All papers submitted to JUAPS journal will be peer reviewed for at least one round. JUAPS journal adopts a double-blinded review policy: authors are blind to reviewers, and reviewers are also blind to authors. The peer review process is conducted in the online manuscript submission and peer-review system. After a manuscript is submitted to the online system, the system immediately notifies the editorial office. After the editorial office passes an initial quality check, the manuscript will be assigned to at least two reviewers. After receiving the reviewers’ comments, the editorial team member makes a decision. Because reviewers sometimes do not agree with each other, the final decision sent to the author may not exactly reflect the recommendations of any of the reviewers. The decision after each round of peer review may be one of the following:
- Accept without any further changes.
- Accept with minor revision. The revised manuscript may or may not be sent to the reviewers for another round of comments.
- Accept with major revision. The revised manuscript will be sent to the reviewers for another round of comments.
- Reject. The manuscript is rejected for publication by JUAPS.
- Unable to review. The manuscript is reassigned to other reviewers.
In addition to the Peer Review Process, the JUAPS Journal has a Post-Publication Evaluation by the scientific community. Post-publication evaluation is concentrated to ensure that the quality of published research, review, and case report meets certain standards and that the presented conclusions are justified. The post-publication evaluation includes online comments and citations on published papers. Authors may respond to the comments of the scientific community and may revise their manuscript. The Post-Publication Evaluation is described in such a way; it allows authors to publish quickly about pure scientific concepts.
Reviewer selection is critical to the publication process, and we base our choice on many factors, including expertise, reputation, specific recommendations, and our own previous experience of a reviewer's characteristics. For instance, we avoid using people who are slow, careless, or do not provide reasoning for their views, whether harsh or lenient.
We check with potential reviewers before sending them manuscripts for review. Reviewers should bear in mind that these messages contain confidential information, which should be treated as such.
JUAPS works on the basis that our editors should:
- Establish and maintain a database of suitably qualified peer reviewers for their journals.
- Monitor the performance of peer reviewers/editorial board members, recording the quality and timeliness of their reviews.
- Ignore rude, defamatory peer reviews. Peer reviewers who repeatedly produce poor-quality, tardy, abusive, or unconstructive reviews should not be used again.
- Encourage peer reviewers to identify any conflict of interest with the material they are being asked to review. In this situation, peer reviewers should decline invitations requesting peer review where any circumstances might prevent them from producing a fair peer review.
- Take note of the peer reviewers suggested by authors, but without considering such suggestions as binding.
- Request that peer reviewers who delegate peer review to members of their staff inform the editor when this occurs, as peer review is a confidential process.
Writing the review
The primary purpose of the review is to provide the editors with the information needed to reach a decision. The review should also instruct the authors on how they can strengthen their manuscript to the point where it may be acceptable. As far as possible, a negative review should explain to the authors the weaknesses of their manuscript so that rejected authors can understand the basis for the decision and see in broad terms what needs to be done to improve the manuscript for publication elsewhere. This is secondary to the other functions, however, and referees should not feel obliged to provide detailed, constructive advice to authors of manuscripts that do not meet the criteria for the book/journal (as outlined in the letter from the editor when asking for the review). If the reviewer believes that a manuscript would not be suitable for publication, their report to the author should be as brief as is consistent, enabling the author to understand the reason for the decision.
Confidential comments to the editor are welcome, but it is helpful if the main points are stated in the comments for transmission to the authors. The ideal review should answer the following questions:
- Who will be interested in reading the work, and why?
- What are the main claims/conclusions of the work, and how significant are they?
- How does the work stand out from others in its field?
- Are the claims novel or in support of emerging knowledge in the field?
- Are the claims/conclusions convincing? If not, what further evidence is needed?
- Are there other experiments or work that would strengthen the manuscript further?
- How much would further work improve it, and how difficult would this be? Would it take a long time?
- Are the claims appropriately discussed in the context of previous literature?
- If the manuscript is unacceptable, is the study sufficiently promising to encourage the authors to resubmit?
- If the manuscript is unacceptable but promising, what specific work is needed to make it acceptable?
- Are there any special ethical concerns arising from using human or animal subjects?
We appreciate that reviewers are busy and are very grateful if they can answer the questions in the section above. If time is available, it would be extremely helpful to the editors if reviewers could also advise on some of the following points:
- Is the manuscript clearly written?
- If not, how could it be made more clear or accessible to non-specialists?
- Would readers outside the discipline benefit from a schematic of the main result accompanying the publication?
