Monash terms and conventions

The following list of common Monash terms and conventions will help you keep the writing across our websites and publications consistent. If you can’t find what you need, you may find it elsewhere in the style guide. Use the A to Z index.

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z


Academic Board

The Academic Board of Monash University is responsible for oversight of the University’s academic affairs, including the maintenance of high standards in teaching and research. It should always be in capitals when used in full, but use ‘the board’ on the second reference.

Academic courses

Use uppercase for specific degrees, but lowercase for general degrees.

a Bachelor of Arts (Fine Arts)
a bachelor’s degree
a master’s degree
an arts degree

Use lowercase when talking generally about courses or units within a degree.

Honours courses are available in women’s studies and Japanese linguistics.

When being specific, capitalise the first word of a subject or unit name.

Logistics control systems
KOS3010 Korean civilisation

Academic and other Monash titles

Capitalise a title when it comes before someone’s name.

Emeritus Professor Sylvia Smith
Professor Seth Jones
Assistant Lecturer Mohammad Zarin

Use lowercase if you are referring to the position generically.

Mohammad Zarin, assistant lecturer in visual arts
Sylvia Smith was appointed emeritus professor in 2010.

Always capitalise the titles of senior Monash staff, even when not using the staff member’s name.

Yesterday, Vice-Chancellor Professor Byrne said…
The Pro Vice-Chancellor said yesterday...

Many senior roles at Monash are styled with the title followed by the division in brackets. Use capitals for the division too.

Pro Vice-Chancellor (Social Inclusion)

Other positions, such as ‘head of school’ and ‘fellow’ are lowercase.

Professor Seth Jones is a visiting fellow at Monash.
Our head of school, Professor Seth Jones...


Use 'Adviser' to describe someone who gives advice, not 'Advisor'.

Alumnus, alumni, alumna, alumnae

Alum (singular) and alumni (two or more) are the gender-neutral terms for a Monash graduate, and their usage is preferred. If specificity is required, alumnus refers to a man who has graduated from university, and alumna for a woman. Alumni refers to a group of graduates. Alumnae refers to an exclusively-female group of graduates. (See table below.) Although they’re foreign terms, there’s no need to use italics, as their use is common in English.

Who are you talking about?

Use this word

One graduate (gender neutral)


One graduate who identifies as male


One graduate who identifies as female


Two or more graduates (gender neutral)


Two or more graduates who identify as male


Two or more graduates who identify as female


study or subjects

Always distinguish between areas of study, majors and minors, and units within a degree.

Do not capitalise areas of study unless they form part of an official title or they are proper nouns.

She studied archaeology as part of her Bachelor of Arts.
He has a degree in computer science.
She is an English major.

Art, Design and Architecture

The faculty calls itself Art Design & Architecture. However, to keep style consistent on the website and in our print publications, add a comma and remove the ampersand.

Our online service is a database of frequently asked questions and also allows students to ask their own questions about Monash.

It should always be written in lowercase.


Do not use this term. Use 'Monash username' instead.


Bachelor degree

Use uppercase for specific degrees, but lowercase for general degrees. Include an apostrophe when used as a possessive.

a Bachelor of Arts (Fine Arts)
a bachelor’s degree
an arts degree

Building names and rooms

Lowercase ‘building’, except when talking about specific buildings. ‘Room’ should always be lowercase.

Many buildings on the Clayton campus have rooms we can use.
The seminar will be held in room 212 in Building 11 at 2pm.
Royal Exhibition Building

Monash campuses often use a shortened form – the number or letter that indicates the building plus the room number. At some campuses, the floor number is also indicated.

H2.35 has a capacity of 63. (This refers to Building H, level 2, room 35.)

Each campus sets their own shortened forms. [WHERE CAN YOU FIND THEM?] These are fine when your audience is familiar with the way our campuses are set up, but consider your reader. Do not use other shortened forms like ‘Buil.H’.



To refer to Australian campuses, use the full name in the first reference. ‘Campus’ should always be in lowercase, unless it begins a sentence. For example:

The Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences in on the Parkville campus.

Campus Centre

Capitalise the Campus Centre, and the official titles of other offices and buildings within Monash.

Collections (library)

Use a lowercase ‘c’ for the Monash University Library collection.  However, use capital ‘c’ for the library’s several special collections:

Ada Booth Slavic Collection
Asian Studies Research Collection
Laura and Israel Kipen Judaica Collection
Gilligich Yiddish Collection
Map Collection
Melbourne Centre for Japanese Language Education Collection (first reference); MCJLE Collection (second reference)
Music and Multimedia Collection
Pacific Law Collection
Rare Books Collection
Vera Bradford Music Collection

Cooperative Research Centres

Capitalise the full name on first reference. Abbreviate on second reference.

Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities
CRC for Water Sensitive Cities


Corequisite units are those a student typically takes concurrently in the same semester. Prerequisite units are those a student must have already completed in order to progress into another unit.

Note that these words do not take hyphens.

Credit points

Use lowercase.

Most academic units are worth six credit points.

Credit transfer

Use lowercase.

