Here’s the last of our posts relating to May 2014’s PubPro event. EAC-BC and Publishing at Simon Fraser University, along with event organizer Iva Cheung, would like to thank PubPro 2014’s generous sponsors for their support: Scrivener Communications, Friesens, Indexing Society of Canada, Leanpub, Talk Science to Me and West Coast Editorial Associates. Also, a big thank you to our volunteers Megan Brand, Lara Kordic and Lana Okerlund for writing great little reads for us all to enjoy during the summer months. If you’d like to see this event again, let the professional development co-chairs know!
by Lara Kordic; discussion led by Anne Brennan, co-chair of the Editors’ Association of Canada (EAC) certification steering committee
The purpose of this discussion was to share experiences related to evaluating new or prospective editors and to gauge whether there is interest in third-party testing developed by EAC. The discussion was led by Anne Brennan, co-chair of the EAC certification steering committee. Anne began the discussion by asking who in the room is responsible for hiring editors for their organization and how we evaluate editors’ skills to determine their proficiency. Most people in the room were involved in the hiring and evaluation of editors, but there was some variation in opinion on how those editors should be evaluated. Some organizations use tests developed in-house and administer them in a high-pressure environment to test both the editor’s skills and their ability to cope under stress. Others prefer face-to-face interviews over, or in addition to, written tests. Some expressed interest in a reliable third-party test, whereas others felt that no third-party test could determine who is right for their particular organization. There was some concern that a third-party-developed test would not be able to evaluate an editor’s people skills or ability to write tactful, diplomatic queries to an author. Anne Brennan pointed out that EAC certification tests do in fact evaluate people skills by looking at the tactfulness of comments/queries, and EAC is now looking into developing tests that would determine editorial proficiency (as opposed to editorial excellence, which is what the current certification tests measure). An editorial proficiency test would be valuable for organizations looking to hire junior editors who are trainable and can grow into their role.