Welcome to our Home of Creativity, where we are serious about processing not only text. Our aim is also to help develop students into co-researchers.
Our strategy brings a distinct difference to processing academic material. Situated in the picturesque “Valley of Wagons” this Home of creative ideas resides in Wellington, heart of the Cape Winelands and within earshot of the enigmatic Swartland, which I call Free State by the Sea.
I am Claude Vosloo (MTh), with the heart of a student and the head of a supervisor. Since 2009, I started my own venture to provide for my family – a dream I have kept in my heart for some time. My focus is to render services that covers my multiple skill-set as professional editor, language practitioner and my experience as lecturer, guide and researcher in the academic field. This resulted in the establishment of: Home of Creativity/Student Services.
What do we do different? We have the “Intel-inside” from both sides of the “arena”. I can give you the better of two worlds.
I have experience as a lecturer/supervisor. I currently act as creativity consultant, study guide editor and research assistant to lecturers as well as post-grad students.
On the other hand, I am a publishing expert with more than 20 years of experience in processing of text, as well as content-creation and mentoring of authors. I manage processes and projects for publishers all over the country. As liaison to publishers I can also help assess your dissertation or thesis and help you publish it as an e-book or hard copy.
My track record reflects my knowledge and experience in servicing the field of tertiary education. I have already guided scores of students and lecturers in processing and structuring their study guides, dissertations, theses and research articles. These include students from other African countries who study through SA universities. For a full resume of such highlights – publications and projects – do enquire at email@example.com.
1. How do I contact you?
Go to the page Contact on this website. There you can access my contact information. You could either make use of the e-channels, such as e-mail, my Facebook page and my Skype no, or contact me on my mobile phone.
2. How can I leave a comment?
I would truly appreciate it if you would leave something behind from your first visit to our Home of Creativity/Student Services. To leave a comment, you should first register. Click on the Register key. Then you can choose your password or the system will provide you with one. Then follow the intructions. This may seem like an unneccesary cumbersome entrance to our Home, but it is actually in order for me to screen the comments that are posted on this website. You can appreciate that we do live in a strange world and unfortunately need such safety catches.
3. How do I begin to acquire your services?
After you have contacted me, I would need the newest copy of your dissertation or thesis, in order to draw up a quote. The best way would be for you to email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org From this I can assess:
The length in pages – how many pages is your dissertations/thesis?
The density of text – how many pages consist of written text, and how many contain diagrams, keywords, illustrations and Appendixes (which would lower the quotation).
The quality of presentation – how you apply your language and formulate your arguments.
The organisation of the argument thread in terms of stylistic structures (headings, subheadings and beacons such as bullets).
4. What additional information do you need up front?
To draw up a quote, I need some basic information about your dissertation or thesis. This comprises three main areas:
The length – will there be additional pages? This could affect the quotation.
Your Research proposal – your initial aim with this study.
Target dates – in terms of the different stages you contracted with your supervisor. Usually there are three main target dates:
the first draft;
finalising the content and finding a proofreader/editor;
submitting the final draft for the examiners.
Your own expectations regarding this assignment. Is this your Master’s degree in preparation of a possible PhD in this study field? Then you need to develop more independent thinking. When we send you our quote, we also include a tool in the email to organise your thoughts on this academic task by helping you translate your dream from realistic to creative thoughts.
5. What services do you provide?
In light of my unique focus and disposition as both publishing expert and academic assistant, we provide services in terms of two levels:
Level 1: Language processing
In this we render services that most language practitioners do, and much more, in light of my focus and experience (lecturer as well as text-mentor). This implies in broad terms:
Comprehensive processing of text and language.
Recommendations to help the stylistic flow of the argument line through what I term complying with the 11th commandment for editors (standardisation and consistent systems throughout).
Continuous guidance about issues concerning text (content) such as inconsistent phrasing and clarity.
Finalising lay-out systems, references, footnotes and, lastly, the Table of Contents and (if need be) an Abstract or brief Summary (usually in Afrikaans).
