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Professional Development Seminars

Registration fees and policies

Members $225 + tax
Non-members $350 + tax
Student members $150 + tax


Cancellation policy

If Editors Ottawa-Gatineau cancels a seminar, we will refund your paid registration fee in full.

If you wish to cancel your registration, the following terms apply:

  • You must send an email to to notify us that you are canceling your registration.
  • If you cancel before registration closes (up to one week before the seminar) we will refund 50 percent of your paid registration fee.
  • If you cancel after registration closes (within seven days of the seminar), no refund is possible.

Contact for all seminar registration and cancellation enquiries.


Seminars for Spring 2021

Editors Ottawa-Gatineau has moved our Professional Development seminars to an online format, using Zoom. These are 6-hour, real-time, instructor-led workshops with hands-on exercises, discussions, and personal attention. Although our seminars are completely virtual, they are not webinars and they will not be recorded.

For Spring 2021, we are offering two seminars:

We are planning more online seminars for fall 2021 and we will announce them here as soon as the schedule is confirmed. We plan to resume in-person seminars again once Covid-19 restrictions permit.


Effective Plain Language Writing with Moira White

Wednesday May 12, 9:00am –12:00 pm &
Friday May 14, 9:00am –12:00 pm

Professional writing today must be concise, clear, and comprehensible — or it doesn’t get read. This means that writers must understand Plain Language principles and be able to apply them effectively.

This lively, hands-on workshop equips participants with the knowledge and skills they’ll need to write clearly for today’s fast-paced work environment. Each participant will receive a workbook full of explanations, exercises, and helpful references that is theirs to keep.

Learning Objectives

By the end of this seminar, participants will

  • understand the principles of Plain Language communication
  • know how to apply Plain Language techniques to communicate effectively
  • understand when and why to use Plain Language techniques
  • write clearly and concisely
  • have the chance to improve their writing in a supportive environment

Workshop Topics

1. Understand communication today

  • Understand how people read today
  • Learn about the five Cs of Plain Language communication: conciseness, clarity, correctness, coherency, and consistency
  • Learn about encoding and decoding information

2. Know your reader and purpose

  • Define your audience, purpose, and key issues
  • Plan your writing Establish a writing process that brings results

3. Words Use concrete words to tell a story

  • Eliminate unnecessary words
  • Use the active voice when appropriate
  • Use active verbs to provide energy

4. Sentences

  • Find the optimum length for readability
  • Use bullets for emphasis
  • Unpack embedded ideas
  • Use prepositional phrases to add only necessary information

5. Paragraphs

  • Ensure there’s only one idea per paragraph
  • Use topic sentences effectively to guide readers
  • Make paragraphs coherent

6. Document Design

  • Help readers find necessary information
  • Use white space and margins effectively
  • Understand the impact of fonts

About the Instructor

Moira Rayner White is an Ottawa-based editor, writer, and trainer. She has decades of experience in plain language editing, writing, and teaching for government and corporate clients. She has a Master’s degree in Social Policy and extensive experience editing documents so that they can be clearly understood by their intended audience.

Moira has specific training in plain language communication, copy editing, structural editing, stylistic editing, and proofreading. She has managed onsite production of reports in Canada, the United States, and Europe; has travelled across Canada with public consultations writing, editing, and producing reports; and has synthesized the work of multiple authors.

Moira is an honorary life member and past president of Editors’ Association of Canada. She is also a member of PLAIN.

Click here to register now!



Managing Editorial Teams with Carolyn Brown

Thursday June 17, 9:00am –12:00 pm &
Friday June 18, 9:00am –12:00 pm

If you are an editor thinking of moving up into supervision or management of other editors, or if you’re not an editor but you supervise editors, this one-day seminar is for you. Through sharing experiences, you will learn from the leader (an experienced editorial manager) and each other.

Workshop Topics

  • Making the transition to management (for editors)
  • Editors are professionals (for non-editors): Motivation, autonomy, professional development, professional standards and ethics
  • Helping your team understand their role in the organization
  • Aligning with senior management expectations, or, Why do documents need to be edited and why does editing take so long?
  • Balancing tensions and resolving conflicts between professional roles and organizational expectations
  • Selling your organization on the value editing adds and promoting "upstream" quality control
  • Serving your organization by adding value such as plain language and web content
  • Creating a positive, consistent editing culture that meets industry standards: style guides, editorial issues, professional editorial standards

About the Instructor

Carolyn Brown is a Certified Professional Editor and Editor in the Life Sciences. She has edited a wide variety of material for 35 years, specializing in scientific and medical publications for the past 25 years. She managed an editorial team for nine years. She is the author of the chapter on citation in Editing Canadian English 2nd edition and a perennial seminar leader.

Click here to register now!