Peer Review Guidelines
Reducing the amount of repeat reviewing by innovating around transferable peer review
Providing training and best practice guidance to peer reviewers
Improving recognition of the contribution made by reviewers
The reviewer scoresheet is the form sent to reviewers to structure their responses. Not all journals use a scoresheet, but we’ve found it’s the best way to ensure all the key issues are addressed. Read our recommendations about how to customize the scoresheet to encourage the most helpful reviews:
Journals often struggle to find a sufficient number of reviewers who are willing to review in a timely manner, particularly in niche areas. See our guide to strategies for finding additional reviewers.
Manuscripts need to be processed in a timely manner to ensure author satisfaction and to avoid publication delays, but the review process needs to remain robust and rigorous.
Double blind review
In this type of peer review the reviewers don’t know the identity of authors, and vice versa. This is the most common form of peer review amongst social science and humanities journals.
- Research is judged fairly, keeping bias out of the equation
- Author and reviewer benefit from some level of protection against cism
- Anonymity isn’t guaranteed, as it could be fairly straightforward discover the identity of the author (either because of the area of research, the references or the writing style)
- Some argue that knowledge of the author’s identity helps the reviewer come to a more informed judgement – and that without this the review suffers
Post publication review
With this type of peer review, the option for appraisal and revision of a paper continues – or occurs – after publication. This may take the form of a comments page or discussion forum alongside the published paper. Crucially, post publication peer review does not exclude other forms of peer review and is usually in addition to, rather than instead of, pre-publication review.