Guidelines for Reviewers

Editorial process Conflicts of InterestsPerforming your reviewSubmitting your comments

Editorial process

All submissions to Archives of Physiotherapy  are initially screened by the Editorial Office which performs a technical check based on the manuscript, ensuring that it is a) complete in all its parts, b) blinded for editors and reviewers, and c) devoid of potentially plagiarized contents. All manuscripts submitted to the journal are screened using iThenticate by CrossCheck.

Editor assignment
All eligible submissions are then assigned to the Editor-in-Chief, who conducts an editorial screening to assess manuscript based on the following criteria: a) suitable for the journal and its sections, b) authors background and credentials, and c) presenting topics of relevance to the journal’s readership. Manuscripts that do not meet these criteria will be promptly rejected. 

Subsequently, the Editor in Chief then assigns each manuscript to a Section Editor, responsible for further evaluatomg the contents's appropriateness within their respective sections.  Following this evaluation, the Section Editor then assigns the manuscript to an Associate editor who will takes charge of selecting and inviting reviewers, evaluating their comments and ultimately submitting an editorial recommendation.

Archives of Physiotherapy adopts a double anonymized peer-review process, which means that reviewer identity is not made visible to author, author identity is not made visible to reviewer, reviewer and author identity is visible to Editor in Chief and Associate and Section Editors. Reviewers are requested to provide confidential comments and recommendations, which will only be visible to the handling editor (Section or Associate Editor) and the Editor-in-Chief, and comments for the authors which are shared anonymously.
We invite both external reviewers and members of the Editorial Board, and we consider reviewers suggested by authors, although the final decision on their invitation lies with the Editors. We offer a 7-day window for reviewers to accept or decline the review assignment, with the expectation that they will return their comments within 2 to 4 weeks upon accepting the assignment. Reviewer reports remain confidential and are not published alongside the articles. Editorials and correspondence may be reviewed and accepted by Editor’s decision.

Peer review details:
identity transparency: double anonymized
Reviewer interacts with: Editor in Chief and Associate Editors
Review information published: none

If a revision is recommended, we request that authors submit their revised manuscript along with a point-by-point response within 2 to 4 weeks. Depending on the scope of changes proposed and the extent to which authors have enhanced their manuscript, a second round of review may be required.

Editorial decision
The Section Editor will finalize the decision and will inform the authors. The final decision is based on the quality of comments provided by selected reviewers, the responses given by authors during their revisions, and the overall manuscript quality. The decision can be acceptance, rejection, or a request for revisions. Additionally, the editor may choose to invite additional reviewers.

The Journal and the Publisher mutually affirm that any advertising or commercial revenue will not influence editorial decisions in any way.

Potential Conflicts of Interests
Please promptly inform the editor promptly if you believe there is conflict of interest between your work and the manuscript you are being asked to review. While a conflict of interest does not necessarily disqualify you from reviewing a specific manuscript, it is essential that you disclose any potential conflicts to the Editor.

Performing your review
Initial considerations
You should always conduct your review objectively. Direct personal criticism is not appropriate, and your views should always be supported by clear arguments. Your comments should consistently be polite and constructive.

Before accepting a review request, consider these three essential points:

  1. Does the topic align with your personal area of expertise? Only accept an invitation to review if you are qualified to evaluate the presented topic.
  2. Can you commit the necessary time to review the article within the given timeframe?
  3. Can you foresee any conflicts of interest between your work and that of the authors you are reviewing?

Reviewing a manuscript must always be treated with confidentiality. Do not disclose or discuss the manuscript with colleagues. If you find a paper to be unacceptable, be concise but provide a few constructive comments and criticisms.

Reviewing a manuscript must always be treated with confidentiality. You should not disclose or discuss the manuscript with colleagues. If you feel a paper is really unacceptable be brief, but offer a few constructive comments and criticisms.

Clarity and Organization:
- Assess the clarity of the manuscript's structure, including the title's alignment with the content.
- Ensure that sections are logically organized and appropriately labeled.
- Check for any mixed-up or misplaced content, such as discussions in the results section.

Methodology and Data:
- Evaluate the study's methodology, including the adequacy of the sample size.
- Ensure the inclusion and exclusion criteria are clearly defined.
- Assess whether ethical considerations like IRB approval and conflict of interest have been addressed.

Originality and Contribution:
- Determine whether the article contributes to existing theories or contradicts them.
- Assess the relevance of the research question.
- Evaluate the novelty and significance of the findings.

Tables, Figures, and Data Presentation:
- Review the clarity and necessity of all tables and figures.
- Ensure that data are presented in an easily comprehensible manner.
- Check for any unnecessary duplication of material between tables, figures, and the text.

References and Citations:
- Assess the relevance and appropriateness of the cited references.
- Ensure that references are pertinent to the subject matter without being overly extensive.

These overarching review criteria provide a comprehensive framework for evaluating a manuscript's quality and adherence to key scientific standards.

Ethical issues
Plagiarism: If you suspect that an article is a substantial copy of another work, please inform the editor. Provide as much detail as possible, including citations to the previous work.
Fraud: While identifying deliberate fraud can be a complex task ( or complex or difficult), if you have reason to believe that the results presented in an article are not accurate, please raise your concerns with the editor.
Other Ethical Concerns: In research involving humans, please verify that confidentiality has been upheld. If you come across any potential breaches of established ethical standards in the treatment of human subjects, promptly bring these concerns to the attention of the Editor as needed.

Be polite with the authors
Always bear in mind that your comments serve to enhance authors' skills and expertise. Even if you believe a paper should be rejected, your feedback can contribute to the authors' improvement in their future work. Take some time to provide constructive criticism, and please maintain politeness in your comments.

Grammar and language issues
Many authors are writing in a second language. While the final version of a paper must exhibit excellent language proficiency, we are willing to review papers with suboptimal writing as long as the scientific content remains comprehensible. All accepted papers undergo thorough language editing.

Submitting your comments
Once you have completed your evaluation of the manuscript, you canproceed with submitting your comments to the Editor. If you might be delayed, do let the Editor know and arrange for a deadline extension.The review form is divided into three distinct sections:

A) Text boxes for entering comments addressed to the authors and confidential comments to the Editor. 
B) The manuscript rating card, based on the following criteria:
Excellent. Decision is accept as is or with minor changes. Few manuscripts can be included in this rating;
Above average. Decision is usually accept with minor changes with a really moderate revision;
Average. Manuscripts may be accepted or rejected according to the current editorial priorities;
Below average. Most likely rejected, unless high-priority topic, that can be improved after one or more revisions;
Unacceptable. It cannot be improved even through further revisions.
C) An area where you can upload a file you may like to share with authors
D) A drop down menu for your recommendation:
Accept submission
Revision required
Resubmit for review
Resubmit elsewhere
Decline submission