What our proofreading course teaches about capital letters


The use of capital letters tends to be a controversial subject. Just ask our proofreading course students! Everyone has an opinion on what should be ‘capped’ But these views are often based on things taught at school or college, or that people have picked up along the way.

This is why it’s essential to follow a style guide. We use the Guardian’s on all our editing courses.

The rules on capital letters not that complicated. You should not put a capital on anything unless:

  • it’s a proper noun (like January)
  • someone’s name (like David)
  • a place name (like London)
  • a street name (like High Street)
  • a company name (like McDonalds)
  • someone’s title but not their job (like: “…and we asked Mrs [title] Marina Olivati, head proofreader [job] at Jacksons…”)
  • it’s listed in the style guide with a capital

Our students find this advice helps learn the Guardian style very quickly.

See our proofreading course