What does a Copy Editor do?
Copy Editors typically work for publishing houses, newspapers, magazines or marketing agencies. They use their attention to detail and their expert knowledge of style guides to contribute to well-written and error-free content. Their job is to make sure that they fact check statements, correct typos and grammatical errors and mark unnecessary or confusing passages for the Writer to revise later on. They may also provide suggestions on how to improve the clarity of a particular passage or statement.
Copy Editor Skills and Qualifications
A mastery of language is the most important skill for a Copy Editor. Copy Editors typically have experience with one or more style guides—in fact, it’s common for a job posting to ask that an Editor have knowledge of a certain style guide. Copy Editors also need to be flexible and able to learn about whatever subject a client needs content for.
Outside of language skills, successful Copy Editors need lots of qualifications related to soft skills and areas like teamwork. These skills include:
- Written and oral communication skills
- Time management skills
- Multitasking skills
- The ability to work under pressure
- The ability to meet tight deadlines
- Organization skills
Copy Editor Salary Expectations
The average salary for a Copy Editor $20.10 per hour. However, the pay an Editor can make depends on many factors, such as whether they work part- or full-time and whether they have any type of management responsibilities.
Copy Editor Education and Training Requirements
Copy Editors need to have a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as English or communications. It’s not uncommon for a Copy Editor to have a degree or training in an area related to the company’s field of expertise. For example, a scientific publication would likely want to hire Editors with a background in science.
Copy Editor Experience Requirements
Copy Editors can find work right out of college. It’s also common for writers to move up into editing roles or for Copy Editors to start in other editing or project management roles. Copy Editors should have demonstrated experience in clear communication.
Job Description Samples for Similar Positions
The responsibilities of a Copy Editor overlap with a few other positions, so it might help to expand your research. Consider these job description samples for similar roles: