A Checklist For Editing


Proofreading and editing go hand in hand, in fact, some people use them interchangeably, most likely because of the minimal difference between them, or perhaps they do not know there is a difference between proofreading and editing. The difference between proofreading and editing is that proofreading involves reading a manuscript or an assignment in order to identify or mark places that need to be corrected while editing involves identifying a problem/error and correcting it.

The checklist illustrated below is a useful guide for proofreading and editing assignments:

The content

  • Is the introduction captivating and relevant?
  • Is the research question answered comprehensively?
  • Has the research question been tackled to the expected depth?
  • Is the text giving specifics or does it focus on generalizations
  • Is the evidence given for the research question relevant?
  • Does the conclusion show the link between different sections of the assignment, and does it leave the reader with a single impression?

The style

  • Is the presence of the writer felt without necessarily using the first person?
  • Is the style used consistently?
  • How varied is the construction of sentences and the use of vocabularies?
  • If quotations are used, are they too many?
  • Is the reader convinced of what the research paper or assignment is discussing?
  • How is the use of vocabularies?


  • How easy is it to identify the theme and thesis statement?
  • How well has the theme and thesis statement fit in the research context?
  • Is there a smooth flow and transition of ideas and from one paragraph to another?
  • Is there uniformity in the paragraphs i.e. are some too long and others too short?
  • Is there cohesiveness and coherence from the introduction to the body and the conclusion?
  • How effective is the structure in conveying the intended message?

This is some of what a checklist for editing should have, however, it is advisable for students to explore proofreading and editing, which they can never exhaust.