ABOUT US

Cardiff Proofreading is the name of a service we’ve been running for over 12 years. Clients come back to us repeatedly because we help make their work error-free, easy to understand and – most of all – impressive to read.

 

We come from a background that includes university lecturing, journalistic and literary experience. And we've prooread a huge variety of works across a variety of disciplines (as you can see below).

 

Three years ago, we were boasting that we’d served clients from every continent of the world. Since then, we've actually seen even greater demand.

 

There seems to be an increasing need for a service that can make a document’s English perfect. Computer software is still decades away from achieving this. And a human service has the additional advantage of answering questions and helping the writer to focus their attention in future writing.

 

We’ve settled on a system for accepting new work with new clients that is explained in this website. The system has the advantage of clarifying our duties at the beginning of a project. We have had very few problems despite working with so many people.

 

We work outside an agency because it offers us greater flexibility and lowers our costs.

 

It is our hope that this website offers as much information as you need to understand our services and practices. Please have a look through the Frequently Asked Questions below and our blog. And please send any further questions to our email box.

 

FAQ

 

When is the best time to send you my work?

If you send us your work a long time before the deadline, that gives you the chance to check all of our changes before you submit the work. You can ask us further questions and, theoretically, improve on ‘perfect’.

 

Ideally, we prefer working on a document that’s already complete. This gives us a better idea of structural problems, inadequate definitions, argument, etc. We can help to re-arrange sections if necessary.

 

But, of course, it’s not always possible to send complete work in advance of submission; the research process isn’t a predictable one. Life can sometimes catch up with all of us.

 

So we’re happy to work on a section-by-section basis. Chapter-by-chapter is actually the norm for large-scale projects like PhDs. And it can work well even for smaller documents. We’re happy to keep backups and records of everything we’ve

worked on.

 

We have found that our work is often most useful when we have a clear idea of what a tutor is expecting from a draft. So if you can establish such details before writing it or sending it to us, this can save a lot of trouble. We actually hate charging people twice!

 

And of course, don’t send it to us immediately if you think there are still more ideas you’ll want to add later.

Can you help with the word count?

It’s worth remembering that the usual University policy is for 10% over the word limit and 10% below the word limit to be unpunished.

 

We can help with cutting words if necessary. Just let us know what your target is. We don’t add words to fill a gap, as that would be a different kind of service. And actually, in our experience, tutors don’t resent essays that are slightly too short – as long as they cover the most important themes, presenting them accurately, with relevant examples.

  

You charge by the word. So, when you add more words, are you increasing your fee?

No. The price is determined by the initial word count, not the final word count. So if the proofreading process results in more words being added (and this is usually true), you won’t be charged for those extra words.

 

If, however, we cut more than we add (which is rare, but not impossible), we’re sorry about that. Consider us to be like a hairdresser!

Can you guarantee I get a good score for this piece of work?

Unfortunately, no one can be held responsible for the whims of University teaching staff when it comes to marking essays, exams or award submissions! We’ve done this job ourselves, so we know that anything involving words (rather than numbers) is a fairly subjective process.

 

If there is anything obvious that is compromising the quality of your work – other than spelling / grammar / formatting / structure, etc. we endeavour to mention that in our comments.

 

And we appreciate it when clients give feedback about previous assignments. This can often be really helpful, as part of a strategy of improving performance over time. Our clients have included students offered ‘most improved student’ awards. And we’re very proud of the results that can come from such communications.

I don’t have a PayPal account

It’s relatively easy to set up a PayPal account. And it has the added advantage (temptation) of helping you with eBay purchases, etc. You need to have a bank account, but this can be in almost any country. And you don’t need to ‘add money’ to your PayPal account before making online purchases. It is much more secure than other online currencies like Bitcoin. But, if it becomes replaced by a better online currency, we will need to add that currency to our list. Please let us know if there’s a better one you use.

 

The only detail you need for sending money through PayPal is the ID of the seller.

I don’t know how to do a bank transfer

If you don’t have a UK Bank account, this is more difficult. Transferring money between territories can incur a charge by the bank(s). PayPal may be the easier option in such cases.

 

If you do have a UK bank account, this is easy. You need to set up your online banking system. From here, look for options to ‘transfer money’, ‘set up a bank transfer’ or ‘send money’. The actual names may be slightly different.

