Technical Editing Services

Online technical editing services are available! Please see below to submit your document for editing.

Editing Services Page 

The Office of Graduate Studies is pleased to provide free editing services to graduate students both currently enrolled and on-campus at S&T. You are invited to submit your paper to the editor (whether you're still working through the first draft of your document or putting the finishing touches on the final draft), who will work with you to help you produce the strongest communication possible.

Please note that technical editing is not the same as format checking for theses and dissertations. To learn more about the format checking process and requirements, click here. For questions, email your graduate studies specialist.

Technical Editing

Documents submitted for editing will be checked for correct grammar, punctuation, capitalization, and spelling. The editor will meet with the student in a one-on-one writing development session after the edits are complete.

One-on-One Writing Sessions

Schedule to meet with the editor in a 30-minute Zoom writing development session. 

Contact Lea Hickerson, editor, to schedule!

Writing Workshops

Each semester, we host a series of writing-centric workshops and events, such as Thesis & Dissertation Writing Camp. A full list of events can be found here.

Editing Submission Process

Please note that beginning Janurary 1, 2020, we will no longer accept hard copies. 

  1. Upload your document to iThenticate to generate a similarity score (create an account here)
  2. Format your document to meet the editing requirements
  3. Save Word or PDF file as LastName_EditingRequest_Month-Day.
  4. Complete the online Editing Submission Form and upload your document

If your uploaded document does not fit our criteria, you will be notified by email.

When your submission is complete, the editor will notify you via email and recommend scheduling an editing review session.

Writing Development Sessions


Students may request to meet one-on-one with the editor in a writing development session. These sessions are best suited for specific questions about your paper or general questions about writing. If you want your full paper edited, please submit it for technical editing.

Sessions are held via Zoom. Email to set up a meeting.

  • 500 words per session (or about 2 pages, double spaced)
  • 3 sessions per week 
  • 1 session per day
  • 1 scheduled appointment at any given time

Frequently Asked Questions

The technical editing services will check your submitted document for correct grammar, capitalization, punctuation, spelling, and clarity. We will also review tone, organization, and in-text citations. However, the editor will not rewrite your paper for you, check the table of contents for accuracy, edit references/bibliographies, fact check, or format check (format checking is required for theses and dissertations, but  is completed by a Graduate Studies Specialist, not the technical editor.) For more information on format checking, visit the Thesis and Dissertation Information webpage.

We accept conference papers, journal articles, theses and dissertations, and thesis or dissertation proposals. All editing requests must be accompanied by an editing submission form.

Yes. You may use the editor’s comments to revise your paper and submit the same (revised) document again; you may submit the subsequent revisions as many times as you would like.

Yes, an editing submission form must accompany every submission.

The processing time will vary depending on the number of submissions in the editing queue. On average, processing time takes about a week, but we recommend allowing ten business days to complete your request. Documents are edited on a first-come-first-serve basis, so during busy times of the year, the wait time will be longer.  If your edits do take longer than ten business days, the editor will notify you.

For conference papers, journal articles, and thesis/dissertation proposals, you may submit 20 pages per submission.  For theses and dissertations, you may submit one section per submission (which may be more than 20 pages). To increase the amount of written work you can submit, you can remove figures, tables, and or images from the document and only submit the text for editing.

Format checking is a separate service from technical editing that ensures your thesis or dissertation is presented in the most professional manner possible (e.g., correct margins and spacing on all pages, consistent page numbering, proper organization, etc.). Format checking is required for all theses and dissertations before they are submitted, and most documents go through several format checks before they are ready for final submission.

The Writing Center’s services are only offered to undergraduates, while technical editing services are only offered to graduate students. The writing center offers peer writing consultations to provide feedback and guidance to undergraduate students during the writing process; the technical editing services edits and proofreads entire submissions by graduate students and then meets with the student to review the edited document.

Yes! Technical editing is offered year-round and we are happy to accept documents over the summer and winter breaks.  The only requirement is that you must be enrolled in the upcoming semester.

For Fall 2019, we accept hard copies and electronic copies. Starting Spring 2020, we plan to move exclusively to electronic copies. Both copies are edited by hand with line edits, and you will receive a PDF of the edited copy either way. Electronic copies can occasionally be edited more quickly if the Find/Replace tools can be utilized, but this only applies to documents that contain consistent errors. 

Yes, you will receive a PDF of the edited document. We do not send back Word files with tracked changes.

Please email the graduate office at to explain your situation; we will handle this on a case-by-case basis.

You may only have one submission in the queue at any given time. Exceptions may be made on a case-by-case basis if the editing queue is low.

 The goal from the technical editing services is to help you learn from each edit. While editing, we make a list of areas to address in your document, and we recommend implementing these in your other documents before submitting again. This will help speed up the editing process and allow us to discuss a wider variety of topics with each of your papers.       

This is not required, but removing figures and tables can allow us to edit more pages at once. Some students remove figures and tables from the document but keep the corresponding captions as a placeholder.

Each session lasts 30 minutes and is scheduled by appointment (walk-ins are welcome between 2 and 4 PM as time permits).  You may have only one session per day, three sessions per week, and one scheduled appointment at any given time. Documents brought to the writing development sessions must not exceed 500 words, or two pages with double line spacing.  