Level 2: Shaping and packaging of content
We help you shape the content and provide guidance through the different processes of compilation, structuring and concluding the main argument stemming from the Research proposal. These comprise my unique services as text processor as well as ‘ghost-supervisor’ and consist of:
the full “language treatment” as mentioned in Level 1
technical help to thread your main line of argument and to avoid turnoffs
help with reader (or rather supervisor!) friendly tone and structure by inserting well-planned “treading stones”, such as subheadings and bullets where the line of argument needs it. This includes recommendations to handle citations and references.
Survival hints to avoid the pitfalls of plagiarism and to stay on the right side of examiners
Continuous guidance and facilitation as text-mentor and co-supervisor manoeuvring around the “potholes” of compiling a thesis according to the likes/dislikes of ’n supervisor.
Structuring the content of the different chapters, including recommendations about moving text, also at the beginning of the process looking at chapter divisions.
pointing out “logical leaps” as well as rewriting copy (creating new content) if needed for a more meaningful representation (placing myself in the shoes of the implied reader).
Affixing relevant “hinges” between chapters of paragraphs to manage the logical flow of the argument between the different chapters.
continuous creative recommendations to help actualise the content and focus on representation of the facts (tables, diagrams, etc).
Recommendation on the conclusion and wording of a catchy punch line to draw the threads together and take your argument to a climax.
If involved early in the process, this service includes creative help and recommendations regarding the research itself, This could imply help with structuring and compiling questionnaires and measuring instruments to gather data (e.g. interviews, differentiating between quantitative and qualitative research)
Understandably my input could imply that Level 1 move on to Level 2, where my participation could progress to that of a ‘ghost’-supervisor, guiding you through the finer skills of processing text and publishing content.
6. What are your tariffs?
Our tariffs are linked to the services we render on the two levels of participation. We usually charge per 1 000 words or per page to simplify matters (one page = approx. 300-350 words). We have different tariffs and a special package deal for students. When you send us your newest copy, we draw up the quote according to the editorial input needed. We qoute according to the two levels on which we render text processing services.
Contact us (see contact details) for a quote. Through our quotes and further discussions we can find a package that suits your needs as a post-grad student within your study field.
7. How do I pay you?
When our transaction is concluded, and you have accepted my quote, I will require 50% to be paid beforehand . With my final quote I will include my first bill with my banking details. After I have ascertained that the payment has been made in my account, I will start with the processing.
After I have delivered a draft that satisfies both of us, I will send you my second bill for the remaining 50% of the amount, also with my banking details included. For this payment I work in terms of cash on delivery.
8. In what format and with what programs do you work?
We do the processing of your text electronically and not on hard copy. For this we use MS Word and would therefore need a Word copy of your dissertation/thesis. (This is the case with most academic institutions that we service).
We prefer this option because we make use of the ‘track change’ and ‘comments’ functions. We use these indicate our editorial interventions and give recommendations to help better your content and structure. For example, we cannot accept PDF-files, seeing that one cannot edit the content without a PDF-converter.
9. How long will it take you?
The time that I take can vary. I usually work according to certain hours that I allocate to a specific publishing project. If I know about the target dates early on, I can reserve my prima hours (from 8 am to 11 pm = 10 hours per day). The time-frame for a dissertation/thesis varies according to the two levels of my involvement (see FAQ 5):
Level 1: I complete approx. 15-20 pages per day, working 8-10 hours. This adds up to a work-week allocated for 100 pages. Naturally that depends on how much editorial interventions are needed as language practitioner. For final grooming you should also allow two more days, in other words approx. 7-8 days . For a thesis of about 200 pages, you can expect 14-18 days.
Level 2: Seeing that my involvement also implies guidance as ‘ghost’-supervisor, you should calculate a time-frame of minimum two work-weeks (week-ends) included. My service usually follows two stages:
I send back the fully processed draft plus my recommendations regarding restructuring of the content, stylistic grooming and proposals to enhance the “logic” of the main argument.
Thereafter I process the whole dissertation through a second round, to finalise the editing and restructure the content according to my creative recommendations and your feedback on it.
