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What this handout is about
This handout provides some tips and strategies for revising your writing. To give you a chance to practice proofreading, we have left seven errors (three spelling errors, two punctuation errors, and two grammatical errors) in the text of this handout. See if you can spot them!
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Is editing the same thing as proofreading?
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Not exactly. Although many people use the terms interchangeably, editing and proofreading are two different stages of the revision process. Both demand close and careful reading, but they focus on different aspects of the writing and employ different techniques.
Some tips that apply to both editing and proofreading
- Get some distance from the text! It’s hard to edit or proofread a paper that you’ve just finished writing—it’s still to familiar, and you tend to skip over a lot of errors. Put the paper aside for a few hours, days, or weeks. Go for a run. Take a trip to the beach. Clear your head of what you’ve written so you can take a fresh look at the paper and see what is really on the page. Better yet, give the paper to a friend—you can’t get much more distance than that. Someone who is reading the paper for the first time, comes to it with completely fresh eyes.
- Decide what medium lets you proofread most carefully. Some people like to work right at the computer, while others like to sit back with a printed copy that they can mark up as they read.
- Try changing the look of your document. Altering the size, spacing, color, or style of the text may trick your brain into thinking it’s seeing an unfamiliar document, 8 ways proofreading service will improve your sex life proofreadingessay.com our company provides help in professional proofreading, done by specially and that can help you get a different perspective on what you’ve written.
- Find a quiet place to work. Don’t try to do your proofreading in front of the TV or while you’re chugging away on the treadmill. Find a place where you can concentrate and avoid distractions.
- If possible, do your editing and proofreading in several short blocks of time. Your concentration may start to wane if you try to proofread the entire text at one time.
- If you’re short on time, you may wish to prioritize. Make sure that you complete the most important editing and proofreading tasks.
Editing is what you begin doing as soon as you finish your first draft. You reread your draft to see, for example, whether the paper is well-organized, the transitions between paragraphs are smooth, and your evidence really backs up your argument. You can edit on several levels:
Have you done everything the assignment requires? Are the claims you make accurate? If it is required to do so, does your paper make an argument? Is the argument complete? Are all of your claims consistent? Have you supported each point with adequate evidence? Is all of the information in your paper relevant to the assignment and/or your overall writing goal? (For additional tips, see our handouts on understanding assignments and .)
Does your paper have an appropriate introduction and conclusion? Is your thesis clearly stated in your introduction? Is it clear how each paragraph in the body of your paper is related to your thesis? Are the paragraphs arranged in a logical sequence? Have you made clear transitions between paragraphs? One way to check the structure of your paper is to make a .)
Structure within paragraphs
Does each paragraph have a clear topic sentence? Does each paragraph stick to one main idea? Are there any extraneous or missing sentences in any of your paragraphs? (See our .)
Have you defined any important terms that might be unclear to your reader? Is the meaning of each sentence clear? (One way to answer this question is to read your paper one sentence at a time, starting at the end and working backwards so that you will not unconsciously fill in content from previous sentences.) Is it clear what each pronoun (he, she, it, they, which, who, this, etc.) refers to? Have you chosen the proper words to express your ideas? Avoid using words you find in the thesaurus that aren’t part of your normal vocabulary; you may misuse them.
Have you used an appropriate tone (formal, informal, persuasive, etc.)? Is your use of gendered language (masculine and feminine pronouns like he or she, words like fireman that contain man, and words that some people incorrectly assume apply to only one gender—for example, some people assume nurse must refer to a woman) appropriate? Have you varied the length and structure of your sentences? Do you tends to use the passive voice too often? Does your writing contain a lot of unnecessary phrases like there is, there are, due to the fact that, etc.? Do you repeat a strong word (for example, a vivid main verb) unnecessarily? (For tips, see our .)
Have you appropriately cited quotes, paraphrases, and ideas you got from sources? Are your citations in the correct format? (See the for more information.)
What this handout is about
This handout delivers some tips and strategies for revising your authoring. To present you to be able to procedure proofreading, we now have allowed to remain 8 errors (a couple of spelling mistakes, two punctuation blunders, and a couple grammatical flaws) in the content on this handout. See if you can area them!