 

The only details you need to make an online bank transfer are:

 

The Sort Code: XX-XX-XX and the;

 

Account Number: XXXXXXXX

 

But you are also advised to make a name for the transaction that the seller will recognise.

 

If the process is too difficult, we do also accept cheques and – if necessary – meeting in person to exchange cash.

Will you write my essay for me?

We're afraid that the answer is ‘No’. This is partly because we couldn’t promise you a good result; university tutors have very specific expectations for their essays that aren’t always expressed in titles or lists of requirements.  So it’s often impossible to know what they really want without meeting them. The other reason, of course, is that it’s against the rules. And ‘outsourcing’ your essay work leads to trouble when exams arrive. If you lack confidence in your research/organisational skills, we’re happy to help, no matter how late in the process you are.

Will you help my essay pass a plagiarism check like Turnitin?

Theoretically, it’s possible to ‘roughen’ the content and order of words to cheat the cynical Turnitin software. Low percentage plagiarism scores are possible this way. But it’s no easier for us to help you with this job than it is to do it yourself. The UK education system traditionally has not asked students to ‘summarise’ the ‘correct knowledge’ in a certain subject; the emphasis has been on the student finding their own answers and conclusions. UK tutors therefore usually found it easy to differentiate students’ own work from derivative work. But there are courses questions today which invite a ‘simple paraphrase’ approach. In such cases, we can ensure that your paraphrased essay is grammatically error-free.

Why did you send me my essay with this messy spider’s web of amendments?

We make changes using the Track Changes function in Microsoft Word.

 

It’s important that you can see what changes we’ve made to your document – in case there is something we have misinterpreted or overlooked. It's also a valuable learning tool.

 

But it’s also very easy to make these marks disappear! Just follow these tips:

 

If you want to see the final version clearly without the changes, either:

 

a) 'select all' of the text, then cut it and copy it into a new Word document. Or you can:

 

b) open the 'Review' section at the top of the Word menu, then look for the 'Changes box' and place your mouse pointer over the 'Accept' sign. This will give you the chance to 'accept all changes'.

 

To delete the 'comments', just place your mouse pointer over them, click the right button, and choose 'delete comment' by pressing the left button.

 

And if you would just prefer us to send a version containing no markings or comments, we’re also happy to do that!

I won’t actually be in the UK while writing this essay. Can you still help?

Yes. We’ve worked frequently for clients while also outside the UK ourselves. We’ve actually worked with certain clients for years without even speaking to them on the telephone. Physical location is no constraint.

 

That’s the beauty of modern technology!

You say you offer research consultation services. How does that work?

If you’re preparing for a dissertation, and needing some direction, we would be delighted to help you talk through your ideas. We can meet somewhere like Cardiff Central Library to do this. Or we can do it over the telephone.

 

The price we charge for such consultation / mentoring / tutoring / coaching is £10 per hour. And it’s amazing how much can be achieved in that time.  

If I contact you, how soon will you reply?

We will do our best to reply to emails / texts within 24 hours. And we will be able to tell you whether or not it’s realistic for us to perform a satisfactory job in time for your deadline. If we are overwhelmed with jobs at that time, we will pass you onto other services.  

I’m a native speaker of English. Will you charge me the same rate as foreign students?

No. If it doesn’t take us as long to make your document error-free and fully-readable, we won’t charge you as much for that service. There is a huge variation in the difficulty of the material we handle. And the free quote should help establish the price point definitively before work begins.

 

Everything on this website looks like it’s for students. Are all your clients students?

No. Not at all. We’ve worked on assignments for civil engineering departments, local government, novelists, legal services, University prospectuses, even an Italian rock band!

By ‘removing mistakes’, will you will spoil the true meaning of my words?

If there is ever any danger of this occurring, we will leave a comment in the margin of the page.

 

Our instinct – wherever the final reader may be confused by your words – is to find a clear English alternative that will make the reading process effortless. But, if we ever feel that this process has required us to make a large ‘guess’, we will add a note acknowledging this guess. Sometimes (very rarely) we will just ask for clarification before we continue working on that sentence.

