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Only use abbreviations if necessary, when space dictates or on second reference. If so, use standard abbreviations. A&S is not acceptable to abbreviate the College of Arts and Sciences. Frequently used standard abbreviations include the following:

  • ACT
  • a.m.; p.m.
  • GPA
  • MLB
  • Mr.; Ms.
  • NBA
  • NFL
  • RN
  • SAT

Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary provides an extensive list of standard abbreviations. Some names can be used on first reference, including the names of government agencies, associations, service organizations and unions: CIA, NAACP, UN, YMCA.

For most two-letter abbreviations, do not use periods, like degrees. Lisa earned a BA in Anthropology.

See also: acronyms and degrees.

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