Colons play a hidden but important role in the planning and writing of effective titles for academic articles. This paper presents three studies of current practices in using colons and four studies of students' and academics' preferences for titles with and without colons. The practice studies showed disciplinary differences in the use of colons (with a greater use in the arts than in the sciences). They also showed that more single authors than multiple authors use colons. Using colons in the titles of academic articles had no effect upon their subsequent citation rates. The preference studies showed that students and academics generally preferred titles with colons to titles without them. However, these results depended to some extent on the materials and the methods used.
Library & Information Science Research – Elsevier
Published: Dec 1, 2007
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