Capitalization guide for academic degrees
It’s University Commencement season, a time of great celebration but also one for confusion over capitalization (or capitalisation for my UK colleagues).
I don’t have a style guide in front of me (bad professor!) so I turned to Teh Googles.
The first search return that made sense to me comes from the University of South Carolina:
Official college degrees when spelled out.
- Bachelor of Fine Arts, but bachelor’s degree
- Master of Philosophy, but master’s degree
The major when it appears as part of the degree.
- Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
However, lowercase the major when it follows the word degree.
- She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science.
However, checking other sources I’m finding conflicting information that degrees should never be capitalized unless they follow a person’s name (Associated Press Stylebook):
- David John Kroll, Bachelor of Science in Toxicology
Other sources are conflicting on the use of apostrophes: bachelors or bachelor’s.
Come to think of it, I should have used university commencement in the first line of this post. University Commencement should be used to refer to the one at my university. Right?