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Frequently Asked Questions

Browse our frequently asked questions to learn more about who we are and what we do. Don’t see your question addressed in this FAQ? Scroll to the bottom and contact us directly. We’re happy to help!

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Top Questions

Can you edit my paper for only the APA? Everything else has been checked already.

Short answer: Yes. We can limit the scope of our edit and focus on areas of your choosing.

This common question concerns us, however, because it suggests APA Style is all about referencing. It typically means, “Please make sure the citations and references are in order but don’t worry about the writing.” The Publication Manual dedicates about 100 pages to citing and referencing but more than 250 pages to principles of good writing, ethics, structure, writing style, bias, grammar, mechanics, and tables and figures.

In our experience, most manuscripts have not had everything else checked. You can always get a free quote to see where you stand.

How much will it cost to edit my paper?

We see a wide range of writing skills and compliance with APA Style, which is why we always review your writing before giving you a quote. As a rough idea, it usually takes 3 to 5 hours to edit a 20- to 30-page journal article ($270–$450); a 100-page thesis ranges from a lower end of about 6 hours to an upper end of about 20 hours ($510–$1,700), averaging around $1,000.

For a more accurate idea, check out our cost calculator or submit your paper for a free quote. If cost is a concern, we can

  • set a ceiling of hours
  • limit the scope of our edit
  • give you our task list to perform some tasks on your own
  • run a laser coaching session

I've never hired an editor. How does it work?

1. Send us your file for a free, no-obligation quote. We confirm the scope of edit, guidelines to be followed, and deadline.

2. If you choose to hire us, we collect your contact info, issue a retainer invoice, set up your online workspace, and fit your project into our workflow.

3. One of our whiz-bang dynamo editors edits your work as agreed, tracking changes and communicating with you as needed. We upload completed files and helpful documents to your workspace, and answer any questions you have as we go. You get an email notification whenever edits are ready to review.

4. You review the edits, reply to comments as appropriate, and return the file to us. Depending on the type of project and number of edits, files may go back and forth a few times until all items have been addressed.

5. We run final checks and give you a clean copy (Word doc and PDF) for submission.

6. Everyone does a happy dance to celebrate your completion. Yippee!

What's included in an academic edit? What types of editing do you do?

Depending on your paper and your wishes, our scope can vary. Broadly speaking, we want to ensure the quality of your work in three key areas:

  1. Manuscript structure: Is the content organized coherently and accurately? Is the page formatting consistent with APA Style (e.g., pagination, running head, headings, block quotes)?
  1. Reporting standards: Have you appropriately cited, referenced, and quoted your sources? Is your writing free of bias or inadvertent plagiarism?
  1. Written accuracy: Are your tone, voice, and expression appropriate? Do the mechanics meet APA Style (e.g., spelling, capitalization, use of italics)? Is your grammar correct?
For Clients Who Are Students

In this FAQ we’ve listed the broad strokes of our services. For student work, our edits comply with the Guidelines for Ethical Editing of Student Texts published by Editors Canada.

  • Fixing issues with any mechanics of style listed in the Publication Manual. These include punctuation, spelling, capitalization, italics, abbreviations, numbers, metrication, and equations. For Canadian universities and publishers, we apply Canadian spelling preferences unless otherwise instructed.
  • Correcting grammar, usage, and syntax.
  • Checking for internal consistency such as between heading levels, in the captioning and numbering of tables and figures, in the presentation of facts, and between references and citations.
  • Determining proper placement of figures and tables, and informing clients of copyright or permissions needed.
  • Clarifying ambiguous vocabulary and syntax.
  • Eliminating redundancies, verbosity, and jargon.
  • Correcting inconsistencies in outlining, parallelism, headings, and captions.
  • Identifying inconsistencies in logic and possible ethical issues.

Click here for a full list of the editing standards we apply to student work.

For Clients Who Are Not Students

If your paper is an institutional report, a journal article, or any writing not being submitted for grading, we have more leeway in our scope of edit. Edits may include all of the above plus any of the following:

  • Fact and reference checking: Looking up sources to confirm the accuracy of reference list entries, quoted material, and facts presented within the paper.
  • Substantive or structural editing: Reorganizing the manuscript structure and/or content for improved readability.
  • Rewriting: Creating new copy based on content or information you supply or request.

How long will it take to edit my paper? What are your turnaround times?

