Mar 12

Methods of Organization

As we move from copyediting to comprehensive editing, it is important to be aware of organizational methods that documents/texts may use.

Sequence: Chronological (instructions, processes, methods, procedures), Spatial (places, objects), and Alphabetical (index, glossary, reference manual)

Hierarchy : Division (parts of a whole), Classification (groups by relationship), Comparison/Contrast, and Advantages/Disadvantages

Combinations: General to Specific, Most-to-least important, Most-to-least used, Questions/Answers, Cause/Effect, and Problem/Solution

An editor must be able to:

  1. Read and outline an existing document to determine its organization.
  2. Based on the outline, evaluate the document’s effectiveness in meeting the author’s purpose and reader’s needs.
  3. Recommend a reorganization of the material if needed.
  4. Justify recommended changes for reorganizing the document.