching assistant professor, teaching associate professor, teaching professor and teaching assistant. Some teaching faculty also hold clinical or adjunct faculty positions. Do not precede a name with a long title.

Capitalize and spell out formal titles when they come before a name, such as Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz.

Lowercase academic titles after a name or when used alone. Be sure to include the full proper title. (Kevin Guskiewicz, the University’s chancellor; Barbara Rimer, dean of the Gillings School of Global Public Health). Exceptions include the names of endowed professorships on first reference—preferably after the name of the faculty member. Capitalize all of the words in the proper title of the professorship. (Wendy Boss, William Neal Reynolds Professor of Plant Biology)

Board of Governors
The governing body elected by the North Carolina General Assembly that oversees the 17-campus University of North Carolina System. Use the full name on first reference; BOG may be used on subsequent references.

Board of Trustees
A 13-member governing body that oversees the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Use the full name on first reference; BOT may be used on subsequent references. The student body president serves as an ex-officio member of the Board of Trustees. Refer to

The leader of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Each of the UNC System’s 17 campuses has a chancellor, all of whom report to the UNC System president. Capitalize when used before a name.

On first reference, refer to Chancellor Kevin M. Guskiewicz. Guskiewicz should be used on subsequent references. In more formal writing, such as in invitations or programs, Chancellor Guskiewicz is acceptable on second reference.

Old Well
Do not capitalize “the,” as in the Old Well.

One Card
The official identification card for students, faculty and staff at UNC-Chapel Hill.

A username for each UNC-Chapel Hill student, faculty member and staff member. Used to log in to various electronic services on campus. Short for “only name you’ll ever need.” Onyen is acceptable in all references; define the term if necessary for readers not familiar with the university.

Person ID Number. The PID is the nine-digit identification number assigned to all persons with a university relationship. It appears on the UNC One Card. PID is acceptable on first reference.

Police (University)

University Police or UNC Police. In a case that involves police on other campuses or law enforcement agencies, distinguish with UNC-Chapel Hill police as needed.

Tar Heels

Always two words. Informally used, Heels may stand alone—for example, Go Heels! in a campus publication or on a website.

The work-study program, funded primarily by the federal government, allows students to earn part of their financial aid through employment on campus. A work-study student, work-study job.

If you are listing a website address on a printed document or in a digital space, do not use http:// or www. in front of the address. Examples of appropriate uses:,

AP Style Guidelines

Dates and times

  • Dates: Follow this format: Monday (day), July 1 (month + date), 2018 (year)
    • For example: Monday, July 1, 2018
  • Times: Don’t use colons for times on the hour.
    • For example: 3 p.m., 8:30 a.m.
    • Both a.m. and p.m. should use periods and lower case letters.
  • Days: Omit st., th., rd., and th.
    • For example: July 1, not July 1st
    • Never say “yesterday.” Use the day of the week instead.
  • Months: Abbreviate Jan., Feb., Aug., Sept., Oct., Nov. and Dec. when writing out a specific date. Spell out names of months when not used to indicate a specific date. For example: Aug. 3, 2018.
  • Years: Use numerals rather than spelling them out. For example: 2018, not twenty-eighteen.


  • Use a single space after a period.
  • Commas should go inside quotation marks.
  • Serial Commas: Commas are not included before conjunctions. However, they should be used to separate each item in a list.
  • Lean toward using periods in abbreviations where applicable.
  • When proper nouns end in an S, add an apostrophe at the end.
  • Names: Use their first and last name on first mention. Then, use only their last name on subsequent mentions.


  • Capitalize formal titles before people’s names.
  • Do not capitalize job titles before names.

Additional Resources