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  • Publishing Career Feature

Proofreader Jobs

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Very seldom it is observed that a book or a magazine that has been published still has some errors. Why? Because before anything is published, the manuscript is thoroughly checked by a group of people who are on the lookout for any mistakes that are made. This group of people is known as proofreaders. They detect and correct the errors if there are any. It is a section of publishing jobs. Every publishing company has a group of proofreaders who work at several stages of production and publishing of the manuscript, book, magazine, or anything else.

Job Description/Responsibilities

The process involved in the publication of a book is as follows:
  • A manuscript is being prepared for publishing. It is called a ‘copy’.
  • Once it is prepared, the proofreaders go through it carefully, detecting and correcting mistakes if any before the copy is typeset.
  • After the copy is typeset, the proofreaders go through the typed version of the manuscript again in order to detect any typographic errors, grammatical errors, errors in spellings, punctuations, uniformity in font size, colors etc. They go through the text as well as the graphics.
  • This corrected version is then sent to the authors and editors for their verdict on the data, and if they want to they may revise it.
  • It is then again sent to the typesetters. This is a master set and it is undergoes a final review for mistakes by the proofreaders.
So the basic responsibility of proofreaders is to find out any mistakes before publishing.

Educational and Other Requirements

No exceptional degree or certification is required to get a job as a proofreader. This is basically a category of publishing jobs that is based in a publishing company. The basic educational requirement for this job is that a candidate should have a high school education or equivalent. There is more emphasis on strong sense of spelling and punctuation. They receive on the job training, so no special training is required.
Sometimes such jobs are in publishing companies that publish technical stuff. For this purpose proofreaders with knowledge of technical language, such as medical terminology or foreign languages are required for specific jobs.

Since it is a very detail oriented job, it requires great concentration and patience. Accuracy is the key in such publishing jobs. Having good eyesight is also a requirement.

Where to Apply For These Jobs?

Mostly proofreaders are required in leading publishing companies, newspapers, or print shops. A job in the publishing companies can be found on job websites, newspapers, etc.


The salary of a proofreader may range from $30,000 to $45,000 depending on qualifications, experience and efficiency. The other factors that may decide the pay scale are geographical location of the job, how big the employer is, etc.

Employment Outlook

Proofreaders working for publishing companies may get promotion to fill the job of copy editor. Overall, the future employment opportunities as proofreaders can be perceived as very bleak. With the advent of technology, new software is coming out with error checking functions. With more and more publishing companies adopting this software, the demand for proofreaders is on the decline.

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