They gain their skills through formal education, experience, on-the-job training, mentoring and other career paths. The principle of lifelong learning and education is taken for granted within the editorial profession. It is essential for the professional development of individuals, and the health and relevance of the profession at large.
Many of the programs that offer education and training in editing are listed on the joint Australian governments' myfuture website.
Undergraduate programs sometimes combine studies in editing and publishing with related disciplines, such as professional writing and journalism. Several Australian universities offer undergraduate studies in editing, either on campus or online. Entering 'editing' in university websites' search engines should take you to relevant programs.
University of South Australia
Southern Cross University
Postgraduate programs are available at:
Many TAFE campuses in Australia provide courses in proofreading, editing and publishing. These include both vocational/award courses and short courses.
Short courses in proofreading and editing are available in NSW, Queensland, and South Australia. You can study these courses internally (Sydney and Adelaide) or externally (Queensland and South Australia). They cover basic skills.
A one-semester Journalism (Editing for Publication) course is available in Canberra. Delivery is internal.
A Certificate IV in Professional Writing and Editing is available in Victoria. While this course focuses on writing, it does include editing subjects. You can study internally, online or via flexible/external delivery.
A Diploma of Professional Writing and Editing course is available in Victoria. This course focuses on writing skills, but it does include some editing subjects. You can choose either internal or online delivery.
An Advanced Diploma of Arts (Professional Writing) course is available in Adelaide. While it focuses on writing skills, it includes some editing subjects.
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Private and industry providers
Macleay College, Sydney, NSW
Diploma in Book Editing and Publishing (face-to-face)
Australian College QED, Sydney, NSW
Correspondence course in professional book editing and publishing
Non-award courses and workshops
Australian Publishers Association (APA)
Face-to-face workshops in editing and proofreading from time to time
Biotext, Canberra, ACT
Face-to-face workshops in science editing and writing
Emend Editing, Sydney, NSW
Online and face-to-face courses in professional editing
Cengage (formerly Thomson Education Direct and Australian College of Journalism)
Professional Editing and Proofreading Course (correspondence)
Centres for Adult Education
Face-to-face workshops in editing and proofreading from time to time (Contact the Centre for Adult Education in your state or territory for current information.)
Workers’ Educational Association (WEA)
Short courses on editing, with some longer, structured programs from time to time (Contact the WEA in your state or territory for current information.)
Most Australian Writers’ Centres offer workshops in editing (Contact the Writers’ Centre in your region for current information.)
Sydney Writers Centre, Sydney, NSW
Face-to-face courses in Editing at Work and Proofreading at Work
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Until about 20 years ago there was no formal education or training for editors. Training took place on the job, within publishing houses, in the form of extended mentoring, and in relation to the particular publishing sector in which the house operated.
As budgets have tightened, some publishing houses have begun to use more freelance editors and fewer editors in-house. This has meant fewer opportunities for young editors to learn their craft from experienced older members of the profession.
IPEd and its member societies of editors have looked carefully at trying to replicate the old in-house mentoring approach through society-based schemes.
Developing a mentoring scheme is a complex exercise, but the Queensland Society of Editors has had some success; Peter Storer delivered a paper about the CAL-funded Queensland mentoring program at the 2009 National Editors Conference.
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Professional workshops offered by state societies of editors
State and territory societies of editors offer occasional professional workshops to upgrade editors' skills in particular areas. Their workshops, which vary from year to year, are publicised to members, but are also available to non-members. These workshops are listed under Events.
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