Thinking about becoming a WAHM? Ever consider a career as a freelance proofreader? As a graduate of Proofread Anywhere, the intensive multimedia online proofreading course, here’s what I have to say about the course everyone is talking about.
In 2015, I found myself stuck in a HUGE rut feeling drained, burnt out, and just overall empty. I knew I needed something more than the daily grind of motherhood, but I wasn’t sure what it was or where to even look.
I tried a ton of different side hustles over the last couple years, like consignment sales; selling on craigslist, eBay, and OfferUp; and I even got into painting old furniture. I had a lot of fun, but after having to move (yet again) into a small apartment with my family, I just didn’t have the space to keep the inventory up. (Have you ever tried to paint a dresser on your small apartment porch? Yeah. Not fun.) I wanted — needed — something different.
Trying to find creative ways to obtain some kind of training and make some extra cash, I decided to look into distance education. Most college courses were very expensive, and SO many things online are big fat scams. But I kept my radar up for anything I thought would be a good fit. Then one day, while perusing one of my favorite blogs, I came across an article about becoming a court transcript proofreader. I was immediately intrigued, but HIGHLY skeptical. I had never heard of anything like this before. Being the compulsive researcher I am, I decided to do some snooping to find out what Proofread Anywhere was all about.
And I’m SO glad I did!
After some careful thought and consideration, my hubs and I decided that this was a fantastic opportunity because 1) it was a LOT cheaper than enrolling in a local college, 2) it was completely remote, and 3) it was entirely self-paced — all of which were necessary for me as a SAHM.
I was still super worried that it was a scam (It’s hard not to be as a consumer in the digital world.), so I hammered the course creator, Caitlin Pyle, with very lengthy emails being super candid about my skepticism. God bless her! She answered each and every email (and concern!) I threw at her. I decided to bite the bullet and enrolled.
Here are a few details about Proofread Anywhere and the career as a whole:
What is Proofread Anywhere? Proofread Anywhere is a blog owned by Caitlin Pyle, master entrepreneur, proofreader extraordinaire, and creator of Transcript Proofreading: Theory and Practice™, the first and only multimedia training program for transcript proofreading.
What is transcript proofreading? Court reporters, sometimes called court stenographers, create verbatim transcripts of different legal proceedings, such as hearings, trials, depositions, arbitrations, examinations under oath, jury selections, and many others. After these transcripts are created and edited, they are sent off to a proofreader to verify that the transcript is free of errors.
What kind of errors do transcript proofreaders look for? Transcripts can have many different types of errors. Proofreaders must have an excellent command of English grammar and punctuation, as well as court transcript formatting — something that varies between the different states and districts. Transcript errors can include incorrect punctuation, mistranslated steno (the language court reporters use to create the transcripts), formatting errors, incorrectly spelled witness names, incorrect dates and times, etc. It’s WAY more than just dotting I’s an crossing T’s. (<–Yes, those apostrophes are correct. I promise. 🙂 )
How do proofreaders do the work? Proofreading can be done entirely from an iPad at home. Some choose to do it on paper or on a computer screen, but the course teaches — and I totally agree based on my own experience — that it is a million times more efficient to do it from an iPad.
Here’s a peek inside what the course offers:
- 9 modules (60 units) of multimedia lessons including worksheets, video tutorials, 3,000+ pages of practice transcripts (Seriously. It’s a LOT.), quizzes, a hand-graded final exam, AND (wait for it …) a complete module dedicated to help you build your business and find clients. (Check out this post about why I think the marketing module makes this entire course better than traditional college courses.)
- Exclusive access to the student community Facebook group. This is hands down the most encouraging, educational social media group I’ve ever been a part of. The collaboration in the student group easily beats any college course I’ve ever taken. As an introvert, I’ve always hated group activities. I mean, I like people, but I’ve always had social anxiety around people I don’t know. Working with other students remotely really eliminated the anxiety for me — a winning course attribute in my book!
- Drum roll please … LIFETIME ACCESS to all course content AND upgrades!! Why is this so awesome? This is why: When I started the course, there were half as many practice transcripts, half as much marketing instruction, and fewer tutorials. This means that from the time I enrolled until today, the course has doubled in size in the content and resources it has to offer, and I have had access to EVERYTHING. It’s like guaranteed continuing education for life — for FREE! Not a lot of people see the value in this, but I do. It means I never have to pay another dime to stay up to speed on the latest and greatest in this industry. I think we’ll all be hard-pressed to find a traditional school that offers that kind of access to their students.
Looking back, I can’t imagine what my life would be like if I hadn’t taken the chance on Proofread Anywhere.
After completing the course in 2015, I was able to gain my first client almost immediately. My goal was to be able to afford health insurance for me and my family. My first month working, I exceeded my goal and made enough money to pay for our health insurance AND enroll in another course for legal transcription (for real!) to add to my skill set and widen my reach as a mompreneur.
The doors Proofread Anywhere opened for me allowed me to make $2,000 in February of 2016, and I have consistently made about $1,500/mo since — working part time from home! I don’t exclusively proofread for court reporters anymore, but I can say without a doubt that this niche is a GODSEND for moms looking to bring in some cash while staying home with their kiddos.
What’s amazing is because of the doors that were opened to me after graduating PA, I have been able to take my proofreading career and mold it to my interests and passions — becoming a virtual assistant, copy writer, and blogger!
Find out more about my journey from burnout to work-at-home success in my exclusive video interview below:
Not interested in proofreading legal transcripts? Proofread Anywhere also offers a general proofreading course as well.
Disclaimer: I’ve heard mixed reviews about the general proofreading course. Some love it, while some are very underwhelmed. Since I haven’t personally taken the general proofreading course, I recommend doing your due diligence before enrolling to make sure this course is right for you.
Another great proofreading program that I’ve heard some excellent feedback about is Art of Proofreading, a course created by a proofreader and copyeditor with over 16 years of experience and over 1600 fiction and non-fiction books (copyedited and/or proofread) under her belt!
