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Editorial Style Guide | Correspondence


Addresses should start with the specific and end with the general:

Name of person
Name of department
Name of university
Street address or PO box number
City, state, zip code


Stephen Stiller, Ph.D.
Department of Physics
Portland State University
PO Box 751
Portland, OR 97207-0751

Office of the Dean
Graduate School of Social Work
Portland State University
Post Office Box 751
Portland, Oregon 97207-0751

Exception: When placing a return address on a standard (third-class) mailing, the U.S. Postal Service prefers that the name of the university be placed first, followed by the name of the department, post office box, and city, state, and zip.

electronic addresses

Avoid breaking electronic addresses. If you must break one, do so after a slash or an @ sign.

Italicize Web addresses and email addresses in running text.

If an electronic address ends a sentence, place a period at the end of the address.

mail codes

The official mail code list is maintained by Mailing Services. Do not make up new mail codes without first consulting with Mailing Services.

Do not place mail codes next to the PSU post box number. Not only does the U.S. Postal Service discourage this practice, but your department's mail code has nothing to do with the University's post box number. The mail code is an abbreviation of your department's name, so when you want to indicate your campus mail code, place it next to your department's name:

Department of English / ENG
Portland State University
PO Box 751
Portland, OR 97207-0751

mailing indicia

Please consult with Mailing Services before using the nonprofit mailing indicia. Incorrect or improper use of the indicia can result in the USPS refusing a mailing or imposing sanctions on the University. Never use the indicia for reply mail. The correct language and presentation for standard (third-class) mail is:

Nonprofit Org.
U.S. Postage
Portland, OR
Permit No. 770

street addresses

Street addresses for all PSU buildings are listed in the PSU Faculty and Staff Directory. Note that the mailing address for PSU is PO Box 751.

See also Abbreviation.

Zip codes

The correct Zip code is usually closely related to the post office box number of your department. For example:

PO Box 751
Portland, OR 97207-0751

PO Box 908
Portland, OR 97207-0908