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The Style Manual

for Mathematics Teachers

Writing Style Examples

Addition space, plus sign, plus 1+2

Subtraction use an “En Dash” (ALT 0150) 1–2

Negative or
En Dash or plus, with no space –1 or +1
Multiplication multiplication sign with spaces (ALT 0215) 1×2

Ratio There is no space used for ratios 1:20

Use words if starting a sentence (unless there are Twenty-one people ...
Using words or numbers later in the sentence, then rearrage the not: Twenty one people
numerals sentence). Don’t start a sentence with a number and 40 dogs ...
accompanied by a symbol. $1400 was earned ...
Use words for numbers less than 9 and numerals for
numbers larger than 9. ... and three people ...
(Unless numbers are being compared, then use ... and 21 people ...
numerals for all numbers)
one hundred and
Use a hyphen for numbers up to 99
two numerals in
use a comma or rearrange the sentence By 2005, 75 people
a row
Use a space (not a comma) to group in lots of 3 for 12 345 or 0.123 45
Large Numbers
more than 1000 1234 not 1 234
12 345
If lining up numbers, then insert a space for 1000 1 234
billion = 1000 million trillion = 10
Use scientific notation to avoid confusion. quadrillion = 1015
For decimals less than one, use a zero before the
Decimals 0.25, not .25
decimal point
If comparing two decimal values, they should have the The levels varied from
same number of decimal places 3.26 to 4.30 ...
Fractions Don’t use a forward slash for fractions ½ or , not 1/2
... first ...
Ordinal words are preferable in general text, or to conserve
... two-hundredth ...
numbers space use numerals
21st (not 21st)
Page and paragraph numbers in lowercase i, ii, iii, ...
Uppercase for titles of books and monarchs (roman George V
numerals are not ordinal) (not George Vth)
Use an en dash and limit the number of digits in the 402–5 12–15
second part unless the span ends in 11–19 1992–98 or 1992–1998
Spans not with spans of years 56–55 BC not 56–5 BC
not with BC periods not from 4–8 or
don’t use the words from or between between 6–10 pm
–2 °C to 4 °C
For temperature use ‘to’ instead of the en dash
not –2 °C–4 °C
No Roman Numerals are omitted in the second part xxiii-xxix not xxiii-ix

Based on Style Manual (6th ed.) –
Use a full stop, not a colon. Insert a space and then am
9.00 am
Times or pm (if not obvious from the context)
9 am
For whole hours, the 00 can be omitted.
The terms noon and midnight are preferred to 12.00
noon midnight
pm and 12.00 am
For twenty-four hour time, four digits are always used,
no punctuation or space is inserted.
To represent hours, minutes, seconds, use colons. 11:14:23
avoid bi (as in biweekly), except when used with twice a week
Time prefixes
biannual (twice a year) and biennial (every two years) fortnightly
Use BC (Before Christ), AD (anno Domini – in the 1920 AD
Eras Year of our Lord), CE (Common Era) or BP (Before 630 BC
Present), leaving a space. BCE is not used. not 630 BCE
Use words or numerals 18th century or
Centuries eighteenth century
(avoid abbreviations) not C18 or 18C
Decades Use a trailing s 1960s
9 September 1999
In running text, don’t abbreviate. Don’t use commas or Friday 12 March 1982
change the order not September 9, 1999
not 9th September 1999
Use words if starting a sentence The first of January...
When using numerals use a forward slash or full stop 12/03/1982
(not hyphen) 12.03.1982
The international standard recommends year, month, 1982-03-12
date (sorts better). Use a hyphen or unspaced. 19820312
Millions of dollars are written entirely in numerals, or $1 000 000
using the word ‘million’ (spaced) or m (no space) $1 million $1m
amounts less than $1 25c or $0.25
a minimum of two decimal places should be shown $0.80
Other currencies, put the relevant letters before the A$4.32 AUD4.32
symbol or the three-letter code with no space US$1.23 USD1.23
Generally, use a space between the number and symbol 20 mm
(Degree ALT 0176) 14.2 °C
Don’t use a space for the symbols with degree (ALT
minute (ALT 0034), second for angles (ALT 0039)
No space for $ or % $100 or 40%
use a forward slash or negative power for derived units m/s or ms–1
Other acceptable units:
days d
hours h
minute min
litre L (preferred) or l
tonne t
nautical mile n mile
knot kn
When using words Celsius is capitalised, none of the millimetre
others are. Celsius
When using words, use per kilometres per hour
(don’t abbreviate to p) km/h (not kmph or kph)

Based on Style Manual (6th ed.) –