For smaller documents or sections of larger projects, we can usually have an edited version returned to you in short order, almost always within a few days. Larger files of 100 to 300 pages can take two weeks or more; we will always confirm deadlines with you before agreeing to take on the project. Depending on our workload, we may be able to accommodate rush jobs.

If our work together is ongoing, please notify us in advance if you require a certain section returned quickly. It is then much easier to promise a fast turnaround time. Our objective is to serve you, so we strive to meet your needs. We often work evenings and weekends, especially if we know you have a deadline looming.

I’ve heard you have a referral program. How does it work?

Our business has grown over the years in large part to the many clients who have referred us to their colleagues, university cohorts, and business associates. To show our gratitude, we have always made referral payments. Here’s how our program works:

  • We ask all new clients how they heard about us. If someone gives your name and retains our services, you get $20 on your account, and so does your contact. Easy money!
  • If you prefer, you can have your $20 e-transferred to you or donated on your behalf to Health Reach Canada, a charitable organization dedicated to sustainable health and education programs in the developing world. Editarians is proud to partner with Health Reach Canada to assist in its fundraising efforts.
  • If you refer five people, we’ll deduct 5% off all future editing projects, and if you refer 10—you guessed it—you’ll enjoy a 10% deduction.
  • You don’t have to be a current or former client to benefit from our referral program. (We just need to know how to pay you!)



How do I get a free estimate?

Just fill out our inquiry form and attach your file. We treat every inquiry in confidence. We will review your work and send you an estimate. No fees or strings attached. Honest!

What’s included in an estimate?

Our estimates outline the time needed for a comprehensive edit of your paper to meet all aspects of the style guide as well as any special considerations from the journal or university to which you’re submitting. The default scope of edit comprises six overarching categories:

  1. Formatting & Structure: Margins, line spacing, indents, pagination, front matter, table of contents (if applicable), heading levels, paragraph structure.
  1. Reference List: Alphabetization, formatting, punctuation, capitalization, comprehensiveness of content.
  1. Citations & Congruence: Citation placement, formatting, and congruence with reference list.
  1. Tables & Figures: Content, placement, formatting, citing, numbering, and permissions (if applicable).
  1. Line Read: Mechanics of style (punctuation, spelling, capitalization, italics, abbreviations, numbers, metrication, mathematical copy), grammar and usage, writing style (continuity, tone, smoothness, word choice, bias), ethical compliance.
  1. Communications & Review: Responding to questions, carrying out the back and forth needed to remove all tracking and comments from the file, completing a final skim to prepare the file for submission.

Once you've received your estimate, we will confirm the scope of edit with you and make any requested adjustments before work begins.

Can the estimate be changed, such as setting a price limit?

Yes. We’re here to serve you, so let’s figure out the best approach for your individual situation.

If you're asking this question, finances are likely a concern. Time permitting, we can give you some tasks to perform on your own. Running through this list can shave quite a bit of time off our estimate, saving you money.

We can also set a time (or price) limit. We'll work in order of priority, doing as much as possible from big picture to little picture within the time allotted.

Setting limits can affect the quality of the final copy, but we understand that students are often under financial constraints. Even so, you might be amazed at how much we can accomplish in each hour billed. When you know APA Style and MS Word intimately, as we do, and you have a process to follow, no time is wasted figuring out what to do next.

Sign me up! How do I get started as a client?

Awesome! First, fill out our inquiry form and be sure to note in the comments you wish to hire us. We will confirm whether we can meet your deadline and take on your project. If so, we’ll collect your contact information, send you a retainer invoice, and set up your project in our collaborative work space. You can expect a welcome message to log in. Any files or documents relevant to your project will be uploaded and ready to go, and we will be stoked to work with you.

I’m a student. Should I send you my thesis before or after it has been reviewed by my faculty supervisor?

Theses and dissertations, or sections thereof, should be sent to us for editing after the content has been approved by your faculty advisor. There’s no sense finalizing the copy if you might then be asked to make content revisions.

Some exceptions to this best practice include overall page formatting and a quick skim of the references. We can get the big pieces to be more APA compliant before you submit, such that your professor can focus on your message without being distracted by the look of the text on the page or any glaring oversights.

If you’re unsure of how to proceed in your case, please contact us. It doesn’t cost anything to ask our opinion!

I’m just starting my thesis/dissertation. Can I hire you to help me as I go?

