Reviewers are valuable members of the journal community. Before you accept the responsibility to review, consider the basics of the process and your role in it.
The editor makes the final decision about a submitted paper, but your report and recommendations are valuable in the decision making process. In your role, you’ll be asked to:
- Conduct an honest, critical assessment of the manuscript analyzing its strengths and weaknesses.
- Provide constructive, evidence-based feedback and suggestions for improvement.
- Keep all manuscripts and supplementary material confidential.
- Follow the instructions of the editor.
- Report any suspicion of duplicate publication, plagiarism (and self-plagiarism), data fabrication or falsification, or ethics concerns to the editor.
- Meet set deadlines.
- Treat authors how you would like to be treated.
When to Accept
The best reviewers tend to view themselves as teachers and mentors rather than critics. Share your knowledge if:
- The manuscript is in your area of expertise.
- You can complete the review on time.
- There are no conflicts of interest such as personal; or professional or financial interest in the author, the study, or the author’s institution.
Article adapted from the presentation, “Reviewing — The Basics,” by Toby Charkin, executive publisher at Elsevier.