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The Process, Importance, and Types of Peer Review

[Approximate Reading Time : 4 mins]

Peer review is a process of scrutinizing the manuscript of an author by other experts in the field. The peer review process is what sets reputed journals apart from others.

Why is peer review important in scholarly publishing?

Peer review ensures that the research work is up to journal standards and is suitable for publishing in the respective journal. Peers in the same field check the paper for

  • Authenticity
  • Errors or gaps in the literature
  • Appropriate design and methodology
  • Reliable conclusions backed by research
  • Clearly defined results

The reviewers also comment and suggest improvements that the author can use to revise and refine the paper. When review reports are published, readers trust the information it contains.

The peer review process

The process varies with research type, subject, journal, and publisher. The same publisher may have different processes for different journals.

Editor’s assessment: When you submit your manuscript, it is screened for basic suitability checks and whether it conforms to the journal’s guidelines. When the editor approves the manuscript, it undergoes initial peer review.

Initial peer review: The team contacts carefully selected experts in the subject for their opinion on the work. The reviewers give comprehensive feedback to the author as recommendations or to make substantial changes, called minor or major amendments, respectively. The author, upon consequent revisions, resubmits the manuscript.

Final peer review: The reviewers check the changes and report to the editor. The final decision is at the editor’s discretion.

The paper can get accepted or rejected at any stage. After acceptance, the manuscript moves to production.

Types of peer review

Know the review process that your manuscript will go through before you submit a paper to a journal. The types of peer review are as follows:

Single blind: The author doesn’t know the reviewer, but the reviewer knows the author’s identity; widely used type.

Double blind: Both author’s and reviewer’s identities are hidden from each other; standard type.

Open: Both the author’s and reviewer’s identities are open. The suggestions made during the process and the responses to the same are published with the article.

Post publication: After the article is published, the reviewers evaluate the work on a journal-provided platform. Open access journals mainly use this type.

Transparent: The author is revealed, but the reviewer’s identity is hidden until they sign the report.

Collaborative: The author and the reviewer discuss and improve the manuscript, but the reviewer’s identity is hidden until publication.

Cascading: When the editor rejects the manuscript due to irrelevance, they refer the manuscript to another journal better suited for the work along with the reviewer’s report.

The type of peer review impacts the quality of the journal publication and the publishing period. Knowing the process will help you decide the best option for your research paper.

Amnet continuously strives to provide seamless, cost-effective, and accessible solutions to publishers worldwide. Click to read more about our services curated for scholarly publishing: https://amnet-systems.com/academic-publishing/.

Sources:
1. https://hbr.org/2015/09/how-certainty-transforms-persuasion.
2. https://www.gsb.stanford.edu/faculty-research/publications/role-certainty-uncertainty-attitudes-persuasion.
3. Kelly, Jacalyn, et al. 2014. “Peer Review in Scientific Publications: Benefits, Critiques, & a Survival Guide.” EJIFCC 25(3): 227–243. October 24.

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