121 thoughts on “My Totally Honest Review of Proofread Anywhere”
Hi Katie! Not sure this will reach you as it has been 4 years since the last post. Here we are in the middle of a pandemic since last Spring and I am wanting to pad my social security a bit. Yes, I am currently 66 years old but in my strong defense I started college in 2009 at a state college majoring in creative writing with a minor in technical writing. I have already had more than a bevy of excellent learning in the world of editing, copywriting etc. Not having used my education in the past 5 years since I graduated, I need a good refresher as opposed to a full-on in-depth course. Examining all the factors which I have mentioned, do you think this course, or the Art of Proofreading is really a direction I should be proceeding? Thanks very much for your input!
So sorry I didn’t see this back in December! My system has been withholding comment notifications, and I didn’t see this until now. My sincerest apologies!
I definitely recommend checking out Phon Baillie’s courses at Edit Republic (formerly Art of Proofreading). I found her program to be comprehensive but also grate for anyone needing a solid refresher. That is my personal recommendation over the general proofreading course at Proofread Anywhere. Both will likely provide value, but I appreciate the in-depth nature of High-Level Proofreading Pro at Edit Republic.
Wow I wish I would have seen your review earlier—I just signed up for the PA General course 2 days ago ☹️
If you don’t access the course content, you may be able to get a refund.
I’ve heard great things about The Art of Proofreading
My research on Proofread Anywhere deterred me from signing up. So many people had concerns about the owner’s behavior; they said her reputation was affecting their ability to get clients. I see some of the comments here are backing up that sentiment.
Yes, the Art of Proofreading is FANTASTIC! Phon Baillie has been working as a proofreader and copywriter for over 16 years, and I highly recommend her super in-depth program.
Regarding Proofread Anywhere, thankfully, it looks like anything strange that was going on has resolved as far as I know. BUT I do recommend all of my readers do their due diligence (as you have!) before paying for any program online. When I went through the PA program back in 2015, the course content was solid, so my review of the curriculum still stands. That said, I recommend you go with your gut and enroll in the program that best fits your overall goals. If that’s Art of Proofreading, you’re making an excellent choice. 🙂
A bit worried now. I just signed up for the General Proofreading course. I am not aware of any negative or concerning social media posts since I really don’t frequent social media much. If the class is solid- is her reputation really harming our career opportunities? Just a bit worried now that I may have made the wrong choice?
Honestly, I haven’t marketed myself as PA grad in a long time since I no longer offer proofreading services, so I cannot say first-hand whether or not it’s really affecting people’s ability to get work. However, I wouldn’t worry too much. You don’t have to market yourself as a PA grad. People don’t really care what training you took. They simply want to know you have the skills. 😉 You’re 100% in control of your business, so market yourself in a way that highlights your skills, not your training, if that makes sense. 🙂
Hi there Katie,
I am interested in taking Caitlin’s Proofread Anywhere General Course but I see on this line of comments that people keep saying there were negative social media posts a while back; what were they? Why are they considered negative? What did she say exactly? I’m nervous about doing this program and possibly being associated with someone who has a bad reputation. Also, just curious, how do you know that the Art of Proofreading is a fantastic course? Do you know from experience or did someone tell you? I’m just trying to figure out which company I want to get involved with.
Regarding Caitlin’s course, I was receiving negative feedback from students inside of her program a few years back that was very concerning. Since then, I have not received any negative feedback. I always recommend that all prospective students do their due diligence by researching the programs and instructors to know whether or not they feel comfortable with taking the program. I don’t believe in speaking negatively about people, so I don’t want to comment on Caitlin other than when I took her legal transcript proofreading course in 2015, I found it to be a comprehensive program that provided adequate training.
Regarding Phon’s programs at Edit Republic (formerly Art of Proofreading), I have personally had the opportunity to review the course curriculum myself. I found it to be excellent and definitely worth considering. She recently rebranded and is now offering more programs for those who want to go deeper into building an editorial business. Definitely worth checking out! So far, I haven’t received any negative feedback on the program or the instruction.
I hope this helps! So sorry for not getting back to you sooner. My system has been withholding comment notification. My apologies!
Since your comment in 2019, have you enrolled in a course and if so, which one? What do you think of it?
I looked at Proofread Anywhere two years ago and wanted to try it but couldn’t afford it at the time. I was seriously considering registering this week so I could work toward staying home with my kids when the summer starts but thought I would just look for updated reviews first, and I’m glad I found yours. I saw the social media posts and really don’t want to get involved in her business. I’m bummed because it seemed so perfect before and I had been looking forward to when I could take the course. Hoping to find another work from home opportunity for someone with an English degree. Thanks!
Hi, Kate! I’m SO sorry about your disappointment with Proofread Anywhere, but I totally understand. Please know that there are some great alternatives if proofreading excites you. I’ve been getting some GREAT feedback about Art of Proofreading. Phon Baillie (owner and instructor at Art of Proofreading) has over 16 years of experience as a proofreader and copyeditor. She’s proofread/copyedited over 1600 books an has a LOT of expertise to offer. You can check out her program here. She also offers a free intro course here to help you get to know the proofreading business before you invest in the course. I’ve heard nothing but great things so far. 🙂
I hope this helps! If you choose to sign up, I’d love to hear what you think. 🙂
hey katie, i was considering proof read anywhere it seems super in depth with transcription. I’m trying to snag it before the Black Friday deal ends. Do you know the differences between it and the Art of Proofreading? I don’t really know what copy editing is but does each program provide that skill?
That’s a great question! Proofread Anywhere has two proofreading programs last I checked: legal transcript proofreading and general proofreading. I’ve taken the legal transcript proofreading, which is NOT the same as copyediting. With this training, you’ll learn how to proofread and annotate legal transcripts for court reporters. It’s a very specific skill set and is not the same as general proofreading and copyediting.
Now, if I were to compare PA’s general proofreading course to Art of Proofreading, I would say I prefer Art of Proofreading. It is an in-depth copy editing training program that trains people in how to proofread for publishers and authors. The program creator, Phon Baillie, has been proofreading novels for publishers and independent authors for many years, and has created an amazing program that I believe will get you all the knowledge you need to build a thriving editorial business as a proofreader and copyeditor.
