Friday, August 12, 2016

When should I use numerals (1, 2, 3) instead of words (one, two, three)?

PLEASE NOTE: THIS ADVICE DOES NOT APPLY TO RESUMES, CVs AND APPLICATION FORMS, WHERE IT IS BEST TO CONSERVE SPACE BY USING NUMERALS (1, 2, 10, 20, etc.)

Also, even in essays, you can use numerals for 

Time (e.g. 1 a.m.)
$,¥

%

Q: HOW DO I WRITE NUMBERS?

  1. Use numerals for numbers 10 or over, and spell the words for 1 to 9.
  2. However, don't mix numerals and the words for them when talking about the same category or items. Choose a form and stick to it.


eg. Of the 20 students, only two failed the exam.
is incorrect.


Of the 20 students, only 2 failed the exam.
Of the twenty students, only two failed the exam.
Both are correct.

Source(s):


Use numbers (numerals) in these instances:
1. For all numbers 10 and above: "There were 17 students in class."
2. All numbers below 10 that are grouped in comparison to numbers 10 and above: "Ony 5 of 17 students passed the course."
3. When using numbers immediately before a unit of measure: "a 5-minute wait"
4. Numbers that represent statistical or mathematical functions or formulas: "a ratio of 12:1"
5. Numbers that represent time, dates, ages, sizes, scores, money, and points on a scale: "It happened 5 years ago"; "a roomful of 6-year-olds"; "$40."
6. Numbers that represent a place in a series: "week 7 of an 8-week diet"
7. In a list of four or more numbers: "We had 1, 2, 5, and 8 pieces, respectively"
For complete information, you may wish to check the APA manual.

Writing Numbers

Reviewing the Rules

By , About.com Guide
Why do so many people find it difficult to remember the rules for using numbers in formal writing? Probably because the rules seem a little fuzzy sometimes. So what can you do? It's no mystery: as with anything, read and study the rules several times, and it will all seem natural, eventually.


Writing Numbers One through Ten
Spell out numbers one through ten, as in this example:


  • My little brother ate four apples before dinner and became ill.
  • Why do parents always check to see if babies have ten toes?
Writing Numbers Above Ten Spell out numbers above ten, unless writing the number would involve using more than two words. For example:


  • I have sixty-three dead bugs in my collection.
  • My cousin has 207 bugs in his. (That would be three words, not counting "and.")
  • This site has given me a thousand helpful hints for my homework.
  • My grandmother is seventy-two today.
  • My little sister had about 4,763 measles on her face. (That would be four words.)

Always spell out numbers that begin sentences:
  • Four hundred and fifty people attended the birthday party.

However, you should try to avoid using long, clunky numbers at the beginning of a sentence:
  • There were 450 people at the party.

Dates, phone numbers, and time: Use numbers for dates:
  • My birthday is March 16.
  • He was born on Valentines Day, 1975.
And use numbers for phone numbers:
  • The phone number for the school is 800-555-6262
  • The international code for England is 44.
And use numbers for time if using a.m. or p.m.:
  • The alarm will sound at 7 p.m.
  • I make my bed at 7 a.m. each morning.
But spell out times when using "o'clock" or when the a.m. or p.m. are omitted:
  • The alarm will sound at seven o'clock.
  • I make my bed at seven each morning.

More tips here: 10 Rules for Writing Numbers and Numerals 


    - Updated by Vince on Sat 20 Aug 2016





    1 comment:

    1. 207 would not be said with the "and". The "and" only comes in with a decimal point. Therefore, 207 is two hundred seven. 207.8 would be two hundred seven and four fifths (or eight tenths.)

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