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Let’s Learn the Difference Between Editing and Proofreading!

by Melanie Peterson

Throughout student life, you must have heard about the terms proofreading and editing? Right? But are you aware that whether they both are the same or different? If not, let us help you in changing your thoughts. Yes, these two terms are completely different from each other. The difference between these two is significant and can be detected easily. In order to make a proper flawless academic paper, these two techniques are highly important.

Don’t worry if there is still some confusion left. This article explores both terms and allows you to have a better and clear idea. 

What Actually is Proofreading? 

Before getting deep any further, let’s learn about what actually is proofreading. According to the definition available in dictionaries, it is a procedure that involves rectifying and detecting errors and mistakes in any writing or paper. Revision is the first step if you are willing to learn how to proofread a write-up. But here, a thing that needs to be cleared up is that revision and proofreading are not the same things. Proofreading comes at the very end of the writing procedure.

Proofreading mainly targets the following errors, these errors are generally called external errors:

  • Formatting
  • Quotation marks and punctuation
  • Sentence structure etc
  • Spacings after periods
  • Spelling
  • Sentence structure etc
  • Syntax
  • Words that sound very identical but mean completely different things
  • Subject-verb agreement

Proofreaders look for errors that may go overlooked by spell checkers or computers. When the paper writing is finished, this procedure is normally followed.

It is an important part of the writing process, and if you skip it, your work may suffer as a result. Your message in the copy will not be adequately transmitted to the reader if you don’t proofread it.

A well proofread writing contains the below-stated features:

  • Clear of all kinds of errors and flaws
  • Has a proper structure with decent language
  • On point writing
  • Has nothing that stops it from being published

Copyediting Vs. Proofreading 

Another term you might be familiar with is copyediting. But what exactly is it and does it have anything to do with proofreading? 

Before a paper is published, it is copyedited for grammar, spelling, style, and punctuation. It entails ensuring that the style of all content that will be released is consistent. Writing the dates, localities, and names in the same style is one example. As a result, every copy editor must be well-versed in the numerous style guidelines. This step guarantees that the content is suitable for publication in a journal or on another platform. At the copy-editing stage, issues such as copyright, libel, and other patenting issues are handled. Proofreading is the process of checking a published manuscript’s proof. It occurs after copy-editing at a later stage.

What is Editing?

In editing, a person carries out a deep analysis of what they have written on the basis of the presentation of information and ideas. An editor does the required changes in writing and ensures quality is elevated. The editor’s job is to make sure the written paper is perfectly organised, highly comprehensible, and is on point if compared to the reader’s preference.  

Still, editing includes the focus on the right use of language and how ideas and information are provided in the writing. It helps in delivering an easily understandable document to the readers. 

A pro editor takes the following things under consideration: 

  • Words are used to express thoughts or feelings.
  • When should active or passive voice be used?
  • Choosing the right tone, style, and diction
  • Expressions are delivered in the greatest possible way.
  • Writing that is both compact and appealing
  • Gendered language usage

The following characteristics will be present in an edited copy:

  • The paper’s quality has improved, and the language has been more effectively used to explain the meanings.
  • Boost your chances of impressing the readers.

Revising Vs. Editing 

It is always suggested to revise everything from the beginning to end once you are done writing. This procedure immensely helps in assuring that whether the right message is conveyed in the content that you are willing to convey or not. By doing this, you will be able to review what you have written, can make the changes where required, and corrections can be made if necessary. 

Alike proofreading, editing is also a subsection of the revision process and comes in the beginning. But still, these two are not the same. There is a difference between revising and editing, so when you just revise a piece of content, you cannot claim that you’ve edited it as well. Also, here another thing to be noted is that editing holds more value as compared to normal revising. Therefore, in the battle of Revising Vs. Editing, editing always gets more points. 

Editing Vs. Proofreading 

There is no denial that proofreading also includes the process of editing, still, you cannot confuse both of them as one. The editing process is required many times while writing anything from an academic paper to any other sort of writing. At the same time, proofreading is done only at the end of the writing procedure. Editing comes way besides checking the errors such as grammar and typing mistakes. 

Both these steps, be it editing or proofreading, are highly important when it comes to delivering an effective and perfect paper. If you skip any of these steps, your paper will be poorly written, and your time and work will have been wasted.

If you are still a student, bypassing this stage will result in a point deduction. Furthermore, if you are a skilled writer, your work may be rejected by the journal. If the reader doesn’t understand what you’ve written, your content will almost certainly be dismissed.

Is It Necessary to Ask a Professional for Assistance? 

Everyone makes the mistake of undervaluing the necessity of proofreading and editing. You could believe that using some web tools, you can easily accomplish this. This notion is completely incorrect.

Editing and proofreading are both difficult activities that necessitate specialised knowledge. A professional will have the necessary skills and know how to apply them to improve the content’s quality. They also have excellent grammar skills, making them proficient at recognising the most typical faults produced by writers. Experts also know how to work in an organised manner in order to be more productive.

Are you aware of the concept called “typo blindness”? The concept basically sheds light on the fact that writers cannot easily see the errors they have made in their write up as they are already aware of the message they are willing to convey. This is the very reason why people prefer to take the opinion of the second pair of eyes. 

Hiring a professional will see the mistakes which were in front of your eyes the whole time, will do the corrections, and let you have perfect error-free papers. 

So What Can We Give You For a Conclusion? 

A paper that is poorly written will be rejected by everyone. Making sure the copy is error-free will allow readers to focus on the information rather than how outstanding your English language skills are.

Some other differences are….

Editing Will Take Care Of:

  • The information is well-written, uses correct language, and is easily understandable.
  • The data is presented in a logical sequence.
  • Only important material is used in the document, and one paragraph leads to the next.
  • The copy will be written in a tone that is appropriate for the target audience.

Proofreading Will Take Care Of:

  • Free of grammatical mistakes
  • There will be no errors in punctuation.
  • Using the right words
  • There is no excess space, and quotation or equivalent marks are used correctly.
  • Sentence-construction that is correct
  • There will be no typos or other common errors.
  • It will bring a copy’s complete perfection.

If you merely proofread, you will only be able to correct external errors. However, you will miss out on improving your writing skills. You won’t be able to achieve the goal of writing the paper in the first place if you don’t have good material. As a result, it is usually recommended to complete both of these procedures in order to create high-quality material.


Academic life is full of challenges. Whether we talk about assignments or just the regular classes. Students deal with so much on an everyday basis and due to this reason, they find no time to explore new things and learn about the latest happenings. But not anymore. 

Due to the technology, students can now redeem services like Law Dissertation Writing. These services offer proper proofreading and editing facilities to ensure the delivered papers have everything a student requires for A+ grades. 

In this article, we have discussed the difference between proofreading and editing to let the students know the difference without getting confused. 

So, you are cleared, right?

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