Essential and Helpful Tips for Becoming an Excellent Peer Reviewer

Writing Peer Reviews: Maintaining the Ideal
Ideally, peer reviews exist to improve scholarship. Peer reviewers act as a form of quality control, assuring that the articles published in a journal and the research behind them are in line with the scholarly standards not only of the journal concerned, but also of the wider scientific or academic community. When a peer review achieves this ideal, it contributes in very real and significant ways to the progress of knowledge in a field. Writing a thoughtful, critical and helpful peer review is no simple task, however, and often the more help the reviewer has to offer an author, the more difficult it can be to provide that assistance clearly and constructively.
Increase Your Chances of Getting Published
First and foremost is to ensure that you have both the time and the knowledge to review a given article thoroughly and effectively. If you are in any doubt about finding enough time, it is better to decline (or not pursue) a reviewing opportunity. Being asked to do a peer review is a compliment, of course, particularly for those at the beginning of their careers, and it is always a informative pleasure to read new material in your subject area, but you will do neither the journal nor the author a favour by holding up publication or submitting a rushed or shabby review due to a lack of time. The quality of your review will also be compromised if you do not know the subject area well enough, so unless you are willing to do a great deal of research to prepare for the review, it is best to pass and let someone more qualified do the job. Journal editors will often send a copy of the abstract when soliciting a peer review, but if you do not receive an abstract, request one to ensure that you understand exactly what you will be reviewing.

Secondly, you should try to be as objective and specific as possible when offering critical analysis as a peer reviewer. Perhaps the author has produced very different findings than you did in a similar study and thus presents very different conclusions and implications. This may be unexpected and generate an emotional response that must be set aside to analyse the strengths and weaknesses of the article objectively. Your focus should be the content, methodology, results, conclusions and overall structure of the paper, and it is most useful for both the editor and the author if your critical analysis highlights specific parts of the article for improvement and suggests how that improvement might be achieved. Try to put yourself in the author’s shoes as much as this is possible and write your comments in a supportive way that you would find constructive and useful were the article yours to revise.

Mean-spirited criticism that provides no practical solutions is unhelpful and far removed from the objectives of peer reviewing. Remembering that the improvement and publication of your own research is also dependent upon the reports of peer reviewers will help keep a compassionate element in your peer-reviewing activities without compromising your ability to express sincere opinions.

Why Our Editing and Proofreading Services?
At we pride ourselves on our large and extremely dedicated team of academic and scientific professionals. Our proofreaders and editors are highly educated native speakers of English and their areas of specialisation range so widely that we are able to help our clients improve and perfect all kinds of research manuscripts for successful publication. Many members of our team work predominantly on articles intended for publication in scholarly journals, ensuring that formatting and references conform to author guidelines with precision and correcting grammar, punctuation, spelling and simple typing errors so that our customers are able to report their research in the clear and accurate ways required to impress acquisitions editors and earn publication.

Our editing services for authors of scientific papers and books are especially popular, but we have the experience and expertise to proofread and edit books in every scholarly discipline as well as beyond them, and some of our carefully trained proofreaders and editors work exclusively on helping students improve the formatting and language of their theses and dissertations. Whether you are preparing a conference paper for presentation or publicationpolishing a professional report to share with your colleagues, or tackling the daunting task of editing and perfecting any kind of academic or scientific document, a qualified member of our expert team can provide invaluable assistance and give you greater confidence in your written work. Our translation services for scientific and academic documents have also proven immensely helpful for many of our international clients.

topbanner errow