I hope this helps!
I started Caitlin’s legal transcript course because I’m a retired attorney and realized I can use the knowledge I already have. A few months ago, the Proofread Anywhere page on facebook blew up with craziness from Caitlin. All you have to do is go and read through some of her posts for yourself. Most of us who are already in the middle of her course are just trying to finish and get out. I’m still waiting on my midterm so I can access the second half of the content. I went ahead and signed up with the Art of Proofreading to get the general and copyediting course finished. I believe this is what I, myself, will make of it.
Thank you SO much for sharing your experience, Susan. It makes me so sad to hear this from students who have enrolled, but hearing honest feedback from students like you will help others make informed decisions, so I very much appreciate your input! I think it’s wonderful that you’re committed to getting the education you need from it so you can move forward with your own goals. Please let us know how you like the Art of Proofreading! I’d love to know your experience in order to see if it’s a good alternative for other people looking to get into proofreading. 🙂
I’m very happy with the Art of Proofreading; I’m learning so much! I’m also hooked up with Margie Wakeman (Margie Holds Court), and I can’t believe how much I WASN’T learning with Proofread Anywhere. So, I’m on my way to a new career at age 62. I do a Miracle Morning, eat clean, and work out, so I can start a new business, right? Please keep encouraging others who are looking to do something wonderful with their lives!
That’s wonderful to hear about the Art of Proofreading, Susan! I was actually so intrigued by your experience that I went ahead and reached out to Phon over at AP to learn more. I’m happy to say I have a review in the works so I can bring more awareness to her program as a resource for people looking to get into proofreading. Thank you so much for the referral!
Congratulations on your pathway to a new career!! You are an inspiration with all you’ve achieved, and I can’t wait to hear updates on your new business. Stay in touch! 🙂
I have been looking at getting into proofreading myself and have been researching both PA and the Art of Proofreading but have been having an incredibly hard time finding any reviews on the Art of Proofreading. Did you finish that review and if so are you able to respond with the link? The one thing that’s been nagging at be about both programs is that neither is accredited in any way. I came across this program https://www.inst.org/proofreading-copyediting-courses/syllabus.htm that looks excellent, but is more pricey and am just wondering how it might compare the Phon’s course.
So sorry I missed your comment! I do have a review and will try to migrate it over to this blog shortly (it’s on another blog that I shut down). I’ll let you know once it’s been added here. Thanks for your patience!
Hi, I notice your update says that you don’t think it’s a good idea anymore, can you explain why?
Sure! While I still feel the transcript proofreading course was fantastic when I took the course, I feel certain content posted on the social media pages is not fitting for building a positive learning environment. Therefore, while I still feel the program could potentially offer great training for transcript proofreading, I encourage folks to first make sure they’re comfortable with the company prior to enrolling.
For most, it won’t be an issue. However, as a blogger, I want to be very intentional with the types of businesses and products I recommend to my audience, and I know some of the things that have been posted on their social media pages have caused a lot of concern for some of my readers. Considering this, I’ve decided to no longer endorse the program. I encourage every potential student to make sure they’re comfortable before enrolling. 🙂 There’s no wrong decision.
Hi, Katie. I’m trying to find a good course to learn how to become a professional proofreader and came across your page. I was about to read your review of Proofread Anywhere, but then saw your recent disclaimer that you no longer endorse them. Is there a legit course you know of that you would recommend? I’m hitting a brick wall and it’s very frustrating.
I’m so sorry to hear about your frustrations. I really understand how hard it can be to find a legitimate way to learn those new skills. Here are two companion courses on Udemy created by a university professor that people are LOVING:
How to Find & Correct Writing Errors: The Proofreading Guide
Kickstart a Freelance Editor & Proofreader Career on Upwork
I haven’t personally taken these courses, but he is one of the highest rated course creators on Udemy. 🙂 I hope you find this helpful!
I am a stay-at-home mom looking for potential work-from-home opportunities. The transcript proofreading sounded like an absolutely perfect fit. I’ve worked in QC prior to becoming a SAHM and have a very high attention to detail. However, after looking at quite a few reviews, the Proofread Anywhere program looks like it’s a waste of money on an already straining budget.
So, my question for you is this:
If I want to become a transcript proofreader, how do I proceed without Caitlyn? Are there other schools or programs that deal specifically with transcriptions?
Also, my husband was noticing that quite a few law firms and courts are beginning to hire on-site proofreaders now that they are in such high demand. Is there still a demand for freelancers?
Thank you so much for your review and your comments!
My apologies for my late reply! I’ve been on vacation for my 11th anniversary. 🙂
Regarding your question, most freelance proofreaders work for court reporters directly, not for agencies. At least, that’s been my experience. Right now, I don’t know of any other transcript proofreading training programs out there. However, if you look into scoping, transcript proofreading is a big part of that. The difference is that you learn to read steno and how to use CAT software to translate and edit steno that hasn’t been translated with the reporter’s CAT software. It’s more expensive to get into, but you can work as a freelance scopist and find a lot of really great work. A lot of reporters hire freelancers to scope their own transcripts, so it could be a great avenue for you. Here is an interview I did with Linda Evenson who owns Internet Scoping School. I hope this helps!
Thank you so much for your reply and your advice!! I will look into the Scoping and check out your interview. Hope your vacation for your Anniversary was lovely!
My pleasure, Annie! I’m happy to help. 🙂 And thank you so much for your kind words! My husband and I had a wonderful time on our vacation. 🙂 Happy New Year!
Your review and comments have been super helpful. I am starting Module 2 of PT today. I became unemployed this weekend, so I hope to apply myself more hours per day. I will heed the advice to not rush through the course. Before I moved abroad a relative gave me a used iPad. It turns out that the IOS 9.3.5 is recent enough to work with iAnnotate 4 (requires IOS 9.0+). That will be a huge blessing. I have not previously been an iPad user, but have been using a MacBook Pro.
