Author perception of peer review

Mark Gibson, Catherine Y. Spong, Sara Ellis Simonsen, Sheryl Martin, James R. Scott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To survey authors submitting manuscripts to a leading specialty journal regarding their assessment of editorial review. The study sought factors affecting authors' satisfaction and whether authors rated the journal review processes differently from the commentary provided by different reviewers. METHODS: Participation in an online survey was offered to 445 corresponding authors of research manuscripts submitted consecutively during a 7-month period. All manuscripts received full editorial review. The survey instrument asked authors to rate six aspects of editorial comments from each of two to four reviewers and three aspects of the review process. In addition, the survey queried overall satisfaction and likelihood of submission of future manuscripts based on review experience. RESULTS: Higher ratings for overall satisfaction with manuscript review were given by authors of accepted compared with rejected manuscripts (98% compared with 80%, P<.001). Authors rated processes for submission and review more highly than editorial commentary (88% compared with 69%, P<.001), and this difference was greater among authors of rejected manuscripts. The extent to which reviewers focused on important aspects of submitted manuscripts received the lowest ratings from authors. Authors' ratings of reviewers' comments differentiated between reviewers and did not correlate with ratings of reviews by the journal's senior editors. CONCLUSION: Author feedback was more favorable among authors of accepted manuscripts, and responses differentiated among aspects of editorial review and reviewers. Author feedback may provide a means for monitoring and improvement of processes for editorial review and reviewer commentary.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)646-651
Number of pages6
JournalObstetrics and gynecology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2008
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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