English Proofreading and English Dialects

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Most writers seek a native English speaker when hiring an English proofreader. Accordingly, English dialects become a relevant consideration when choosing an English proofreading service. This article will provide a brief overview of the diverse geographic locations where people speak English, consider how English dialects differ among these locations, and finally consider how English dialects impact the choice of an English proofreading service

Where are the world’s native English speakers located?

According to a 2015 article by the Washington Post, there are approximately 527 million native English speakers in the world. The majority of these native English speakers are located in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia. Although people speak other languages in each of these countries, English is the most common language used in education, business, and politics. 

Image of Globe
The world's largest English-speaking population is in the United States.

Although the majority of native English speakers are located in just a handful of countries, English is either the official or most commonly spoken language in many others, including New Zealand, South Africa, Belize, Ireland, India, Jamaica, Kenya, the Philippines, and Zimbabwe. 

How different is the English in these countries?

Generally speaking, there are more similarities than differences among the English dialects spoken around the world. English speakers from distant geographic locations can typically communicate without much difficulty. That said, the main areas in which English dialects differ are these:

If English dialects intrigue you, Dr. C. George Boeree has a web page with an intriguing and enjoyable analysis of English dialects

As it relates to choosing an English proofreading service, differences in pronunciation are not relevant. In contrast, differences in vocabulary, grammar, and spelling are notable considerations. As a student, academic, or business professional, you will appear more professional to your audience if you use the English dialect that is most familiar to them.  

What considerations are most important for choosing an English proofreading service?

The differences among English dialects are relevant considerations when choosing an English proofreading service. The Internet makes it possible to choose an English proofreading service based anywhere in the world. It therefore becomes necessary to consider the English dialect appropriate for your paper.

Writing on Paper
The English dialect spoken by your audience is a consideration when choosing an English proofreading service.

If your paper is an application essay or statement of purpose for a United States university, then American English will naturally be appropriate for your paper. On the other hand, if you are writing an article for submission to a UK-based academic journal, you will need to ensure that your paper applies British English (unless of course the journal’s guidelines specify otherwise). As a third example, if you are writing a cover letter to apply for a job in Australia, you will naturally want to ensure that your cover letter uses Australian English.

Once you know the appropriate English dialect for your paper, you can pursue finding an English proofreading service that specializes in that dialect. An alternative may be to find a friend who can be your English editor. If you want to use an English proofreading service, you will have many options to choose from. All of the major English-speaking countries have a wide spectrum of businesses offering proofreading services. You can use search engines to find an English proofreading service that fits your requirements.


There are many considerations when it comes to choosing an English proofreading service. One factor is the dialect of English that is appropriate for your paper. Some proofreading services specialize in a particular dialect, whereas other services may have expertise in a variety of English dialects. Start by identifying the English dialect appropriate for your paper and then seek out an English proofreading service with the appropriate expertise. 

Post by Online English Editor.

Online English Editor is an English proofreading service and provider of resources to help individuals prepare for university studies and professional careers.