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When to use & instead of “and”

Is there a rule as to when to use "and" as opposed to using "&"?

eg. Andy and Steve's duties were to grade, guide & proctor exams, homework & projects

  • For most purposes, the "rule" is not to use "&" at all in formal writing where the concept of rules is meaningful. Otherwise, if you're going to use them in a sentence where you also have "and" joining other nouns pairs, use "&" for those pairs that are most closely associated for the purposes of your context. Jan 20, 2012 at 1:35
  • @Daniel, that's odd, when I entered "and &" as a search query, nothing came up. Thanks for that. Jan 20, 2012 at 1:40
  • 1
    Yes, I tried "and" and nothing came up. 9That's not supposed to happen. I found it by searching for "ampersand".
    – Daniel
    Jan 20, 2012 at 1:43
  • @Danielδ, that's because the search is rather dumb and can't make the use-mention distinction. Common words like "and" and "the" are not indexed, even when they're the subject of the discussion.
    – Marthaª
    Jan 20, 2012 at 1:46


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