Rules for Headline Writing. Basic rules for writing captivating, correct headlines. Material property of the AR Dept. of Education Distance Learning Center. It may be used for non-profit, educational use only after contacting the ADE DLC at http://dlc.k12.ar.us ER.
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Basic rules for writing captivating, correct headlines.
Material property of the AR Dept. of Education Distance Learning Center. It may be used for non-profit, educational use only after contacting the ADE DLC at http://dlc.k12.ar.us ER
Use contrasting type styles between primary and secondary heads: bold and italic, for example
Do not split an infinitive or prepositional phrase from one line to the next.
Don’t split a word with a hyphen from one line to the next.
There should not be any opinions in a news headline.
Do not split a proper name from one line to another. line to the next.
There should not be information in the headline that is not in the story.
Don’t split a verb phrase, prepositional phrase or infinitive phrase from one line to another.
Omit the articles line to the next.a, an and the.
Use numerals rather than spelled out number names
Don’t abbreviate unless the readers will understand.
Avoid passive forms of the verb “to be”. line to the next.
Headline should use simple construction: Subject, verb, direct object.
Avoid using the name of the school or mascot in the headlines.
Do not include the “when” in the headline.
Do not repeat key words from one part of the headline to the other.
Use literary techniques such as alliteration, puns, satire if appropriate.
Quotes make great secondary heads, but not primary headlines.
Avoid abbreviations in a headline. Use initials only if your readers will know what they stand for.
Write in present tense if the event has already happened. if appropriate.
Use “can” or “may” instead of “will.” Predictions change.
Write in future tense or use infinitive (to + verb) to show that something will happen in the future.
Primary headlines do not necessarily have to have a subject and verb – if there is a secondary headline included.
Secondary headlines should always have a subject and a verb.
Keep punctuation to a minimum. Use single quotes instead of doubles. Use a comma instead of word ‘and.’ Use a colon instead of word ‘said.’