Sign up for the free managing peer reviewers editor training course!

Scholastica announces the release of a free training course for journal editors on best practices for managing peer reviewers. Sign up here!

In order to maintain and develop the reputation of their academic journal, editors are generally focused on working to increase their journal’s submission volume and attract more readers. This is key to a publication’s success, however, there’s another often less thought of area that can be just as essential to the health and reputation of a scholarly journal - how the journal approaches reviewer management.

The effectiveness of your journal’s system for managing peer reviewers will determine how likely referees will be to work with your publication. Consequently, it will affect the speed of your peer review process, which is of the utmost importance to authors who, in the rush to get published, don’t have time to waste waiting for journals to make a decision. Referee management should be top of mind for all editors, especially as journals across disciplines are reporting difficulty in finding reviewers.

As noted by Jason Roberts, Senior Partner at Origin Editorial “many journals are now down to 50% of invitations to review being accepted and that number has been trending down by a percentage point or two annually for about a decade now. In short, it’s getting harder to convince reviewers to provide a review.”

What can your journal do to stand out to new reviewers and keep your reliable referees coming back for assignments? Focus on giving reviewers the best peer review experience possible! Learn how in a new academic journal editor training course from Scholastica: “Guide to Managing Peer Reviewers.”

What you’ll get with this course

The Guide to Managing Peer Reviewers course walks through the primary steps your editorial team should take to develop a quality peer reviewer management plan or iterate on your current one. We’ve broken up the course into easy-to-follow sections that you can return to as needed once you’ve completed it for refreshers on key topics.

This course covers:

  • Primary areas where you should be offering reviewers support
  • How to build a reviewer database and retain reviewers
  • Key reviewer metrics to track and how to use them
  • Advice for a smooth revise and resubmit (R&R) process
  • Ways to recognize peer reviewers

Additionally, the course comes with the following 3 complimentary worksheets:

  • Reviewer email templates
  • Review feedback form template
  • Reviewer checklist template

You can use these worksheet templates as is or customize them to make them your own!

Thanks to the following journal experts

We want to thank the following journal experts for taking the time to interview for the Scholastica blog. We’ve featured excerpts from their interviews in this course:

  • Jason Roberts, Senior Partner at Origin Editorial
  • Wendy Laura Belcher, Associate Professor in the Princeton University departments of Comparative Literature and African American Studies and former managing editor of Aztlán Journal of Chicano Studies
  • Jonas Ranstam, Medical statistician and winner of the Sentinels of Science most prolific peer reviewer award
  • Marcel Minutolo, Associate Editor of Journal of Behavioral and Applied Management

Ready to get started?

Reviewer management is an often overlooked area of journal management that can have a big impact on your publication’s reputation and productivity. By improving your journal’s peer reviewer experience you’ll be a step ahead of other publications in your field when it comes to finding and retaining referees.

The Guide to Managing Peer Reviewers course will arm you with the insights you need to assess your journal’s peer review management process and implement easy updates to improve the experiences of your reviewers and consequently your authors.

Are you excited for this course and interested in others like it? We plan to launch more editor training courses in the future. If you have ideas for a course that you’d find useful let us know!

We’d love to know about your experience with this journal editor training course! We invite you to share your thoughts with us in the comments section or on Twitter by tweeting at @scholasticahq.