S

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Sad
seasonal affective disorder

Safeway

Sainsbury's
for the stores; the company's name is J Sainsbury plc

Saint
in running text should be spelt in full: Saint John, Saint Paul. For names of towns, churches, etc, abbreviate St (no point) eg St Mirren, St Stephen's church.

saleable

Sats
standard assessment tasks

SATs
scholastic aptitude tests (in the US, where they are pronounced as individual letters)

Scandinavia
Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Iceland; does not include Finland

schoolboy, schoolgirl, schoolchildren, schoolroom, schoolteacher
one word

schools
Alfred Salter primary school, Rotherhithe; King's school, Macclesfield, etc

School
Cap up the s when talking about Schools within our University

school years
year 2, year 10, key stage 1, etc

scientific measurements
take care: "m" in scientific terms stands for "milli" (1mW is 1,000th of a watt), while "M" denotes "mega" (1MW is a million watts); in such circumstances it is wise not to bung in another "m" when you mean million, so write out, for example, 10 million C

amps A, volts V, watts W, kilowatts kW, megawatts MW, milliwatts mW, joules J, kilojoules kJ

scientific names
no need to italicise — E coli (Escherichia coli) etc. The first name (the genus) is capped, the second (the species) is lc — eg Quercus robur (oak tree)

ScotchTape
TM; say sticky tape

scratchcard, smartcard, swipecard

seas, oceans
uc, eg Black Sea, Caspian Sea, Pacific Ocean

seasons
spring, summer, autumn, winter all lc

seize
not sieze

self-control, self-defence, self-esteem, self-respect
hyphenated

Sellotape
TM; say sticky tape

Shia, Sunni
two branches of Islam (note: not Shi'ite); plural Shia Muslims and Sunni Muslims, though Shias and Sunnis are fine if you are pushed for space

shoo-in
not shoe-in

shopkeeper

shortlist, longlist

Short money
payment to opposition parties to help them carry out their parliamentary functions, named after Ted Short, the Labour leader of the house who introduced it in 1975

side-effects

siege
not seige

silicon
computer chips

silicone
breast implants

Singaporean names
in three parts: eg Lee Kuan Yew

Singin' in the Rain
not Singing

single quotes
in headlines (but sparingly), standfirsts and captions

siphon
not syphon

ski, skis, skier, skied, skiing

skipper
usually only of a trawler

Sky Plus
not Sky+

socialism, socialist
lc unless name of a party, eg Socialist Workers party

social security benefits
all lc: income support, working tax credit, etc

sod's law

soiree

south
south London, south-west England, the south-east: all lc

spacing

We have one space after a full stop and before the next sentence beginning. Not two, not three

spelled/spelt
she spelled it out for him: "the word is spelt like this"

spicy
not spicey

spoiled, spoilt
she spoiled her son: in fact he was a spoilt brat

spokesman, spokeswoman
are preferable to "spokesperson", but if possible attribute a quote to the organisation, eg "The university said ... "

spring

square brackets
use for interpolated words in quotations, eg Dr Marsh said: "Nigel [Hill] has my full support'

square metres
not the same as metres squared: eg 300m squared is 90,000 sq m which is very different to 300 sq m; we often get this wrong

stadium
plural stadiums

stalactites
stalactites cling from the ceiling; stalagmites grow from the ground

stationary
not moving

stationery
writing materials

sticky-back plastic

stiletto
plural stilettos

still life
plural still lifes

stilton
cheese

stimulus
plural stimuli

storey
plural storeys (buildings)

stratum
plural strata

stylebook
but style guide

sudoku

summer

Sunni, Shia
two branches of Islam (note: not Shi'ite); plural Sunni Muslims and Shia Muslims, though Sunnis and Shias are fine if you are pushed for space

supermarkets
Marks & Spencer or M&S, Morrisons, Safeway, Sainsbury's, Tesco, Woolworths (no wonder people get confused about apostrophes)

supermodel
every new face who makes a name for herself these days is labelled a supermodel; model is normally sufficient

supersede
not supercede

swap
not swop


swingeing

swinging 60s

synopsis
plural synopses

syntax
beware of ambiguous or incongruous sentence structure: 'A man was charged with exposing himself in court yesterday'

synthesis, synthesise, synthesiser



 
 

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