Yes, you can. In fact, we recommend it. You may find it advantageous, as many students do, to work with us as you complete your thesis or dissertation:

  • You get an idea of how well you have grasped APA guidelines and what, if anything, you should do differently in subsequent submissions.
  • If there are gaps in your reference list, quotes with missing page numbers, excerpts that require permission, or the like, early detection gives you more time to gather the necessary information.
  • If there’s one rule of thumb for dissertations, it’s that they always take longer to complete than you ever imagined. Having an editor work with you along the way helps you to budget your time more accurately.
  • Edited copy gives you the peace of mind of being done with early sections as you work on later ones.
  • You accomplish more when you sit down to work because you can focus on your writing, reassured that we are minding the nitpicky details.
  • Working together along the way creates a feeling of partnership and collaboration. Writing a thesis or dissertation can be lonely, and it’s nice to know we’re in your corner, cheering you on.


Editing Process

What is your editing procedure?

Our editing procedure is documented in writing and is agreed upon prior to work commencing. A PDF copy is posted to your work space for your reference.

For student work being submitted for a grade, we follow the Guidelines for Ethical Editing of Student Texts created by Editors Canada.

Here are the basics of our procedure:

  1. Email us your file or upload it into your secure work space. Uploads to the work space are encrypted for your protection. If you prefer to email and security is a concern, files can be password protected.
  1. Your superstar editor gets to work, asking any questions along the way. We usually do not track formatting changes (to pages, references, tables, or figures), but we track all text revisions.
  1. When the edited version is ready for your review, we upload it to your work space. You receive an email notification that the file is back in your court, so you don’t have to monitor the work space. If you have a long paper, we may work in chunks.
  1. Some back and forth may be needed before the paper is ready for submission. The work space keeps everything organized, so nothing gets lost in an email thread. As well, we use a file naming strategy to prevent file confusion.
  1. For a more exacting final copy, we can have a different editor do a second line read. This is advisable if the first round of edits has been extensive, if the paper is complex, or if you simply want the paper to be as near to perfect as possible.

Can we work section by section, or do you need to receive a complete file?

We can easily work section by section if that is the best approach for your paper. Here are some example scenarios when working in pieces may be advisable:

1. If you are working with us over the course of your degree program, sections of your thesis or dissertation can be sent as they are completed, in any order (although it is helpful to have the reference list as soon as possible).

2. If your deadline is looming and time is at a premium, editing in sections allows both parties to work in tandem: You can be finalizing one section while we edit another.

3. If you have a long or complex paper, we may break chapters or sections into separate files for ease of working (and then piece them back together for you).

Have you worked with my university before?

We have worked with students and faculty from over 70 universities in 14 countries—check out the list below or view these schools on our interactive map. If you are a graduate student and you don't see your school's name, all we need to get started is a copy of your program guidelines. Note that some programs have strict rules for editing of student work; if you are unsure whether editing is allowed, confirm with your supervisor.

Adler University (Vancouver, BC)
Al Ain University (Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates)
Ambrose University (Calgary, AB)
Athabasca University (Athabasca, AB)
BI Norwegian Business School (Oslo, Norway)
Brock University (St. Catharines, ON)
Burapha University (Saen Suk, Thailand)
California Southern University (Chandler, AZ)
Cambridge College (Cambridge, MA)
Camosun College (Victoria, BC)
Cape Breton University (Sydney, NS)
Central Michigan University (Mount Pleasant, MI)
Charles Sturt University (NSW, Australia)
Chicago School of Professional Psychology (IL)
City University of Seattle (Seattle, WA)
City University of Seattle, Calgary Campus (AB)
City University of Seattle, Victoria Campus (BC)
Columbia University (New York, NY)
Dalhousie University (Halifax, NS)
Douglas College (New Westminster & Coquitlam, BC)
Georgetown University (Washington, DC)
Gonzaga University (Spokane, WA)
Grand Canyon University (Phoenix, AZ)
John F. Kennedy University (Pleasant Hill, CA)
King Saud University (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia)
Kwantlen Polytechnic (Richmond, Langley, & Surrey, BC)
London Metropolitan University (London, England)
McGill University (Montreal, QC)
McMaster University (Hamilton, ON)
Memorial University (St. John’s, NL)
Mount Royal University (Calgary, AB)
Northcentral University (San Diego, CA)
Northeastern University (Boston, MA)
Royal Roads University (Victoria, BC)
San Francisco State University (CA)
SBS Swiss Business School (Kloten, Switzerland)
School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University (Boston, MA)
Simon Fraser University (Burnaby, BC)
Toronto Art Therapy Institute (ON)
Tyndale University (North York, ON)
Trinity Western University (Langley, BC)
University College Cork (Ireland)
University College Dublin (Ireland)
University of Alaska (Fairbanks, AK)
University of Alberta (Edmonton, AB)
University of British Columbia (Vancouver, BC)
University of Calgary (AB)
University of California, Davis (CA)
University of the Fraser Valley (Abbotsford, BC)
University of Guelph (ON)
University of Helsinki (Finland)
University of Lethbridge (AB)
University of Leicester (England)
University of Manitoba (Winnipeg, MB)
University of Maryland (College Park, MD)
University of New England (Biddeford, ME)
University of Portland (OR)
University of Regina (SK)
University of Strathclyde (Glasgow, Scotland)
University of Toronto (ON)
University of Victoria (BC)
University of Wales Trinity Saint David (Lampeter, Wales)
University of Winnipeg (MB)
University of Wisconsin-Stout (Menomonie, WI)
Vancouver Island University (BC)
Vrije University Brussel (Belgium)
Walden University (Minneapolis, MN)
Washington State University (Pullman, WA)
Western University (London, ON)
Western Washington University (Bellingham, WA)
Wichita State University (Wichita, KS)
York University (Toronto, ON)
Yorkville (Fredericton, NB)

