About the Style Guide

Why do we have the WSDOT Style Guide?

The WSDOT Style Guide is provided to help writers and editors working for the Washington State Department of Transportation provide clear and consistent information. Adopting a consistent style reinforces our agency brand and makes it easier for our customers to understand and use the information we provide. 

The Style Guide is an extension of our Communications Manual. It is a reference and a guide, intended to improve accuracy and further our credibility. It is not a strict set of rules for all writing; it is a guide. The Style Guide was developed collaboratively, will evolve over time and is approved by the agency's Communications Director.

Does the WSDOT Style Guide replace the Associated Press Stylebook?

No. The WSDOT Style Guide augments the Associate Press Stylebook, the Chicago Manual of Style and the dictionary with terms commonly used by WSDOT communicators, writers and editors. In some cases, entries are unique to WSDOT. For formal correspondence only, refer to the governor's Executive Correspondence Guidelines, or The Gregg Reference Manual.

When should we use the WSDOT Style Guide?

Use the WSDOT Style Guide as a quick-reference guide to prevent errors and inconsistencies in the use of transportation terms, media communications, grammar and punctuation. If you have seen terms written differently, refer to the Style Guide to settle the question.

How do I add entries to the Style Guide or suggest revisions?

The WSDOT Style Guide is an evolving document. You may contact Webhelp with ideas for entries, comments and suggestions.