Writing Guidelines

Our Approach

At Columbia University Irving Medical Center (CUIMC), we strive to be clear, concise, and effective in our writing, so it is accessible to as many people as possible. Readers' understanding is our first priority.

CUIMC follows the Associated Press (AP) stylebook.

Go to AP Stylebook

On the web, readers often skim text before reading it. To encourage greater engagement and understanding, clearly structure your text, using bullets, lists, and subheadings.   

Writing Principles

  1. Fewer words are usually better. 
  2. Use active voice. 
  3. Avoid jargon.
  4. Stay consistent.
  5. Stay gender neutral. 
  6. Avoid unnecessary adverbs or adjectives.
  7. Disclose conflicts of interest.