Digital Spy

Search Digital Spy
 

DS Forums

 
 

Full Stops after a bullet point?


Reply
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 21-10-2011, 22:38
OrdinaryMorning
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 2,378

Hey,

I'm currently writing out my CV and under my job history i've listed some of the skills/tasks etc that i've done within that job. However, i'm not sure whether you're supposed to end a bullet point with a full stop or not? I've seen mixed answers to this so i'm asking for your opinions.
OrdinaryMorning is offline   Reply With Quote
Please sign in or register to remove this advertisement.
Old 21-10-2011, 22:47
WiltshireWoman
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 25
Hey,

I'm currently writing out my CV and under my job history i've listed some of the skills/tasks etc that i've done within that job. However, i'm not sure whether you're supposed to end a bullet point with a full stop or not? I've seen mixed answers to this so i'm asking for your opinions.
This seems to explain it well and is from the Oxford Dictionaries website so fairly reliable:

http://oxforddictionaries.com/page/p.../bullet-points
WiltshireWoman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-10-2011, 23:33
MrsWatermelon
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Hertfordshire
Posts: 2,922
I would see what looks nicer and go with that.

Employers are not going to be that picky
MrsWatermelon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-10-2011, 23:46
gkec
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 432
It is more about what you say. But for bullet points keep it brief and to the point. That is not supposed to be a pun but if it helps you remember so much the better. I would end with a full stop. Using colons to introduce bullet points is probably unnecessary. I think the article is generally correct but you should follow it in "spirit" rather than have to be obeyed. In other words take on board what it says but make sure what you say sounds and looks good,
e.g.:[LIST=1][*]Does it sound good.[*]Is it easy to read.[*]Does it look good.[*]And finally is the punctuation correct.[/LIST]
You should notice that the first paragraph says essentially the same as the bullet points -- which is easier to read?
gkec is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-10-2011, 23:55
*stargazer*
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 11,590
You only use a full point after a bullet if it is a complete sentence. But the last bullet in a list is always followed by a full stop.

For example:

My skills include:
* Word
* Excel
* PowerPoint.

Or

My skills include:
* I have worked extensively with Microsoft Word.
* I can type at 40 words per minute.
* I can do shorthand at 100 words per minute.
*stargazer* is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-10-2011, 23:58
muffin789
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Devon
Posts: 1,608
You only use a full point after a bullet if it is a complete sentence. But the last bullet in a list is always followed by a full stop.

For example:

My skills include:
* Word
* Excel
* PowerPoint.

Or

My skills include:
* I have worked extensively with Microsoft Word.
* I can type at 40 words per minute.
* I can do shorthand at 100 words per minute.
This.
muffin789 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 13:38
grumpyscot
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Edinburgh
Posts: 6,844
I would have thought that the correct use would be a comma with a full stop only at the end of the last item, since the list is in effect a whole sentence.

i.e.
* I went outside,
* I fed the dog,
* I Murdered my neighbour.
grumpyscot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 13:48
Smokeychan1
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 9,025
You only use a full point after a bullet if it is a complete sentence. But the last bullet in a list is always followed by a full stop.

For example:

My skills include:
* Word
* Excel
* PowerPoint.

Or

My skills include:
* I have worked extensively with Microsoft Word.
* I can type at 40 words per minute.
* I can do shorthand at 100 words per minute.
In the second example, I personally wouldn't use then for sentences that short, and the top example, where only the last bp has a full stop? No, no, no. It looks awful, inconsistent and sloppy.
Smokeychan1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 13:52
c4rv
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Essex
Posts: 14,966
I would have thought that the correct use would be a comma with a full stop only at the end of the last item, since the list is in effect a whole sentence.

i.e.
* I went outside,
* I fed the dog,
* I Murdered my neighbour.
I wouldn't do this, bullet points are not a normal paragraph. I would go with the suggestion that if each item is one or two words then no full stop. if its a sentence then yes.
c4rv is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 14:57
Inkblot
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: West London
Posts: 21,055
[LIST=1][*]Does it sound good.[*]Is it easy to read.[*]Does it look good.[*]And finally is the punctuation correct.[/LIST]
1. Do you normally end a question with a full stop.
2. Perhaps a question mark is better?
3. Seriously, though, I don't think anyone would regard it as correct to use full stops in a list of bullet points
Inkblot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 14:57
*stargazer*
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 11,590
In the second example, I personally wouldn't use then for sentences that short, and the top example, where only the last bp has a full stop? No, no, no. It looks awful, inconsistent and sloppy.
The OP asked what was correct, not what was aesthetically pleasing.
*stargazer* is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 15:29
daznov11
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Glasgow,Scotland
Posts: 3,666
My English teacher taught me if the bullet point had a verb, use a full stop - if not, don't. Though she did mention that the final bullet point had to to have a full stop.
daznov11 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 15:43
oxfordruse
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: SW1
Posts: 1,011
The OP asked what was correct, not what was aesthetically pleasing.
I agree with Smokeychan1; having a full stop at the end of the last bullet looks messy. It isn't a question of what's correct, since there are plainly differing opinions on it; it's a question of style.

