What is proofreading?

What is proofreading? As its name suggests- proof plus reading it generally means reading for a proof to make any document error free.

Why proofreading is important?

  • To ensure accuracy in grammar.
  • Consistency in spelling, punctuation and formatting.
  • Revision of a manuscript before it is printed or published.
  • To review the final draft.
  • To see the final accurate version.
  • Get better grade on final paper.
  • Eradicate errors.
  • Avoid negative impression.
  • Give big picture view.
  • Achieve good results.
  • Include appropriate information.

Measures to check the document

  • Accuracy
  • Grammatical errors
  • Sentence framing
  • Spelling mistakes
  • Right words
  • Punctuations
  • Cohesion-Coherence

Steps for it

  • Use a checklist
  • Fact-check
  • Spell-check
  • Read aloud
  • Focus on one line at a time
  • Attend to format
  • Proof again

Symbols and Signs used in proofreading

Proofreading symbols are used to identify mistakes and to state the needed correction. Here is a list of the most common proofreading marks

^ Insert something; the text to be inserted will likely be provided in the margin

x Delete

⁐ Close up space

# Add space

∼ Transpose

sp Spell out

≡ Make uppercase

_ Make lowercase

stet Let stand

eq# Make equal space

^, put a comma

. period required

;/ Insert semicolon

: put colon

= insert hyphen

N̲ en dash

M̲ em dash

^put apostrophe

? Insert question mark

! put exclamation mark

(/) parentheses

[/] Insert brackets

V(( ))V quotation marks

bf Set as bold

ital Set as italics

wf Wrong font

[ Go to left

] Go to right

|| up

|| down

] [ Center

¶ Begin paragraph

Proofreading Vs Editing

proofreading vs editing

Proofreading is a part of editing but editing is much more than it.

The differences are actually pretty simple to understand once they are explained. They can be summed up in two sentences:

“Copyeditors catch all the mistakes the author missed,
Proof-readers catch all the mistakes the copyeditor missed.”

Qualities of a good proof-reader

  • Knowledge
  • Focus
  • Passion for accuracy
  • Patience
  • Ability to be meticulous


  • Proofreading helps to improve the writing efforts of students as they skip this crucial step when writing.
  • It creates readable writing and eliminates errors before printing or submitting an academic paper, essay, email or any other written document.

Poll Questions

1. Do you think proofreading and editing is necessary for a good piece of work?


2. There isn’t any difference between Proofreading and Editing.


3. It is not essential to proofread documents before printing or submitting.


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