Editing and proofreading your work
As your studies progress it is important to become more independent with refining your own work. Editing involves improving the 'big picture' of your assignment: whether it addresses the task requirements fully, how the paragraphs are structured and flow and so on. Proofreading focuses on specific details like spelling, sentence structure, referencing etc. The following points may be printed as a checklist, with space for notes about your assignment.
- Introduction: does it clearly state the topic and how it will be dealt with?
- Paragraphing: does it have clear topic sentences? Do the ideas 'hang together' cohesively?
- Are there links between paragraphs and sections (implicit / explicit connectors)?
- Conclusion: does it sum up your main points? Is there a final observation?
Coverage of your topic
- Have you answered the question?
- Have you explored the issues raised by the topic to sufficient depth?
Analysis and argument
- Have you provided adequate analysis?
- Have you demonstrated an independent, original approach?
- Is your argument supported by sufficient evidence and supporting information?
Citations, quotations, paraphrasing
- Are there too many or too few quotations?
- Are the quotations and citations all from reliable, representative sources?
- Are the paraphrases in your own words?
- Do the quotations fit grammatically and add meaning to your writing?
- Are the thought relationships clear?
- Are headings clear and concise?
- Are there signposts throughout to indicate where you have come from within the argument, and where you are going next?
Logical development and flow of writing
- Is it in a consistent style appropriate for an academic audience?
- Is the flow of ideas logical and smooth?
- Check for consistency of heading levels, diagrams and tables, margins and indentation, bibliography and footnotes (if used).
- Is your table of contents consistent and accurate?
- Are all sources listed in the bibliography or list of references?
- Are all reference details complete?
- Are all references consistently presented in the required style?
- Check grammar, word choice, sentence fragments, spelling, punctuation (see checklist on next page)