How much does it cost?

Of course you want to know how much it will cost for a high quality, professional job!

In June 2020, the Institute of Professional Editors released its first guide to fair hourly pay rates for self-employed editors in Australia here. I am a member of IPEd’s Pay Rates Working Party that developed the information, contributing information from my own business workshops for editors, my professional experience as a self-employed editor and additional research. However, IPEd does not provide guidance on editing work rates such as words or pages per hour. International editing bodies that do provide guidance have such wide ranges it only shows that it all depends on the job and the editor.

The price for research, review and editing services varies according to the services required and estimated time. The more information you provide about your project, the fairer the price is for both you and Right with Rhonda.

Based on the work required, Rhonda will provide a written, fixed price quote to give you certainty about the cost, timing and the services provided. No unpleasant surprises for you or your editor.

What affects the price

There are many factors which can affect the price of an editing job:

  • the total word count
  • how much editing work is required such as the mix of proofreading, copyediting, substantive editing or review
  • how much formatting is required
  • the mix of text and non-text elements such as tables, figures and graphics
  • the use of reference management software (or not)
  • how many rounds of editing and checking are required
  • the format for editing: Word file (preferred), pdf, hard copy, other
  • the number of individual files (combined into 1 file preferred)
  • the urgency of the work
  • familiarity with the material.

How to get a fair quote

The best way to get a fair quote is to provide as much information as possible about your job including the total word count, the audience, the deadline and any special requirements. A fixed price quote can only be provided after reviewing all the material to be edited, not just one page or one chapter.

Academic editing prices

In July 2021, IPEd released indicative costs for academic editing work to provide guidance to potential clients on budgeting here. I am a member of the Standing Committee on Academic Editing that developed these indicative prices.

For academic editing quotes, please email Rhonda at with

  • the total word length of your thesis, research proposal or journal article, including the preliminary pages, references and footnotes
  • the whole file to be edited, showing use of features in Word, footnotes and non-text material such as tables and figures
  • a note of any deadlines including when you will provide the final material, when you would like it back and your submission deadline
  • a note of any other requirements such as reference style, thesis formatting requirements or target journal style
  • a note of any other issues such as very large file size, multiple files or use of software other than Word.

See Rhonda’s Guidelines for students on thesis editing, based on her experience as an academic editor.

Other work

For quotes for other services, please email Rhonda at with a description and sample of your project so we can discuss the work required.

Email Right with Rhonda on to discuss your project.


A 50% deposit paid by direct transfer is usually required to accept the quote with the balance due within 7 days of the invoice provided with the edited file. Payment can be made by credit card after requesting a PayPal link (no account required). A receipt can be provided after payment in full. If your university is paying for academic editing, please advise of any special arrangements.

Is it worth it?

Of course professional editing is worth it! Editing can save you time and money by getting it right the first time, and be a great return on investment for applications, grants, proposals and business materials.

See these blogs for examples:

Please be realistic about your deadline and budget

Note: Please think about your budget and timeline for a high quality job where your editor carefully reads, more than once, every single word you have written. If you have spent over 3 years writing a 100,000 word thesis, it is unrealistic to expect it to be professionally edited in 5 days for $500 or $1000 or even $1500. While some universities may offer a grant for editing, it does not necessarily cover the full cost of using a professional editor. You should discuss multiple funding sources with your supervisors. If you have a specific budget, please advise in your email.

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