Please submit applications for credit transfer to Student Services by 10 February.


Degrees, courses and diplomas

Cite academic awards in full whenever possible. If you need to shorten the title of an award for space or convention, shorten all elements.

Graduate Diploma of Arts (Applied Linguistics)
GradDipArts (AppLing)

Capitalise the name of an award but not a general description of it. Include an apostrophe in the generic reference.

a bachelor’s degree in engineering
Bachelor of Engineering

For more information, see the university’s policy on course titling and abbreviation procedures.


Use uppercase for specific courses, but lowercase for generic references.

He received a Diploma of Arts.
He has a Monash College diploma.


Use lowercase.

Civil engineering is a discipline within engineering.


Use uppercase for courses and uppercase abbreviations for titles.

Doctor of Public Health
Dr Richard Turner
our family doctor

Domestic student

Refer to Australian citizens and permanent residents studying at our Australian campuses as ‘Australian domestic students’ in the first instance, and ‘domestic students’ or ‘Australian students’ in the second. Follow the same pattern for Malaysian and South Africa students.

South African domestic students can apply for a range of scholarships. See our options for South African students.

Double degree

Use lowercase when talking about double degrees. They are styled by simply joining the two degrees together.

Monash provides a range of double degrees.
Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Commerce




Capitalise when you use the faculty’s name in full, but not when contracted.

the Faculty of Science
the science faculty


Use uppercase for all letters.

FEE-HELP applies to students enrolled in non-research award courses.


Refer to 'course fees' rather than 'tuition fees'.

Fee-paying course

Use lowercase

John has enrolled in a fee-paying course, so he has to pay the full cost.


Use lowercase and hyphenate.

A full-time student completes 48 credit points of study per year.



Use lowercase.

John is a graduand because he has finished his degree, but has not graduated yet.

Graduate Diploma

Use uppercase for specific courses and lowercase for generic references.

a Graduate Diploma in Psychology she received after her first degrees.


Higher degrees by research or HDR

Avoid this term and its acronym. Use ‘research degrees’ instead.

PhD and master’s degrees are two research degrees you can undertake at Monash.


Please see ‘Academic and other Monash titles’ above.


Use lowercase, even as part of a title.

The honours degree of Bachelor of Arts
an honours degree

The shortened form looks like this:

BA (Hons)



Juris Doctor (JD)

Use uppercase.

The Monash Juris Doctor is for non-law graduates who want a law qualification.


Lectures and short seminars

Only capitalise the first letter of the first word for names of special lectures and one-off seminars. Use single quotes.

‘A question of media bias?’ by Mr Michael Schildberger
‘Traditional Thai music’ by Associate Professor Udom Aroonratna


At Monash, these are computer terms are one word, without a hyphen.

You need to login to authcate to get your email.


Major/minor sequence

Use lowercase.

Bachelor of Arts students can choose to major in history.

Master’s degree

Use uppercase singular for specific degrees, but lowercase possessive for generic references. Include an apostrophe in the generic reference.

Master of Journalism
a master’s degree


Please use a hyphen.

Mid-year enrolments begin soon.

Use lowercase to talk about our online portal.

Login to with your Monash username.



Please use a hyphen in these phrases.

This unit is available to study off-campus.


Part-time and full-time

Use lowercase and hyphenate.

A part-time student takes less than 75 per cent of a full-time load in a particular semester.

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Use uppercase for P and D initials.


Use lowercase.

Eligible graduates can go on to postgraduate study, such as an honours degree.


Please see ‘Academic and other Monash titles’ above.


This does not need a hyphen. For the difference between a prerequisite and a corequisite, please see ‘corequisite/prerequisite’.



Please use a hyphen.

You can re-enrol in January.

Room numbers and building names

Lowercase ‘building’ and ‘room’ except when proper nouns.

Please see ‘Building names and rooms’.


Scholarships and awards

Capitalise the full name for scholarships and awards.

Monash University Scholarships for Excellence


Use uppercase.

The School of Chemistry is part of the Faculty of Science.

Seasons, semesters and holidays

Use lowercase for the four seasons and semesters. Only capitalise the  first letter of the first word and proper nouns for religious and  national holidays.

Queen’s Birthday long weekend
Melbourne Cup day



Use lowercase.

Bachelor of Science graduands receive a testamur when they graduate.


Please see ‘Academic and other Monash titles’ above.



Use lowercase.

Lisa is an undergraduate student in the Bachelor of Economics degree.


Use sentence case (capitalise the first letter of the first word only in the unit’s title).

Professional practice in sport and outdoor recreation

Unit codes

This is a combination of three letters and four numbers assigned to all units. The first number generally indicates the year level at which the subject is offered.

EDF3617 Professional practice in sport and outdoor recreation


The proper names of universities, like ‘Monash University’, should be capitalised. The generic term should be lowercase.

Monash University is a member of the Group of Eight, a coalition of Australia’s leading universities.

If you are using a shortened form of our name, prefer ‘Monash’. However, if you do refer to ‘the University’, capitalise it.


Vice-Chancellor (VC)

Please see ‘Academic and other Monash titles’ above.