Answered By: Mary Fairbairn
Last Updated: Nov 10, 2017     Views: 914

What is Peer Review?

Peer review, also called refereeing, is a prepublication process used by most scholarly journals. Before an article is accepted for publication, the editors will send the manuscript to outside experts for review. The reviewers will then provide feedback on the quality of the research in the paper. The author can usually make revisions and resubmit the work for final acceptance.

Not all journals are peer reviewed. And some of the entries in a peer reviewed journal may not, in themselves, be peer reviewed. Examples include letters to the editor, book reviews, etc.


Why do I care if an article is from a peer-reviewed journal?

Peer-reviewed articles are the gold standard for academic research. For students, it means that other experts have read and approved the methods and conclusions of the work, providing extra authority to the piece.


So does it all mean the same thing?

Not exactly. "Scholarly" is actually a fairly vague term. It may mean that the articles in the journal are simply written by scholars for other scholars. Indications that an article has been "peer-reviewed" or "refereed" confer much greater reliability and esteem on it than saying they are "scholarly." But the three terms are often used interchangeably.

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