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Five Reasons Why You Need To Hire an Editor for Your Academic Writing

This blog post was initially published on LinkedIn.

Should an author be his own editor?
Spoiler Alert: No

Whether you are an undergraduate student writing your first research paper, a PhD student working on your dissertation, or a veteran scholar with several publications to your name, your writing can always improve. Here are five reasons why you might want to hire an editor to ensure that your work is the best that it can be.

1. They will catch the mistakes you will not.

No matter how well you write, mistakes happen. Because you know how the text is supposed to read, your eyes may gloss over misspelled words, improper capitalization, missing or repeated words, or improper punctuation. Even if you are great at proofreading other people’s papers, you might not be the best candidate for proofreading your own work. A qualified editor will find all of the mistakes that you missed.

2. They will guarantee your message is clear and effective.

Just as you know what you intended the individual words to be, you also know the intended meaning of the text. Sometimes even the clearest writing can be improved so that your arguments can be more effective. An editor can help improve your paper by identifying spots where a reader may struggle to understand your point and working with you to clarify them. They can further improve your arguments by reorganizing the text, choosing different words, or making your verbiage more concise (or recommending that you add text).

3. They will ensure credibility.

Whether you are writing your paper for a class project or submitting it to an academic journal, you want to be taken seriously. We know that many people make decisions about a person’s credibility—rightfully or not—based purely on appearance. Similarly, a reviewer may see a paper with typographical, mechanical, or grammatical errors and wonder if the author was as careless with their research as they were with their writing. An editor can ensure that your writing is error-free so that your reader can focus on the content.

4: They will provide objectivity.

You have spent a lot of time crafting your paper. You are proud of what you wrote (and you should be). Your investment in the writing is one of the best reasons to hire an editor: Because they did not write it, they do not feel attached to it. Your editor will also be more objective than someone close to you, such as a friend or colleague, who might feel more inclined to be complimentary than to identify any weaknesses in your work. An editor is best equipped to provide an honest assessment of your work and recommend improvements precisely because they have no connection to it.

5: They will be professional.

Although anyone could edit or proofread your paper, hiring a professional has its benefits. Because they edit for a living, they do not have other professional responsibilities that would prevent them from focusing on your work. “Editors” such as your spouse or your friend who teaches high school English may not be familiar with scholarly writing. Even a colleague who regularly writes and publishes academic papers might not have the expertise or skills to copy edit or proofread your work. A professional editor will have the skills, expertise, and dedication required to make your writing shine.

If you want to improve the quality of your academic writing, an editor can help. They will bring a professional, objective eye to your work, and they will improve your paper’s credibility by ensuring that your message is communicated well and by fixing your typographical, mechanical, and grammatical errors.

Kos Writing Support Services offers a variety of efficient and affordable editing services. Visit my website to learn more about how I can help you improve your writing.

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