Three Common Myths About Academic Editing & Proofreading

Three Common Myths About Academic Proofreading

Whether you’re producing an academic paper, creating a TV commercial, authoring a book or play, or writing a business document, professional editing is a must for excellent results. Different types of editing go into the completed project, with each one playing an important role. We’ll help you understand what the various types of editing are, how professional editing is used in business today, and dispel common myths about the different types of editing.


Myth: Any Editor Can Edit Academic Writing

While it may seem that any editor can perform academic editing, it does require specific knowledge to do this type of editing. Academic writing is always at a higher level than the general public, so the editing involves a higher level of review. In addition, the editor needs to know something about the source material to edit it accurately. A skilled academic editor will be equipped to complete this job properly.


Myth: Editing and Proofreading Are Interchangeable

People who are not familiar with the editing and proofreading definition may assume these two are the same thing. However, there are some key differences. First, editing can be anything from developmental editing to line editing. Developmental editing involves doing a deep analysis of the content’s development. The editor will ascertain whether it has a solid structure and flow and provide feedback.


When the structure and content are reviewed, a line editor or copy editor will check the copy for errors line by line. They are primarily looking for other ways to make the copy stronger with different word choices, active voice, and the elimination of long or awkward sentences.


Proofreading is the last step in the process before a document gets published. In this phase, the paper is scanned for errors such as grammar, spelling, or formatting problems. Sometimes there might be a small word that is spelled correctly but is the incorrect word, so it doesn’t get picked up on “spell check.” For example, a person may have meant to write “from” but typed “form” instead. The proofreader is trained to spot these types of errors quickly.


Keep in mind that when you solicit the help of professional editing, it won’t change the content of your work at all. Some people may worry that a proofreader or editor will “rewrite” portions of their document. However, the goal of a good proofreader and editor is to make sure your main ideas stay intact. They only help you improve upon the style, grammar, structure, or format.


Myth: Needing an Editor or Proofreader Is a Sign of Poor Writing

Some professionals might believe that if they need professional editing or proofreading, then they aren’t good writers. This is a myth. All authors go through several rounds of editing before publishing. There are various types of editing, which all serve a vital role in improving your work. When you invest in either developmental editing, academic editing, or any other different types of editing, your finished product will be even more excellent.


The different types of editing are all valuable to an author’s work. Whether it’s copy editing, developmental editing, or proofreading, it is essential to have your content reviewed by experts in the field. Your authored work will maintain the same theme and ideas but will be free from any errors. Professional editors will make sure you have the strongest word choices and most polished formatting structure. You can have confidence when you publish your work.


Check out Editor World's editors page to find out how you can receive help for your writing projects. New customers are eligible to receive a free 300-word edit when they book with an editor. Contact us today for more information.