Is editing a similar thing as proofreading?
Not exactly. Even though many people make use of the conditions editing, interchangeably and proofreading are two several phases on the revision process. They focus on different aspects of the writing and employ different techniques.
Some pointers that apply at equally modifying and proofreading
- Get some yardage in the text! It is tough to revise or proofread a report that you have just accomplished crafting-it’s nonetheless to common, and you simply typically omit throughout a whole lot of flaws. Put the paper aside for a fewdays and hours. Alternatively, weeks. Select a function. Travel to the beachfront. Very clear the head of the you have written allowing you to relax and take a fresh new go through the paper and find out just what is definitely over the website page. Even better, allow the pieces of paper to a good friend-you can’t get much more distance than that. One who is looking through the report the very first time, pertains to it with fully fresh little brown eyes.
- Decide what channel helps you proofread most very carefully. Some individuals like to perform perfect for the computer system, whilst others desire to settle back by using a printed out version that they can signature up as they learn.
- Try out evolving the design of your papers. Changing the color, size and spacing or model of the words may possibly trick your thoughts into considering it is viewing an unfamiliar paper, and to help you get yourself a distinct viewpoint upon which you have created.
- Discover a silent location to function. Do not make an effort to do your proofreading before the Tv set or while you’re chugging away for the treadmill. Choose a spot that enables you to avoid and concentrate interruptions.
- If possible, do your editing and proofreading in several short blocks of time. Your concentration may start to wane if you try to proofread the entire text at one time.
- If you’re small in a timely manner, you may wish to prioritize. Just remember to full the main editing and enhancing and proofreading projects.
Croping and editing really you start engaging in once you surface texture the initial draft. You reread your draft to see, to illustrate, regardless if the old fashioned paper is well-planned, the transitions amongst paragraphs are clean, along with your information certainly backside the discussion. You can actually redo on a number of ranges:
Have you executed anything the task necessitates? Will be the claims you are making exact? If it is required to do so, does your paper make an argument? May be the issue comprehensive? Are all of your promises regular? Get you guaranteed each and every level with adequate data? Is all the information and facts in your own newspaper strongly related to the assignment and/or your existing composing purpose? (To get more strategies, see our handouts on knowing tasks and .)
All round building
Does your papers experience an right introduction and conclusion? Is the best thesis distinctly claimed in the release? Do you find it obvious how every one section in the body on your old fashioned paper is related to your thesis? Are classified as the lines arranged with a rational series? Get you created apparent transitions between lines? A good way to confirm the shape of your papers is to earn a .)
Design throughout lines
Does each one section use a apparent subject sentence? Does every one section stay with one principal plan? Are there extraneous or missing out on phrases in all of your paragraphs? (See our .)
Have you defined any necessary terminology that has to be not clear to your visitor? Certainly is the meaning of each and every phrase clean? (One method to solution this inquiry should be to learn your pieces of paper an individual phrase at a time, setting up afterwards and doing business in reverse which means you not unconsciously fill out articles from prior phrases.) Could it be clear what each individual pronoun (this, which, he, who, they, she and it for example.) means? Maybe you have picked out the ideal ideas to convey your thoughts? Stay away from words and phrases you find with the thesaurus that are not component of your common language; you may misuse them.
Maybe you have applied the ideal strengthen (formal, persuasive and informal and the like.)? Is your using gendered terminology (feminine and masculine pronouns like And#8220;he” or And#8220;she,And#8221; thoughts like “fireman” that contain And#8220;guy,” and ideas that most people wrongly suppose relate to one simple sex-for instance, a number of people expect And#8220;health care workerAnd#8221; ought to reference someone) suitable? Do you have wide-ranging the length and structure on your phrases? Does one sometimes use the passive sound too much? Does your authoring have many unnecessary words like And#8220;there is certainly,” And#8220;there can be,And#8221; “mainly because that,And#8221; for example.? Can you returning a very good statement (as an example, a vibrant key verb) unnecessarily? (For guidelines, see our .)
Perhaps you have effectively citedparaphrases and quotes, and ideas you acquired from places? Are your citations inside accurate structure? (View the for more information.)
