3) Substantive Copy-editing Service

Dissertation proofreading services

The Substantive Copy-editing Service is the most advanced level of  essay and dissertation proofreading services that we provide to MA & Ph.D students, academics and researchers.

In this service, our expert editors and proofreaders will thoroughly and rigorously examine every single aspect of your dissertation, thesis, essay, academic paper or journal at two key levels: 

Form: your language, style of writing, structure, presentation and organisation of ideas, etc

Content: your argument, your ideas, your research, etc.

Who is the Substantive Copy-editing Service for?

This Substantive Copy-editing Service is the most popular dissertation proofreading service among Ph.D students and academics. This service particularly suits non-native speakers, who need a more critical, in-depth and meticulous examination of their thesis or dissertation, or any other form of academic writing.

As explained and exemplified above, while proofreading your academic text, our editors will look at your language, style, ideas, organisation, flow, sentence structure, word choice, referencing style, and in-text citations, among several other aspects.

If you are a foreign student or academic studying in a UK university, it can be an extremely arduous task to write up your dissertation in a formal academic English language, which is not their native tongue, as needed by your supervisors and professors. 

Here comes our role as specialists in the proofreading and editing of dissertations and theses.

With an eye for detail, our expert editors and proofreaders will also pay extra attention to any lack of clarity, inconsistency, contradiction, textual incoherence or unnecessary repetition in your dissertation or thesis. 

This will be flagged up to you so that you learn what you did wrong and they will correct it.

Unlike many other service providers, we will fix any errors in your referencing style or in-text citations. All we will need to know from you is what your preferred referencing style: APA, Harvard, Chicago, etc.

To do a perfect job, our editors and proofreaders may seek clarifications from you if they come across bits and pieces which are not understandable or clear enough in your academic text in order to ensure that your dissertation or thesis is edited and proofread to the highest standard possible.

Our ultimate goal is to help you, as students and academics, attain the highest grades possible.

In a nutshell, this level of dissertation proofreading services is best suited to those who have written a very long document and would like to ensure that their text is in the best shape in terms of content, form, structure, ideas, organisation, clarity and presentation.

What does the Substantive Copy-editing Service include in detail?

1. Grammar

a) Subject-Verb Agreement (SVA)

- Although it may sound too simple, a large number of corrections we have to make in dissertations, essays and other academic papers are linked to SVA.

Here are some real examples:

Original: The three major parts of the Railway Station Reopening project includes project scope, stakeholder assessment, and risk assessment.

Corrected: The three major parts of the Railway Station Reopening project include project scope, stakeholder assessment, and risk assessment.

Original: Figure 3 which highlights the three shapes mainly focus on the processes and duration of each activity. 

Corrected: Figure 3 which highlights the three shapes mainly focuses on the processes and duration of each activity.

b) Use of conjunctions/connectors

Using connectors in academic texts such as dissertations or theses is extremely important because it strengthens the coherence, logic and flow of the text.

Here are some real examples:

Original:  The probability of strike action is low, however, the impacts of such action can be serious.

Corrected:  The probability of strike action is low; however, the impacts of such action can be serious.

Corrected: The probability of strike action is low. However, the impacts of such action can be serious.

c) The use of tense

Original: In this academic study, I aim to present my findings and conclusions in the last chapter which I wrote before the deadline requested by my supervisor.

Corrected: In this academic study, I aimed to present my findings and conclusions in the last chapter which I wrote before the deadline requested by my supervisor.

Original: I conduct the research for this dissertation in 2015.

Corrected: I conducted the research for this dissertation in 2015.

Original: I have reviewed the literature for my thesis two weeks ago.

Corrected: I reviewed the literature for my thesis two weeks ago.

d) The use of modifiers, possessive pronouns, and split infinitives

Original: The proofreader said the chapter was well written, but it's content needed further detail.

Corrected: The proofreader said the chapter was well written, but its content needed further detail.

e) Any errors in the use of the apostrophe, or lower and upper case.

Original: The phenomenon was discussed at the level of the Whole World.

Corrected: The phenomenon was discussed at the level of the whole world.

2. Spelling

We will correct any spelling mistakes in:

a) Words

cheek (check), grammer (grammar), loose (lose - as a verb), believes (beliefs - as a noun), proof read (proofread), weak (week) etc.

b) Names

Hum (Hume), Aristole (Aristotle), Daved (David) etc

3. Punctuation

We will also correct any punctuation errors in relation to.

a) The full stop

b) The colon

c) The semicolon

d) Quotation marks

4. Typos

We will also fix any typographical errors in your text, as exemplified in the following instances:

* They wanted too (to) discuss this in their academic paper.

* The researcher has recommended they sotp (stop) making mistakes and use English proofreading services.

* In the peeface (preface), they explained what they will discuss in their thesis.

* Proofreading services are needed impotent (important).

5. American/British English

We will replace any American words or expressions with British equivalents, as exemplified below:

* Learned (American) Learnt (British)

* Focussed (American) Focused (British)

* Center (American) Centre (British)

* Elective (North American) Optional course of study (British)

* Characterize (American) Characterise (British)

6. In-text citation and referencing

We will also ensure that in-text citations, references and bibliography in your essay or dissertation are in the correct format, based on your preferred referencing style, whether APA, Harvard, MLA or others.

Original : (Brantingham and Brantingham 1991)

Corrected: (Brantingham & Brantingham, 1991)

7. Word choice

In English there are words have greater impact than others; and there are words that fit more an academic purpose than others. Some examples include:

Original: The researcher pointed out that he wanted to talk about this phenomenon first.

Amended: The researcher explained that he wanted to discuss this phenomenon first.

