In my search for an online copyediting program, I made the choice to go to The University of California – San Diego Extension. If you haven’t already, you can find out how I came to this decision by reading my last post. The school recommends applying to the program as soon as possible in order to register for classes and get prepared. As there is little information out there, I thought I’d share the process.
Registering at UCSD Extension
First, register for a student account in order to view the application. The student account consisted of your personal information such as home address and email address. They also requested the last four digits of your Social Security Number. While it isn’t required for the application, you will need to provide it later for tax purposes.
Applying to the Program
Once you have registered your student account, select the Copyediting Certificate and click “Apply Now.” Unlike another school I considered, which required an updated resume and a personal statement, UCSD only requires a simple application. Overly simple, really. Other than your personal information, the application had just five sections, only two of which had required fields:
- Relevant Education Experience (at least one required)
- Most Recent College Experience
- Relevant Employment (at least one required)
- Professional Associations
The Education section requested the field of study, institution, and the date. The Work section wanted to know the company, job description, and date range. Please note that some of the cells are small for the information they are requesting. For instance, under “job description,” I only had space to share my title.
Acceptance and Fees
Personally, I had some technical issues when trying to submit the application. It would reset one of the date fields and claim it was empty. I had to save and exit the application before going back and finishing up. Once you press the submit button, your application is under review and if approved they will require payment of the $60 application fee. Immediately, I received an automated email saying I was approved for the program. I had to wait until the next day in order for my account to update so I could pay the fee.
Depending on when you apply, you may need to wait to register for your first course in the program. Unfortunately, I had just missed the winter term and will need to wait until the spring, starting in April. I can register for my first course at the beginning of February
The program allows you to take Grammar Lab and Copyediting I at the same time. While this would mean finishing three months sooner, you may not want to risk being overwhelmed right from the start. Grammar Lab seems like the basics, but at this time, I am unsure of the workload. I would rather be able to focus and still enjoy life, so I will be taking Grammar Lab on its own.
It may feel a little disheartening at first to be automatically accepted. It takes away the feeling of accomplishment. However, it makes sense. Some people, like me, may be taking this certificate because they have no documented experience in the field. While I am confident in my resume despite this, others might not feel the same. Anyone who is willing to put in the work (and clearly the money) should be able to take the program to better themselves. My only complaint is the lack of human interaction and personal touch.
Despite the simple application, the program itself appears reputable, and I am looking forward to making the next steps in my journey. I will be sharing information each step along the way, so make sure you check out future installments if you are interested in this program.