Why it Matters
• Different types of writing follow different style
guidelines. For example, in your other college
courses,...
Why it Matters
• Therefore, you must know Associated Press
style if you intend to get a job in the media or
public relatio...
Why it Matters
• Strictly following a particular usage style
provides consistency, accuracy and clarity in
grammar, punctu...
Why it Matters
• While some publications, such as The New
York Times, have their own unique style, the
vast majority of ne...
Why it Matters
• AP style aims to be totally accurate, clear to
anyone with a high school education and
inoffensive (curse...
How to Study
• Read some of your AP Stylebook every day.
Keep it handy and refer to it often. You
probably won't be able t...
Practice Makes Perfect
• Many free practice quizzes are available
online. Take this one and see how much you
know:
http://...
Top Ten AP Style Rules
• The AP Style book contains hundreds of rules.
But some come up much more often than
others.
• Wha...
• 1. Use a person's full name and title the first
time you mention him or her in an article. For
example, write Don Swanso...
2. Spell out abbreviations or acronyms on first
reference. For example, use Passaic County
Community College the first tim...
3. Abbreviate months when used with days,
and use numerals (1, 2, 3, etc.) not ordinal
numbers (1st, 2nd, etc.). Exception...
4. Generally, spell out the numbers zero
through nine and use numerals for 10 and
higher. Note, however, that numbers used...
5. But use numerals even for ages younger than
10. This is another exception to that
aforementioned number rule. When used...
6. Spell out the word "percent" but use
numerals for the actual number. Examples:
Participation increased 5 percent. Nearl...
7. To indicate time, use figures and lowercase
letters (9 a.m., 6 p.m.). Put a space between the
figure and the letters. E...
8. Capitalize formal titles used before a name.
For example, write Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton. Very long titles ma...
9. Capitalize names of people, places or things to
set them apart from a general group. These include
proper nouns such as...
10. Use the name of the website rather than
the Web address. For example: YouTube, no
YouTube.com or New York Times, not
n...
Still Need Practice?
• More AP Style quizzes are available at:
http://www.radford.edu/~rstepno/104/apquizzes.ht
Associated Press Style
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Associated Press Style

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This presentation explains why AP Style is essential for public relations practitioners and journalists. It covers the 10 most commonly-used AP Style rules. And it features links to practice quizzes.

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Transcript of "Associated Press Style"

  1. 1. Why it Matters • Different types of writing follow different style guidelines. For example, in your other college courses, you may be required to adhere to the MLA, Turabian or APA styles guides. In journalism and public relations, you must know Associated Press Style.
  2. 2. Why it Matters • Therefore, you must know Associated Press style if you intend to get a job in the media or public relations.
  3. 3. Why it Matters • Strictly following a particular usage style provides consistency, accuracy and clarity in grammar, punctuation and other language issues.
  4. 4. Why it Matters • While some publications, such as The New York Times, have their own unique style, the vast majority of newspapers, magazines and press releases follow the rules of the AP Stylebook. And because communicating with the media is a significant part of public relations, PR practitioners must know and utilize AP style, as well.
  5. 5. Why it Matters • AP style aims to be totally accurate, clear to anyone with a high school education and inoffensive (curse words are generally avoided, for example) -- all while being as succinct as possible. Note that AP style differs significantly from style guides typically used in English classes, such as the APA and Oxford style guides.
  6. 6. How to Study • Read some of your AP Stylebook every day. Keep it handy and refer to it often. You probably won't be able to memorize everything inside the book, but you should at least remember common style issues (such as the aforementioned rules) and be familiar enough with the book that you can look up other issues quickly when you're writing on deadline.
  7. 7. Practice Makes Perfect • Many free practice quizzes are available online. Take this one and see how much you know: http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/ap-
  8. 8. Top Ten AP Style Rules • The AP Style book contains hundreds of rules. But some come up much more often than others. • What follows are 10 of the most common AP Style rules. You should memorize these. And you must follow these in your writing assignments for this course, or you will lose points.
  9. 9. • 1. Use a person's full name and title the first time you mention him or her in an article. For example, write Don Swanson, professor of communication, not Prof. Swanson. Once people have been fully identified, refer to them by last name only. There are exceptions, so always check the AP stylebook. Also: Do not use courtesy titles such as Mr., Miss, Mrs., or Ms., except in direct quotes or where needed to distinguish between people of the same name. Using courtesy titles may be polite. And the New York Times uses them in its articles. But it is not AP style.
  10. 10. 2. Spell out abbreviations or acronyms on first reference. For example, use Passaic County Community College the first time you refer to the college in a story. You may use PCCC on any references made after that. Another example would be to use DAR only after you have spelled out Daughters of the American Revolution on first reference.
  11. 11. 3. Abbreviate months when used with days, and use numerals (1, 2, 3, etc.) not ordinal numbers (1st, 2nd, etc.). Exceptions are March, April, May, June and July -- write them out, don't abbreviate. For example, write Sept. 2, 2008, not September 2nd, 2008. But, when using only the month and year, spell out the month.
  12. 12. 4. Generally, spell out the numbers zero through nine and use numerals for 10 and higher. Note, however, that numbers used at the beginning of a sentence are spelled out. Example: Five hundred twenty-four students attended. It is better, however, to rewrite the sentence so that it doesn't begin with a number. Example: Attending the event were 524 students from local colleges. Years are one of the exceptions. For example: 2008 was a bad year for investors.
  13. 13. 5. But use numerals even for ages younger than 10. This is another exception to that aforementioned number rule. When used like an adjective, say X-year-old, including the hyphens. Otherwise, don't use the hyphens. For example: the 5-year-old girl kicked her brother, who is 8 years old.
  14. 14. 6. Spell out the word "percent" but use numerals for the actual number. Examples: Participation increased 5 percent. Nearly 28 percent of all students don't like algebra. Exception: use may use the % sign in headlines.
  15. 15. 7. To indicate time, use figures and lowercase letters (9 a.m., 6 p.m.). Put a space between the figure and the letters. Exceptions are noon and midnight. Do not say 12 noon or 12 midnight -- it's redundant.
  16. 16. 8. Capitalize formal titles used before a name. For example, write Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Very long titles may be shortened or summarized unless they are essential to the story, but the shortened form should not be capitalized (for example, you may use spokesperson instead of Vice President for Public Affairs and Communications). Use lowercase when formal titles follow a name (e.g., Hillary Clinton, secretary of state). General titles, such as astronaut Neil Armstrong and actor Matt Damon, are lowercase.
  17. 17. 9. Capitalize names of people, places or things to set them apart from a general group. These include proper nouns such as Mike, Canada, Hudson River, and St. John's Church. But use lowercase for common nouns (i.e. nouns not coupled with a proper name), such as the river or the church. Also, put a word in lowercase when you have more than one proper noun sharing the word. Example: Ocean and Monmouth counties. Capitalize the first word in a sentence. Refer to the dictionary or AP Stylebook, if needed. When in doubt, use lowercase.
  18. 18. 10. Use the name of the website rather than the Web address. For example: YouTube, no YouTube.com or New York Times, not nytimes.com. Keep in mind that a URL is merely a source’s address in cyberspace. So, for example: when you cite sources, saying adelphi.edu instead of Adelphi University would be the equivalent of saying “According to 1 South Avenue in Garden City,” instead of “according to Adelphi University.” Use the source’s name, not address (physical, Internet or otherwise).
  19. 19. Still Need Practice? • More AP Style quizzes are available at: http://www.radford.edu/~rstepno/104/apquizzes.ht

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