Difference Between Editing And Proofreading

When I was in the beginning of my writing career, I always thought that the concept of editing and proofreading is same. However, I was not sure what was the difference between two but with the passage of time, I came to know that editing is a complex process where as proofreading is only a part of this entire process. Nevertheless, the duties of an editor and proofreader are extremely high. Only through proper training, one can deal with the complexities of any document. before taking an example, lets have a look at the duties of these two types of people.

An editor is expert in making changes in the document in a way that it looks professional. for this purpose, he does sentence editing, paragraph structure editing, document structure editing, grammar editing from all grammatical perspectives, format editing and writing style editing. All these elements together make the editing process ample complex but after all these types of editing, the final product is always outstanding and appealing.

Proofreading is basically reading through a paper from grammatical perspective. A proofreader usually removes the grammatical errors through reading each sentence from grammatical perspective. it means he has to see different elements such as parts of speech, use of noun and pronoun, proper placement of adjectives and adverbs and much more.

Lets take an example here:

Obesity has been considered a Major issue across the globe and experts are struggling to come up with the complications cling to this universal issue.

This sentence has a lot of problems. If we will edit it completely, there is structural error in this sentence. For instance the sentence is written for general article, the vocabulary is too high for a naïve person. Similarly, the use of the word “issue” twice indicate the writing style error. There must be no repetition of words, sentences or concepts. Similarly, the sentence must have break down. There must be two sentences instead of one so that it appears easy to read. If this sentence is edit from grammatical perspective, we will call it proofreading. For instance, the ‘M’ of word ‘Major’ is capital. Similarly, the word ‘issue’ should be changed to ‘problem’ to avoid vocabulary issue.

Therefore, in order to become expert editor, you have to be an expert proofreader. In each case, there must be proper training and expertise. In order to develop that expertise, you should take practice tests as well


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