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More words that shouldn't be capitalized

Posted by CreateSpaceBlogger on Sep 19, 2017 5:41:46 AM


In a recent post I explained that the seasons of the year should not be capitalized, nor should job titles that don't come directly before a person's name. Here are two other areas in which I frequently see capital letters where they shouldn't be:

Fields of study/work

Unless it's a language, fields of study or work aren't capitalized.

  • Gloria majored in Math. (INCORRECT)
  • Gloria majored in math. (CORRECT)

  • She's not sure yet, but she's thinking about pursuing a career in Physics. (INCORRECT)
  • She's not sure yet, but she's thinking about pursuing a career in physics. (CORRECT)

  • David teaches high school Chemistry. (INCORRECT)
  • David teaches high school chemistry. (CORRECT)

  • Maria studied both english and spanish in college. (INCORRECT)
  • Maria studied both English and Spanish in college. (CORRECT)

  • He's a world-renowned professor of History and French. (INCORRECT)
  • He's a world-renowned professor of history and French. (CORRECT)


When spelled out, undergraduate and graduate degrees are not capitalized.

  • Gloria has a Bachelor's Degree from UCLA. (INCORRECT)
  • Gloria has a Bachelor's degree from UCLA. (INCORRECT)
  • Gloria has a bachelor's degree from UCLA. (CORRECT)

  • David wants to get a Master's Degree in chemistry at Harvard. (INCORRECT)
  • David wants to get a Master's degree in chemistry at Harvard. (INCORRECT)
  • David wants to get a master's degree in chemistry at Harvard. (CORRECT)

  • She received a Bachelor's in math and a Master's in English from Berkeley. (INCORRECT)
  • She received a bachelor's in math and a master's in English from Berkeley. (CORRECT)
  • She received degrees in math and English from Berkeley. (CORRECT).

Unfortunately, capitalization rules are frequently flouted on corporate websites and in press releases, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't follow them. Just read any article in a major newspaper and you will see that professional writers still take them seriously.

-Maria Contributors/MurnaneHeadshot.jpg

Maria Murnane is a paid CreateSpace contributor and the best-selling author of the Waverly Bryson series, Cassidy Lane, Katwalk, and Wait for the Rain. She also provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Have questions for Maria? You can find her at

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2,963 Views Tags: self_publishing, authors, writing, capitalization, grammar_tip

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Oct 2, 2017 7:27 AM Seemac    says:

Hi Maria,

I question one of your examples in the use of capitals and seek an explanatoon. I agree that 'she's thinking about a new career new career in physics' is correct, but in the previous example, I would have thought that 'Gloria majored in maths,' was the proper answer, otherwise physics should be physic. there may be a transatlantic difference here. Can you help?

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