Why your academic essays need proofreading

About to submit your first essay of the academic year? Spent so much time brushing up on your referencing you’re certain you’ve missed some glaring mistakes?

Why you need a proofreader

Hiring a proofreader to check over your academic essay is a great way to make sure you get the best marks for your work. When you’ve been slaving over a lengthy project, you want it to be perfect. But unfortunately, there are likely to be at least a few typos.

The reality is, your eyes are so used to reading the same words over and over, obvious errors are bound to slip through. Yes – even when you’re convinced they haven’t! Trust me, it’s only once you get your paper back you’ll see them for yourself.

To avoid that face-slap moment, hire a proofreader to look over your work with fresh eyes.

What can an academic proofreader do?

An academic proofreader can give your work a light or in-depth proofing, depending on your needs and preferences.

If you just want someone to skim through your essay, coursework, proposal or funding bid to check for errors in spelling, grammar and punctuation, you can hire a proofreader to read through and mark any changes using Track Changes in Word. This way you can easily decide whether to accept or reject them.

Or, if you’d rather give your prized essay or project a little more attention, a proofreader can copyedit your work, paying attention to sense and consistency in addition to typos and mistakes. They won’t change the meaning but they’ll help you convey it in the clearest and most concise way possible. This is a great option if you’re an international student or English isn’t your best subject.

You can read more about the differences between a proofreader and copyeditor here.

Is hiring an online proofreader easy?

Hiring an online proofreader is so simple.

For starters, they don’t even need to be located nearby. I live in the north-west of England, but I’ve proofread and copyedited work by writers living on the other side of the world. In fact, I’ve spent the last 12 months editing academic textbooks for international scholars! What’s more, I copyedit texts on a daily basis for a renowned content-creation platform.

We can communicate via email or Skype, whichever is best for you. I’ll also put together a small brief and send it across to you for confirmation, so you have full control over what I edit.

If you need something proofing at the last minute, I can also help you out, depending on your project. Academic proofreading is also cheaper than you think. At least, it is when you use my services.

Get your essays proofread today

Don’t let some obvious mistakes cost you crucial marks. If you need your academic essay proofing, get in touch today and I’ll reply within 48 hours with your free quote. As soon as it’s confirmed and part payment is taken, I’ll get started eliminating errors from your essay, coursework or funding bid to ensure your hard work is rewarded.

Could a proofreader stand between you and success?

When the words have to be perfect, it’s always worthwhile getting another pair of eyes to look over your work.

Hiring a proofreader could be just what you need to ensure that important document or piece of copy is error-free and ready to go.

Many people hire the services of a freelance proofreader or copyeditor. They include:

Writers, editors and publishing houses who want to ensure their articles and books carry authority

Authors and self-publishers who don’t want readers distracted by mistakes in their novels or eBooks

Students who want their academic essays, dissertations, research proposals and funding applications to be successful

Businesses looking for someone to double-check for potentially costly errors in their adverts, policy handbooks, website content and brochure copy

Job-seekers eager to make a professional impression with their CV, resume and/or cover letter

What does a proofreader do?

A proofreader will go through your work and check for mistakes that would compromise the quality of your work. Typically these include spelling and grammar errors. They can also check for things like consistency and formatting, for example, UK vs US spelling, capitalisation and favoured uses of punctuation.

The difference between a copyeditor and a proofreader

You might be struggling to put together a document, content for a website or even advertising copy. Perhaps you’re not sure which are the right words to use or you have the loose structure but it just isn’t quite how you want it to be. You might want someone to check it through and refine the wording to make it read more fluidly and better clarify your meaning.

If any of these apply, then you need a copyeditor.

You could also employ a copyeditor to perform a rewrite, which is a more comprehensive form of copyediting. A rewrite is recommended if you have a piece of copy that you want making unique (i.e. for SEO purposes) or if English isn’t your first language and you want someone with a good grasp of the language to improve the flow and accuracy.