Where I am in Bali, Indonesia, it is not that easy or convenient to have copies made. I hope to teach myself iAnnotate to mark up my PT checklists and worksheets. That would be a giant help if it works out. Thank you again!
I’m so sorry to hear about your job. But I’m happy to hear you’re using the opportunity to dive deeper into building new skills! That’s fantastic! Definitely don’t rush through the course content. Take your time to really absorb the lessons as they will only make you a better proofreader, which will equate to more client referrals and more income in the future. I’m cheering for you! 🙂
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS! I HAVE BEEN CONTEMPLATING FOR A WHILE OF WHAT I SHOULD DO TO PROVIDE SECONDARY INCOME FOR MYSELF AND I TRULY FEEL LIKE THIS IS THE WAY TO GO. I CURRENTLY WORK CLERICAL FULL-TIME FOR A LOCAL SHERIFF’S OFFICE AND IT IS HARD FOR ME TO FIND A SECOND JOB BECAUSE OF MY CURRENT WORK SCHEDULE. I WILL BE ATTENDING THE WORKSHOP WITHIN THE NEXT FEW DAYS AND KEEP YOU UPDATED. AGAIN, THANK YOU!
Very exciting, Keshia! I’m cheering for you!! 🙂
Thank you for your review. You’re really great at responding to comments, so I thought I’d ask a question. I have done proofreading, but was self-taught having been a court reporter prior. I’m looking to go back and learn more, which is how I happened upon the course and then your blog. When I have proofed in the past I am usually listening to audio at the same time to verify what was transcribed was done so correctly. Do you learn how to proof that way? Also, is it required to have CAT software when working as a proofer for court reporters (we used a CAT software at the old firm I used to work for)? Thank you so much!
From my experience, those who proofread on CAT software (actually editing the transcript) function more as a scopist than a proofreader. Of course, each firm approaches this a bit differently. At Proofread Anywhere, you’re taught how to proofread via an iPad using a very specific annotation program, making annotations on top of a transcript and leaving the actual editing up to the court reporter themselves. This enables the court reporter to have full control over what edits are made to their transcripts. That said, other methods of proofreading are also supported by the school, though they tend to be a bit more inefficient.
Regarding proofing to audio, that’s definitely a service you can offer to your clients! Customarily, proofing to audio requires a higher per-page rate, which is why proofreaders add it to their rate sheet as an option, not a standard offering.
I hope this helps answer your questions! 🙂
Thank you for the response! It was very helpful.
My pleasure, Lucy! 🙂
Hi. I found your video while trying to find out more about PA. I’ve noticed that the overwhelming majority of people who are doing this are women. Can guys be just as successful in finding clients once the training is over? I have a pretty good background in English, even having taught EFL (English as a Foreign Language) for two years in Colombia. My weakness is anything and everything having to do with technology, computers, social media, marketing, etc. I don’t really have much experience at any of those things. For example, I’ve never even picked up an iPad, iPod, etc. in all my life, didn’t even own a computer until my mid forties (I’m 54 now), and most definitely wouldn’t have the foggiest notion about how to create my own website. Oh, and I always wonder about age discrimination and whether that would affect my ability to find clients. I currently sell books full time on Amazon, but am looking for a home-based opportunity that I can do 100% at home without having to constantly be driving long distances in order to obtain inventory. I hope you can answer some of these questions for me. I’ve sent messages to Caitlin but so far have not received any responses. Thanks.
Those are some really great questions! As a graduate, I can say that age/gender has little to do with success post-graduation. I know there have been men who have been very successful after the course, and the oldest graduate I believe was 69! That record may have been broken since my graduation, however. Here’s a blog post Caitlin published about this specific graduate.
I think a lot of women seem to be featured in success stories simply because this type of work seems to appeal more to women than men. But that’s certainly not a rule, and I know there are men within the student group who do very, very well. 🙂
When it comes to technology, there are three methods you can use to proofread: paper and pen, computer, or iPad. Some court reporters prefer paper and pen (if you choose to become a legal transcript proofreader). However, for the legal transcript proofreading course, Caitlin highly recommends the iPad method because 1) it’s incredibly fast and efficient, and 2) it’s very much like holding a book in your hand, which makes reading more natural and the proofreader less likely to miss an error. Computers are generally not recommended, but there’s really no rule against it.
The truth is that in order to further your reach and increase your client base, it’s good to offer multiple methods of proofreading to accommodate the preferences of your client. This is true for both legal transcript proofreaders and general proofreaders.
You seem to have a great background in English as an ESL teacher in Columbia, so that could really work to your advantage as a proofreader. You already have a great foundation to start with, and I think this could very well be a great option for you. 🙂
Your story is so inspiring! Congratulations on being able to conquer it all, family-love-passion. 🙂 I feel energized when I read about women who took a chance and found out that they can do it!
I am still not a mom, but I want to be more independent and prepare well for my future. I’m actually a fashion designer and I have just graduated last year. Unfortunately, I left my first job in fashion because the company wasn’t the right fit for me. At the moment, I am still sorting out my place in fashion because I also have a plan of going abroad. I realized that besides fashion, I want to learn something new (something new that I can use as another source of income for me). I want to build new skills that I can take anywhere I go and will be a permanent source of income. I looked around online for flexible online jobs and I found proofreading and transcribing.
The price for the courses is a little bit expensive for me so I plan to take one for now. I plan to take PROOFREADING first, and luckily came across Proofread Anywhere. I wanted to read more reviews about and really get the feel if it is really for me.
The course said that it will take 2-4mos to finish. Is it possible to finish it earlier or it will really take that long? And how did you start finding your first client?
I guess one of the worries I have is getting clients immediately after I graduate. I really want to start earning more because I want to save up so I can move to UK to study. 🙂
I hope you can give me some insights! Thank you!
I’m SO grateful to know that my story has inspired you on your own journey! With regard to how long the course will take, it will definitely depend on which proofreading course you take (general proofreading or legal transcript proofreading). I took the legal transcript proofreading and it took me about two months. Of course, I had kids to wrangle and studied whenever they were asleep. If you have more time to dedicate to the course and mastering the skill, you may be able to do it sooner.
