Just like in any writing process, editing and proofreading are vital to your research. You need to review your grammar, punctuation, and flow to make sure you produce the best version of your paper. A well-written journal article should also break down crucial topics to get your message across to your readers clearly and concisely.
Editing is a big task, and often you need to revise your draft multiple times to ensure proper thought organisation and clarity of the content. On the other hand, proofreading requires you to have a keen eye to find the errors and make revisions to improve the manuscript.
Both tasks are time-consuming. And doing it on your own means that there’s a strong possibility of missing errors or being biased. As such, it’s a good idea to have another person or service do these tasks for you.
The best writing isn’t done alone.
Instead, it is a result of a collaboration between experts that critique your paper.
But, here’s the big question: Is hiring outside help, such as an English editing service, even allowed?
Is Hiring Academic Editing Services Allowed?
In the United States, hiring an academic editing service is allowed. And it’s common practice for longer texts, like PhD dissertations.
And so, hiring someone to edit or proofread your research is allowed and even encouraged in some cases, as long as they do not write (or rewrite) the entire research paper for you. When you pay someone to write your paper, that is considered severe plagiarismーwhich is unacceptable in academia.
If your goal for hiring an academic editor or English editing service is to help you improve your manuscript, then go ahead. Hiring third-party proofreading services are acceptable and recommended by universities, like the University of Auckland—especially for specific and complicated papers like a PhD dissertation.
As long as the journal publisher or university does not explicitly advise against it, hiring an academic proofreader and editor won’t violate any codes of conduct. However, for smaller papers and school essays, it is best to ask your professor and department for guidelines on editing and proofreading.
One of the top reasons for hiring an editing service is to ensure that you are not making beginner mistakes. Of course, not all editors are created equally—so you need to make sure you hire someone who isn’t a beginner themselves.
What to Look for When Hiring an Academic Editor or Proofreader
Here are some tips to remember when you decide to hire an editor or proofreader:
- Ask for references or samples to make sure they know what they’re doing.
- Read reviews or testimonials if you’re hiring an editing service.
- Editors and proofreaders will make suggestions on improving the flow and clarity of your text. Remind them to leave feedback as comments, rather than rewriting the sections themselves.
Finally, it’s important to note that academic editors and proofreaders are not the same. They both serve different purposes and have different skillets as a result. With that in mind, let’s briefly discuss the difference between the two.
Difference between Proofreading and Editing
The terms proofreading and editing are used interchangeably, but that doesn’t mean they are the same in practice. Knowing the difference between proofreading and editing is important. And here’s why.
Your professor or supervisor might allow you to hire a proofreader, but not an editor, as the latter might heavily rewrite your paper. In that case, as mentioned above, it can be considered plagiarism.
So here’s how you can tell the difference between the two:
|Academic Proofreader||Academic Editor|
|Works on the final draft of the manuscript||Works the draft and continues until the draft is finalised|
|Addresses surface-level issues||Addresses the core features of writing|
|Check spelling, grammar, proper punctuations, inconsistencies, and formatting errors||Improves the content by focusing on clarity, readability, and flow|
|Does not rewrite anything or do big picture editing||Includes reducing of words to be more concise, if required|
Proofreaders and editors can both improve your paper, but they’re only there to assist and be a second pair of eyes. They should not be writing whole sections or the entire paper for you.
Why You Need an Academic Editor or Proofreader
A researcher’s goal when conducting a study is for the paper to get published. Globally, there are approximately 2 million academic papers published yearly in over 30,000 journals.
But, this number is only 20% of academic articles submitted. This means most submissions aren’t publishedーand of course, you don’t want to be part of the unlucky 80%. So, to increase the likelihood of your paper for publication, you should submit a well-written manuscript. One way to ensure this is by working with academic editors and proofreaders.
Here are some benefits you’ll get when you hire an outside proofreader or editor:
- Saves you time editing and proofreading your paper
- More objective pair of eyes
- Enhances your reputation by reducing mistakes
- Maintains the style and voice throughout your research
- Catch any errors in language, especially if English is not your first language
- Helps you refine your writing and produce the best version of your research
There are a lot more advantages to hiring third-party proofreading and editing services. You don’t want your effort wasted by things that you could have easily improved if only you invested and requested help from experts.
Flowcite: Academic Editors and Proofreaders You Can Trust
Editing and proofreading help you become an overall better writer that produces high-quality research papers. Without them, the stress and time spent editing and proofreading can seriously add up—and lower your chances of getting published.
Working with third-party proofreading and editing services, such as Flowcite, will help you overcome all these worries. You will be sure that your journal articles are excellent with no grammatical errors.
At Flowcite, we want to make the world of academic research easier for you. We provide an all-in-solution that helps improve your overall research processーfrom writing to publication. You will have access to cutting-edge features like:
- Plagiarism and premium proofreading service powered by Unicheck and iThenticate (a Turnitin company) to ensure you avoid unintentional plagiarism.
- AI-powered article summariser using Scholarcy that you can use to easily identify and verify key findings and sources from research papers.
- Premium submission service, in partnership with Enago, that checks formatting against guidelines and will do the submission process for you. It even includes writing your cover letter.
- Reference and Citation Manager that makes searching, saving, and organising your references easy.
With Flowcite, you are sure that your research paper meets the highest standards for publication. In addition, Flowcite enables you to focus more time on your research and less on worrying about grammatical errors, proper formatting, and plagiarism.
Sign up with Flowcite today and write a paper that goes through trusted academic proofreaders and editors.
Content Marketing Strategist
Brittany is a Content Marketing Strategist at Flowcite, and an outstanding academic writing expert. She holds a first-class Honours degree in Literae Humaniores from the University of Oxford and has been certified in Digital Marketing Analytics by the MIT Sloan School of Management.