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Preferred spellings and usage

  • adviser not advisor.
  • awhile Spell solid when not preceded by for . . .stay awhile, but stay for a while.
  • benefit, benefited, benefiting not benefitted, benefitting.
  • chair holder Spell open, two words.
  • chair of excellence Lowercase shortened and incomplete forms chair of excellence in the humanities, humanities chair, Suntrust Bank chair. Cap when the complete name is used, the Burkett Miller Chair of Excellence in Management and Technology.
  • Chancellor's Roundtable, the roundtable. . .
  • Coach, head coach Capitalize coach when used directly before the name; lowercase when used with a qualifying term. . . .said Coach Jones. . .said head coach Jones. . .
  • ensure, insure Use ensure to mean guarantee; insure for references to insurance.
  • farther, further Use farther for distance; further for time or quantity.
  • 50 Plus, 50 Plus Club Use figure and word, not 50+ or Fifty Plus.
  • Founders' Day, but Founders Hall
  • fund raising, fund-raising, fund-raiser Use fund raising and fund-raiser as nouns. Fund-raising is the adjective form.
  • Homecoming Capitalize UTC Homecoming. Lowercase homecoming in general use.
  • ID Caps, no periods.
  • kickoff, noun; kick off, verb, spelled open.
  • noncredit not non-credit.
  • president-elect Use hyphen.
  • state of Lowercase state of constructions, state of Tennessee.
  • telethon, phone-a-thon, bike-a-thon, walk-a-thon
  • total, totaled, totaling not totalled, totalling.
  • UT system Lowercase system.


The following are on the editors' "hit" list of words not to be used in University publications.

  • And/or Bureaucratic jargon, choose one word or the other.
  • Contact Use phone, write, or call.
  • Hopefully Not accepted by usage authorities when used to mean it is to be hoped or let us hope. Take responsibility: I hoped, we hope.
  • Impact, impacted To describe things bumping together, yes, but not to mean effect.
  • Loan as a verb. The verb is lend, lent.
  • Offputting, ongoing Let's offput these words and ongo to others.
  • Utilize Bureaucratic form of use, use use.