I don’t, however, recommend rushing through the course. It’s important to really, REALLY absorb the content because if you’re not good at what you do, your clients will know it and will not continue to hire you OR recommend you to their friends. (Referrals are very important!)
So I recommend deciding committing wholeheartedly to whatever course you decide to take, and make it a goal to master the skill completely so you can set yourself up for success right after graduation.
When it comes to getting your first client, I recommend following what the course outlines. It covers everything you need to know about getting clients and growing your business. My only advice is to treat your clients like people, not like paychecks. 🙂 Their work is important, so take it on as if it were your own. This has always proven to be the key to success for me. Other than that, follow Caitlin’s recommendation in the course. She really covers all her bases there!
Wow! Two months while managing children seems great! On average, how many hours per day did you work on it?
Thank you, Nancy! I would say I worked on the course about 2-3 hours a day on average; though some days I did skip in order to nurture my sanity a bit. 😉
Some people finish sooner, but I honestly have a slower reading speed than most.
I also read on the slow side. That’s encouraging that you finished that quickly at 2-3 hours per day. Thanks for the feedback!
I’m so glad I could encourage you, Nancy! 🙂
I am seriously considering taking the plunge and signing up for PA. However, I’m apprehensive because I have a 1-year-old daughter who takes up a lot of my time. When she is napping or has gone to bed, that’s time for me to eat, clean, shower, exercise, etc. Would you recommend I wait until my daughter is older and more independent before starting this journey? I worry I won’t be able to dedicate myself to training and working as a proofreader.
Any insight is appreciated!
When I started, my sons were 2 and 5. I was blessed with a very supportive husband who would take the boys to the park and help with the house whenever I needed to study and work, which made things much easier on me. That said, it was always difficult to proofread or study when I was the only one to care for the kids. I studied every chance I could get when they were asleep or napping. Yes, sometimes that meant having my husband pick up dinner on his way home from work. Sometimes it meant I skipped my shower at nap time so I could get an hour of studying in. As a student, you get lifetime access to the course, so you can absolutely take as long as you want. This is AWESOME for moms of littles.
Then as you can, you can take on one client at a time and slowly build up your work base at a pace and load that works for where you are. You can work for one reporter and only get occasional work or you can take on more work if you want to. It’s totally up to you.
So I don’t necessarily think you have to wait until she is older. I think once you enroll, you’ll find a groove that works for you. And if you can get outside help like a family member to watch your sweetie baby for an hour here and there, that can be a huge help, too. 🙂
It doesn’t look like you took the general proofreading course – but I’m trying to figure out which would be better – the court based course or the general one. My background is medical but now I am home with four children. If I can only take one-how do you decide? I assume the court work is more tedious, though that doesn’t bother me. From what the PA website seems to say, you make more doing the court reporting? But I also enjoy reading less heavy material… what would be your thoughts?
Great question! Because your background is medical, I would start with transcript proofreading. Having an understanding of medical terminology is a HUGE asset in the court reporting field because oftentimes there are doctors who are called as expert witnesses, and reporters need a proofreader who can proofread medical terms. So you definitely have an advantage there. 🙂 I would start with legal transcript proofreading, then use your earnings from that to fund the general proofreading course so you can widen your clientele. That will result in more earning potential for you. 🙂
I have a question about the Proofread Anywhere course… I worked for several years as a technical writer and proofreader for a government agency. Therefore, I am not interested in proofreading transcripts. However, I would not mind proofreading fiction. Is there a demand for proofreaders for fiction (novels). Fiction works I have read the past few years do not appear as if they have been proofread and as an avid reader, I find all the little mistakes annoying.
Absolutely, Lin! The PA general proofreading course covers information on proofreading various types of media, including novels, and how to get established as a freelance general proofreader. It sounds like you have a lot of experience as a proofreader, so I think you have a great foundation to get started!
I wrote a review of the course too, and I’m not a PA affiliate. Based on a couple of the comments here, I thought it’d be valuable for folks to read a review from that perspective also. 🙂
Thank you so much for sharing this, Tris! I think it’s definitely great for folks to hear other people’s perspectives about PA. 🙂
Regarding Proofread Anywhere, I am used to a using a desktop computer with a large monitor and a keyboard. Why would I want to type corrections using an iPad? Isn’t that harder? I have an iPad but I’m old school. Lol. Thanks and I look forward to hearing your reply.
The iPad is the preferred method for Proofread Anywhere because of an app called iAnnotate. It makes it SUPER easy to read through a document naturally, adding annotations and annotation stamps as you go. In addition, computer screens have completely different lighting, which can increase the likelihood of missed errors. iPads have been known to have a lot better screen technology to prevent such things. However, this is definitely preference, and I know some folks stick with their preferred method of proofreading on a computer screen. 🙂
So, after reading your very marketed comment on how this course has changed your life, and was ready to look into this course, I read in small letters that, “Caitlin will not allow people into the course unless they have an established blog. ” Is this really a requirement before your able to take the course? And what exactly are the credentials of this course that people take? I have tried many things that people claim to have changed their lives, and here is the thing I’m very tired and skeptical of wasting my time and money, marketing for other people while they continue to get richer, I have tried it works only to realize several times I made the tier for a pay raise and never received it, I quit after working for a good year and 4 months, and just don’t want to waste my time anymore. I absolutely love to read, and proof read but if her requirements are that I need to have an established blog, that’s a bummer.
Actually, the red letters at the bottom of the post were speaking specifically to the Proofread Anywhere affiliate program. It’s stating that the affiliate program is not open to students simply because they’ve enrolled; it’s only to individuals with established websites. I wanted to make it clear that as a former student, I’m not compensated for sharing the course simply because I was a student (nor would I promote the course if it weren’t every bit as wonderful as I’ve expressed in my blog post). So to clarify, this isn’t a stipulation to join the course at all. It’s a stipulation to being a part of the affiliate program to promote the course. 🙂
Unless you’re reading something somewhere else, the quote I see is “She doesn’t even allow students/grads to become affiliates unless they have established blogs”. Not STUDENTS, affiliates, meaning that people who make money when they successfully refer new students. Having a blog is not a requirement of this course.
