Every semester, I get at least one student who doesn’t need to proof read anything because, well, as the title tries unsuccessfully to say, his or her writing is perfect in his or her own eyes. Or not.
If only perfection happened on a regular basis, it would save me a tremendous amount of time. It would not be necessary for me to slave over every poorly-written word, every missing punctuation mark, every…well, you get the idea. I could finish my grading in record time, and be on to other things…like my own writing.
So what’s a student to do? I suggest reading your document out loud. Print it off (don’t try reading it off of a computer screen or you will miss something) and grab a cup of tea and stand there and read it as if you were presenting it. Don’t rush or you will add in something you left out. Our eyes are tricky that way.
I also suggest you use a red or other bright colored pen to mark up your document. If you use blue or black ink, you may miss it when you go back to the computer to fix the mistakes you are likely to find. Don’t be ashamed of the hemorrhaging of your paper. I have had documents that looked as if they had been in a train wreck when I got through with them. (They weren’t my own, of course, because I’m prefect….) 🙂 [Please note that I misspelled the word “perfect” on purpose here!]
Mark away, fix the document, and then read it again. Now, perhaps, you are ready to turn in your absolutely fabulous assignment.