Because you revise at each one of these ranges, you can expect to make significant changes into the information and wording on your papers. Keep an eye out for patterns of error; knowing what kinds of problems you tend to have will be helpful, especially if you are editing a large document like a thesis or dissertation. Upon having revealed a style, it is possible to grow tactics for spotting and fixing future cases of that structure. If you notice that you often discuss several distinct topics in each paragraph, you can go through your paper and underline the key words in each paragraph, then break the paragraphs up so that each one focuses on just one main idea.
Proofreading would be the closing point in the editing and enhancing process, looking at work surface issues including misspellings and faults in grammar and punctuation. You might want to proofread only once you have concluded your entire other editing and enhancing alterations.
Why proofread? It is the material that really counts, ideal?
Content is important. But as it or otherwise, the way that a old fashioned paper seems to be can affect the best way some judge it. When you have did the trick tricky to build and provide your opinions, you don’t want sloppy problems distracting your readers from what you need to say. It’s value taking note of information that encourage you to create a decent idea.
Lots of people commit just a couple minutes to proofreading, looking to take any obvious errors that hop outside the webpage. But a cursory and quick reading through, mainly right after you have been doing business very long and hard on a newspaper, often misses a great deal. It’s far better to partner with a specific approach that allows you to browse systematically for specific kinds of issues.
Sure, this takes a little extra time, but it pays off in the end. If you know that you have an effective way to catch errors when the paper is almost finished, you can worry less about editing while you are writing your first drafts. As a result the entire publishing proccess extremely effective.
Keep the croping and editing and proofreading steps distinguish. If you are enhancing a young draft, you don’t would like to be worried with thinking of punctuation, sentence structure, and spelling. If your worrying about the spelling of a word or the placement of a comma, you’re not focusing on the more important task of developing and connecting ideas.
The proofreading process
You most likely previously use many of the methods outlined under. Try out diverse techniques until eventually you get a strategy that can be useful for you. The main thing is to make your procedure organized and centered to ensure you get plenty of issues as they possibly can with the the very least time frame.
- Do not rely altogether on spelling checkers. These can be useful devices but are away from foolproof. Spell checkers enjoy a small thesaurus, so some text that show up as misspelled may well definitely simply not stay in their reminiscence. Furthermore, spell checkers will likely not catch misspellings that form yet another legal concept. If you type “your” instead of “you’re,” “to” instead of “too,” or “there” instead of “their,” the spell checker won’t catch the error.
- Sentence structure checkers may be all the more a problem. These courses employ a very little selection of regulations, so that they cannot recognize every last miscalculation and quite often make some mistakes. In addition, they neglect to give in depth explanations to assist you realise why a sentence must be revised. You may want to use a grammar checker to help you identify potential run-on sentences or too-frequent use of the passive voice, but you need to be able to evaluate the feedback it provides.
- Proofread for only one kind of error at a time.. It’s easier to catch grammar errors if you aren’t checking punctuation and spelling at the same time. Also, a few of the approaches that work good for recognizing a single sort of blunder will not hook other individuals.
If you try to identify and revise too many things at once, you risk losing focus, and your proofreading will be less effective,
- Read through sluggish, and look just about every statement. Attempt , which factors someone to say each individual word and even enables you to pick up how the key phrases sound jointly. If you study quietly or too quickly, you could possibly omit more than issues or make unconscious improvements.
- Standalone the written text into individual sentences. This is one other process that can assist you to study every single phrase properly. Simply hit the go back major following just about every timeframe in order that any sections starts out a new phrase. Then check out every single phrase as a stand alone, interested in sentence structure, punctuation, or spelling issues. Try using an opaque object like a ruler or a piece of paper to isolate the line you’re working on.
- Circle just about every punctuation level. This pushes you to check out each of them. Ask yourself if the punctuation is correct.
- Check the newspaper in reverse. This procedure is useful for taking a look at spelling. Begin with a final statement over the last page and work the right path to the beginning, checking out just about every statement individually. Becausecontent and punctuation, and grammar won’t make any sense, your focus will be entirely on the spelling of each word. You may as well read in the opposite direction phrase by phrase to test sentence structure; this will assist you avert getting distracted by written content matters.