Do you know what the difference between the Transcript Proofreading: Theory and Practice course and the Inspire course? I saw them both out there and was confused on the difference and if there is a big difference, which one would you recommend?
That’s a great question! I actually have never heard of Inspire. Is it another proofreading course?
I was wondering if you have to work as a court transcript proofreader after graduating, or can you work for any area of proofreading?
No, you don’t have to be a court transcript proofreader after graduation, but the course does focus on that skill set. A lot of students have gone on to proofread other types of media successfully, so it absolutely can be done. I’d check in with Caitlin over there and see if she has plans to launch a general proofreading course. You can email her at email@example.com. You never know! It may happen. 😉
I have a Samsung tablet. Must it be an ipad, or is the necessary software available for android?
There are folks who use Android tablets to proofread, but the reason why iPad is so highly recommended is because of iAnnotate, an app that makes the process SO much easier. The consensus between students is that there simply isn’t a comparable Android app that can do what iAnnotate can do. You can read more on the subject here. Hope this helps! 🙂
Actually, iAnnotate is also available as an Android app, and it does everything the Apple version can do as well. I really don’t understand why people always say you must use an iPad if you want to use iAnnotate.
The Android version of iAnnotate (last I used it) didn’t include some of the most important features that are found on the Apple version, which is why it’s been so recommended for folks to switch to iPad. However, they may have updated it to include those features since then. I have’t used iAnnotate on Android in a very long time, so I really can’t compare. But if they did update it to include all the features, that’s awesome! 🙂
Different Crystal than up above. 🙂 Do you think the course would be worth it for someone not in the U.S.? (Not so much the grammar/proofreading itself, but in terms of how to find work and perhaps even court procedures in other countries are different)
While the course teaches students how to work exclusively for U.S. court reporters, Caitlin has had students enroll (and graduate!) from all over the world. Students have worked from Thailand, South America, and Canada — and probably other places I’m not aware of, too! That said, it will NOT teach you how to work for court reporters that are not based in the U.S. Court systems are completely different in other countries, as are transcript laws and procedures. To work for court reporters in your home country, you’ll need to look into that niche in your local court systems.
BUT that doesn’t mean you can’t work for U.S. court reporters! As I said, people have done it successfully without issue. You’ll have to consult a local-to-you tax professional to work out the tax side of things, but working for an American reporter should be no issue. 😉
Very helpful, thank you!
You’re so welcome, Crystal! 🙂
Hi Katie, I’m on module 2, and studying for the WST. I had a moment of panic last night because on the fb site we (people working through the course) are on, don’t include graduates so you don’t hear a lot from them. And we don’t have access to their site until we, ourselves graduate. I am enjoying the course but I feel that hearing more from actual graduates and hearing their success stories (even if they had a rough start) would help me keep motivated. I have read all of the FAQs on Caitlin’s website but it’s all stories about her most successful students. I know not everyone can be having this same success. I guess I’m craving to hear from a wide range of people and their successes, as well as their struggles. Hope this makes sense. Btw, I’m terrified of the WST! Lol!
Let me just calm your nerves a bit and say that EVERYONE feels the same way about the WST. You’re not alone there. 😉 But take heart in knowing that while it’s challenging, it’s definitely not the hardest test you’ll take. If you study Modules 1 and 2 and really absorb the content, you should have no problem passing. If you don’t pass, it isn’t necessarily an indicator that this isn’t for you. You can take it again (for a fee) and see if you’ve learned from what you missed. If at that point you don’t pass, then I’d say it might be an indicator that proofreading isn’t for you. But try not to worry too much. It’s really not too hard. 😉
I think your point on the graduates being MIA from the main group is valid. I’d definitely recommend emailing Caitlin @ firstname.lastname@example.org and make your suggestion to her. I think it would be fantastic if PA could foster more interaction between grads and students. It’s definitely an idea worth pitching. There are definitely grads in the PA student group that do help people out. The point of the PA Graduate Huddle is to prevent training students from immaturely getting information on where to find clients. It’s proven disastrous for folks (and PA!) who try to snag work without finishing the course and receiving proper training first. The PA Graduate Huddle is a place for grads to share job inquiries and help each other out in the marketing side of things. They’re still encouraged to participate in PA proofreaders. 🙂
Side note, you can find a variety of student success stories here: https://proofreadanywhere.com/category/testimonials/student-spotlight/
These stories are submitted by students themselves. They are not sought out by Caitlin. Keep in mind that success is relative to a person’s personal goals. For example, when I started as a proofreader, I only wanted to earn enough to cover a few hundred dollars in healthcare costs per month … and I did! That is what I call success. Others are still working toward their goals. 😉 Success doesn’t necessarily mean a full-time income. But if that’s your goal, it’s totally possible. 🙂
What’s the actual cost of taking this course?
You can view the current pricing of the different levels of the program here: https://caitlinpyle.com/pa. Scroll half-way down the page for tuition pricing. Currently, the full cost of taking the course is $1,174, but there are discounts for upgrading immediately after completing each level. 🙂
I loved your article and am very interested in the course.
I’m just wondering, do you work for PA?
Thanks so much!
I’m so glad you liked the article! After graduating the course and working as a proofreader for a bit, I decided to explore becoming a virtual assistant. Caitlin Pyle (owner of Proofread Anywhere) became my first client! So yes, I do work as Caitlin’s virtual office manager. However, that was LONG after I had taken her course, graduated, and worked as a proofreader. 🙂
Thanks Katie! Very impressed with your dedication.
Happy holidays to you and your family!
Thank you so much! Happy holidays to you as well! 🙂
I am very close to enrolling in this. I have done enough research to feel like it is legitimate. My hesitation is whether or not I will obtain work after. I understand and respect why that is kept secret, but I am nervous that I won’t have what it takes to get work (chasing down court reporters, keeping up with a website, etc). I wish there was a little more information on this. Can you offer any encouragement in this area?
