Pre-nominal letters

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Not to be confused with Post-nominal letters.

Pre-nominal letters are a title which is placed before the name of a person as distinct from a post-nominal title which is placed after the name. Examples of pre-nominal titles, for instance professional titles include: Doctor, Captain, Eur Ing (European Engineer), Ir (Ingenieur), CA (Indian Chartered Accountant)[1] and Professor; whilst other common social titles are Mr., Master, The Honorable, Ms., Mrs. and Miss. Pre-nominal letters are generally social, but can be professional in nature (e.g. Eur Ing).

Academic degrees[edit]

In some Continental European countries all academic degrees were traditionally pre-nominal.

Pre-nominal academic degrees in German-speaking countries include: Dipl.-Ing. (Master's degree in Engineering), Dipl.-Kfm. (master's degree in management), Dipl.-Phys. (master's degree in physics), Dr.-Ing. (German doctorate in engineering), Dr. med. (German doctorate in Medicine) and Mag. (Austrian master's degree (Magister) in all disciplines except engineering).

Pursuant to the Bologna process, most of these pre-nominal degrees will be replaced by post-nominal bachelor's and master's degrees; but people who held academic degrees before the Bologna process may continue to use the pre-nominal academic degrees. In contexts where pre-nominal academic letters are used, such degrees may be placed prenominally for consistency (for example, "MMathPhil Marcos Cramer").[2]

In Finland, abbreviated academic titles can appear before or after the name (for example, FM Matti Meikäläinen or Matti Meikäläinen, FM). In the United States a person may at their discretion use "Dr." as a pre-nominal or their doctoral degree's initials as a post-nominal, but rarely at the same time. It would also be very unusual to see a professional license (such as for an engineer) used as a pre-nominal in any form.

In Poland, abbreviated academic titles appear as pre-nominal letters: inz. for holders of inżynier degree (Polish equivalent for a Bachelor of Science (BSc), Bachelor of Engineer (BEng), or Bachelor of Applied Science (BASc)) awarded by a polytechnical university or faculty; mgr for holders of a Magister (Polish equivalent for a master's degree); mgr inz. for holders of a Magister awarded by a polytechnical university or faculty; dr for holders of a Doktorat (Polish Doctorate); dr inz. for holders of a Doktorat awarded by a polytechnical university or faculty; dr hab. for holders of a Doktorat and a habilitacja (Polish post-doctoral habilitation qualification); dr hab. inz. for holders of a Doktorat and a habilitacja awarded by a polytechnical university or faculty.

Order of titles[edit]

In the UK, those with both a knighthood and rank in the armed forces (or clergy, or academic titles) put the Sir after the other title;[3] for example: Lieutenant General Sir William Leishman;[4] His Eminence Sir Norman Cardinal Gilroy, KBE;[5] Professor Sir Richard Peto.[6]

See also[edit]