Is your collaborative work space complicated to learn? I’m too busy for that.

Happily, no. If you can send an email, you know pretty much all you need. You’ll appreciate how simple, effective, and organized our system is. Our clients love that everything to do with their project is safe and secure in one place.

Upon completion, we archive the space, including all files and messages, giving you a secure back-up of your research. More than once over the years we have had clients contact us to locate a copy of their manuscript or a file version with a certain table or figure—and boom! There it is.

What does the edited file look like? How do I know what has been changed?

We use the track changes feature in MS Word to mark our edits. You simply review the changes and accept as appropriate. If you’re not familiar with track changes, we provide easy-to-follow instructions, and we clarify the process in our written editing procedure.

Your final copy will be free of all tracking and comments, ready for submission. Guaranteed!

Do you ever explain the edits you make?


  • When we have a sentence-level question or need to explain something in the paper, we insert a comment. Comments allow us to communicate without compromising document integrity.
  • With every file upload, we’ll send you a message outlining what we’ve done and clarifying next steps for you. As with files, all messages are stored in the work space. At any time, you can see what has already been communicated about your project.
  • If we have suggested a revision but you don’t understand the thinking behind our change, we encourage you to ask your editor about it. We are happy to explain edits and direct you to relevant sections in the Publication Manual, if applicable.
  • If you wish to improve your prose, we may be able to help you as writing coaches. (If you are a student, you should have any such mentoring approved beforehand by your faculty advisor.)

What if I don’t agree with an edit that you’ve made?

If you see anything you’re questioning, we encourage you to speak up so we can explain our reasoning. Often we’re applying a nitpicky aspect of APA Style, so rejecting our edit outright may not be advantageous.

If it’s a matter of style or grammar, one benefit of hiring an editor is the opportunity to be reminded of the finer points of written English that perhaps you don’t recall from your grade school days. Many writers repeat the same types of errors, and understanding your weaknesses could improve your writing.

If after hearing our explanation you want to revert to the original wording (in editor lingo, “stet the edit”), that is unquestionably your prerogative. It’s your document, so you have the final say.

What versions of Microsoft Word can you accommodate?

We can accommodate all versions of Microsoft Word from 1997 to present.

I use a Mac. Are there any issues with using Word for Mac?

Working from Mac to PC shouldn’t be a problem. We have experienced the odd glitch over the years, but they have been easy to overcome.

How much experience do you have?

Tons! We happily pore over thousands of pages of text every year. We read papers written in APA Style virtually every day, on psychology, nursing, education, leadership, policing, government, Aboriginal relations, and social justice, among other topics. Our editors have university degrees, specialized training, years of experience, and an inner yearning to make all academic papers shine. Don't just take our word for it; check out our testimonials to see what our clients say about us. Or see for yourself with one of our free estimates.

I’ve had a certain editor recommended to me. Can I request to work with her?

