Guidelines for Reviewers

The Responsibility of the Peer Reviewer

The peer reviewer is responsible for critically reading and evaluating a manuscript in their specialty field, and then providing respectful, constructive, and honest feedback to authors about their submission. It is appropriate for the Peer Reviewer to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the manuscript, ways to improve the strength and quality of the work and evaluate the relevance and originality of the manuscript.

Before Reviewing

Please consider the following:

  • If you receive a manuscript that covers a topic that does not sufficiently match your area of expertise, please notify the editor as soon as possible. Please feel free to recommend an alternate reviewer.
  • Finished reviews of a manuscript should be completed until the date set by the editorial office. Please contact the editorial office if you require an extension to the review deadline.
  • While conflicts of interest will not disqualify you from reviewing the manuscript, it is important to disclose all conflicts of interest to the editors before reviewing. If you have any questions about potential conflicts of interest, please do not hesitate to contact the receiving editorial office.

The reviewers should fill the RSC Review form which includes the following sections:

Please answer the questions that are set in the Review Form.

Please provide the following comments and answers:

  • Abstract: After reading the abstract, do you already understand the aims, key data, and conclusions of the manuscript?
  • Introduction: Is the introduction clear, short, and simple? Does it include sufficient literature review and the latest research? Does the author show that the manuscript is original? Does it set the aim of the study, research question(s)/hypotheses?
  • Theoretical part: Is the theoretical part of the manuscript enough detailed, coherent, and consistent? Does it include all theoretical concepts relevant for the study? Are all relevant published works cited?
  • Methodological part: Are the selected research methods sufficiently described and justificated? Are the methods used appropriate? Have all necessary procedures been followed (for example, ethical standards; informed consent, etc.)?
  • Results: The authors should report the results of all tests noted in the methodological part: demographics – age, gender, side, site etc.; objective data; subjective data etc. Are the results sufficient? Do the results make sense? Are the results clearly formatted
    and presented?
  • Discussion: The discussion should not be a repetition of the results. It should put the results of the study in context i.e. how does it fit in with what we already know? Do the authors achieve their stated aim of the manuscript? Can you follow the reasoning of
    the manuscript? The authors should compare their data with previously published studies to confirm similarities/explain differences.
  • Conclusion: The authors should provide a short conclusion and describe the limitations of the study. Does the conclusion address the research questions set in the introduction? Does it support or contradict previous theories? Is it consistent with the evidence and arguments presented? Does it provide suggestions for further studies in the selected subject area?

Is the manuscript an appropriate length? Is the sequence of chapters consistent and coherent? If you suspect that a manuscript is a substantial copy of another work (plagiarism), please let the editor know, citing the previous work in as much detail as possible.

Please provide an overall recommendation for the publication of the manuscript as follows:

  • Accept in Present Form: The manuscript is accepted without any further changes.
  • Accept after Minor Revisions: The manuscript is in principle accepted after revision based on the reviewer’s comments.
  • Reconsider after Major Revisions: The acceptance of the manuscript would depend on the revisions. The author needs to provide a point-by-point response or provide a rebuttal if some of the reviewer’s comments cannot be revised. Usually, only one round of major revisions is allowed. Authors will be asked to resubmit the revised manuscript and the revised version will be returned to the reviewer for further comments.
  • Reject: The manuscript has serious flaws, makes no original contribution, and the manuscript is rejected with no offer of resubmission to the journal.