8. Sentence structure

One recurrent problem that we fix in essays, theses, scientific papers and journals, written in English by non-native and native speakers alike, is what we call run-on sentences...i.e sentences are excessively long. We amend such sentences to make them soundly, comprehensibly, and academically structured.


Original: The scene of the crime and any data connected with the crime are able to supply pointers regarding suspects’ identities, assistance in the assessment of scenarios, help in the planning of avoidance or detention procedures, and to assist in the attainment of an improved comprehension of environmental features that may have a link with the crime.

Amended: The scene of the crime and any data connected with the crime are able to supply pointers regarding suspects’ identities and assist in the assessment of scenarios. Both factors also help in the planning of avoidance or detention procedures, as well as in the attainment of an improved comprehension of environmental features that may have a link with the crime.

9. Language flow

A constant request from our clients is that we ensure that the language throughout the text is flowing nicely in a consistent manner. This is one thing that is part of this service.

10. Your ideas and argument

As part of this service, we will flag up any inconsistency or oddity in ideas and arguments laid out in your academic paper, essay or dissertation, or indeed in any other form of writing.

11. Clarity

We will also ensure that any ambiguity or lack of clarity that we come across in your copy is handled in order for the text to be fully comprehensible.

How does it work?

We try to make things as easy and as simple as possible to our clients.


So, if you have an essay or a dissertation and would like to place an order for our Substantive Copy-editing Service, please follow the following steps.

    • 1) Send us the document by email to info@ultimateproofreader.co.uk. We work on both word (preferred) and PDF formats
    • 2) Specify in your email your preferred deadline
    • 3) If you have any specific requirements or instructions, please highlight them in your email

  • Confirmation

    Within two hours or less, we will get back to you with:

    • 1) Confirmation of receipt and availability
    • 2) Delivery details
    • 3) Payment details (we accept payment via PayPal or bank transfer)

    Once payment has been made, the job will be assigned to an editor, and it is all done.

    Alternatively, your can upload your document through the form available on our website and let us know which service you are interested in and when you need your document back by.


    You will get your document back from us within your preferred deadline by email. You will receive the document in two copies: one with changes marked to show you what has been changed by the editor, and another clean final version that is ready for immediate use and submission.

    Who are we?

    The Ultimate Proofreader is a professional dissertation proofreading services provider that is based in the UK. We are located close to London, in the southeast.

    Over the years, we have helped a large number of academics, postgraduates and PhD students from various universities in the UK and across the world with proofreading services of the highest quality for their dissertations.

    We have clients from universities such as the University of Cambridge, the University of Oxford, the University of Leeds, the University of Reading, and the University of Sheffield, the University of New York, Utrecht University, University of London, among many more.

    We strongly believe in our name, so we strive to provide immaculate thesis proofreading services of a quality and standard that can hardly be matched by any other service provider.

    We have come to exist and thrive, fully aware that, if we do not deliver high-quality services, we would not stand an opportunity in this highly competitive dissertation proofreading services market.

    For this reason, delivering academic proofreading services of an excellent quality has been our first guiding principle.

    Our second guiding principle is affordability. We are equally aware that if the services that we deliver to clients in the UK and abroad are highly priced, we would be beaten by others who provide thesis or dissertation proofreading.

    So, we have been determined to provide outstanding, yet affordable and reasonably priced, proofreading services. We are a caring, rather than greedy, service provider; we appreciate how students often run a tight budget, especially with the high cost of education in the UK.

    We have therefore priced our service offering in a way that would make them accessible to everyone.

    The third guiding principle we have been working to is to deliver our excellent, affordable dissertation proofreading services  in a timely fashion. Although we try our best to complete assignments within fast turnaround times, we never give priority to speed over quality.

    For us, priority always comes first. Unlike other providers, our proofreaders and editors may spend one or even two hours on a single page to correct, improve and clarify the text. We do not work on an hourly basis; we give every document we receive all the time and care it needs, no matter how much time or effort we put into it. Our ultimate goal is to produce a text that is proofread or edited to a high academic standard that would help the student or the academic.

    Having said that, we still strive to meet orders with tight deadlines by making sure that we have proofreaders and editors available 24/7, ready to step in when needed.

    The Ultimate Proofreader prides itself on having a very experienced team of proofreaders and editors who help us deliver those unique proofreading services to our UK clients.

    We are also a very friendly service provider, and are always happy to interact with our clients, whether before, during or after the completion of their assignments.

    We also believe that our task goes beyond the mere improvement of the language and style of writing to an informative, insightful educational service to academics and students. For this reason, we provide feedback, as appropriate, on the areas of language that need to be worked on. Additionally, we have created a blog on our website that is purely dedicated to language-related matters.

    Our aim is to help academics and students, particularly non-native speakers, to learn and improve their knowledge about the use of the English language for academic purposes. 

    We can be reached by email (info@ultimateproofreader.co.uk) or by phone (07717750188), around-the-clock.


    "I would certainly recommend this dissertation proofreading service to anyone who would like to have their thesis completely scrutinised and improved in terms of everything...English, structure, ideas, organisation etc," Maison, a Master's degree student.

    "The substantive copy editing and proofreading service is wonderful, it has made my dissertation look much much better...I highly recommend for those keen on the best quality for their academic papers," Ali, a PhD student.

    "I am a big fan of your services, particularly this one which has been a great help to me in organising and presenting my ideas in the best shape. I am glad I chose the dissertation proofreading services uk because it has significantly improved my long dissertation," Shenai, a Master's degree student.

    "The substantive copy-editing service is truly indispensable for academics like me, given the level of intervention from the editors of the Ultimate Proofreader," Zina, a Master's degree student.