Writing Tip: Job Titles & Departments

In most cases, job titles are lowercased:

  • He is the professor of biblical studies.
  • Jane Smith, president and CEO, will speak at the meeting.
  • Author, speaker, and writer John Smith will attend the conference.

However, there are a few exceptions where capitalization is necessary.

  1. In title-cased text, capitalize job titles as you would any other term.
  2. When the title is used before someone’s name, as part of their name, it should be capitalized.

President Barack Obama gave his address.

Editor in Chief Jane Smith will review the publication.

  1. If the title is a proper term, use the correct capitalization.

He has been appointed the John A. Smith Professor of History.

And similar rules apply to departments, too! In general, lowercase department names unless they’re used as the name itself or have a proper name:

  • The marketing department will run the promotion.
  • All promotions requests go through Marketing.
  • The university’s department of history is holding an open house.
  • The John A. Smith Department of History is holding an open house.

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