Language Matters: New Guidance on Race-Related Terms in The Graduate Center Style Guide

July 9, 2020

The Graduate Center capitalizes Black and Indigenous. Our updated style guide includes a section on terms related to race and national origins.

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In recent weeks news organizations, including The Associated Press and The New York Times, have updated their editorial guides to reflect our changing times. Recent changes address how to use terms related to COVID-19 and race and ethnicity.

The Graduate Center has similarly updated its Editorial Style Guide ( We invite you to refer to it for all your print and digital communications for frequently used terms. Entries include terms related to The Graduate Center and those of more general usage. We generally follow Associated Press guidelines, with noted exceptions.

Our latest style guide includes a new section on language related to race and national origins. Two important changes, aligned with AP, are capitalizations of Black when referring to racial and ethnic groups that identify as Black and of Indigenous when referring to original inhabitants of a place. You will also find guidance on using terms such as Latinx (accepted in our style guide, unlike AP) and Hispanic.

Both the Editorial Style Guide and Brand Guide ( are helpful in maintaining consistency for branding, including the proper way to refer to The Graduate Center, ASRC, and other Graduate Center entities.

The guides can be found on The Graduate Center website under the News tab through the Communications and Marketing link. (You can also use the shortened URLs listed above, and we recommend bookmarking the pages.) We regularly review and update the style guide and welcome questions and clarifications. You can reach us at