I've always gone by the same rules as that outlined in WiltshireWoman's link. As it says even there, "there are no fixed rules". But those guidelines provide for the most professional presentation, in my opinion. They're also used by government departments in their communication and style guidance.
oxfordruse is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 15:51
TheBigM
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: moon
Posts: 12,697
The most important thing is to be consistent. Either use it on all or on none.

I grappled with this a lot in my last job. I came to the conclusion of not using them. It looked nicer without. But if I had whole paragraphs on a bullet, I used them to separate the sentences within a paragraph but no full stop at the end of each bullet
TheBigM is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 16:12
*stargazer*
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 11,590
I agree with Smokeychan1; having a full stop at the end of the last bullet looks messy. It isn't a question of what's correct, since there are plainly differing opinions on it; it's a question of style.

I've always gone by the same rules as that outlined in WiltshireWoman's link. As it says even there, "there are no fixed rules". But those guidelines provide for the most professional presentation, in my opinion. They're also used by government departments in their communication and style guidance.
There are fixed rules. If you choose not to follow them that is fine. But the OP asked the question and I responded.
*stargazer* is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 16:13
oxfordruse
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: SW1
Posts: 1,011
There are fixed rules. If you choose not to follow them that is fine. But the OP asked the question and I responded.
Lol, okey dokey. Where's this rulebook, then?
oxfordruse is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 17:06
Smokeychan1
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 9,025
The OP asked what was correct, not what was aesthetically pleasing.
The OP says they had received varying answers before posting; s/he wanted our opinions. Obviously, the fact that they already received conflicting answers is proof enough (for me) that hard and fast rules don't apply, as previously mentioned. But I will add that, if bullet pointing isn't done in an aesthetically pleasing way, then it rather defeats the purpose of the exercise.

I wasn't having a go at you personally, just sharing my opinion as asked for.
Smokeychan1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 17:39
Little Nell
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 982
You only use a full point after a bullet if it is a complete sentence. But the last bullet in a list is always followed by a full stop.

For example:

My skills include:
* Word
* Excel
* PowerPoint.

Or

My skills include:
* I have worked extensively with Microsoft Word.
* I can type at 40 words per minute.
* I can do shorthand at 100 words per minute.
But the second version isn't gramatically correct. The problem is 'My skills include: ....I have worked extensively with....'

It could be reworded -
My skills include: working extensively with Microsoft Word etc.

I much prefer the first version.

Sorry if I'vve gone off topic!
Little Nell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 17:43
misschippy
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Essex
Posts: 82
Hmmm, I always thought it was:

* the first line;
* second; and
* last.

You learn something new every day
misschippy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-10-2011, 17:56
IslandNiles
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 12,821
But the second version isn't gramatically correct. The problem is 'My skills include: ....I have worked extensively with....'

It could be reworded -
My skills include: working extensively with Microsoft Word etc.

I much prefer the first version.

Sorry if I'vve gone off topic!
Agreed. The bullet points should each be a continuation of the sentence that was started at the top. You can get round it though, by re-wording the opening sentence. Something like: "My skills include the following:" Then each bullet point will form a complete sentence.

Hmmm, I always thought it was:

* the first line;
* second; and
* last.

You learn something new every day
Again, I agree. I think it really should read as follows:

My skills include:
- working extensively with Microsoft Word;
- typing at 40 words per minute; and
- taking shorthand at 100 words per minute.

However, I think the most important thing is consistency. If you prefer to use a full stop after the bullet points, do it after all of them. If you want to omit them, don't use them at all.
IslandNiles is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24-10-2011, 23:34
alfster
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 3,701
People will be scanning the CV and hence you just want it too look 'right'.

In the examples above I would not put the full stop after 'Powerpoint' as it looks out of place.

I would not use semi-colons or 'and's just full stops after full sentences (I do use a lot of semi-colons but avoid in bullet points in CVs...other places I do.

Although not totally correct it looks better and as I am a bit of a grammar Nazi I know it's not totally correct but CVs have a different grammar anyway which isn't always correct English.

Also, if it's going to HR people they'll probably not know the difference anyway...and anyone who does will not mind...and if they do...I would not want to work with them!
alfster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24-10-2011, 23:41
ff999
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Middlesex
Posts: 4,452
I have a editorial job, and the 'rule' we all have to use is;
*If the whole line of text makes a sentence that can stand alone, it should start with a capital letter and finish with a full stop.
*If the bullets are for a list that would not be stand alone sentences, then start with a lower case, and no full stop.

So when I go shopping tomorrow, I have on my list;
*bananas
*oranges
*cleaning equipment

Edit: I broke my own rule!
ff999 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25-10-2011, 10:53
Mumof3
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 4,011
I don't tend to use full stops in conjunction with bullet points, and certainly never in presentations.

The bullet point format is intended to strip away superfluous content, so there should be no need to add in redundant punctuation.
Mumof3 is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply



Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 
Forum Jump


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 15:33.