When choosing the best proofreading courses, the most important factors to consider are your learning style and specific career goals. If you can adapt to a self-taught learning style, then a large variety of proofreading courses are available. If you prefer a traditional classroom setting with an instructor, proofreading workshops may be offered through local colleges and community centers at a relatively low cost. There are different types of proofreading courses; basic classes are great for copy editors and writers, though industry-specific training may be necessary for proofreading careers in legal, financial and technical industries.
Completing a professional proofreading course can be beneficial for someone seeking career advancement, especially in an office setting and in jobs that require written reports to be produced. Online courses may be best for working professionals who do not have sufficient time or resources to dedicate to a full certification program, although online certification programs also are available. If you are uncomfortable taking self-paced courses online, you can check local colleges and community centers for instructor-based proofreading courses. You also may be able to obtain a proofreading certificate in combination with a two- or four-year degree in English or journalism.
It can be difficult to determine which proofreading course or certification program is best, because there are many options, especially online. If you are applying for a job that requires a specific type of proofreading skills, such as legal proofreading, you may ask the referring employment agency or the prospective employer to recommend a preferred training program. Employment agencies may require a test to evaluate your proofreading skills, and you may score higher after completing a professional proofreading course. Otherwise, you may want to search online forums for reviews of various Internet-based proofreading courses designed for your job interests.
General proofreading courses will be suitable for anyone seeking a career in copy editing involving books and magazines, website content and news releases. This type of coursework should provide proofreading techniques for improving overall readability and style while correcting grammar and spelling errors. An independent contractor with proofreading certification can charge more for his or her services and secure additional work from new clients.
Technical proofreading courses are essential for certain types of jobs, especially in the legal and financial industries. For example, legal proofreading skills are a requirement for any legal proofreading job, because of the specific knowledge, vocabulary and level of detail required to be a successful legal proofreader. Taking a specialized proofreading course designed for legal professionals, financial experts or technical careers may help you to land a job in those fields.