Become a Reviewer
Getting involved in the peer review process can be a highly rewarding experience that can also improve your own research and help to further your career.
If you’re just starting out as a reviewer, don’t be deterred. Journal editors are often looking to expand their pool of reviewers, which means there will be a demand for your particular area of expertise.
What is peer review?
Peer review is designed to assess the validity, quality and often the originality of articles for publication. Its ultimate purpose is to maintain the integrity of science by filtering out invalid or poor quality articles: peer review functions as a filter for content, directing better quality articles to better quality journals.
Running an article through the peer review process adds value to it. For this reason our Law Review needs to make sure that peer review is robust.
Who are peer reviewers?
Reviewers are members of the national and international academic community, who have been recognised as experts in their field of research. They are selected on the basis of their credit and of their experience by the Editor-in-Chief and/or the Vice Editor-in-Chief in collaboration with the Managing Editors.
Exceptionally, members of the Advisory Board as well as other national or international scholars may be engaged in the double-blind peer review process, provided that the Editor-in-Chief and/or the Vice Editor-in-Chief deem their intervention as additional reviewers as necessary.
Who Can Become a Reviewer?
In short, anyone who is an expert in the article's research field.
Editors might ask you to look at a specific aspect of an article, even if the overall topic is outside of your specialist knowledge. They should outline in their invitation to review just what it is they would like you to assess.
All in all, you simply need enough specialist knowledge to evaluate the manuscript and provide constructive criticism to editors and authors. What's more, a good reviewer can be at any stage of their career.
What do reviewers do, and why?
Reviewers evaluate article submissions to the journal based on the requirements of that journal, predefined criteria, and the quality, completeness and accuracy of the research presented. They provide feedback on the paper, suggest improvements and make a recommendation to the editor about whether to accept, reject or request changes to the article. The ultimate decision always rests with the editor but reviewers play a significant role in determining the outcome. Reviewing is a time-intensive process but it is very worthwhile for the reviewer as well as for the community.
- ensure the rigorous standards of the scientific process by taking part in the peer-review system.
- uphold the integrity of the journal by identifying invalid research, and helping to maintain the quality of the journal.
- fulfil a sense of obligation to the community and their own area of research.
- establish relationships with reputable colleagues and their affiliated journals, and increase their opportunities to join an Editorial Board.
- can help prevent ethical breaches by identifying plagiarism, research fraud and other problems by dint of their familiarity with the subject area.
- reciprocate professional courtesy, as authors and reviewers are often interchangeable roles – as reviewer, researchers "repay" the same consideration they receive as authors.
Further informations about the reviewers' responsibilities and the application procedure can also be obtained by contacting us directly by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) and by visiting our official webpage (https://teseo.unitn.it/tslr).
Peer Review Resources
- COPE’s Ethical guidelines for reviewers
- Wiley’s Best Practice Guidelines on Publishing Ethics
- The Council of Science Editors (CSE) gives guidelines on roles and responsibilities in peer review
Studies of Peer Review
- Peer review in scholarly journals: Perspective of the scholarly community – an international study, Mark Ware & Mike Monkman, Publishing Research Consortium, 2008
- Rewarding reviewers – sense or sensibility? A Wiley study explained, Learned Publishing