Centre for Continuing Education

A Course in Editing and Proofreading

English. Develop your command of the English language with us.

COVID-19 update: arrangement of our courses

We are now delivering courses both online and in-person. Please check the delivery format for each class before you enrol.

Please note that course materials for all classes (excluding prescribed textbooks) are shared electronically within 48 hours of a course starting. Printing is not available.

You start with a basic text; it might be a report, a brochure or a book. You edit it so that it has a strong structure and reads well. Then you proofread it to remove errors and ensure consistency. If you can master this simple process, you’ll have the skills to communicate clearly and produce documents of professional quality. In this course you’ll be introduced to the essential skills of editing and learn techniques for editing and proofreading professional documents.


By the end of this course, you should be able to:

  • identify the differences between writing, editing and proofreading
  • explain the role of the editor and proofreader in the writing process
  • explain the four basic elements: structure, expression, consistency and accuracy
  • apply your understanding of these four elements to written examples, with a view to applying them in your daily work
  • use standard mark-up symbols when proofreading printed texts
  • compare and contrast various texts to see how well you communicate your message
  • appreciate the ‘grey areas’ of editing and proofing, such as house style, personal preference and changes in spelling.



  • What are editing and proofreading
  • How do they fit within the writing process
  • The politics of editing

Structural editing

  • Document structure
  • Using paragraphs
  • Using headings

Copy editing

  • Sentence structure
  • Choosing words well
  • The ‘tone’ of a document

Proofreading for accuracy

  • Proofreading symbols
  • A proofreading checklist
  • Common spelling and punctuation errors

Proofreading for consistency

  • Making sense of the changing language
  • Using style guides
  • Making the right editing decisions

Intended audience

Suitable for people who write, edit and/or proofread texts in their daily work, or who assess other people’s written work.

If you’re an aspiring professional editor or proofreader, you’ll gain valuable knowledge and skills from an editor with over 25 years' experience. Past courses have included lawyers, managers, businesspeople, executive assistants, editors, project managers, and people working in marketing and communications.

Delivery style

This interactive course balances theory with hands-on exercises to reinforce what you’ve learned. There’s no time wasted on PowerPoint presentations – we just get down to the business of editing and proofreading.


A course workbook is provided in class.

Additional information

It is recommended (but not essential) you to bring your own device to class. You should ensure your device is fully charged as access to power is limited. Please note that University does not carry any responsibility for your lost, stolen, or damaged devices whilst on the University premises.


  • Expert trainers
  • Central locations
  • Course materials – yours to keep
  • CCE Statement of Completion

What others say.

  • The small group sizes made it very personal. The tutor was very attentive and enthusiastic.

  • OMG! I thought the course was amazing. The Tutor was knowledgeable and succinct, with excellent communications skills. The entire class was captivated and at no time did I feel the content was boring. I am grateful for the knowledge I gained and will work hard to apply this newly acquired knowledge to the work that I do. I have already recommended this course to my work colleagues.

  • This is a very knowledgeable tutor who made the subject extremely enjoyable. I can go back to work feeling confident with my new skills.

  • A very worthwhile course for any writing level.

  • The tutor was extremely knowledgeable and was able to utilise the extensive experience as an editor and educator to clearly communicate the key concepts and with language use guidelines. My writing will be improved in its ability to communicate to the reader. I am grateful for the knowledge I gained over the course. Now for the hard work in applying this knowledge.

  • Great instructor who was enthusiastic about the subject and very keen to pass on knowledge. Highly recommended.

  • This course exceeded my expectations. I found the course relevant to my current and future work tasks, and the presenter was excellent. I will definitely be enrolling in the advanced course.

  • A great course; the teacher expertly covered content that in the wrong hands could be very tedious.

  • Excellent tutor. Really great, well organised, knows the stuff and a really lovely teaching style. I left with some great new skills I can put to use at work.

  • I’ve been on other courses with different providers and this was the best course I have done so far.

  • Of all the decisions I make, doing this course is in the 90th percentile of positive decisions.

  • The size of the class was good so there were lots of opportunities to ask questions. We also had plenty of classroom activities to test our understanding after each topic.

  • Found the presenter very engaging and knowledgeable. Feel I learned a lot and was also able to determine opportunities for future employment in this field. Liked the fact he came to lunch with us and a great lunch it was, too. Thanks a bunch!

  • The presenter was a great facilitator who used stories and anecdotes well. He was great at managing the group and had a lot of experience to share. The course was also well paced.

  • As an stand-alone course, it was most satisfactory. It has whet my appetite to enrol in the advanced course. The tutor’s knowledge and delivering were both entertaining and informative.

  • A great presenter – experienced, practical and laid back. He has the course down pat, in terms of mixing theory with practice and well-timed breaks. Both days flew.

  • Very lively course given by a professional with experience.

What others say.

  • As an stand-alone course, it was most satisfactory. It has whet my appetite to enrol in the advanced course. The tutor's knowledge and delivering were both entertaining and informative.
  • Valuable course! We were made to feel welcome and any questions were accepted by the tutor. We were also allowed to discuss our own specific work problems or questions. Thank you.
  • The size of the class was good so there were lots of opportunities to ask questions. We also had plenty of classroom activities to test our understanding after each topic.
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