The College uses The Chicago Manual of Style, 15th Edition, as its official guide on questions of style, grammar, and usage. It uses Webster’s New World College Dictionary, Fourth Edition, as its official guide to spelling, capitalization, and hyphenation. In cases where the Manual and the dictionary disagree, we favor the Manual.
However, for press releases, background statements, and other material destined for the news media, Bowdoin uses the Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law, even though many of its style points are at odds with the Chicago Manual.
In many cases, a style decision is not an issue of right or wrong; rather, it is simply a determination to follow one set of rules that will produce consistent publications.
There are some Bowdoin-related questions that are not addressed in these reference works, and there are a few cases where we intentionally depart from these resources on issues that relate to Bowdoin specifically. This site covers both common writing and publishing issues, and those that are specific to Bowdoin.