- Should the authors be asked to provide supplementary methods or data to accompany the manuscript online? (Such data might include source code for modeling studies, detailed experimental protocols, or mathematical derivations.)
- Have the authors done themselves justice without overselling their claims?
- Have they been fair in their treatment of previous literature?
- Have they provided sufficient methodological detail so that the experiments could be reproduced?
- Is the statistical analysis of the data sound, and does it conform to the book/journal's guidelines?
- Are the reagents (if applicable) generally available?
Timing of reviews
JUAPS is committed to editorial decisions and publication, and we believe that an efficient editorial process is a valuable service both to our authors and to the scientific community as a whole. We therefore ask reviewers to respond promptly within the number of days agreed. If reviewers anticipate a longer delay than previously expected, we ask them to let us know so that we can keep the authors informed and, where necessary, find alternatives.
Editors should aim to ensure timely peer review and publication for manuscripts they receive, especially where – to the extent that this can be predicted – findings may have important implications. Authors should be aware that priority publication is most likely for manuscripts that, as judged by the book/journal's editorial staff, may have important implications. The timing of publication may also be influenced by themed issues or if editors group submissions on a similar topic; this inevitably prevents articles from being published in the order in which they were accepted.
JUAPS does not release reviewers' identities to authors or to other reviewers except when reviewers specifically ask to be identified. However, unless they feel strongly, we prefer that reviewers should remain anonymous throughout the review process and beyond. Before revealing their identities, reviewers should consider the possibility that they may be asked to comment on the criticisms of other reviewers and on further revisions of the manuscript. Identified reviewers may find it more difficult to be objective in such circumstances.
We ask reviewers not to identify themselves to authors without the editor's knowledge. If they wish to reveal their identities while the manuscript is under consideration, this should be done via the editor or if this is not practical, we ask authors to inform the editor as soon as possible after the reviewer has revealed their identity to the author.
We deplore any attempt by authors to confront reviewers or determine their identities. Our own policy is to neither confirm nor deny any speculation about reviewers' identities, and we encourage reviewers to adopt a similar policy.
Editing Reviewers’ reports.
As a matter of policy, we do not suppress reviewers' reports; any comments that were intended for the authors are transmitted, regardless of what we may think of the content. On occasion, we may edit a report to remove offensive language or comments that reveal confidential information about other matters or to make the report more understandable. We ask reviewers to avoid statements that may cause needless offense; conversely, we strongly encourage reviewers to state plainly their opinion of a manuscript. Authors should recognize that criticisms are not necessarily unfair simply because they are expressed in robust language.
Ethics and security
JUAPS’s editors may seek advice about submitted manuscripts not only from technical reviewers but also on any aspect of a manuscript that raises concerns. These may include, for example, ethical issues or issues of data or material access.
Very occasionally, concerns may also relate to the implications to society of publishing a manuscript, including threats to security. In such circumstances, advice is usually sought simultaneously with the technical peer-review process. As in all publishing decisions, the ultimate decision of whether to publish is the responsibility of the editor of the book/journal concerned.
If discussions between an author, editor, and peer reviewer have taken place in confidence, they should remain in confidence unless explicit consent has been given by all parties or there are exceptional circumstances.
Editors or board members will never be involved in editorial decisions about their own work.
Editors, members of editorial boards, and other editorial staff (including peer reviewers) should withdraw from discussions about submissions where any circumstances might prevent them from offering unbiased editorial decisions.
Editorial independence should be respected. Owners (both learned societies and universities) should not interfere with editorial decisions. Decisions by editors about whether to publish individual items submitted to JUAPS should not be influenced by pressure from the editor's employer, the journal owner, or the publisher.
Authors are entitled to expect that peer reviewers or other individuals privy to the work of an author who submits to JUAPS will not steal their research ideas or plagiarize their work.
JUAPS’s guidelines to peer reviewers are clear about their roles and responsibilities. In particular, the need to treat submitted material in confidence until it has been published. Furthermore, JUAPS expects peer reviewers to destroy submitted manuscripts after they have reviewed them.
Editors should expect allegations of theft or plagiarism to be substantiated but should treat allegations of theft or plagiarism seriously.
JUAPS trusts its editors, who in turn trust peer reviewers to provide fair assessments, authors trust editors to select appropriate peer reviewers, and readers put their trust in the peer-review process. Academic publishing also occurs in an environment of powerful intellectual, financial, and sometimes political interests that may collide or compete.
Ideas and expression
Our editors and readers have a right to expect that submitted work is the author's own, that it has not been plagiarized, i.e., taken from other authors without permission where required, and that copyright has not been breached, e.g., if figures or tables are reproduced.