Before getting your dissertation edited by an editor, it is always efficient to self-edit the first draft of your dissertation. This ensures that you have been able to convey your ideas efficiently through your content and have not left it completely to another person. Effective self-editing can also improve your writing skills as a researcher.
The following points can be serve as a guide for your self-editing skills:
- Document structure
Ensure that your dissertation contain the required sections including a Title page, Acknowledgment, Table of contents, Copyright, and Reference list. Check if page numbers are included on each page and are with the right format. If your dissertation contains multiple figures and tables, ensure that a Table of figures and Tables are included in your dissertation. Finally, check if your dissertation contains any blank or empty pages.
- Spelling errors
Complete the first round of spelling check using the feature provided by your writing tool. In addition, read through your dissertation to identify wrong use of words and homonyms. Check for the correct use of “is” and “are” with context to the sentence. Identify the common mistakes that you make as a writer, and check for the same during the self-edit process.
- Improving the readability of your dissertation
Read the dissertation loudly to check the readability factor of your document. The readability factor of your dissertation can be improved by getting rid of unnecessary words and cutting down long sentences. Sentence construction can be improved by removing run-on sentences and sentence fragments, and also by varying the style of the sentences to make your writing more interesting.
- Checking the overall tone of your dissertation
Each section of your dissertation must contribute to the development of your research idea. Remove any sections or paragraphs that do not contribute any value to your research work. Pay attention to your thesis statement and check if it is conveying your central argument and the purpose of your research work.
- Punctuation errors
Errors in punctuation can often change the meaning of the sentence. Common punctuation errors include improper use of commas and use of periods in place of a question mark.
Depending on the length of the dissertation, self-editing can be a challenge for new writers. However, the habit of self-editing can gradually improve your writing and enable you to avoid common errors in the future.