Copy-editing reports is a very important part of the publication process. In the first instance it ensures that reports are written in correct English, are readable and that scientific terms and concepts are accurate. It applies a consistent house style to reports, which provides a familiar presentation to readers and aids understanding of reports in unfamiliar disciplines. Copy-editing also plays a significant role in enhancing the readers’ experience and perceptions of the journal.
Once all pre-production checks have been completed copy-editing begins. First, the files are prepared for copy-editing by putting them into one file and making initial corrections to spelling and grammar as well as ensuring that the report follows a consistent house style. The copy-editor is briefed on any specific instructions relating to the report and then carries out a detailed copy-edit of the report. This includes checking that abstracts and scientific summaries conform to appropriate guidelines, ensuring that all studies and reports cited are included in the reference list and checking that URLs cited in the text are valid. The copy-editor will then raise any queries that arise with the author. During this stage the copy-editor will also carry out additional tasks, such as checking that the title is appropriate and carrying out final checks on referencing numbering and so on.