California State University, Fullerton

Editorial Style

Jargon, Clichés and Colloquialisms

Jargon, cliches and colloquialisms are distractions that usually have no place in the university’s publications. Overused words and phrases lose both meaning and impact. Say what you mean without resorting to a vague, shopworn or hackneyed vocabulary. English is a rich and expressive language and writers should have no need to take shortcuts wordwise. Avoid the temptation to add -size and -wise to words; try not to prioritize, agendize and utilize. Instead, arrange priorities, place on the agenda, and use.

Avoid wordy expressions, redundant words and extended phrases; obtain opinions rather than feedback; offer reactions rather than input; enough is always better than adequate enough; pre-planning is redundant; and it is easier to center on an issue than it is to center around one.