Reviewer resources

Whether you are an experienced peer reviewer or are completing your first review, it can be helpful to have a few pointers about what to look out for when assessing a manuscript and how to structure your comments. A set of high-quality review comments can be of great help to the authors, allowing them to improve their paper.

IJGO is looking for:

  • Thorough, objective, and useful comments
  • Reviews that assess the study as a whole, including purpose, design, and conclusions
  • Numbered comments for the author
  • Constructive criticism, with suggestions for improvements
  • Notes on the suitability of the paper for the journal, as appropriate (in the “Reviewer Confidential Comments to Editor” section)
  • An overall recommendation (Modify – Major, Modify – Minor, Reject, or Accept)
  • Prompt receipt of review comments

What types of comments are useful?
A helpful set of review comments is a mixture of general comments (with examples for illustration), very specific comments, and ideas about what details are missing from the manuscript. Generally, remarks relating to formatting, spelling, or grammar are not necessary, although if the text is very unclear as a result of such mistakes, it is helpful to highlight them and suggest how they could be rectified.

Please see Examples of useful comments for more detailed guidance.

Assessment of the Abstract
Arguably the most important part of any paper is its Abstract—this section will be the most widely read and discussed—so it is important for reviewers to pay it due attention. Please consider the following seven points in your assessment of an Abstract.

1.    Have the aims of the study been clearly described? If not, how might the authors more clearly explain the research question?

2.    Is the study design (retrospective/prospective) clear?

3.    Have patient recruitment, study protocols, and analyses been concisely and adequately summarized in the Methods section? If not, what is missing?

4.    Are the results most relevant to the research question reported in the abstract? If not, what other results would be more informative for the reader?

5.    Are the conclusions included supported by the results reported?

6.    Can the study be understood from the abstract alone?

7.    Are there any important aspects of the whole manuscript that are missing from the abstract? The abstract and the complete manuscript should convey the same take-home message to the reader.

Other resources
The information here is meant to provide some guidance and we hope you will find it helpful. If you do want more information, please do visit the following pages:
Step-by-step guide to reviewing a manuscript
7 top tips for reviewing a clinical manuscript
Peer Review Resources and Advice for Reviewers

IJGO is hugely grateful to all its peer reviewers. If you complete a review for IJGO and wish to receive some feedback on the quality of your comments, please add a note to the “Reviewer Confidential Comments to Editor” box and a member of the editorial team will get back to you.

To show appreciation, IJGO is pleased to offer the following benefits on completion of a review:

  • Free access to all IJGO content on Wiley Online Library for 30 days.
  • 30% discount on Wiley books.
  • Recognition for review contributions on Publons.

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