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GSS > Policy and guidance hub > Style.ONS: a guide to writing about statistics

Style.ONS: a guide to writing about statistics

Policy details

Metadata item Details
Publication date:13 September 2017
Author:Office for National Statistics
Approver:Office for National Statistics
Who this is for:Members of the Government Statistical Service
Type:Guidance
Contact:gsshelp@statistics.gov.uk

Brief description:

Style.ONS is a guide to writing about statistics that can be accessed online.

This guide is produced with help from the Government Digital Service (GDS) for all members of the Government Statistical Service (GSS).

It covers the elements of writing about statistics. It aims to make statistical content more open and understandable, based on editorial research and best practice. In the Office for National Statistics (ONS) this style guides replaces any previous writing standards and following style.ONS is mandatory.

Style.ONS contains:

  • Writing numbers: formats for statistical and non-statistical types of numbers, dates and measurements.
  • Language and spelling: includes abbreviations, grammar tips, and using capital letters.
  • Using punctuation: how to correctly punctuate your work.
  • How to write for the web: writing and structuring digital content to be accessible, searchable and readable.
  • Data visualisation: guidance for creating charts and tables and best practice for using colour in your work.

Review frequency:

Style.ONS is reviewed regularly and updated when new research and user feedback indicates changes need to be made.

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