University of California, Irvine ... UC Irvine ... UCI: What’s in a Name?
A lot! That’s why we’ve developed this Web page to assist your writing, speaking and communicating about UC Irvine. This is a companion to the campus’s Graphic Identity Standards and Communications Style Guide.
A single, unified identity plays to the strength of our university. The following guidelines have been developed to facilitate a common system of language, or nomenclature, which enables clear, consistent communications about our campus.
We are the University of California, Irvine or UC Irvine or UCI. Please use “UC Irvine” in all references to this university, with the following exceptions: “UCI” may be used in headlines, subheads and quotes (if it’s what the speaker said). When writing for a non-local audience who may not be familiar with our university, “the University of California, Irvine” is preferable on first reference, followed by “UC Irvine” in second and subsequent references.
- First, Second and Subsequent References: “UC Irvine” is preferred in all textual references to the university, though “University of California, Irvine” may be suitable for certain target audiences. For unfamiliar – particularly regional, national and international – audiences, use the university’s full name for added clarity; for campus and other familiar audiences, use “UC Irvine” in the first reference.
- Headlines and Headings: Headlines and headings in correspondences, publications, websites, etc., are often subject to spacing constraints and, thus, require significant flexibility in their application. Therefore, it is acceptable to use “UCI” in headlines and headings. Other words, such as “campus” or “university,” may be appropriate to avoid redundancy.
- Titles and Names: Since the family of “University of California, Irvine” and “UCIrvine” wordmarks are preferred in most graphical applications, and since “University of California, Irvine” and “UC Irvine” are the preferred first textual reference to the university, must the titles or names of programs, organizations and events follow suit? Yes, whenever possible. UC Irvine Medical Center and UC Irvine Foundation are two examples of recently updated references. However, in some cases, “UCI” is part of a legal entity name. For this reason, or for reasons of continuity or familiarity, “UCI” is allowable in such applications.
- Text vs. Graphics: The family of “UCIrvine” wordmarks, with their condensed spacing, should only be used as graphic elements (as provided in official artwork available on the campus’s Graphic Identity Standards Web site), and should not be replicated in textual forms. In text, “UC Irvine,” with a space between “UC” and “Irvine,” is appropriate.
- UCIrvine: Used only as a graphic element (as provided in official artwork available on the campus’s Graphic Identity Standards website); should not be used in text.
- UC Irvine: The preferred textual reference to the university, particularly when addressing familiar or internal audiences.
- University of California, Irvine: Preferred as a first reference for non-local or unfamiliar audiences.
- UCI: May be used in headlines, subheads and quotes (if it’s what the speaker said).
These guidelines do not cover all usages or applications; for additional assistance, contact Strategic Communications at 949-824-6922. For guidance on the campus’s graphic standards, including use of the UC seal, click here or call the number above.
Campus Language – A Brief History
The University of California, Irvine opened in 1965, and for much of its history has been referred to by its full name or the initials UCI. “UCI” traditionally was preferred over “UC Irvine,” in part, because in our early days the city of Irvine did not yet exist and awareness of the Irvine name was limited. Because the campus’s founders likened the abbreviated UCI name to such prestigious research universities as MIT and UCLA, the UCI identity grew in popularity. Logos were created and signs erected. Over time, “UCI” has indeed become synonymous with one of America’s leading public research universities for countless faculty, staff, alumni, students and community members. There is only one UCI!
Today, the University of California, Irvine has become known internationally for excellence in research, teaching and public service. And, thanks in no small part to the university’s success, the city of Irvine is widely regarded as a business, residential and academic center. But while the acronym UCI remains permanently etched in the minds of many, it is not always recognized or understood by those unfamiliar with the campus or outside our geographic area. Even those who recognize that “UC” stands for University of California don’t always associate our “I” with Irvine.
To address this issue, the university’s graphic identity standards were amended in 2001 to include a family of “UCIrvine” wordmarks, which built upon the previous UCI visual identity system, maintaining UCI as the “cornerstone” element. While the new “UCIrvine” wordmarks did not fully replace the UCI wordmarks, they were preferred for most audiences and applications, including all external audiences.
The current identity system provides flexibility in communications and follows a common-sense approach in its application.