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The Mayfield Handbook of Technical & Scientific Writing
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Section 1.11.3

Editorial Review

Editorial reviews aim to improve the readability of a manuscript. The reader examines the manuscript for ways in which it can be clarified and simplified. Then the reviewer either makes the changes and returns the marked-up manuscript to the writer or makes marginal notes and a written report for the writer's use in revising. The review often proceeds as follows:

  1. Read the draft for content: coverage and organization. Read the draft all the way through before you start to make suggestions for adding or rearranging material, reordering paragraphs, or recasting sentences. Get a firm grasp of the author's purpose, problem statement, audience, and organization.
  2. Make marginal notes. If you have to slow down in your reading or have to reread a section, mark it for revision. Make marginal notes of sections that are vague, awkward, inconsistent, or poorly supported. Note any grammatical or stylistic problems as you read along.
  3. Place potential problems in context. Reread each area you marked in the first reading. Place the problem in the context of the audience, the reader's purpose, and the rules of grammar and style.
  4. Write down your recommendations. Make written suggestions in the margins or on a separate sheet of paper. Identify
  5. Read for punctuation and mechanics. Note patterns of misused punctuation, mechanics, and spelling, as well as any misuse of units, acronyms, citations, or numbering of pages, sections, graphics, or equations.

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