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Note: This site will be updated as revisions or new information become available.
Site updated: June 26, 2014

Introduction
The Iowa Department of Transportation’s Style Manual is now available in this format to provide employees with easy-to-access information. The style information is for Iowa DOT employees writing content for reports, brochures, newsletters, pamphlets, news releases, Web pages and other publications that represent the Iowa DOT.

This site is where information can be easily updated by assigned staff and, therefore, users have access to the most up-to-date materials all in one location.

How do you use this style manual?
The style manual's design includes a navigation box on the left side of each page where style topics are listed alphabetically. To move through the manual, just click on the desired topic or return to the home page.

Why use this style manual?
Although the Iowa DOT uses The Associated Press Stylebook as its primary style guide for publications, the department also uses a writing style adopted over many years that is unique to the agency and transportation industry. This Iowa DOT Style Manual is also updated with names of new transportation programs, Iowa Code references, etc. (e.g., the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act [Recovery Act] of 2009) specific to the administration of the department.

This Iowa DOT Style Manual is not intended to repeat what is published in The Associated Press Stylebook, but rather to complement it with the Iowa DOT-specific styles and usage. The overriding principle is that style and formatting be used consistently within an article, publication or Web page.

While each division and office within the Iowa DOT is distinctive, each is also part of the whole department. Many readers who start with one publication from the Iowa DOT also receive, or seek out, other publications from the department.

If each division or office produces a publication with its own look and stylistic conventions — with no similarities to other department publications — then it becomes difficult for readers to associate the program with the Iowa DOT. That association is important because the Iowa DOT benefits from the success of each of its parts. When any one program makes a positive impression on the public, the Iowa DOT’s reputation is strengthened. As the department’s reputation gets stronger, every program benefits in turn.

 

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