What Is Proofreading?

You might have asked yourself why your professor or boss has insisted on your work to be proofread in the past before submitting it to them. Firstly, it is common courtesy to read through something and check it for errors in advance of presenting it to someone to read. However, there are many other reasons why proofreading your writing is essential in the academic environment as well as the workplace. 

What Is Involved In The Proofreading Process?

Proofreading is so crucial that many books and manuals have been written about how to do it properly. It is interesting to know that proofreading something doesn’t actually involve fact checking or in-depth changes— it is not the same as editing.

Proofreading what you have written is the process of carefully and systematically reviewing the final draft of your paper or article to ensure its consistency, grammatical accuracy, punctuation, spelling, and format. It is something only a human can do.

It might seem strange to state that only humans are capable of proofreading as there are many apps and “proofreading” computer programs that claim to be able to do the same job. These computer generated programs can’t grasp the intricacies of the English language, and they are awful at figuring out neologisms. Only a human can read a sentence and accurately gauge its merit. 

What Is Traditional Proofreading?

Proofreading something before having it printed is different to the process that is done before submitting a paper at college or university. Both jobs entail reading a manuscript or paper through and fixing any errors that are forgotten or overlooked and may end up looking bad for the person who didn’t see the mistake. It is more than just a chance to fix any spelling mistakes, proofreading something requires a great deal of concentration and focus.

What Kind Of Errors Can A Professional Proofreading Service Fix?

Thinking about what kind of errors might slip through your check can be overwhelming. This is when it makes sense to think about enlisting professional proofreading services to help you out. When your document is ready for proofreading, it means that you have already finished with the editing process. If this hasn’t been done, you might need a rewriting service instead.

Professional proofreading will find both big and small errors that you missed during or even introduced during the editing process. They will ensure the final draft is free of grammatical mistakes such as inappropriate word choices, subject/verb agreement anomalies, and incorrect spelling/punctuation. All those irritating little English puzzles that cause writers such grief are checked by someone who knows the difference between who, whom, and that.

Document proofreaders don’t limit themselves to only one read-through. They concentrate on checking the paper many times to make sure that it is flawless. They will only pass it over to the client when at least two sets of eyes have seen it, and both have found it to be perfect. When it is returned, you can be confident it is submission-ready.

Adam Hansen

Adam is a part time journalist, entrepreneur, investor and father.