Grammourpuss’s online proofreading course

Proofreading is an essential cog in the machine of publishing, with responsibilities and skills to match. People who think it's easy ignore all considerations of style and typography, assuming that it's simply a case of checking for spelling mistakes in a document. What's more, many courses are little more than basic English lessons with a list of proofreading symbols. The result is that those with a flair for spotting errors often try to find proofreading work when they are not prepared.

This course is designed for people who want to proofread professionally. It assumes that anyone embarking on a career in proofreading will have a reasonable understanding of English and explores style and typography, essential for real-world proofreaders. It draws on the experience of its author to identify problematic areas involving punctuation and grammar, and imparts its wisdom in an informative yet informal manner.

There are no promises of work, direct or implied; the course simply teaches you what you need to know and then lets you use your own initiative. It will prepare you for working for web developers, designers and publishers of books and magazines.

The course includes:

a complete and descriptive section on the proofreading symbols
an introduction to copy editing
a glossary of proofreading, typographical and editing terms
tests in various aspects of the trade that let you know if you're ready – or show where any weaknesses lie
over 50,000 words of information – about a two to three days' study
step-by-step instructions on the mechanics of proofreading
a further reading list to enhance any specialised skills
an email helpline that helps you to sort out any problems and lets you make suggestions on improving the course

Members Join

We are currently working on a system that will allow members to access a forum so that proofreading woes can be aired and solved by other proofreaders and editors. It could also be used as a means of sharing work by requesting assistance when deadlines are approaching. We are still taking suggestions on possibilities for the forum – if you've got any ideas, click here. Mail here too if you discover any books or websites deserving of a place in the further reading section.