It may seem daunting at first, but proofreading academic texts doesn’t have to be intimidating to the proofreading professional. The proofreading can be completed in much the same manner as any other text.
When thoroughly proofreading an article, I read the entire article first to get a feel for the voice of the author. The second reading usually is where the changes that are needed take place.
There is a difference between copy writing, editing and proofreading. This has to do with whether the article is merely being checked for grammar, punctuation, formatting and spelling and is usually the last step in the editing process of an article. Some people refer to it as an addition set of eyes to look over the article before being published. Editing involves all the steps of proofreading, but goes deeper into the article to make changes that allow the article to be clear, organized and fully understood by the audience. Editing usually takes place multiple times during the writing process.
When changing an article from English to Spanish, I will want to keep the author’s voice. Because of the different sentence structures, it is important to look at the original punctuation as a way to get a feel for the author’s voice. I can then use the appropriate Spanish punctuation that allows for the varying sentence structures to keep as much of the author’s voice intact as possible.
Some proofreaders may find the subject matter of a particular academic subject is something that is totally unfamiliar with them and run into words that are specific to the field of study. The proofreader in this case must have the ability to look up these subject specific words to ensure that they are spelled correctly. Many academic texts cite research from other academic sources. This means that I make an effort to look up names of researchers and titles of sources are spelled correctly. A simple google search should suffice to do this. An example of this is an article that cited the source: New South Wales University Center for Healthy Brains on Aging. However, the actual source is spelled University of New South Wales Centre for Healthy Brain Ageing. Now, this might seem like a small difference, but having the actual name of the institution is important in any article, especially an academic article.