Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Media Bistro Copy Editing Certificate Program So Far

Hey friends! I just finished the first class, Intro to Copy Editing. Yay! On my way! I hope...
I figured if anyone is following along and is looking for honest feedback they can trust, then I owe you that much!

So with one class down and five to go, here is my impression thus far:

Media Bistro Copy Editing Certification
Intro to Copy Editing

1. Nice easy online interface
2. No strict "must show up" "must participate" "deadline or no grade"- you get what you put into it
3. Class chats are saved in case you miss the chat...which I did. Every single one.
4.  No real hard grade so it's okay if you take the class to learn and aren't a genius already.
5. Personal grades on homework turned in on time. Nice personal touch.

1. Instructors...not so easy to get a response from
2. Chat times are pretty late. Which if you have a late schedule works great but 8pm...I want to be done with school by then and back to working on my novels!
3. Lessons consisted of a few PDF pages and then reading from the AP Style book online which...
4. have to pay for. The AP style book that is. Bleh.

So about neck and neck with pros and cons. Overall, the schooling seems laid back and I feel like I'll get what I put into it but not be stressing if I forget a due date or class chat. Which by the way...when it comes to online schooling that is one thing I detest. Online group chats. Seriously what do they think we're going to get out of typing a half-a** "response" in?

Anyway, rant over....I feel this particular first class was more aimed for those of you looking to edit for a newspaper. Did you know that AP style deems the plural form of cactus as cactuses. Not cacti! I know! We were told least if you are writing in AP Style. Me...I'm looking to edit fiction and possibly academic work and online content. So I mostly feel it was kind of pointless. After all, if someone puts cacti in their online article, why would I change that? So like I said, more for newspaper editors.

I hope that because that particular class was introducing AP style book that that explains the way of "teaching"...which is more teaching yourself. Hopefully the next class, Grammar, will be better and I'll feel like I'm getting my monies worth.

I'll keep ya informed!

From One Writer...


  1. I do have a couple questions. If the program doesn't give formal grades, how is the certificate earned and is it accredited?

    I'm a fellow writer, with a full time job in a field I hate! So i was looking at an Editing Certificate to go with my BA in English so that I could trade in careers.

    1. Hi lilbit81! Thanks so much for your comment. Great questions and exactly what I asked before I signed up. You earn the certificate by completing the classes within a certain time frame (1 year). It is not accredited, so no financial aid unfortunately. But unlike the accredited schools with four year degrees that cost an arm and a leg for classes you'll never use, you'll use everything you learn here. This is what helped to make my final decision. It will add to your resume, show your specific interest in editing and boost your confidence. Every time I looked at an English degree I only ever saw one or two classes on actual writing/editing and I didn't feel I'd be confident or prepared to edit work with only that little education. But I'm starting on my third class and have already edited a lot of things that I wouldn't have without the confidence it gave me. If you have the self-motivation and are taking the class to really learn (not just as a resume booster), then you'll want to do assignments and take each class etc. Some don't understand the "no grade" part, (even I just found out when my instructor told me it basically wasn't a biggie if my assignments were late), but I feel it's for your own knowledge. You'll get what you put into it. Hope I helped! Also I have a great contact over there if you have more in-depth questions! Thanks for reading!

  2. Hi! I just came across your blog post while looking for info on mediabistro's certificates. I'm actually interested in getting one in DIGITAL JOURNALISM to compliment my MA in Communication. I have a year of journalism experience, but at the moment I'm at a dead-end job I HATE! :(
    I was wondering, since it's been a year since you started, how did it turn out for you? Were you able to complete the certificate? Have you been able to get a good job in your field? How has this benefited you?
    Just trying to get all the info I can before I make MY final decision. Thanks in advance! :)

    1. Hi MJ_Marti! Sorry to hear about your stinky job! I think in the terms of boosting your current degree, why not? Some places just like the degree on your resume. I didn't like their teaching style at all, so if you are looking to really learn something, you may have better luck elsewhere. But who knows? Not everyone's experience will be the same! I, however, feel my money could have been better spent elsewhere. Since then, I have been able to secure internships rather easily. I've then discovered editing isn't really my forte, writing is my true calling. So I think if I had kept going, I might be well on my way. I did complete the program though. But I don't think I benefited at all, with the exception maybe to my resume. Good luck to you! Let me know what you decide! :)