Writing Tips

Policy versus Procedure: 

A Policy​: ​A Procedure:
​states a mandatory rule or official position ​states the steps to meet the rule/position
​states what to do and why ​answers how, when, who and sometimes what
​is generally brief ​is generally more detailed
​has longevity ​may change frequently as processes continue to improve

General Tips on Writing a Policy or Procedure:   

  • Use direct and simple language that is easy to understand
  • Define new and uncommon terminology and terms that can have more than one meaning
  • Spell out acronyms when used for the first time
  • Avoid using an individual’s name (to help eliminate information from becoming outdated)
  • Link to related policies, procedures, guidelines
  • Check for consistency with other documents (no contradictions)
  • If it’s not mandatory, it may be guidance/best practice
  • Refer to the University Editorial Styleguide for editorial questions, including abbreviations and capitalization
Additional Policy Writing Resources: 


Visit http://louisville.edu/policies or refer to the policy and procedure guidance templates and Policy Resources for more information.