Our comprehensive proofreading course will take you from complete beginner to confident, trained professional, ready to start work. And to give you a head start in the industry, we include a freelance work guarantee with our partner company, Proofed, for all students who pass the final assessment with a distinction grade of over 80%. Start your freelance proofreading career straight away!
We also cater for companies and institutions who want to train their employees to write, proofread, or format documents.
If you have an eye for detail, our proofreading course is a great way to kickstart a new career.
A freelance career as a proofreader provides the ultimate flexibility and freedom. Work as much as you want, whenever you want, and wherever you want! Fit work around your schedule, avoid the commute, and have more time for the important things in life.
Our proofreading partner, Proofed, has run a proofreading service since 2010. They wanted to establish a benchmark for proofreading standards, as there were no qualifications that fully demonstrated editorial skills to the standards Proofed required. After years of real-life experience and research into the support experienced proofreaders need, as well as the skills people interested in editing need to gain, our flagship proofreading course was born.
However, we don’t just teach you the skills you need to proofread – we also line you up with the work!
Don’t take our word for it! Liz
This course includes the modules listed below. Click on the headings to open a new page with the full syllabus for each module.
Find out why editing and proofreading have traditionally been treated as separate tasks in print publishing, as well as how they often merge in digital work. Get to grips with the ethical issues you might encounter while proofreading. And meet the different client types you might work with once you start your career as a professional proofreader!
If you’re a bit rusty on computing, this module will oil you up! Take a tour through all the tools in Microsoft Word you’ll need to get started with proofreading. If you are a technophobe, worry no more! Our back-to-basics course covers tracking changes, changing the proofing language, setting your user name in Microsoft Word, and more.
Finally, you can nail the difference between ‘there’, ‘they’re’, and ‘their’, and much more. Get to grips with British, US, and Australian spelling, clear up the rules about irregular plurals, and impress friends with your knowledge of closed, open, and hyphenated compounds!
Perfect your prepositions, parenthetical clauses, and parallelism! Fix fragments and faulty agreement! And free yourself from dangling and misplaced modifiers for evermore! Grind down the grammatical gremlins of UK, US, and Australian English, and bust some well-worn myths as you boldly go where no non-proofreader has gone before!
Queries about question marks? Extremely excited about exclamation points?!! Do you, put, too, many commas, in your sentences? We’ll iron all that out. If you’re the type who goes shopping with a paintbrush to correct grocer’s apostrophes, you’ll be right at home here.
Take our guided tour through everything else you need to know about the nitty-gritty of language, including Latin terms, abbreviations, acronyms and initialisms, number use, and capitalisation. Find out where most people trip up and separate your ‘i.e.’s from your ‘e.g.’s for good!
What’s the difference between a style guide, a style sheet, and a referencing style? Worry no more, we’ve got you covered in our style module. We’ll also talk you through written tone, technical jargon, avoiding offensive language, and how to turn clunky confusion into elegant flow.
We’ll take you back to school with an in-depth look at proofreading academic documents, ranging from undergraduate essays to journal articles and PhD theses. We’ll show you how to work with LaTeX (no, it’s nothing kinky), how to make sure quotes are used properly, when the active and passive voices are appropriate in academic writing, and much more.
Does Harvard hurt your head? Does APA make your eyes ache? Are you shy about Chicago? And what does ALWD even mean? We’ll soothe all your referencing woes with our extended guide to some of the major citation styles, as well as some not-so-well-known ones.
If you’re in a tangle about tables or perplexed about page numbers, join us for a look at formatting in Microsoft Word. Learn about page and section breaks, how to format headings and captions, how to create dynamic tables and lists, and everything else you need to know.
Learn how to work with authors and publishers as we guide you through how to proofread creative writing. This module looks at both fiction and non-fiction, as well as non-standard English, authorial voice, and proofreading dialogue. After completing the lessons, you will be primed to proofread a range of different writing styles and document types common in the publishing world, including book manuscripts, screenplays, and PDF page proofs.
Drum roll, please! It’s time to show off what you have learned! In this final part of the course, you'll learn about how to find work as a freelance proofreader. We'll guide you through top revision areas, and provide you with a practice mock assignment. Then you’ll take two proofreading tests and a formatting test, on which you’ll receive detailed tutor feedback. If you score 80% or above, you can start freelancing at Proofed immediately.
Do I need to have a degree or any other qualifications?
No, we teach you all you need to know to work as a professional proofreader!
What do I need to get started?
You'll need a laptop or desktop computer, the latest version of Microsoft Word (2016 or later), and, as our course is all delivered online, you'll also need to be connected to the internet to access our course material.
Can I do this course on my iPad or Chromebook?
You will need to have access to the full version of Microsoft Word in order to complete the course successfully. Currently, the IOS version and online versions of Word are not as comprehensive as the full version so you would not be able to proofread professionally unless you have the full version of Word. Clients will expect you to have the right professional tools for the job and our Becoming A Proofreader course is a great way to ensure you can use the all of those tools properly.
How soon can I start work as a proofreader after getting my distinction grade at Proofreading Academy?
Straight away! You’ll have a meeting with one of the Proofed team to talk you through the process, usually within a couple of weeks of receiving your results. You need to score 80% or greater to qualify for the work guarantee.
How much work will I be able to do?
It’s up to you! Proofed has proofreaders who do a few hours a week to supplement their income, all the way up to proofreaders who work full-time. And as a freelancer, as well as working for Proofed, you can use your new proofreading skills with as many extra clients as you like!
Is there a time limit for how long I have to complete the course?
You will have access to the course for a full year. Students complete it within around 40 hours on average, though, so that is plenty of time!
Does it matter where I’m based?
As long as you have a PC/Laptop with the latest version of Microsoft Word and an internet connection, you really can proofread anywhere!
What resources do I need to do the course and work for Proofed?
To complete the course and work for Proofed, all you need is a laptop or desktop computer, access to an internet connection, and Microsoft Word 2016 as a minimum. We provide the rest, including real-world sample documents for you to download and practise proofreading.
Have another question?
Take a look at our FAQs here, or get in touch here and we’ll be happy to help!