Guarantees? Guarantees?

Have you been following the discussion on choosing an editor?

If not, I recommend you go back and read the last two posts. Only then will you understand what I’m going to say about guarantees.

Here are some actual questions students have asked:

“Do you guarantee your work?”
“What is your success rate with [school] on approval of [school’s] dissertations?”

On the one hand, the answer is really simple. Yes, editing work has guarantees.

What is important is to understand what can be guaranteed. An editor:

  1. can make sure that the work is in standard English (American of British, as required).
  2. can help the writing style have an academic rather than and informal tone.
  3. can check and apply any house styles you send. If your do not take the responsibility to send any, we can only apply standard norms.
  4. can apply whatever format your school requires (e.g. APA, MLA, Harvard, etc.). Again any style preferences other than the norm need to be supplied by you.
  5. will walk the journey with you however often you need us.
  6. charge uncomplicated fees so that students can budget accurately.
  7. offer a clear timeframe, again so students can plan to the day.

On the other hand, editing is not a product and does not carry product guarantees. Thus editors:

  1. cannot know and apply every personal preference of your mentor/advisor/supervisor/chair, committee, review board, dean’s office or whoever else might have input into your document.
  2. cannot take problematic writing from 0-10 in one edit.
  3. cannot be expected to sort out content concerns in a copy edit.
  4. are not the review board or the dean’s office. Editors cannot ensure automatic approval. The review board and dean’s office are required to identify concerns and require rewrites of you to help you strengthen your presentation. Most times a resubmission somewhere along the way is going to happen. This is not personal, simply how the system works.

So to sum up, the writing is yours, and any changes you make or any changes you do not accept from us are your responsibility. Students who understand that doctoral writing is about a creative journey understand what can be guaranteed. Students who are still in the product mode need to understand what cannot be guaranteed. A dissertation is NOT a product, but a creative journey.

If what I’ve just said makes sense to you, then you are ready for a LOL editing journey. True, sometimes it could be a roller coaster ride. But you will do what it takes to complete the ride and not expect the editor to make it happen for you. You’re our kind of student :). Do you know of other students who might like to read this message. Let them know by clicking on the ShareThis button below!

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