Center for Publishing
Editorial Fundamentals: Copyediting, Proofreading, and Fact Checking
Whether you are editing a manuscript or creating new documents for publication in print or on the web, you need a strong grasp of grammar and punctuation as well as an understanding of fact checking and research to determine the accuracy of the content at hand. Editors, agents, and future freelancers need to know how these functions fit into the editorial process in a print and/or digital environment. In this course, students will learn the different processes in editorial production for print books, magazines, and on the web. First, students will study effective research and fact-checking strategies, including what to fact check, introduction to rights and permissions, and an overview of effective research sources in print and on the web. Students will next learn the elements of copyediting and the functions of a copy editor, including copyediting symbols, electronic copyediting techniques, style sheets, type coding, and querying authors and editors. There will be a recurring discussion of select grammar and punctuation issues and common mistakes. Finally, students will learn the mechanics of proofreading, including symbols to use, how to mark proof pages, and the elements of proofing onscreen vs. on hard copy. The objective of this course is to provide students with a strong foundation in the editorial skills all publishing professionals need to effectively create, edit, and market content.