I'm applying to Master's programs for Statistics. In my personal statement, I mention the names of some R packages like car, ggvis, and effects when I talk about professors that I would be interested in working with and some of my own research. Typically when people write about these, they are just all lowercase letters, not italicized or anything.

It looks really weird in a regular Word document, especially since "car" and "effects" are regular words. I'm afraid that it may look out of place. Is it okay if I change the font to the code font so it looks like ggvis and effects? I wouldn't use the grey background, but the serif typewriter font is pretty standard for bits of code, right? I'm afraid it will look unprofessional for academic/business writing.

  • 1
    You can use some typewriter font for those.
    – vonbrand
    Commented Nov 19, 2015 at 20:19

2 Answers 2


Probably you are thinking about this too hard: as long as it's clear what you're saying and choosing a reasonable form of presentation, it's probably fine. Monospace font is one way to do this, another way is to put the names in quotes, just like you did in your question.

If you want to be really cautious, you can look at scientific papers from the field and see what conventions people tend to use. That way, you will be certain that your readers will find your presentation familiar.

  • 3
    I'd pick a monospace font, yeah. For extra style points, use the same monospace font for your email address and any URLs in your CV.
    – D.Salo
    Commented Nov 19, 2015 at 23:20
  • 1
    I'd pick a monospace font — I wouldn't. — For extra style points, use the same monospace font for your email address and any URLs in your CV — No, please don't!!
    – JeffE
    Commented Nov 20, 2015 at 15:32
  • 3
    @JeffE - Clearly you feel strongly about this. If you share your reason(s), maybe you'll convince me! Also, could you propose an alternative for the OP? Commented Nov 21, 2015 at 16:38

I would recommend following the style guide in the official R documentation, which is to typeset the package name with a bold font.

See this related question. The answer I'm posting here is given on that page in a comment on the original question by Massimo Ortolano.

  • Can you point to where exactly the documentation says that? I don't see it, but I do see that the document does not typeset package names with a bold font.
    – Edward
    Commented Nov 18, 2022 at 1:19
  • @Edward you are right. I may have misinterpreted the comment as saying there is some explicit statement that the names should be bold. I can't find it either. But I do see the package names are set in a bold font at least in the short introduction to R html document.
    – qdread
    Commented Nov 18, 2022 at 10:52

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