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Technical Editing Services

Technical Editing Services

Writing and editing are two independent tasks that complement each other but cannot perform each other's functions. Each is a distinct process and the skill set needed for one will not be sufficient to do the other. So, what does a technical editor do?

A technical editor revises science and/or technology documents so that the content and flow of data is more effective and easily understood by the reader. Like all editors, the technical editor's core intention is to ensure that the reader has a final error-free document to read and understand. Technical editing entails the reviewing and correction of a science or technological document so as to improve accuracy, language, consistency, and coherence.

Functions of a technical editor

There are three kinds of services that a technical editing services provider offers you. They include:

  • Comprehensive editing – In this level, the editor checks and edits both the content and form. While checking content, the editor focuses on the usage of appropriate language, completeness, and accuracy. While checking the form, he or she focuses on usability, organization, and visual design.

  • Copyediting – This aspect of the technical editor's job ensures that the document is correct with regard to all aspects of the mechanics including grammar, spelling, and punctuation. The editor also checks for stylistic consistent of the content.

  • Proofreading – Here, the editor checks the final edited document with the original marked-up version to ensure that all corrections are done accurately.

All technical editors need not do all the above functions for every project. The complexities in the editing process depend on other factors including the importance of the document under question, the schedule of the project, and the budget.

Editing work is mostly invisible especially those of a good editor. Let me explain this sentence in a little more detail to you. Many people are quite unaware of the fact that they are reading a good piece of technical content. Many technical users may not know that they are holding a good piece of writing that has undergone excellent editing.

However, the very same people will immediately recognize a bad piece of writing which is a result of bad editing. Thus, the effects of good editing are actually invisible and the effects of a bad editing are starkly visible. So, if your editing work does not receive any criticism, then you can be proud of your editing skills.

Moreover, as compared to development teams, technical editors hardly get any kind of recognition or praise. Here are some classic scenarios of why most technical editors remain in the background:

  • If a technical document is completely free from all kinds of errors and is well-organized, the writer invariably gets the credit. It is indeed unfortunate that most people will never know that the technical editor would have done a lot of edits and corrections to make the said document completely free of all errors.

  • Many times, writers and development teams get the final credit when the project is considered a success and technical editors who participated with equal vigor are simply forgotten. This may not be a deliberate intention. That is how invisible good editing is!

It is very important to get your technical document edited and corrected by a good technical editing services provider.

Content that needs the services of a technical editing services provider

Today, the repertoire of a technical editor goes beyond printed materials. You might need technical editors to edit the following:

  • Printed materials such as books, reference cards, pamphlets, reports, etc

  • Electronic materials such as online help pages, online documentation, web pages, etc

  • Scripts of videos

  • Study materials for computer-based training courses

In most of the cases, the target audience need have great technical expertise and they could be from the general public. So, only a technical editor can make sure that the technical content is written well enough for the ordinary non-technical person to read and understand.

In some cases, the job of a technical editor could include detailed editing of the technical aspects of a program. For example, during the editing process of any user guide, the technical editor would ideally test the written processes for check for their real-world outcomes.

Technical editors operate in a wide variety of fields including computer hardware and software, engineering, medicine, sciences, brokerage services, banking and financial services, legal services, website development, etc.

Responsibilities of a technical editor

  • Edits documents for content, organization, style, and technical accuracy

  • A good editor will be able to clearly discern the level and depth of edits that are needed in any particular document depending on which stage of development it belongs to

  • A good technical editor will edit several pieces of content at different stages of development

  • A good technical editor will create word lists and style guides for use by the internal development team

  • A good technical editor will keep track of corporate governances and legal guidelines of the company

  • A good technical editor will develop and execute external and internal review processes for various documentations

  • A good technical editor will have excellent interpersonal and communication skills as he or she will have to collaborate with more than one writer especially in large projects

Final Notes

Like all editors, the first priority of a technical editor is also the reader. If an editor feels that the document will make no sense to an average reader, he or she will mince no words in putting across this thought to the writer and/or the development team so that appropriate corrections are made on the document.

As most of the technical documents are quite dry and utilitarian, readers will merely scan them and read only what they absolutely need. It becomes the job of a technical editor to ensure that all relevant and important data are written succinctly for any reader to easily read and understand.

At Prescott Papers, our teams of writers and editors are highly trained, qualified, and experienced in their domains to help you with writing and/or editing content. Moreover, our academic writing team would be happy to help you with all your academic writing needs. Do not hesitate to call us for custom essays, projects, assignments, and more.

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