What is the correct way?

  1. CM stand for cervical mucus (without s in the end of stand)

  2. CM standS for cervical mucus (with s in the end of stand)

  • 4
    I hope you are a med student or something. TMI, otherwise. Commented Feb 9, 2015 at 21:42
  • 1
    TMI stands for Too Much Information (with the s!) Commented Feb 10, 2015 at 8:27

2 Answers 2


When we cite acronyms, or words or even phrases, we treat the whole citation as singular. A citation is when we mention the acronyms or words but we aren't actually using them in a normal way in the sentence. We could, for example, put the word(s) or acronym in 'quotes', or in italics:

  • AIDS is short for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome
  • 'Not very tall' usually means 'short'.
  • UN stands for United Nations.
  • "Buenas noches" is "good evening" in Spanish.
  • CM stands for cervical mucus.

In the examples above we see the third person singular verb forms is, means, stands instead of the plural forms are, mean and stand.

Hope this is helpful!

  • 1
    You just beat me to it, and in more detail. +1 for making my answer obsolete! :) (You even used the same example, UN!)
    – oerkelens
    Commented Feb 9, 2015 at 15:06
  • @oerkelens That makes a change! It's normally you who beats me to it :D Commented Feb 9, 2015 at 15:10
  • This is one of those things that makes English difficult... a blatant disregard for any sort of order or logic. First the nouns give you the rule that you add an "s" to make plurals, then the verbs turn around and do the opposite. A tree grows but trees grow... go figure.
    – J...
    Commented Feb 9, 2015 at 19:07

Sentence 2 is the better because CM is singular.

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