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I have written my thesis using Word and Endnote. I have three months of corrections. Any general tips based on previous experience on how to streamline the edits would be welcome.

The document is too big to run Grammarly on, and I am worried if I write directly in, I will introduce more typos that I won't catch. Should I just take each chapter apart and put it together again, write each edit in a separate document, paste it in carefully, and take care with the endnote bibliography?

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    I'm a bit at a loss as to what you're asking. You may find it prudent to create a backup copy of your thesis before you begin editing, but otherwise...I think most people edit documents by deleting text and writing new text in its place. There's no magic recipe for preventing typos other than being careful.
    – user137975
    Commented Feb 1, 2023 at 22:40
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    Is the main problem here that you feel incapable of editing without the assistance of Grammarly? Built-in spelling/grammar check from Word isn't sufficient?
    – Bryan Krause
    Commented Feb 1, 2023 at 23:06
  • I have three months of corrections ... Do you mean that you have only 3 months in which to complete corrections ? I don't see how you could estimate the time to finish the work as it's dependent on the number and nature of edits, the efficiency of your tools + yourself and the nature of unintended consequences that may arise. Please clarify. How many pages (or words) are in the draft ? Surely you can get some friendly person to proof read it ? What is your supervisor's opinion on it - I'm assuming he/she has read it more than once - and what is their tool recommendation ?
    – Trunk
    Commented Jul 25, 2023 at 21:57

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From the remarks in your question, my guess is that you have not been asked to make significant structural changes to your thesis that would involve cross-chapter links between changes. Instead, it sounds as if the changes are going to be pretty localized, either because you need to make some grammatical or typographical corrections, or because individual paragraphs need clarification or amendment.

My suggestions would be:

  1. Create a backup, perhaps even several. Take additional safeguards by (a) changing the file permissions on the backups to 'read-only', and (b) including in the backup file-name something to indicate that it is a precious original
  2. Edit your document using Track Changes in Word.
  3. Confine your work to one chapter at a time. After every significant period of work, or having concluded work on a chapter, save another new copy, perhaps including the date and time in the file name. This can be helpful despite the fact that Windows will record the time of the last change in the file attributes. After saving a new copy of the file, close Word, click on the filename in Explorer, right-click and select Properties, then check the Read-Only box.
  4. When you return to work, open the last-saved copy. Because it was marked Read-Only, you will be forced to save your new work in yet another new file, thereby preserving the hard-work of your previous sessions from being accidentally erased or overwritten.

I worked my thesis in TeX rather than Word, but the same process of creating multiple new incrementally-changed copies, each of which was set as read-only, saved me from heartache on more than one occasion during the rewrite process.

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