Medical Editing

Who is this course suitable for?

This course aims to give an introduction to the specialism of medical editing. A general base of editing skills is presumed – those without this knowledge should look at the CIEP’s proofreading and copyediting programmes before beginning this course. Overall, this course is suitable for people who are already competent editors and who wish to expand their skillset into this particular field.

Please note that people without some sort of qualification or experience in medicine, biology or a related field may struggle to find work in this area. If you do not have such a background then you should carefully consider whether this is the right path for you before investing in this training.

The health editing section of this course is also available as a separate short course.

Course description

This course will help you to:

  • become familiar with the resources and study guides that medical and health editors use on a daily basis
  • edit medical figures, tables and references
  • discover how the editor fits into the medical journal and book publishing process
  • learn about editing for medical communication (‘medcomms’) agencies
  • learn about editing materials aimed at patients and service users, health and care professionals, employers and related bodies such as training providers and regulators
  • learn how to avoid language that perpetuates inequality in health care
  • understand the language that is appropriate for different readers of healthcare materials.

The course provides exercises for you to put into practice the lessons learnt through the study notes. There are model answers, commentary on all the exercises and a section on useful resources to help you in this field.

Curriculum snapshot

What you should know after the course

After working through this course, you should understand what is involved in editing a typical medical journal or book, what may be expected of you as a medcomms editor, and what is involved in editing typical materials for patients, professional guidance for those who work in health care, and reports, policies and plans for healthcare organisations. You should be aware of particular style issues and what to look out for when editing figures, tables and references. You should be able to handle sensitive information respectfully and appropriately for the context. You should be aware of and be capable of addressing issues relating to health literacy and health inequality. You should also know where to look for further information where a particular issue you may face in medical editing or health editing is not explicitly covered by this course.

Availability, prices and upgrade points

Price (members)  
Price (non-members)  
CIEP upgrade points 6
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Other price discounts are available. See the fees page.

E-learning courses take between 10 and 45 hours to complete, depending on the course, but you have access to the course materials for 6 months.

Prices are exclusive of tax, which will be added automatically at your local rate at checkout.

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