Essential Copy-Editing: Editorial Skills Two


Essential Copy-Editing is an up to date, computer-based course that covers the entire copy-editing process. It trains you to work effectively as a copy-editor to prepare documents for publication. The early units equip you with the fundamental skills and theoretical knowledge you need. Units 5 to 7 build on these skills to give you the experience to tackle more complex material and challenging editorial tasks.

Essential Copy-Editing is an online course using Microsoft Word on-screen to complete the exercises and assignments.

The course assumes prior acquisition of proofreading skills, and experience in applying them.

What is copy-editing? 

Copy-editing is the process of preparing a document for publication. The role of the copy-editor is to make the author’s message clear and accessible to readers and to mark up the manuscript for the typesetter. It’s a complex job, which requires an understanding of not just language and grammar but also production processes, typography and design conventions. It covers the structure, organisation and writing style of the text, as well as legal issues, such as copyright and libel. 

 Five reasons to choose Essential Copy-Editing

  1. PTC is widely recognised by publishers and beyond
  2. Cover the requirements of the wider business world as well as publishing
  3. Have the support of a personal tutor at every stage of assessment
  4. Learn and practise with 36 self-check exercises
  5. Benefit from the most widely recognised industry qualification 

Learning outcomes

At the end of Essential Copy-Editing you will be able to:

  • use fundamental copy-editing skills to work on fiction and non-fiction, and on many styles of text and websites
  • use the particular aspects of copy-editing that are relevant mainly to books and journals, giving you the tools needed to work in either field
  • work on-screen and on paper
  • manage more complex non-fiction projects
  • deal efficiently with detailed tables, technical drawings, figures and endmatter
  • brief an illustrator and editor

How does the course work?

Each unit contains a number of self-check exercises plus a longer assignment that you send to your tutor, who will mark it and provide you with the feedback you need to progress to the next unit. Each assignment tests the knowledge you have gained and skills you have developed in the unit that you have just completed, and reinforces what you learned in preceding units. The final assignment is thus also a consolidation exercise, testing the skills you have acquired throughout the course.

Only the assignments will count towards your final grade, but, where appropriate, your tutor will also give you feedback on the self-check exercises, ensuring that you have fully understood the learning points from each unit and can apply what you’ve learned.

Course materials are accessed through the PTC's online learning platform. Your exercises and assignments will be completed on-screen in Microsoft Word and submitted by email. Marked assignments and tutor feedback will be emailed back to you.
In addition to a computer with internet access, MS Word 2007 (or later) or MS Word 2008 for Mac (or later) is required for this course.

Payment Options

Essential Copy-Editing costs £495. You can pay for the course in three instalments: the first instalment of £215 is payable on enrolment; the second and third instalments of £140 each will be automatically collected between the 10th and 15th of the following two months.

You can opt to receive a printed copy of the module chapters for £30, payable on enrolment. These may be useful for reference, but the printed modules do not include the exercises and assignments, which must be completed via the online learning platform.

Have a look through our Frequently Asked Questions for more information. 



* Payment Options:

Printed Manual:

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Study Time

At least 70 hours and up to 18 months to complete

Special Offer

Good grammar is essential for a copy-editor. We strongly recommend you also work through Essential Grammar. This normally costs £70 but if booked at the same time as Essential Copy-Editing the price is reduced to £35.

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