Copy editing

Correcting spelling (US, UK, or Canadian), punctuation, grammatical, and usage errors; editing bibliography or reference list according to the style of your choice (e.g., Chicago, APA, MLA, Vancouver/medical); matching up reference entries with in-text citations; checking headings, captions, and callouts; editing tables and figures; ensuring internal consistency and, if applicable, consistency with any style sheet provided.

Line editing & stylistic editing

All of the above plus editing for clarity, tone, and target audience; eliminating repetition, cliché, jargon, and awkward or unidiomatic phrasing; considering document structure and flow.


Checking typeset page proofs for consistency with design specs; correcting/querying typographical errors, spelling errors, and mismatches with a supplied style sheet; checking headings, running heads, and word breaks / hyphenation; if applicable, checking article/chapter titles, subtitles, author names, and starting page numbers against a book or journal issue’s table of contents; adding or checking TOC page numbers.

On request, reading a revised proof (“live copy”) against the marked-up proof from the previous round (“dead copy”) to verify that all requested changes have been made.


A note on formats: Copy editing, line editing, and stylistic editing are done in Microsoft Word using the Track Changes and Comment functions. Proofreading can be done either onscreen in Adobe Acrobat Pro, using Adobe’s markup tools; or on paper, using standard proofreader’s marks.