Four Aspects of Scholarly Texts That Require an Extra Check
In the proofreading business, especially when your clientele is international, you see many different kinds of problems in the documents scholars plan to publish, present, submit, post or disseminate in some other way. There is enormous variation, of course, but there are also certain trends that seem to cut across cultural and linguistic divides. Among these are aspects of academic and scientific writing that tend to be particularly rife with errors and are always in need of an extra check before a document is shared.
References must come at or very near the top of any list of problems commonly encountered by academic and scientific proofreaders. Both in-text citations and the more complete references to sources that are included in a final list or bibliography require checking. In-text and in-list references should be checked against each other as well as against the original sources to ensure that names, titles, publication dates and places, and information such as page numbers are correct in every case. All of this sounds straightforward, of course, if time-consuming, but it is truly wondrous how easy it is to introduce errors to dull bibliographical material and indeed to pass over those errors when proofreading your own work.
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The same principle applies to tables, figures and lists if you use them. They are likely to have been developed early in the writing process, and though they may have been scanned by a quick eye numerous times, they are often not proofread with the attention to detail they demand. They do tend, after all, to contain vast amounts of information in very concise forms, yet authors are often very familiar with what they contain or should contain. This is to say that their creators already know what should be there, so the likelihood of seeing correct information rather than the mistakes that may actually exist increases accordingly, and errors crop up in tables, figures and lists with enormous frequency. These elements therefore always require a close check.
Although headings and other structural indicators would seem far too obvious on the page to sport errors by the time they reach a publisher, they are in fact another aspect of scholarly documents that often require correction. Numbering of sections can pose problems, particularly when the automatic functions of computer programs are involved, and so can fonts, which are often used to make headings stand out, but can also vary to distinguish different levels of heading in a document and different elements of the document as well (table headings, for instance, rather than section headings). In some cases spacing around headings must also maintain consistency within levels and distinction between them, so headings are obvious texts that require checking with an alert eye and ideally some understanding of font, spacing and numbering functions in the relevant software program.
Somewhat incredibly, personal information is among the aspects of scholarly papers that frequently require correction. Perhaps it is because they are relieved to have the document itself finished or utterly bored with reading instructions by the time their references are polished, but scholars often do not seem at their best by the time they add the personal information required by a journal or press. Typing errors, incomplete and misplaced data, and even personal information included in opposition to a publisher’s requirements for blind peer reviewing are all too common, so do take a second look at this material before submitting your writing.
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At Proof-Reading-Service.com we offer the highest quality English editing and proofreading services via our large and extremely dedicated team of academic and scientific professionals. All of our proofreaders and editors are native speakers of English who have earned their own postgraduate degrees, and their areas of specialisation cover such a wide range of disciplines that we are able to help our international clientele with research editing to improve and perfect all kinds of academic manuscripts for successful publication. Many of the carefully trained members of our expert editing and proofreading team work predominantly on articles intended for publication in scholarly journals, applying painstaking journal editing standards to ensure that the references and formatting used in each paper are in conformity with the journal’s instructions for authors and to correct any grammar, spelling, punctuation or simple typing errors. In this way, we enable our clients to report their research in the clear and accurate ways required to impress acquisitions editors and achieve publication.
Our scientific editing services for the authors of a wide variety of scientific journal papers are especially popular, but we also offer book editing services and have the experience and expertise to proofread and edit manuscripts in all scholarly disciplines, as well as beyond them. We have team members who specialise in medical editing and bioscience editing, and some of our experts dedicate their time exclusively to PhD proofreading and master’s proofreading, offering research students the opportunity to improve their use of formatting and language through the most exacting thesis editing and dissertation proofreading practices. Whether you are preparing a conference paper for presentation, polishing a progress report to share with colleagues, or facing the daunting task of editing and perfecting any kind of scholarly document for publication, a qualified member of our professional team can provide invaluable assistance and give you greater confidence in your written work.