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At the Annual Meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature in 2003, Professor James Nogalski raised the possibility of including a student supplement to the SBL Handbook of Style in its next edition. Jim is a member of SBL who teaches at the School of Divinity at Gardner-Webb University in Boiling Springs, North Carolina. He is also an SBL author, having translated Odil Steck's Old Testament Exegesis, and having served as co-editor of the SBL Symposium Series volume Reading and Hearing the Book of the Twelve. Knowing a little about Jim's background as an author and a teacher, as well as his experience in librarianship, I took the question seriously, especially when he shared that all the Divinity School students at Gardner-Webb are required to own a copy of the SBLHS. Unfortunately, not all the information needed for students working with biblical and theological literature could be found in what SBL had intended to be a comprehensive handbook. Jim and his colleagues had identified a need and were interested in what SBL could do to help satisfy it.

Work on a second edition of the SBLHS had been ongoing for some time, but the idea of a student supplement had not been discussed. So, as the adage goes, "be careful what you wish for"—I asked Jim if he and his colleagues would be willing to take on the project. What you see here is the product of their collective labors in determining what information is needed for students that was not in the first edition of the SBLHS. SBL is most grateful for the opportunity to make this supplement available online.

Joel LeMon, a Ph.D. candidate in Hebrew Bible at Emory University and a part-time staffer at SBL, has edited this supplement, looking at it from the perspective of both student and teacher. We appreciate Joel's time and his energy as he has formatted this document in the same style as the current SBLHS.

We invite our colleagues who teach to examine the supplement and determine if it will be helpful to your students. Are there questions that your students raise that are unanswered by this supplement? Is there other information that you would want to see included? We would be delighted to have your suggestions and comments so that future versions of the supplement will as helpful to students as possible. Please send your comments to our Editorial Director, Bob Buller, or to me at We welcome your response.

See the SBL Handbook of Style Student Supplement

Leigh Andersen
SBL Managing Editor
August 2004

Citation: Leigh Andersen, " Student Supplement to the SBL Handbook of Style," SBL Forum , n.p. [cited Oct 2004]. Online:


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