Our messaging provides a way to talk about the University of Iowa with consistency and impact. It explains what makes us different from other universities and ensures we’re all speaking with the same voice.

Drone shot of the Iowa River

Key messages

Use these themes when communicating to prospective audiences to reflect and reinforce the most distinctive facets of the Iowa brand.

A person reading at Iowa Writers’ Showcase, a literary reading and fundraiser for the Iowa Youth Writing Project

The writing university.

Iowa’s excellence in writing has created an unmatched array of writing-related resources that everyone can benefit from.

students talking in bike building class

Where art meets science.

Iowa’s balanced leadership in the arts and sciences encourages exploration and innovation across disciplines.

Lab students studying electricity, magnetism, light, and modern physics.

Collaboration over competition.

At Iowa, we believe great teams, not individuals, will find the answers to the biggest challenges.

Aerial view of campus

A college town like no other.

All of this is made possible by our uniquely integrated town and campus, making Iowa City an ideal place to live, learn, and work.

Messaging guide

Use our messaging guide when talking about the university—online, in conversation, in print materials, in speeches, and during presentations. It applies at all levels, from the president’s office to prospective student tour guides.

Download messaging guide

Effective messages are: 

  • Active. Avoid the passive voice, dull language, and run-on sentences.
  • Simple. Limit your use of adjectives and superlatives.
  • Concise. Keep sentences short, tight, and focused on the objective of your message.
  • Intentional. Understand your audience(s) and your unit’s goals. Use that understanding to guide your communications.
  • Clear. Avoid heavily academic or technical language in promotional or recruitment-driven materials.
  • Compelling. Look for opportunities to connect with your audience emotionally and move them to action.

University of Iowa in text

Refer to the University of Iowa on first reference and as “Iowa” for subsequent references. If doing so may lead to confusion between the university and the state, use “the UI” (not “U of I”). Use sparingly as adjective. Don’t capitalize “university” if standing alone, and only capitalize “the” in “the University of Iowa” if it is at the beginning of a sentence.

Examples:

  • The University of Iowa has 11 colleges.
  • Welcome to the University of Iowa campus.
  • Iowa has a world-renowned space-science program.
  • There are three public universities in Iowa; the UI has 11 colleges.
  • The university was established in 1847.
Icon illustrating message on paper

Boilerplate

Boilerplate text is standardized copy that provides a high-level overview of the University of Iowa. The copy has a formal tone and offers context for external audiences unfamiliar with our institution. 

Remember to consider your target audience when selecting which version to use in your marketing and communication pieces—what information do they need and what information is most relevant to them?

Boilerplate versions

The University of Iowa is among the top public research institutions in the nation. Home to more than 31,000 students, we deliver a world-class education in over 200 areas of study and over 100 graduate programs. From the most prestigious creative writing program in the United States, to a nationally recognized academic medical center, our balanced excellence in the arts and sciences encourages innovation and exploration across the disciplines.

Our 15:1 student-to-faculty ratio and smaller class sizes than peer institutions allow students to work directly with their professors while gaining real-world experience and valuable, practical skills. And with state-of-the-art academic resources in every field, Hawkeyes have access to personalized support and are equipped with the tools they need to stand out in a competitive workforce.

With more than 600 student organizations on campus, we offer a variety of opportunities to get involved and have fun outside the classroom. The university seamlessly blends into the heart of Iowa City, a top 10 college town that offers all the amenities of a big city in a safe, open environment. More than 100 restaurants, local shops, Big Ten athletics, and music venues are within walking distance of campus.

The University of Iowa is among the top public research institutions in the nation. Home to more than 31,000 students, we deliver a world-class education in over 200 areas of study. From the most prestigious creative writing program in the United States, to a nationally recognized academic medical center, students are encouraged to explore their interests across the disciplines.

Our 15:1 student-to-faculty ratio allows students to work directly with their professors while gaining valuable experience that stands out in a competitive workforce. And with more than 600 student organizations in one of America’s top college towns, Hawkeyes have every opportunity to get involved and create lasting memories beyond the classroom.

The University of Iowa is among the top public research institutions in the nation—offering a world-class education in over 200 areas of study to more than 31,000 students. From the most prestigious creative writing program in the United States, to a nationally recognized academic medical center, our balanced excellence in the arts and sciences encourages innovation and exploration across the disciplines.

Additional messaging resources

The University of Iowa is known both nationally and internationally as “the Writing University.” We encourage communicators to live up to this reputation by demonstrating care and precision in all messaging, including press releases, digital and print materials, social media posts, and editorials. Communication should also reflect the university’s goals toward diversity, equity, and inclusion, and be inclusive, respectful, and accurate. 

Editorial style guide

(Updated: October 31, 2023)

The University of Iowa uses predominantly AP style, with some exceptions. Consult the Editorial Style Guide for more instruction and details. 

Download Editorial Style Guide

DEI style guide

The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Style Guide attempts to answer common questions and provide thoughtful guidance on topics that may be encountered when creating and/or editing content.

View DEI Style Guide

Rankings and facts

(Updated: September 20, 2023)

The University of Iowa boasts an impressive list of rankings and historical firsts. An overview sheet offers current rankings and facts that can be used to support your messaging.

Download Rankings and Facts