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Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

A Beginner’s Guide to the Peer Review System – GradHacker (Carolyn Trietsch | January 2019)0

Posted by Admin in on February 10, 2019
 

Thinking through the Peer Review system, especially for first time writers.

I was thrilled to receive my first request to peer review a paper while working on my Ph.D. Then I realized I didn’t know how to peer review. It had never been covered in my classes, so I started asking around and sending emails, reaching out to my friends in other programs, but with little luck. As important as peer review is, it seems that few STEM programs actively teach students about how to navigate the peer review process and make the decisions involved, such as whether to accept or reject a paper for publication.

Fortunately, this is why we have mentors. I set up a meeting with a veteran peer reviewer and journal editor who was kind enough to spend an afternoon answering my questions and sharing important takeaways gleaned over years of experience. I realized that others could benefit from this advice, and I put together the following post from our discussion (with permission, of course, though my mentor wished to remain anonymous).

Here is some guidance for students, early career professionals and others who are new to the peer review system:

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AI peer reviewers unleashed to ease publishing grind – Science (Douglas Heaven | November 2018)0

Posted by Admin in on February 4, 2019
 

A suite of automated tools is now available to assist with peer review but humans are still in the driver’s seat.

Most researchers have good reason to grumble about peer review: it is time-consuming and error-prone, and the workload is unevenly spread, with just 20% of scientists taking on most reviews.

Now peer review by artificial intelligence (AI) is promising to improve the process, boost the quality of published papers — and save reviewers time.

A handful of academic publishers are piloting AI tools to do anything from selecting reviewers to checking statistics and summarizing a paper’s findings.

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Ten considerations for open peer review (Papers: Birgit Schmidt, et al |0

Posted by Admin in on January 26, 2019
 

Abstract
Open peer review (OPR), as with other elements of open science and open research, is on the rise. It aims to bring greater transparency and participation to formal and informal peer review processes. But what is meant by `open peer review’, and what advantages and disadvantages does it have over standard forms of review? How do authors or reviewers approach OPR? And what pitfalls and opportunities should you look out for? Here, we propose ten considerations for OPR, drawing on discussions with authors, reviewers, editors, publishers and librarians, and provide a pragmatic, hands-on introduction to these issues. We cover basic principles and summarise best practices, indicating how to use OPR to achieve best value and mutual benefits for all stakeholders and the wider research community.

Keywords
open peer review, open science, good practice, research integrity

Schmidt B, Ross-Hellauer T, van Edig X and Moylan EC. Ten considerations for open peer review [version 1; referees: 2 approved]. F1000Research 2018, 7:969
(doi: 10.12688/f1000research.15334.1)

Blowback Against a Hoax – Inside Higher Ed (Colleen Flaherty | January 2019)0

Posted by Admin in on January 11, 2019
 

Author of a recent academic scam faces disciplinary action by Portland State, for failing to alert his research review board before hoodwinking journal editors with outrageous articles. Many say he’s guilty of bad form, but did he commit misconduct?

There may be value in a covert study such as this, but it has to be argued before the research ethics committee on grounds of merit and justification for covert research. You can’t just say we are going ahead without the research ethics review because there is no way they would approve. You don’t only go to the research ethics committee with studies that they will approve. You need to test your views and argue your case.
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How would your institution’s research ethics committee approach a proposed project like this and what would your institution do about the failure to seek ethics approval? We agree with Ivan Oransky’s comments at the end get of this news item.

A hoax revealing that academic journals had accepted fake papers on topics from canine “rape culture” in dog parks to “fat bodybuilding” to an adaption of Mein Kampf met with applause and scorn in the fall. Fans of the project tended to agree with the hoaxers that critical studies scholars will validate anything aligned with their politics. Critics said that the researchers acted in bad faith, wasting editors’ and reviewers’ time and very publicly besmirching academe in the process: the story was covered by nearly every major news outlet.
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Now the controversy has flared up again, with news that one of the project’s authors faces disciplinary action at his home institution. Peter Boghossian, an assistant professor of philosophy at Portland State University and the only one of three researchers on the project to hold a full-time academic position, was found by his institutional review board to have committed research misconduct. Specifically, he failed to secure its approval before proceeding with research on human subjects — in this case, the journal editors and reviewers he was tricking with his absurd but seemingly well-researched papers. Some seven of 20 were published in gender studies and other journals. Seven were rejected. Others were pending before the spoof was uncovered.
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“An IRB protocol application should have been submitted to the Office of Research Integrity,” reads a determination letter from Portland state’s IRB dated last month. “University policy requires that all research involving human subjects conducted by faculty, other employees and students [on campus] must have prior review and approval by the IRB.”
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