Learning Objectives

By the time you complete this section, you will be able to:

  • Distinguish between proofreading and editing

Editing and Proofreading

What do you know about proofreading and editing? Take this quiz to identify what type of editor you currently are. Then, continue on to learn more about editing and proofreading.



Editing: A process of revising the content, organization, grammar and presentation of a piece of writing. Proofreading: Checking for accuracy in a piece of writing that is nearly complete; includes checking smaller details of grammar, spelling and punctuation. Proofreading is a part of editing, but editing is much more than proofreading.
Image Credit: Rawia Inaim

When you think of editing, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Many people view the main task of editing as finding and fixing grammar or spelling mistakes. However, editing is much more. Editing is a process that involves revising the content, organization, grammar, and presentation of a piece of writing. The purpose of editing is to ensure that your ideas are presented to your reader as clearly as possible. Proofreading focuses on checking for accuracy in smaller details of your work. It is a part of the overall editing process, and is best done as the final stage of editing. In the next section of the workshop, you will discover how to implement an editing process that moves from big picture concerns through to the final step of proofreading.

Reflection Questions

  • What do you do now to edit your writing?
  • What do you do now to proofread your writing?


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Effective Editing Copyright © 2019 by Christina Page is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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