Guidelines for peer reviewers
All BJPsych journals have general guidelines when constructing a review. Please consider the following.
- Please number your comments consecutively.
- Please do not include a recommendation for publication in your comments to authors.
- Review supplemental files by navigating from the 'Proofs' tab to the 'Files' tab.
- Please check authors have followed the registered protocol for RCTs and systematic reviews, noting unexplained changes.
- Please note that one-line reviews do not help the editor to reach informed decisions.
- If you find the manuscript is difficult to review in detail because of major flaws or poor writing, please offer brief comments to enable us to respond to the authors quickly.
BJPsych has key points to consider when writing a review:
- Is the manuscript accessible to practitioners and researchers, written in clear, concise English for an international readership?
- Does the manuscript address a clear, important research question?
- Is a clear finding identified, which is original and a significant advance on existing knowledge?
- Does the manuscript provide new insights and opportunities for treatment and prevention in clinical practice and/or impact on policy?
- Is the methodology sound and is the discussion and interpretation appropriate for the data?
- Are there elements of the manuscript that could be omitted or added, such as tables or figures or specific text?
BJPsych Advances peer review resources
BJPsych Advances has a number of articles to aide peer review. All links below are free to read and listen.
- 'Peer reviewing made easy' by Neel Halder, Rosalind Ramsay, Peter Tyrer, Patricia Casey
- 'Peer reviewing made easier: all your questions answered' by Neel Halder, Rosalind Ramsay, Peter Tyrer, Patricia Casey, August 2020
- 'Open versus blind peer review: is anonimity better than transparency?' by Natalie Shoham, Alexandra Pitman
- BJPsych Advances Podcast: Peer reviewing made easy
Peer Reviewer Recognition
We are always working on how we can better support and appreciate our reviewers. During the Annual RCPsych Publishing Awards, chosen reviewers are awarded the 'Reviewer Recognition Award' award from the respective Editors-in-Chief. Take a look at the 2020 Award Winners here.
BJPsych Journals are partnered with Publons. Peer reviewing is an essential part of scholarly academic research. Publons gives reviewers the opportunity to be widely recognised for their contributions to peer review. View the CUP guide to Publons for more information.
Thank You Listings
We publish a list of our peer reviewers on our website and in the print journals with a thank you to their commitment and support to the journal. Take a look at the BJPsych 2020 Reviewers here.
Useful external resources for peer reviewers
There are a number of resources available for peer reviewers online for free. Below we have highlighted a list of useful resources our peer reviewers might be interested in.
- Cambridge University Press have freely accessible peer review guidelines including ethics in peer review and FAQs
- Committee of Publication Ethics Peer Review Processes
- Media Bias Fact Check (we recommend using this tool when reviewing opinion pieces for the journal)
- Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network
- Centre for Evidence Based Medicine
- Systematic reviews and meta-analyses: PRISMA checklist
- Top Tips for Peer Reviewers
- RCTs: CONSORT guidelines (1996, Journal of the American Medical Association, 276, 637-639)
- Cluster RCTs (2004, BMJ, 328, 702-708)