Peer Review Policy
As a condition of agreeing to assess the manuscript, all reviewers undertake to keep submitted manuscripts and associated data confidential, and not to redistribute them without permission from the journal.
If a reviewer seeks advice from colleagues while assessing a manuscript, he/she ensures that confidentiality is maintained and that the names of any such colleagues are provided to the journal with the final report. This means that AJLS endeavor to keep the content of all submissions confidential until the publication date other than in the specific case of its embargoed press release available to registered journalists. Although we go to every effort to ensure reviewers honour their promise to ensure confidentiality, we are not responsible for the conduct of reviewers.
Reviewers should be aware that our policy to keep their names confidential, and that we do our utmost to ensure this confidentiality. Under normal circumstances, blind peer-review is protected from legislation. We cannot, however, guarantee to maintain this confidentiality in the face of a successful legal action to disclose identity in the event of a reviewer having written personally derogatory comments about the authors in his or her reports. For this reason as well as for reasons of standard professional courtesy, we request reviewers to refrain from personally negative comments about the authors of submitted manuscripts. Frank comments about the scientific content of the manuscripts, however, are strongly encouraged by the editors.
This journal employs double blind reviewing, where both the referee and author remain anonymous throughout the process. Referees are matched to the paper according to their expertise. We welcome suggestions for referees from the author though these recommendations may or may not be used. Referees are asked to evaluate whether the manuscript:
- Is original
- Is methodologically sound
- Follows appropriate ethical guidelines
- Has results which are clearly presented and support the conclusions
- Correctly references previous relevant work.
Typically the manuscript will be reviewed within 2 months. Should the referees' reports contradict one another or a report is unnecessarily delayed a further expert opinion will be sought. Referees may request more than one revision of a manuscript. A final decision to accept or reject the manuscript will be sent to the author along with any recommendations made by the referees, and may include verbatim comments by the referees.