|Running the peer review gauntlet (from GenomicEnterprise.com)|
Several recent articles from different sources have addressed how to write a good review of a research article, and many start with the assumption that few PhD students are given any training at all in how to approach peer-reviewing. Not the case for ESPM students however, as we have been learning how to helpfully review each others' manuscripts, and also picking up everyones' favourite buzzwords along the way (is four uses of 'elucidate' in one ms too many?!).
Two useful places to start are Drubin (2011) 'Any jackass can trash a manuscript, but it takes a good scholar to create one' and Nicholas and Gordon (2011) 'A quick guide to writing a solid peer review'. Further ideas, and reasoning for why to do the review anyway comes from the always informative Nature Careers section, with Gewin (2011) 'Rookie Review' interviews a postdoc who wins awards for his reviews.
Other useful articles in related areas, are:
- Annesley (2011) 'Top 10 tips for responding to reviewer and editor comments' for when the tables are turned and you need to remember to be polite to the person who didn't read Drubin (2011) before reviewing your beautifully crafted ms.
- Mullins and Kiley (2002) 'It's a PhD not the Nobel Prize: How experienced examiners assess research theses' that you hope will be read by your examiners before you meet them for a viva, and might even be useful in deciding who they should be!
- Roebber and Schultz (2011) 'Peer review, program officers and science funding' which uses game theory to investigate the Scientist's Dilemma - how many grant applications do you need to send off before one gets funded, and how do economic conditions and the reviewers' state of mind affect your chance of success?