 We require iThenticate scores on all editing submission forms to help avoid plagiarized documents and to raise awareness of plagiarism issues.

Currently enrolled S&T students can create an account for free through CAFE. Documents that are uploaded to the website are only accessible by the student (unless shared with another account) and are not searchable in iThenticate's database.

 To set up an account, complete the form here.

 If you have questions, please contact CAFE at or (573) 341-6713.

Please note that iThenticate does not detect plagiarism; rather, it highlights exact wording that appears elsewhere in their database. Students can use these highlights as a guide for areas that need proper quoting, paraphrasing, summarizing, and/or citing. Text that is highlighted is not necessarily plagiarized, as iThenticate will also highlight quotes, bibliographies, titles, and common phrases. iThenticate will not detect images. It is the student's responsibility to ensure that all material is properly cited and necessary copyright permissions are obtained.

All documents are edited using standard proofreading marks. For hard copies: edits are made in pencil and comments are made in pen. For electronic copies: edits are made using a digital pen, and color differences are used to distinguish edits and comments. Occasionally, electronic versions will be edited through Word’s Track Changes. A guide to the proofreading marks we use can be found here.

Theses and dissertations: Yes.  Technical editing is optional, but if you choose to have your thesis or dissertation edited, you must adhere to the deadlines of the final semester in which you will graduate. The deadlines to submit a thesis or dissertation for editing are in early October, mid-March, and mid-June for the fall, spring, and summer semesters, respectively. If you submit your thesis or dissertation to the technical editing services, you cannot begin format checking until editing is complete.

For other documents: No. We accept documents year-round. However, keep in mind that the turnaround can take around 10 business days, so you will need to plan ahead if you are trying to meet the deadline of your publisher or conference.

We provide writing workshops every semester, and we also oversee Thesis & Dissertation Writing Camp, which is held twice a semester. We also hold a variety of events throughout the semester which may include topics such as formatting, using LaTeX, or using the Word thesis and dissertation templates. For additional resources, we recommend the Purdue OWL and Grammarly.

Helpful Links


Lea Hickerson
216 Centennial Hall

Editing Submission Form

To submit for editing, fill out the editing submission form and upload a digital copy of your document 

Take Our Survey!

Share your suggestions and feedback by taking our survey. Your responses are deeply appreciated.

Additional Writing Resources

To help avoid plagiarism, students are required to upload documents to iThenticate before submitting their document for editing as of November 2017. The overall similarity score and date uploaded to iThenticate should be noted on the editing request form. Students with similarity scores above 30% might be asked to revise and resubmit their document before it is edited.

Please note that iThenticate does not detect plagiarism; rather, it highlights passages that appear elsewhere on the internet. Students can use these highlights as a guide for areas that need proper quoting, paraphrasing, summarizing, and/or citing. Text that is highlighted is not necessarily plagiarised, as iThenticate will also highlight quotes, bibliographies, titles, and common phrases.

iThenticate is free for all current graduate students at Missouri S&T. Documents that are uploaded to the website are only accessible by the student (unless shared with another account) and are not searchable in iThenticate's database. To set up a account, complete the form here. If you have questions, please contact Educational Technology.

If you have specific questions about your document or general questions about grammar and editing, come meet with the editor in a 30-minute writing development session. Bring a hard copy of your paper with you. If possible, print with double line spacing for notes and proofreading marks. Due to the time limit, it will not be possible to review your entire paper during one session, so please mark the specific sections you wish to target.

Sessions are held Monday through Friday from 2:00 to 4:00. No appointment is required, but you can email Emily Seals at to reserve a time slot.

Note: As of the Fall 2018 semester, the following limitations will apply:

  • 500 words per session (or about 2 pages, double spaced)
  • 3 sessions per week 
  • 1 session per day
  • 1 scheduled appointment at any given time

The Office of Graduate Studies hosts a series of writing workshops presented by the technical editor. Examples of past topics include writing style, grammar, and punctuation. These workshops are one hour long and provide attendees with free writing workbooks.

Writing Workshop: Style

Writing Workshop: Grammar

Writing Workshop: Punctuation

Editing Your Own Work

Thesis & Dissertation Writing Camp is held every semester and is meant to assist students that are in the researching/writing stage of their thesis or dissertation. The program brings in several guest speakers and covers topics such as the literature review, format guidelines, citation managing, and best writing practices. There is no cost to attend, but registration is required. Visit our Thesis & Dissertation Writing Camp webpage for more information.

For help with basic formatting in Microsoft Word, see the walkthrough and practice document below. is an automated editing software that scans your document for writing errors. It is available in both a free and premium version and has Microsoft Word and internet browser extensions. Grammarly promises to never share your text publicly, but does store User Content on its servers. More information can be found in its privacy policy.

The Purdue University Online Writing Lab offers writing resources for free on topics such as academic writing, mechanics, grammar, punctuation, and citations.

This writing guide walks students through what they need to know to improve thier writing skills. It details various writing styles and lists available writing tools and apps.