I’ve been busy this summer with the class Grammar Lab, which is taught by the UC San Diego Extension Service. It’s class number one (of four) in a copyediting (or possibly copy editing–the term is spelled both ways) certificate. *
Though it very clearly stated when registering that this is NOT a learn-as-you-go class, it turned out to be just that. The 10-week series was loaded on the first date and the instructor said things had to be done by the end date. He recommended not getting very far behind.
This was great news to me as I had a vacation scheduled during Week 10, and I prefer to vacation during my vacations, not work on schoolwork. After the first three weeks (which were killer) it got easier, so I’ve got a plan to work ahead and finish a week early.
The class requires taking multiple quizzes per week and one can use notes and other helping devices. To save flipping between windows, I’ve started utilizing both my tablet and desktop computer. The quizzes go on the tablet, where I’m able to type using my wireless keyboard. Then I can look at my notes and online resources as I go using my desktop computer.
Speaking of online grammar resources, the internet is very generous in this area. It’s as though the grammar people would like nothing better than for you to be properly able to use grammar correctly. I’ve enjoyed Grammar Bytes for both its content and aesthetics, but the most helpful site for me this summer is the Guide to Grammar and Writing. On this site you will be charmed (or repelled) by the early web page layout, but you will be incredibly appreciative of the clarity and volume of information. The guide to tenses alone saved my bacon repeatedly.
*And now that I’ve officially announced that I want to be an official copy editing-type person, all of the many mistakes contained in this blog look that much more terrible. I hang my head in shame.