Example Text Editing Exercises

The following texts contain errors in English and may be used to help determine how well someone understands and edits English. Try to edit these passages to correct all errors of spelling, grammar and punctuation, and make other changes to help them deliver their intended messages as clearly, accurately and interestingly as possible.

Passage 1

Assume this passage is part of a press release.

James Wilson thinks the use of the green creme is best and he proscribes it often. It's affect lasts longer and has deeper penetration to the skin. Patience who develop a skin rush are told to ask advise from their local Doctor. Neither James or Jame's colleges can be responsible for any condition developed if you chose to use this medecine. You are reminded to use too much than you need. Irregardless, Dr Wilsson says that "if you have problems, let Proffesor Black and I know". Although Dr Wilson specializes in skin conditions from hid office downtown, he also utilises his skill overseas in voluntary circumstances. this is different to many of his pears who avoid doing something to help others. Dr Wilson insists he is onto an important principal, that helping everyone is good for them. When asked who he should help Mr Wilson says “any one in need’. He further say, ‘if you are adverse to doing good things you will never achieve you full potential and will for ever remain stationery in you're life. The High Street is harder but more rewarding in the longer run.’ He adds that he has born much in his own life and wants to contribute back to the society and while he does not want to infer that others are amoral, he does wander about there will to sacrifice. His unpaid work is complimentary to his full-time paid work. Even so he is carefull to keep the 2 areas of his actions discreet to avoid issues with the government. He also doesn’t flout his generosity publicly, its his practise to be humble. “I try to insure that I do not loose perspective and have an inflated opinion of what I do”. Dr Wilson is obviously a philanderer whose greatly admired by all who know him. [Dr wilson has authorised this statement.

Passage 2

This passage is a short story.

They took my mother away the other day. They cam in broad daylight and callously knocked down to the ground and dragged her away in chains. She kept quiet right to the very end. The rest of us stood our ground in defiance. Later on they came back for me too. Remembering my mother, I stood up proud and tall. Their painfull blows came with steely inevitability. I fell down just like my mother did. In chains I was carriedoff to their deadly camp. Stripped and then dressed roughly, I embarrased darkness as their murderous machines took me to my maker.
I woke up. Hardly myself at all, I was standingin the doorway of a well decorated bedroom. I turned slowly into my empty prison which I was both a prisoner and the guard of. In one of the corners stood a large, solid timber wardrobe. I looked despondently at it. But salvation was calling me; my niggle of suspicion became a yell of recognition. That strong grain and heart-shaped knot, and above all, that delicate, comforting smell I had known for many years -- it was my mother!

Passage 3

Assume this passage is from a User Manual for a piece of industrial equipment.

Using the 9000E series machine

The 9000e series is the latest version of our successful widget making machine. It incorporates all the very latest technologies which we have developed. There are significant improvements in usability and safety over the 8000K series.

Starting the machine

a)To turn the machine on, push the green button marked "On"
b)wait for the sound to reach full volume and the green "Ready" light to switch on.
C)When the wheels are turning at full speed, engage the blue handle
d.be sure you are wearing your hearing protection headset

Creating widgets

-Feed the blank panels into the slot. Do let your hands get too close to the slot as it id dangerous.
-When the finished widget come out the other end, wait until it is fully out and than grab it and drop it in the completed widget pile

packing widgets

a.Widgets must be packed carefully as they are delicate and can break easily
B.lie the packaging foam between individual widgets and cut the extra off with the blade provided. Remember be careful with the blade.
d.P lace the stack of widgets in the plastic lined box and seal it with the acrylic sealer .Do not breathe too heavily cause the sealant smells bad, and don't rub your eyes with sealer

Turning the machine off

a. Push the blue handle off
b.Push the red button marked with 'Off'
c..wait for the sound of the machine to stop
d check everything is okay

Passage 4

This is an exact transcription of the English translation on a box of tea from China.

The way of making tea

1.The tea amount used may depend on personally likes fluctuating, the tea quantity and water-soaks the time to have the inverse ratio. the world comments the tea recognition amount used is 3g teas. breaks in the 150cc boiling water. right amount swelled several times.

2.Front this tea swells take the chinaware or the glass system tea set as is good. makes tea cleans by all means must. avoids the unusual smell, the tea puts in first to the boiling water has burnt the tea set, may receive keeps warm effect of the concurrently acceleration tea taste leaching.

Passage 5 ... A Novelty

This is not an exercise in editing. Rather, it is a demonstration of how the human brain can recognise patterns and make sense of "text" even when it contains major errors. The same process that makes reading this passage possible is also responsible for writers being "blind" to the errors in their own writing.

The content comes from a message that was circulated on the Internet some time ago.

F1gur471v3ly 5p34k1ng?

7H15 M3554G3
53RV35 7O PR0V3
H0W 0UR M1ND5 C4N
D0 4M4Z1NG 7H1NG5!
1MPR3551V3 7H1NG5!
1N 7H3 B3G1NN1NG
17 WA5 H4RD BU7
N0W, 0N 7H15 LIN3
Y0UR M1ND 1S
R34D1NG 17
4U70M471C4LLY
W17H 0U7 3V3N
7H1NK1NG 4B0U7 17,
B3 PROUD! 0NLY
C3R741N P30PL3 C4N
R3AD 7H15.
PL3453 F0RW4RD 1F
U C4N R34D 7H15.

Passage 6 ... Another Novelty

This also is not an exercise in editing. Again, it shows that major errors in text can be missed when writers edit their own writing.

The content comes from a message that was circulated on the Internet some time ago.

I cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg.
The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid Aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at
Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, deosn't mttaer it inwaht oredr the ltteers in a wrod
are, theolny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in
the rghitpclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it
wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey
lteter byistlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Amzanig huh? yaeh and I awlyas
thought that slpeling was ipmorantt..