Monday, September 9, 2013

Media Bistro Copy Editing Certificate Program Verdict

Happy September all my writers and editors!

Well it has been less than a year but I did finish the Media Bistro Copy Editing Certificate Program I enrolled in in October 2012. Ladies and gentlemen, if you take one piece away from this post, let it be this: stay far away!

After taking three Copy Editing Courses, two Grammar courses, and a course on Freelance writing, I should be able to at least edit a paper with confidence, right? I thought so too. Unfortunately, these classes were not at all what I had hoped and expected. I read the "reviews" from people who had supposedly taken the courses, read the impressive biographies of the teaches and was confident in the syllabus of each course. Until the courses began.

If you've read my previous posts Media Bistro Copy Editing Cert...So Far and Media Bistro Copy Editing--another update then you already know of the horrible "lessons" and how much of a joke the "class times" are. So if you are interested in this program, I highly suggest at least skimming these posts for a more thorough review.

If you have been following (or if you just went and read them and came back) then I'm here to wrap up and give my final verdict of this program.

I finished with glee, hey the classes were a joke but I worked and submitted my assignment every week. I was looking forward to adding Certificate in Copy Editing to my resume and proudly displaying my Certificate in my office. Until the certificate came. By email.


 No, that is not the cover page. That is the actual certificate. The certificate Media Bistro claims is "suitable for display". You tell me: would you display that? Not be Miss Braggy-pants (since I don't really like her but she does have a point sometimes) but I've received participation certificates that looked more professional than this. If you thought it looked like a Power Point slide, you weren't alone. Not only that, but it is digital. Yep. Another detail conveniently left out.

I have expressed my concern and frustration with my "counselor" who has been asking me for reviews. After telling her my feelings, she suggests if I had participated more I would have gotten more out of it and offered to send a print version of that horrid certificate. No offer for a refund, no taking my validating my concerns, no defending their canned courses, nothing. Why? Because they know these courses are a joke. They know poor people like myself will buy them because we can't afford huge school loans for simple copy editing.

If you are still considering Media Bistro for your Copy Editing Certificate needs, consider this: I signed up October 2012 and paid $1500. I noticed several times in the lessons that these were the same lessons year after year and offered no "voice" of the teacher, as they all sounded the same and one even left the date in. The exact same certificate course today, September 2013, is now $1650. For the exact same classes and I guarantee the exact same PDF lessons. So why they are charging more money? My question exactly.

I'm sorry to say, if you are looking for an affordable option to obtain a certificate in copy editing, it is not this. You will end up in my exact position: with no more confidence, a shoddy "certificate", and $1500 in debt. Oh and if you wanted to at least see if you learned anything, you'll be disappointed. No final test is offered. Correction; no test is offered at any time to mark your progress. Shocker! The scammers strike again!


  1. Hi Shelby, I'm sorry your classes didn't turn out. I agree, that's a shocker they don't even have a finishing test! Thanks for letting us know. I'm looking for editing tests myself.
    I hope you find what you're looking for. How's the novel coming?


    1. Hi Azalea! Thank you so much for stopping by! I hope my information was helpful to you. I'd check out UC San Diego Extension Copy Editing Cert if you are still looking. If nothing else, you'll have a real cert to be proud of in the end. That may get you a job. Check out my other posts on getting experience. Internships are great too! Also places like Guru are great places to get your foot in the door. The novel is coming great! It is with my editor now :) I plan to have it published in March/April of 2014. Eventually I'll post my new website and some new posts. It's pretty time consuming, this novel writing :) Thanks again for visiting Azalea! Good luck!

  2. Thank you for posting your experience. I was looking into mediabistro, and thought they looked...... not as professional as I'd like them to. Would you consider going to get another certificate from UC San Diego since you are referring people to them? Do you know anyone that has done it, and their experience? Congrats on the book, that's a wonderful accomplishment!

    1. Hi Amy! Yes I would probably send people to UC San Diego if they need an online copy editing degree if they are starting from scratch. They might be just fine with Media Bistro if they are using it as a refresher course and are already in the editing field. If you do it, let me know how it goes! Thanks for the congrats, in the editing stage now! :)