 

But – wherever grammar is correct and understanding is not in question - we will work to retain the ‘flavour’ of the words. We are readers, as well as writers. And we love to see ideas presented in fresh, imaginative ways. The process of translation across languages can be a real source of inspiration, introducing fresh idioms and analogies to English writing. We don’t want to suppress your individual style.

I’m worried that, because you’re not an expert in my subject, you may not be able to match the style my department expects.

Naturally, there is no one who knows as much about the ideas in your head as you do.

 

At the same time, the language of written English makes it possible to express an idea from any discipline to people who have never studied it before.

 

But of course, each subject has its own conventions and assumptions. And fortunately, we’ve been doing this job for long enough to become familiar with most of those academic conventions.

 

We have worked on assignments from the hard sciences to The Arts, with business and engineering documents becoming a staple recently. Sometimes, we will ask a student about a specific tutor/department’s preferred referencing system, etc. And it is often helpful for the student to send us their essay Requirements sheet.  

I’m worried that this service is against my University’s rules.

Proofreaders have always existed in the publishing and academic world. They have to exist, because the best human writers make mistakes and create potential misunderstandings.

 

At one time, correcting grammar, etc. was part of the service offered by a University supervisor / personal tutor. But since then, student numbers have increased exponentially. And many of the new students are non-native speakers of English.

 

Even if the university offers its own English language service (to help dyslexic students, for example), these services are rarely able to meet demand. We encourage you to try them first before asking us for a quote. If they can help you for free, that’s great for you!

 

University departments are becoming more tolerant of poor grammar and spelling. But tutors aren’t necessarily becoming better at understanding bad English. They lack the time and the knowledge to decode essays strongly influenced by a student’s first language. If they can’t easily find the information they want, they will mark the essay down.

 

So some University tutors directly recommend services like ours – particularly for larger pieces of student work. And Universities have hired us themselves in preparing work for publication.  As long as we are not writing the essay for you, our service is fully approved by all authorities. And you should never worry about acknowledging any service you have received. Nowhere is it regarded as 'cheating'.

Do you have an ESI Reference Number?

Yes. We were recently asked this question. It was a surprise - as it's a detail that most HMRC staff don't seem to know much about.

 

Our ESI number is: E2403151012685

 

According to the HMRC test, the worker (Cardiff Proofreading) is considered to be 'self employed' because:•


There is a low indication of substitution.
•
There is a medium indication of control over the worker.
•
There is a high indication of financial risk.

 

If your business requires that contractors for services like ours submit their ESI details, this figure may be of use to you.

 

 

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Client Testimonies

     I'm very impressed with how you've edited my work, so much so that I've passed your details to my friend who'd like to use your services!       - Amena, Cardiff

 

 

     Thanks. I appreciate your help. You have increased my motivation.       - Eunice, Cardiff

 

 

     Thanks very much for editing my journal article. At that moment I didn't think I'll meet the deadline. Good work and feedback.       - Jahid, Cardiff

 

 

     I'm very satisfied with the professional way of editing and commenting. I like the fact that you comment on ambiguous sentences, which alerts me to rewrite them in a clearer way.       - Abdul, Cardiff

 

 

     Thanks, You're a Life Saver!       - Abbie, Cardiff

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Selected List of Assignments

PhD Proofreading (a summary):

The Development of the Welsh Country House (2015, Cardiff University)

The Role of IT Systems in Determining Working Practices in a Middle Eastern Airline (2015, Cardiff University)

Civil Association and International Society. Michael Oakeshott's Political Philosophy of International Relations (2014, Cardiff University)

 

The relationship between personality disorder and perceptions of attractiveness and personality (2013, Cardiff University)

 

Fostering Collective Responsibility for Online Collaborative Inquiry Discourse

through Principle-based Innovation among Chinese Undergraduate Students (2012,

Hong Kong University)

 

Writing for Periodicals:

 

Columnist for The Nanjinger – Since 2014. Writing the monthly article Strainer – a Chinese Tea Guide for ex-pat and international readers.

 

Founding and editing Relish Magazine at Beijing’s University of Postage and Telecommunications (2006), editing articles/columns for ELL – China’s best-selling magazine in English (2005-2010).

 

Writing for Broadcasting:

 

Afan FM (as News Editor, 2009), The Wave (as Reporter, 2008), China Radio International (2007), India DVD (2006 – volunteering for MM, Vijayawada, starting up a video production facility).