Of course. We accommodate specific requests whenever possible. If that editor’s workload is too heavy, we’re confident you’ll be thrilled with another editor’s work. After all, everyone on our team is excellent, and we all follow the same process.


Pricing & Billing

What do you charge? Do you charge rush rates?

We charge a regular rate of $90/hour and a discounted student rate of $85/hour. In special circumstances, we may also quote on a per-project basis.

Rush jobs may be billed at time and a half, depending on circumstances; any such charges will be outlined and agreed upon by both parties before work proceeds. We are often able to accommodate rush jobs without having to increase our rates.

Our rates average out to pennies per word and are extremely competitive for the quality of work we provide. We stand behind our results 100%. We can set a ceiling of hours to meet your budget, and we can assist with modified payment terms. Plus, you’ll never catch us billing for time we haven’t spent working. That just isn’t the way we roll.

Contact us today to see how flexible we are! (Rates are in Canadian dollars and do not include GST.)

Will I know how much time has been spent on my project?

Of course. We log our time, and we keep clients apprised of time accrued as we proceed with edits. You can also easily check the status of your project whenever the whim strikes you by logging in to your account.

How do you bill for your work?

We ask for a retainer fee of $150 to secure our services and commit your project into our workflow. The retainer fee is converted to a credit on your account and reimbursed on the final invoice. It is not an additional fee.

As we work, we track our time. For ongoing projects, we invoice at the beginning of the month for the previous month's work. When a project is completed, we issue a final invoice that refunds the retainer.

Unless alternative payment terms have been agreed upon beforehand, payments not received within 14 days will result in work stoppage, and those not received within 30 days will incur a penalty of 2%.

What types of payment do you take? Can I pay by credit card?

You can pay by credit card (without having to share any financial information with us), PayPal, e-transfer, or good old-fashioned cheque.

Why do you charge by time and not per word (or per page)? Isn’t your pricing more expensive?

We price based on time spent working because it's fair.
Per page or per word pricing is commonplace, but that doesn't mean it's the best approach. Every editor knows that word count varies from page to page and not all words need equal attention. Freelancers price this way because it makes for easy estimates. They can give you an estimate without so much as glancing at your paper.
When we give an estimate, we’ve taken the time to review your work. We’re basing our estimate on experience, not word count.
Our prices average out to pennies per word, comparable to the competition, but you pay only for time spent editing what needs to be done. If your file needs a quick polish, you shouldn't have to pay the same amount as someone whose file is a similar length but needs a major edit. With Editarians, you won't.


Ethics & Privacy

Do you have a privacy policy?

Yes. Editarians' privacy policy is right here. We take the privacy of our clients’ personal and professional information seriously. We collect personal information in order to work effectively with clients, and in so doing we conform to the Province of Alberta’s Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA), which sets standards for the use of personal information by private sector organizations. Our editors abide by our privacy policy and otherwise take all reasonable precautions to protect your confidential information.

Will you sign a nondisclosure agreement (NDA)?

Sure. We don’t normally sign an NDA because confidentiality and nondisclosure are covered in the terms of our editing agreement, but we are happy to oblige if you prefer to have one signed. We have our own NDA; we can also sign an NDA of your choosing.

I work with sensitive information. Can you protect my files?

Rock-solid integrity has been at the core of our company since 2002. We know that whether it’s important to national security or just important to you, your information needs to be handled securely. We have been trusted with highly sensitive documents from a number of industries. Our system uses the latest in security standards. Uploads and downloads from our site are encrypted, and all editors must maintain up-to-date anti-virus software on their computers.

In addition to these standard procedures, we can take additional security measures, such as limiting the number of staff with access to your project and password-protecting documents. Let us know your concerns and together we'll find a solution.

How do you maintain confidentiality?

It is our policy to consider any document not within the public domain or otherwise freely available to the public to be confidential. Our duty of confidence is neither to disclose nor make use of any information for any purpose other than that intended by our client. All documents are received, acted upon, and stored or deleted so as to ensure the confidentiality of the information contained therein. We will not sell, transfer, publish, disclose, or otherwise make your intellectual property available to third parties without your prior written consent.

What happens to the copyright of my manuscript?

Nothing at all. Your intellectual property remains exclusively yours. Any rights granted to Editarians for editing or assessment services do not affect your copyright of your manuscript.

Still need help? Send us a note!

If you call, prepare to speak to a human!

Phone: +1 (403) 569-7376