Comma and title name of the professor

0

I am not sure if I placed the comma correctly, but also should I capitalized the title of "ecomonic professior?"

Thanks

See example:

When I returned to Darby College my economics professor, Andre Sallee, suggested that I lose no time in trying to setup another interview with you.
asked Apr 18 '12 at 02:04 Dawn New member

3 answers


2

Robert correctly describes many of the exceptions to the general rule regarding capitalization of titles, but omitted the general rule.

 

Titles are capitalized when they immediately precede the proper name they modify.  So "Professor Alan Jackson", but not "Alan Jackson, professor of economics".  Because you've used your professor's name as an interrupter (see Robert's description), the title no longer modifies the proper name and is not capitalized. (As an interrupter, the proper name now modifies the subject which is "economics professor".

 

Robert describes a number of exceptions to the rule. In America, the exception for "Dean" is not universal. Some styles guides accept this usage, others discourage the practice, and some -- Chicago Manual of Style and Modern Language Association -- acknowledge the practice without taking a stand.

 

An exception that Robert does not mention involves the sovereign or chief executive of a country. This exception varies by location. In the United States, "the President" always receives a capital, but "queen" is only capitalized when it precedes a proper name -- "Queen Elizabeth".  In Britain, the capitalization rule is generally reversed.

 

Regarding the commas .... In Dawn's first sample, a comma should be added between "college" and "my" to separate the introductory clause from the main clause.  In Dawn's second sample, a comma should be added between "Professor" and "that".  In the second, "Professor" is another interrupter that must be set off by commas.

 

Hope this helps.

link comment answered Apr 18 '12 at 04:23 Jeff Pribyl Grammarly Fellow
1

Your comma placement is correct. There are two things to test this type of situation.

  1. Whatever you place between the commas should provide more information to the reader. Another example might be: I went to the beach, in Brighton, for my holiday. Here, the fact that you went to the beach is the focus, and the fact that it was in Brighton provides more information to the reader.
  2. Second, if you have two commas, you should be able to remove what is between the two commas, and the sentence should still make sense. Let us consider: I went to, Brighton, for my holiday. If we remove the phrase encapsulated by comments, our sentence no longer makes sense. (However, there are instances where you have multiple commas and yet they are not encapsulating – an example of which is my next sentence, where each subsequent clause is providing information on the preceding clause.)

As to your question about the capitalisation of economics professor, my response would be no, as this is not an official title; the person is a professor of economics. If the person was rather the head of the law school, which in Australia we would call the Dean, you would be correct to write the Dean of the law school. Or, if the person was the holder of a named or sponsored position, for example the ACME Trust Dynamite Economics Professor, then you would use capitals.

 

While this is ouside the scope of your question, I would suggest you re-write the sentence as shown below. This avoids the slightly chatty nature of your sentence.

 

When I returned to Darby College, my economics professor, Andre Sallee, suggested that arrange another interview with you as quickly as possible.

 

I trust this answers your question and provides a general explanation too.

link comment answered Apr 18 '12 at 02:56 Robert Cooper New member
1

Thank you!  I am still trying to get this comma thing done.

 

This paragraph, I have debated if I should put a comma after Professor and the word "That"

 

I hope, Professor that it still may be possible to set up another appointment sometime soon, so that I may discuss my qualifications further with you.

link comment answered Apr 18 '12 at 03:09 Dawn New member

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