As a rule of thumb, proofreading is cheaper than copyediting, and copyediting is cheaper than rewriting. However, it all depends on the word length of the document, the amount of time involved and the number of changes.

Hire me to proofread your words to perfection

Whether you have a web page, feature, academic essay or eBook you want to be proofed, you can hire me as your freelance proofreader. I work for an academic publishing house as well as a commercial copywriter, so you can rest assured you’re getting a quality service.

Contact me now for a free consultation.

5 proofing hacks for your business

Your copy needs to be spot on if you’re going to impress. There’s a lot of competition out there, and while customers won’t always reward you for getting it right, they will punish you for silly errors.

That includes spelling, grammar and punctuation mistakes. Since you don’t know who might be reading your words, it’s also important to fact-check and ensure your copy doesn’t break any laws.

That’s why I’m going to share my top 5 quick and easy proofing hacks to make sure you get it right.

  1. Grammarly

Grammarly is an essential free tool to download. It helps flag up any common errors in spelling and missing words, and is clever at spotting punctuation and grammar errors, even teaching you as you go! It installs on your browser, in MS Word and on your PC for use on many different platforms. Grammarly also offers a year-long premium option, providing even more fixes and a plagiarism checker.

  1. Spell checks

While it’s OK to use MS Word spellchecker, don’t rely on it. It misses many an obvious mistake, and there are plenty of free spell checkers on the Web. My favourite is on Google Docs. How often does Google correct your search results and know what you want? Well, the Google Docs spell checker checks your words against the plethora of information on the Web. That makes it good at spotting errors in references, names, place names and even some international words and phrasing in addition to the usual spelling mistakes.

  1. Plagiarism software

Ensure you don’t fall foul of plagiarism laws by always running your copy through a plagiarism scanner. Grammarly premium offers this service or you can find a free one on the Web, such as this from Small SEO Tools. If you reuse product descriptions or content from the Web, make sure you rewrite it so it’s 100% unique. Otherwise, your search rankings will be lowered and you could even face a copyright suit. A surefire way to avoid this is to pay a copywriter to write your content for you. They’ll get it spot on and you get copy tailored to your business’ needs.

  1. Oxford Dictionaries Online

Consult a dictionary. Yes, some things you can’t get a robot to do! But don’t dismiss these humble reference tools. Oxford Dictionaries Online has a vast store of UK, US and world dictionaries to check spellings, pronunciation, similar words (synonyms) and encyclopaedic entries for notable persons and events. If you’re not sure how to spell a word, start typing and it will pop up. This site is especially useful for showing you how to use a word or phrase in a sentence and different spellings for US or UK English. Sites like Wikipedia are also invaluable, but always check their sources before citing ‘facts’.

  1. PerfectIt

Go pro and invest in PerfectIt – proofreading software that has an add-in built for MS Word. This software can run many tests on your work, including commonly misspelt words, inconsistencies in spelling and punctuation, formatting errors, and you can even specify your preferred spellings and punctuation use. Plus, once you’ve paid, it never expires! Even better, you can also try before you buy with a 30-day free trial.

It’s best practice to run your copy through as many proofing tools as you can, to ensure your content is up to scratch.

A supplement not a substitute

However, this is not only a timely procedure, it also isn’t 100% effective. Unfortunately, robots can’t catch everything and, in some cases, they even make suggestions that are incorrect – causing potential embarrassment.

These tools are a supplement not a substitute for accurate proofreading and need to be used with caution. You’d be surprised what kind of obvious errors slip through these filters, which can cost you big business.

Get perfect, tailor-made copy

So to get it right first time, it’s best to employ a proofreader or professional copywriter to ensure you don’t make these costly errors.

If you work with me, we can come up with the best solution for your needs. Perhaps you simply need another pair of eyes to spot any errors, you already have some content you’d like rewriting, or you want some copy creating from scratch.

Contact me today and we’ll get across everything you need to say in the best way possible.