To be on the safe side, calculate at least 10 days for a project of 100 pages, if restructuring is involved. Depending on the my interventions, it can however be quicker. If I get involved early in the process, I can do the processing chapter by chapter.
10. What would be easier to process – the dissertation as a whole or per chapter?
Both of these text processing avenues have its own benefits:
Processing the material per chapter, gives one the chance of assessing problems in style and the flowing of the main argument (rationale) beforehand and correcting it in time. However, one unfortunately does not have an overall image of the study project as a whole.
Processing the material as a whole gives one a better overview of the argument sprouting from the Research proposal and how it branches into the different chapters. Then one can also consider whether to omit or include another chapter or certain informing paragraphs as “hinges” to bind chapters together.
It depends on how early in the process you acquire my text processing services. If you contact me just after you and your supervisor have finalised your Research proposal, I can process each chapter and guide you through the process of structuring your main argument line and packaging the content.
11. Can you also help met with my Research proposal?
Usually I do the research proposal (RP) and dissertation/thesis in one unit as a package deal. In other words, when you have formulated your RP and have a final draft, I help you to process this draft and package the content, with the view to process the dissertation/thesis that flows from it. The processing of the RP also follows the options of the two levels of involvement (see FAQ 5). It also makes sense: after helping you to structure and package your RP, I am in the best position to guide you as text-mentor with your eventual dissertation/thesis.
However, we can also process your RP as such. Then we charge a once off fee, usually R1 000 (provided that the RP does not exceed say 30 pages).
12. Can you help me on short notice, in time to achieve my grade?
Due to various reasons it can happen that students need help on extremely short notice. Sometimes the hick-up can be the processes at the tertiary institution. Sometimes it takes more time than you have envisaged completing your first draft that satisfies your supervisor. Delays can also be caused by the fact that some students (esp. those from African countries or rural areas) have limited access to transport. Some students are in full-time jobs and have to ask for special study leave. I can help you on short notice, such as a week, but then I would have to facture in some of my time after-hours. I would have to fast-track your project, meaning that I focus entirely on your material and exclude any other publishing projects for that time. It stands to reason that this is special circumstances. Then I would have to charge you for my extra hours. As with any project the quote can, however, be negotiated.
13. Why shouldn’t I look for the cheapest text editing option?
It often happens that students feel their needs are satisfied by someone rendering cheaper proofreading (and sometimes editorial) services. Naturally it is your choice. However, this is arguably your life-time achievement and the passage to your future career. Therefore it pays to consider the best possible language grooming and packaging of content for your final product. Here you should be mindful of ‘fly by night’ language practitioners or part-time proofreaders out to make an extra buck, or supplement their pension. Most of the time these ‘practitioners’ don’t have the necessary experience or track record and are limited in their processing skills.
Keep in mind that your final draft have to be scrutinised by examiners who will not take kindly to badly groomed text. Remember, work that was quoted cheaply, but need extensive revision when it returns from the examiners, becomes an expensive enterprise in terms of time and money and lesser marks. When you search for the cheapest processing, you might just find it!
14. What follow-up services do you provide?
I provide follow-up services for both stages: finalising the Research proposal as well as final structuring of the dissertation or thesis.
Regarding the Research proposal: I help you with formulation and finalising when you receive the final recommendations and commentary from your supervisor.
Regarding the dissertation/thesis: After you have received the final draft from the different examiners, I help you assess and apply their recommendations, comments and final revisions of your supervisor.
Depending on how much restructuring is required, I usually charge half-price for such services. However, as is the case with my first quote, the amount is negotiable. In addition you become part of our Home of Creativity and have access to hints and ‘survival’ tips that I post on this website constantly.
Contact me for any information or queries:
Home of Creativity/Kreatiwiteitshuis
Cellphone: 076 456 1267
Landline: 021 864 3580
Facebook: CreativePort Wellington
Tip of the day
Remember that you do not only compile and structure a written thesis. You also develop and transform yourself gradually into a new persona by compiling a new role-set – that of a budding co-researcher.