Writing style guide

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These writing style guidelines outline our department's preferred use of words, phrases and punctuation for all print and web content.

See below for a list of additional resources and contact Engagement, Communication and Media at digital@dsdmip.qld.gov.au if you have any queries about these guidelines.

Writing well: a checklist

Use this checklist to ensure your content remains consistent, engaging and high quality.

Plain language

We use plain language in our print and web material, ensuring content is both professional and accessible.

Spelling and capitalisation

Find out how we use capitalisation in our published work and how to check your spelling.


A simple overview of grammar, from nouns and verbs to pronouns and prepositions.


Know your punctuation rules and where to use them effectively in your written work.

Text layout

Structuring your content well, including when to use headings, bullet and numbered lists, and tables.

Text emphasis

Know when to use italics and bold text in your publications.

Numbers and measurements

We have a consistent approach to the way we use numbers and measurement across the department.

Shortened forms

How to use abbreviations, contractions, acronyms, initialisms and symbols.

Non-discriminatory language

We avoid stereotypical, stigmatising or divisive descriptions in our writing.

Use of key terms

When it is appropriate to use key terms such as 'the government', 'the state' or 'the department'.

Additional resources

Use these additional resources to help you with your writing:

Note: Use the following details to access the online version of the Macquarie dictionary:

Related links