“Large scale” Or “Large-scale”? (Hyphenation Rules & Best Practice)

Hyphenation rules are a lot of fun to get your head around when you’re learning English. The best part is that when you learn the rules for one word, you learn them for all the others. So, is it large scale or large-scale? How do we hyphenate large-scale in a sentence?

Large Scale Or Large-Scale – Hyphenated Or Not?

The large scale hyphen rule comes down to whether there is a noun or object to modify. If we’re modifying a noun or object with the words “large-scale,” then we must hyphenate them to indicate that. If there isn’t a noun or object, then we leave “large scale” unhyphenated and use it as a phrase noun itself.

Examples Of When To Use “Large Scale”

We’ve covered the basics of large scale vs large-scale, so it’s time to dive a little deeper. The best way to explain our point is by including some examples for you to understand them a little better. We’ll start with the unhyphenated version (which you’ll notice is often put in at the end of a clause).

  • The project is large scale.
  • We are working on a large scale.
  • This building is large scale.
  • I only work on a large scale.
  • That boat is large scale.

Examples Of When To Use “Large-Scale”

We use the hyphenated version when it precedes a noun or object in a clause.

  • That is a large-scale building.
  • I can’t get through this large-scale project alone.
  • I’m a large-scale thinker.
  • We work for a large-scale firm.
  • This is a large-scale building.

Is Large Scale Hyphenated AP Style?

AP stylebook guidelines teach us a lot about hyphenation rules. When we ask, “is large scale hyphenated,” we can find our answer with the AP stylebook. Basically, hyphens are treated as connectors for words to modify nouns or objects in a sentence. The words become an adjective when they are hyphenated. Without a noun or object to modify, the words are left unhyphenated and become their own phrase noun.

Should I Capitalize “Scale” In The Word “Large-Scale”?

Capitalization rules are difficult already if you’re not familiar with title styles. They’re made even harder when you have to throw in a hyphenated word as well. What happens when we use “large-scale” in a title? How do we capitalize it? Well, the answer is a little more complicated than a simple yes or no. The truth is, it depends on the style you use. There are three main styles of capitalizing words in titles, and it’s all down to personal preference.

Style one capitalizes only the first word and proper nouns. Every other word is left lower-case, meaning “large-scale” is lower-case (unless the title starts with it, then “large” is capitalized only). The second style is to capitalize all words except for articles, short prepositions, and short conjunctions. Here, we would always capitalize “large” no matter where it is in the title, but “scale” is always lower case.

The final style is to capitalize every word in the title. In this case, you’d capitalize both “large” and “scale” no matter what. It’s the most common style to use in more informal writing pieces.

Alternatives To “Large Scale”

If you’re still struggling to wrap your head around the hyphenation rules, don’t worry! We’ve got you covered with some simple alternatives that’ll take the stress away of trying to remember it. If you simply use one of these words instead of “large scale,” you’ll have a much easier time conveying your message without anyone calling you up for poor grammar.

  • extensive
  • sweeping
  • broad
  • mass
  • nationwide

Quiz – Large Scale Or Large-Scale?

We’ll finish this article with a quiz to see what you’ve learned. Each question is multiple choice and includes either the hyphenated or unhyphenated version or large-scale or large scale. You can refer to the answers at the end to see how well you do.

  1. The operation was (A. large scale / B. large-scale).
  2. This is a (A. large scale / B. large-scale) task.
  3. You only work in a (A. large scale / B. large-scale).
  4. The (A. large scale / B. large-scale) building across the street just opened.
  5. I’m part of a (A. large scale / B. large-scale) project.

Quiz Answers

  1. A
  2. B
  3. A
  4. B
  5. B