Proofreading a Thesis – Acceptable or Not?
The short answer is yes. Usually, it is perfectly OK to get your thesis proofread. However, you need to check what your university or department policy is.
In general, most universities are happy for you to get a professional to proofread your work. As with everything, there are always a few exceptions. It is up to you to find out what the rules and regulations are. Some universities have a list of approved proofreaders who agree to work by the university regs. Other have forms that you need to complete to make it clear who has proofread your work. Some just ask you to credit the proofreader you work with in the thesis.
What can a proofreader do?
Proofreading a thesis is a little different to proofreading other manuscripts. The thesis is the product of your original research. A proofreader cannot do anything that changes the meaning of your work. They can check spelling, grammar, capitalisations, formatting and abbreviations. However, they can’t correct any mistakes in calculations or change the overall structure.
What should I do if I want my thesis proofread?
First, check your university rules and regulations. If they allow proofreading, the next step is to see what they allow and what is prohibited. If you can, send the details to the proofreader you approach so they have access to the rules too. Every university is different, so it is up to you to be aware of the procedures.
Once you know you can get your dissertation proofread, it’s time to get in touch with a proofreader. Remember that it takes time to proofread. It may have taken you three years to write this manuscript. It would be a disservice to your work to think it could be proofread in 24 hours.
I would suggest you get in touch early on to see if there is availability to take on your thesis. Don’t worry if it isn’t quite finished yet, you can still get a quote and get booked in. The other thing to remember is to allow some time to check through the final document. When you get the manuscript back, there may be queries that you need to resolve. A proofreader can’t check the references for you, but they might highlight a section where your reference manager hasn’t formatted the reference correctly. You need to make sure you have time to work through all these corrections.
In conclusion, getting your thesis professionally proofread is usually a good idea. However, you need to check what your university or college regulations are.
If you want to know any more, feel free to get in contact with me.