I apologize for not getting back to you sooner. The holidays have really set me back a bit! I would LOVE to encourage you in this area! I was pretty skeptical and nervous that I wouldn’t see any return on my investment, too. I promised myself that I would stick with it until I at least made my tuition back. Then, I’d decide if I should keep going. After graduating from the course, I obtained my first client without even really trying. I actually responded to a reporter’s ad on Facebook. Voila! My first client. I can honestly say that I didn’t find it very hard to find clients, though I know some other folks did have a more difficult time. It all depends on your dedication to finding the work. It is definitely out there in abundance! I know a lot of proofreaders in our graduate group over at PA who often have to turn down work because they simply can’t take any more. So I want to encourage you that if you are someone who can honestly dedicate some time to mastering the skill AND putting into practice what you learn in the course with regard to marketing, you will find work. 🙂 I did! I hope this helps calm your concerns a little. Feel free to email me at email@example.com if you ever feel you need more encouragement! I know how intimidating it can be. 🙂
Will I have to be “chained” to headphones and some type of stenographer’s device to do this business?
No, you won’t have to be “chained” to headphones or any stenographer’s device to do the work of a proofreader. Proofreading can be entirely done from an iPad. 🙂
So, if you had to pick just one, would you say this course or Transcribe Anywhere is more beneficial? I know they’re related but separate, but still… Just wondering. 🙂 Or would you advise PA, then TA, as you did?
Hmmm. That’s a tough one. I honestly feel that by taking PA first, it really helped me build a great foundation for the legal transcription course over at TA. It wasn’t what I had originally planned, but it was kind of a natural progression for me. However, either course really is fantastic on its own. If you’re someone who will get bored reading transcripts all the time, then transcription, I think, is a bit more stimulating. 🙂
I’m a bit confused about your answer. Did you say that if we get easily bored, we should take Transcribe Anywhere versus Proofread Anywhere?
I’m sorry my answer was a bit unclear. If you’re someone who would get bored reading for long periods of time, proofreading can get boring. It can be much more stimulating to listen to the audio and creating the transcript like a transcriptionist would. 🙂 Some people enjoy a lot of reading, therefore proofreading might fit their interests better. 🙂
Do you realize you mis-spelled the word ” bored” in the first sentence above?
You’re right! I sure did! Moral of the story: Don’t reply to comments while tired. 😉 Good eyes!
“board” ? Did you proofread?
See comments above. 😉
Do you have to find your own work after completing and passing the final exam or is it sent to you through the website? I know if you complete a medical transcribing course, they also find the work after you have passed the final exam. I am in Australia.
PA doesn’t provide work for its graduates; however, they teach you exactly how and where to find clients, AND they do advertise available graduates to court reporters via the graduate directory posted on the website. They also take requests from court reporters for trained proofreaders. 🙂
Thanks for your reply. I’m still wondering whether it’s a worthwhile course for me to do. I’ve never heard of it before do might do some research over here about how hard jobs are to get over here. Thanks again
I think it’s a fantastic idea to do your due diligence, Kerry! I was one of Caitlin’s most skeptical students (she says so herself), so I completely understand. Keep in mind that you will be trained to proofread for American court reporters, not Australian reporters. Because of the differences in syntax and legal guidelines, I’m not sure looking into the job market there is ideal. You are absolutely able to work for reporters within the US, even though you don’t live here. In fact, PA has had a lot of graduates proofread for American court reporters from all over the world. US reporters are used to working with remote proofreaders, and customarily work with them exclusively via email. 🙂 It makes your location irrelevant, which is a good thing. She has a lot of info in her FAQs on the website. I encourage you to look through them regarding your concerns. They’re really helpful. 🙂
After months of thinking about enrolling, I was finally ready to take the plunge until I saw that the extra recommended resources will add another few hundred dollars to the price of the course. Now that negative voice in my head is piping up again!
Did you purchase the materials, and did you find them to be helpful in completing the course?
Here are my thoughts: DON’T let the added course materials discourage you. You can substitute the more expensive manuals for Gregg’s Reference Manual to get you through the course. That’s exactly what I did. I bought a used copy for a couple dollars and it’s been a fantastic help! All (or almost all) CR’s are familiar with Gregg’s. I do highly recommend getting some kind of reference manual to get through the course. There are SO many rules to remember, and you always want to be able to back up any annotations you make as a proofreader. Having a manual to cite is VERY important. So if you have an iPad already (or a desktop computer), all you need is a reference manual like Gregg’s (as low as a few bucks) and the iAnnotate 4 software ($9.99 for iPad) to get through the course. Keep in mind that you don’t really even need the software OR the manuals until you start Module 5. 🙂 Hope this helps!
Your post was so helpful! I was also skeptical of the course; I’ve spent the past week doing a lot of research and going through Caitlin’s site. It really looks like a great opportunity to try something new and embrace my love of proofreading!
I wonder if you can answer this question: you mentioned in one of your comments that you purchased the 10th edition of the Gregg Reference Manual. Would it be better to purchase the 11th edition, or is the (cheaper) 10th edition sufficient?
So the 11th edition isn’t at all different from the 10th that I know of. The 11th is just a tribute edition. Here is the one I purchased: http://amzn.to/2nDrah2.
It is cheaper than the 11th, and it absolutely works perfectly for the course. Most folks use 10th anyway. 😉 I got the spiral bound. It’s cheaper that way, too. Hope this helps! 🙂
I actually just enrolled in the course and flew through modules 1 and 2 in a few days because I was so excited to get started! Now I’m procrastinating on taking the module 2 quiz because I’m so nervous I won’t pass! I would feel so horrible and demotivated if I didn’t pass – like all the air was let out of my balloon!
I’m so glad that you are a tried and true case from Caitlin’s course! Puts the wind back in my sails a bit to just take the quiz and see what happens from there! I was making such great progress until then ha.
Haha! I totally understand your nervousness to take the Word Skills Test at the end of Module 2. Most people are! Caitlin’s pretty cool, though, and allows people to either 1) pay for an extension to keep studying for it, or 2) pay for a second attempt. Sometimes all someone needs is to know where their weak areas are and where to direct their studying. 🙂 Good luck on the quiz!
