Difference Between Revising and Editing (With Table)

Any piece of written literature needs a final and finishing touch to make sure that it is error-free. This is an extremely crucial process that no writer dares to skip. Every novel, article, passage needs at least one revising and editorial glance. The two words, Revising and editing, even though used interchangeably, stand for different things.

Revising vs Editing

The difference between Revising and Editing is that the former means to alter the text by making additions, subtractions to the content. It means to alter the document if required. On the other hand, editing is the process of going through the text to look for any grammatical mistakes or literal inaccuracies, etc.

Revising is the process of improving one’s written content by making suitable changes in the text. These changes could include the addition and subtraction of matter or even the introduction of new ideas. It could also mean rephrasing, realigning, or readjusting the entire matter or written material.

Editing, on the other hand, is the process of going over the text to make sure that there are no errors present. It is a cursory glance that is taken to check for spelling errors, usage of punctuation marks, grammatical mistakes, incoherent speech, so on and so forth.

Comparison Table Between Revising and Editing

Parameters of ComparisonRevisingEditing
MeaningIt means to change the text by additions or subtractions to make it better.It means checking and correcting any errors that may be present in the text.
AlterationsThe text is altered by adding, removing, moving, or changing certain phrases or paragraphs. The text is altered by correcting grammar, punctuation, syntax, etc.
AddressIt addresses higher-order concerns like the development of the text, etc.It addresses lower-level concerns like the choice of words, spelling mistakes, etc.
FocusIts focus is on ensuring that the text meets the requirement of the audience or the reader.It focuses on every sentence and word.
StageRevising is done after one has completed the first draft of the paper or text.Editing is done after the revising stage is over.  

What is Revising?

Revising can be termed as the process of re-visiting one’s text or content so as to make efforts to improve it. Revising a document can include including fresh ideas, reassessing the written matter, making amendments to it by adding or deleting phrases or sentences, so on and so forth.

It is aimed at giving the written matter a finishing touch by enhancing the content. While revising a document, the writer ensures that the gist of the message being portrayed in the text matches the requirement and expectations of the audience. It should be in congruence to the topic.

The focus of revising relates to higher-level concerns such as developing the text, ensuring it matches the criteria of the organization or audience concerned, etc. This is why in revising a document or any matter, the entire paragraphs can be modified, realigned, or readjusted. This is done to meet the requirement of the target audience.

Generally, it is the author’s job to revise his or her work before sending it for or proceeding towards editing. This means that the text or matter should be worked out in an orderly fashion and must be in good shape in terms of its content. Once the revising part is complete, the text can then be edited and given a conclusive shape.

What is Editing?

Editing is the process of going over the text or written matter to look for any and all the persisting errors. The purpose of editing is to check the grammar of the content, correct the mistakes present, fix the syntax, ensure correct usage of punctuations and other such related stuff.

It is focused on ensuring that no error remains in the content. Editing makes up for the concluding stage of writing any piece of literature. There are no changes required after the content has been edited thoroughly. It can then be uploaded or published without further delay.

The focus of editing relates to lower-level concerns. In a general sense, it means to eradicate all spelling mistakes, assess the choice of words, make sure that the text has clarity and is easy to comprehend. It is in editing that the content must be checked to ensure that it has been written in a way that suits the audience and the readers.

Usually, editing is done by the editor, but there doesn’t need to be a separate editor for every author. In certain cases, the authors themselves have to edit their work. Editing is the last step, and hence it is succeeded by the revising stage. In editing, each and every word or sentence has to be proofread for errors, etc.

Main Differences Between Revising and Editing

  1. Revising is the process of altering the text by adding or deleting the text, whereas Editing means eliminating the errors present in the text.
  2. Revising includes realigning, reassessing, readjusting entire paragraphs or phrases, whereas editing includes correcting mistakes related to incorrect spelling, grammar, syntax, etc.
  3. Revising is usually undertaken by the author himself or herself, whereas editing is usually done by an editor.
  4. Revising focuses on higher-level concerns such as developing the text, introducing new ideas, etc. On the other hand, editing suffices itself with lower-level concerns such as clarity in the text, choice of words, etc.
  5.  Revising is done after the author has finished with at least the first draft of his or her text, while editing is undertaken only after revising has been completed.


Revising and Editing both are concepts that help us in enhancing our texts, novels, or any other written work. Revising pertains to modifying the content to make it better and also to ensure that it meets the requirement of the audience concerned. It can include adding, deleting, or even introducing new concepts or ideas to the text. It is done usually by the author himself or herself.

Editing, on the other hand, is the process of giving the text a final touch by ensuring the removal of errors that may be present in it. It involves checking each and every word and sentence and then eliminating the grammatical errors, spelling mistakes, enhancing the word choice, improving clarity, and so on. It is done after the text has been thoroughly revised.


  1. https://thork.people.uic.edu/fair/RevisingProse.pdf
  2. https://www.rivisteweb.it/doi/10.7385/99158
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