Italics are often used to draw attention to words or phrases, for instance to provide an example.

Exemple correcte Only use etc. at the end of a series of examples and never at the end of a series introduced by the words like or such as.

However, we generally recommend restricting their use to the following cases.

  • Titles of books, journals and other publications

    Unless following specific editorial guides, write the titles of books, journals and other published materials such as theses, end-of-degree projects, dictionaries and reference works in italics, to distinguish the titles from the rest of the sentence.

    Exemple correcte Recent research into the applications of microbial cyanobacteria on oil pollution has been published in the latest edition of the prestigious journal Science Today.

    Be aware, however, that conventions for indicating the title of a book or journal may vary depending on the publication or academic field. You will therefore have to bear these factors in mind, depending on the purpose of your text and where it will be published. For additional comment, see Titles in the section on capitalisation.

  • Words and expressions in other languages

    Italicise words or expressions from other languages that are not common in English (that is, words not included in a reliable English dictionary) and that may therefore not be readily understood.

    Exemple correcte The ceiling of the Faculty’s Aula Magna offers visitors a beautiful example of Catalan Modernisme.

    Other expressions of this kind are the Latin terms for academic distinction, cum laude, magna cum laude and summa cum laude (meaning “with honour”, “with great honour” and “with highest honour”, respectively), which should be italicised.

    But note that foreign words that have now become part of normal English do not require italics.

    ad hoc
    status quo
    vice versa

    Note also that, in the event of using a non-English form for the official name of an organisation (universities, companies, governmental bodies, etc.) these names are not written in italics.

    Exemple correcte The University is currently involved in discussions with the Red Española de Supercomputación (Spanish Supercomputing Network).
Darrera actualització: 17-11-2021
Impressió del capítol | Impressió de la pàgina
Recommended citation:
«Italics» [en línia]. A: Criteris de la Universitat de Barcelona (CUB). Style Guide. Barcelona: Universitat de Barcelona. Serveis Lingüístics. <> [consulta: 18 gener 2022].