Michelle, I am currently enrolled in the course as well! Don’t fret about that quiz! Go onto Quizlet and join the Pa Proofreaders class for study material if need be.
Just focus on your notes, and you will do wonderfully!!
Thanks for the review! I’ve been eyeing this course for a while. I have been wanting a work at home career since my 2nd child was born back in 2009. I’m trying to decide if I want to invest in this course or that general transcription course by Janet. My kids are in school so I pretty much have most of the day to work. Is it possible to make $2000/month after taking either of these courses?
I think making $2,000/month shouldn’t be too difficult given the time you have available to work uninterrupted. However, your income potential really hinges on your own dedication and proficiency in the work you do. For someone who really studies, shows mastery of English grammar and punctuation, and is dedicated to finding the clients using the marketing lessons in the courses, I’d say you should be able to work up to $2,000/month. Understand, though, that this is rarely an income someone gets right out of the gate (though some have!!). It takes some time to build up your clientele. If you’re good, though, word will spread and you’ll get great repeat clients. So to sum it up, it really depends on you. 🙂
In your original post you say you made around $1500/month on part-time hours – what does part-time mean? I’m not expecting an exact amount because I understand jobs vary in size, but can you give me a range? Is it like a full time job when you receive a transcript?!
You are right. Jobs vary in size, but that’s not the only factor on how long it’ll take to do a job. The content of the transcript and the type of proceeding can greatly effect the time involved. For example, court cases tend to have a lot more lengthy discussions, which translates to margin-to-margin text. This makes the job MUCH more dense, which takes a lot longer to get through. Also, highly technical transcripts (like the examination of doctor) requires a lot more work because of the time it takes to research all of the technical medical terms, their spellings, definitions, as well as medical measurements. The slightest variation could lead to a huge error that has potential to get a case thrown out of court. Yikes! Then you have standard Q & A (question and answer). That is usually the easiest to read.
All that to say that jobs definitely vary in content. The length of transcripts can very greatly too. Some could be only a couple pages while others could be thousands. On average, my reporters would send me 60 to 200-page transcripts. But that is by no means the average for other reporters. Keep in mind that the average proofreader reads about 30 pages an hour for relatively standard transcripts (not too dense, not too easy). Some proofreaders can read much faster — others, slower. So speed and accuracy are a huge factor as well.
So to answer your question, my $1,500/month that I was speaking of wasn’t exclusively from proofreading. It was, however, completely attributed to the doors proofreading opened for me. Part-time was anywhere from 15 to 25 hours each week to make between $1,500 to $2,000 between proofreading and transcription. 🙂 I hope this helps give you a bit more insight into the earning potential. Note that I know people who made a LOT more than me doing proofreading exclusively, so my example is by no means the measuring stick. Keep that in mind. 😉
I have a question. I know the course is “meatier” than when you took it, but how long did it take you to finish?
The course IS meatier than when I first enrolled, but because of having lifetime access for the full membership, I’ve been able to complete all the updated curriculum. It generally takes students 2-4 months to finish the full course. It took me 2 to complete it with the updated curriculum (it was updated shortly after I enrolled). 🙂
Proofreading may be just the part time job for me. I love words and I love grammar. Have to brush up on spelling though. Any special places to go to do that? Thanks!
That’s a great question, and unfortunately I’m not familiar with any specific places to go to brush up on spelling. I did do a quick Google search and found this little resource: http://www.splashesfromtheriver.com/spelling/courseoutline.htm. It’s a free spelling course. Some of the content might be a tad elementary, but it might help you brush up on the basics before diving into more complicated rules. 🙂 Disclaimer: I’ve never taken this course, and I’m unfamiliar with the curriculum. My thoughts are based on a quick glance of the site. 🙂
Thank you for the review! I found the information for this course a couple weeks ago and I’ve been debating about doing it and how legit it is. But honestly, I’m tired of the 9 to 5 office job. I want something I can do from home that is flexible and can allow me to still contribute to the household. I may bite the bullet soon. Honestly though, the exam scares the crap out of me.
Haha! I love your honesty! It scares the crap out of a lot of people. But the truth is, if you take the time and really absorb the material, it isn’t really that hard. 🙂 Excited for you! 🙂
Thanks! Fingers crossed!
Thank you Katie for all the information on the PA course, it’s find the time and schedule it and just do it. I going to start reading the get started modules right away. I need to read another point of view. Thanks again
I’m so glad you found it helpful! Good luck on your studies. 🙂
Hey Katie, I’ve been eyeing this course for a while and have been thinking about enrolling. You mentioned you were drained and burnt out before starting, which is my situation! In fact, that’s the only reason stopping me right now since I’m really busy this summer.
Being that this is such a meticulous craft, how hard was it for you to pass the exams? Thanks!
When I started the course, I was SO hungry for something new that I was actually super excited to get through it. While the exams are difficult, if you put in the time to learn the material, passing the exams really won’t be hard at all. Having two young children, the most difficult thing for me was finding quiet time to study. I’d do most of my studying during nap time and after they went to bed at night. My husband also gave me time to study when he was off work, which I know isn’t a luxury everyone has. If you can find some quiet time each day (maybe an hour or two), then the course shouldn’t be too hard to get through. 🙂
I really wanted to read your review of the PA Marketing module, but the link provided to it seems to be dead? Can you provide a current link? Thank you! 🙂
Sorry about that, Karen! It’s fixed. That’s actually a link to my 3 Reasons We Quit College (And Why We’re Glad We Did) post. It outlines the benefits of taking courses like this, especially since most college degree programs don’t teach the necessary marketing skills to actually go out and find the work! However, I don’t mind adding info to this review about the marketing module specifically in PA! I think that’s a great idea!
This sounds really interesting, I may have to give it a shot!
Seriously, it’s been a HUGE game changer for me and my family. Caitlin is awesome and the student community is simply wonderful!! Let me know if you have any questions! I’m happy to help. 🙂