Abbreviations Without Definitions


PerfectIt spots abbreviations that have been used but have not been defined in the text.


Not all abbreviations need to be defined; for instance, BBC and USA are well known abbreviations that do not require definition. However, in some cases, especially when technical terms are used many times, authors will choose to define the abbreviation. If this is the case, it should be introduced at the first instance with either the abbreviation or definition in parentheses.

You should browse the list provided by PerfectIt in this check to ensure that all abbreviations will be comprehensible to readers. Where there may be confusion, ensure that the definition is introduced at the first usage of the abbreviation.


  • The tallest buildings are in the CBD (Central Business District).

  • The tallest buildings are in the Central Business District (CBD).

Customizing the check image0

You can add abbreviations and their definitions to this check in the Always Find tab of the style sheet editor. When you add definitions and abbreviations there, it will search for them in all checks related to abbreviations and their definitions. It will also use them as the suggested fix in this check. You can add multiple definitions by separating them with the | symbol. You can specify the default format for the definition and abbreviation in the Settings tab of the style sheet editor, where you can also tell PerfectIt to ignore abbreviations in tables, and in table, box and figure titles.

You can also specify abbreviations that PerfectIt should ignore in the Never Find tab, as well as customizing the check as you work.


This check does not include footnotes even with the footnote skipping option turned off.