Students may work with a typist or editor for help formatting a document in Microsoft Word or for line editing or transcription. However, using a typist or editor from this list to create or author your work is strictly prohibited. The Graduate School provides a list of typists and editors who are independent contractors and are not employed by The Graduate School. The Graduate School thus does not guarantee the availability or credentials of the individuals and supplies this list as a courtesy.


  • Line Editing:  Language usage, grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, typos, etc. Does not include content revisions or formatting.
  • Formatting: Formatting an MS Word document to meet the Standard or Manuscript guidelines. Does not include line editing.
  • Transcribing: Transcription of digital recordings into written format.

It is up to the student to verify and confirm the fees, credentials and any other needed information before hiring a typist/editor. 

Checklist — Important questions to ask when hiring a typist/editor:

  • Ask for their rate. (e.g. Is this per hour? Per page? A flat rate?)
  • Send them a draft of your document and ask for an estimate of their time.
  • Tell the typist/editor to ask for your permission before they work above the estimated time and ask why they need to go above the original estimate.
  • Ask about their availability, turn-around time, and if they can complete your document by the posted deadline.
  • Ask how many MSU Graduate School papers they have formatted and when they last formatted an ETD (if you require formatting help).
  • Ask about their editing experience (if you require line edits).
  • Be clear about what your needs are. (Do you need help with formatting in MS Word, or do you need line edits, or both?)

This checklist of questions is not exhaustive, but should give you some guidance in finding the right person for your needs and budget. Please be in touch with the Formatting Advisor and report any issues, concerns or positive feedback you have.

 Typist/Editor List
Name &
Contact Information
Date added to
Typist/Editor List
Services Offered
MS Word
Rebecca Ballotta
Word formatting, editing, transcribing
[email protected]
January 2013 X X X
Donna Kelly
Word formatting, editing
(h) 406-285-5235 or (c) 406-539-7231
[email protected]
January 2002 X    
Robin A.W. Kelley
Word formatting, editing
[email protected]
January 2013 X X  

Maria Madruga
[email protected]

 June 2015   X  
Katie Thomas
Editing, transcribing
[email protected]
March 2013   X X
Jeanine Olson
January 2022   X