- Proofreading is often a learning course of action. You’re not merely looking for faults you discover; you’re also understanding how to understand and proper new faults. This is where dictionaries and handbooks can be bought in. Maintain your varieties you get very helpful good in front of you because you proofread.
As you edit at all of these levels, you will usually make significant revisions to the content and wording of your paper. Keep an eye out for patterns of error; knowing what kinds of problems you tend to have will be helpful, especially if you are editing a large document like a thesis or dissertation. Once you have identified a pattern, you can develop techniques for spotting and correcting future instances of that pattern. For example, if you notice that you often discuss several distinct topics in each paragraph, you can go through your paper and underline the key words in each paragraph, then break the paragraphs up so that each one focuses on just one main idea.
Proofreading is the final stage of the editing process, focusing on surface errors such as misspellings and mistakes in grammar and punctuation. You should proofread only after you have finished all of your other editing revisions.
Why proofread? It’s the content that really matters, right?
Content is important. But like it or not, the way a paper looks affects the way others judge it. When you’ve worked hard to develop and present your ideas, you don’t want careless errors distracting your reader from what you have to say. It’s worth paying attention to the details that help you to make a good impression.
Most people devote only a few minutes to proofreading, hoping to catch any glaring errors that jump out from the page. But a quick and cursory reading, especially after you’ve been working long and hard on a paper, usually misses a lot. It’s better to work with a definite plan that helps you to search systematically for specific kinds of errors.
Sure, this takes a little extra time, but it pays off in the end. If you know that you have an effective way to catch errors when the paper is almost finished, you can worry less about editing while you are writing your first drafts. This makes the entire writing proccess more efficient.
Try to keep the editing and proofreading processes separate. When you are editing an early draft, you don’t want to be bothered with thinking about punctuation, grammar, and spelling. If your worrying about the spelling of a word or the placement of a comma, you’re not focusing on the more important task of developing and connecting ideas.
The proofreading process
You probably already use some of the strategies discussed below. Experiment with different tactics until you find a system that works well for you. The important thing is to make the process systematic and focused so that you catch as many errors as possible in the least amount of time.
- Don’t rely entirely on spelling checkers. These can be useful tools but they are far from foolproof. Spell checkers have a limited dictionary, so some words that show up as misspelled may really just not be in their memory. In addition, spell checkers will not catch misspellings that form another valid word. For example, if you type your instead of you’re, to instead of too, or there instead of their, the spell checker won’t catch the error.
- Grammar checkers can be even more problematic. These programs work with a limited number of rules, so they can’t identify every error and often make mistakes. They also fail to give thorough explanations to help you understand why a sentence should be revised. You may want to use a grammar checker to help you identify potential run-on sentences or too-frequent use of the passive voice, but you need to be able to evaluate the feedback it provides.
- Proofread for only one kind of error at a time. If you try to identify and revise too many things at once, you risk losing focus, and your proofreading will be less effective. It’s easier to catch grammar errors if you aren’t checking punctuation and spelling at the same time. In addition, some of the techniques that work well for spotting one kind of mistake won’t catch others.
- Read slow, and read every word. Try , which forces you to say each word and also lets you hear how the words sound together. When you read silently or too quickly, you may skip over errors or make unconscious corrections.
- Separate the text into individual sentences. This is another technique to help you to read every sentence carefully. Simply press the return key after every period so that every line begins a new sentence. Then read each sentence separately, looking for grammar, punctuation, or spelling errors. If you’re working with a printed copy, try using an opaque object like a ruler or a piece of paper to isolate the line you’re working on.
- Circle every punctuation mark. This forces you to look at each one. As you circle, ask yourself if the punctuation is correct.
- Read the paper backwards. This technique is helpful for checking spelling. Start with the last word on the last page and work your way back to the beginning, reading each word separately. Because content, punctuation, and grammar won’t make any sense, your focus will be entirely on the spelling of each word. You can also read backwards sentence by sentence to check grammar; this will help you avoid becoming distracted by content issues.
- Proofreading is a learning process. You’re not just looking for errors that you recognize; you’re also learning to recognize and correct new errors. This is where handbooks and dictionaries come in. Keep the ones you find helpful close at hand as you proofread.