If you are currently working on your first science paper, you might be worried if your paper will get accepted by the review or will you have to make changes. We made this post, so you can avoid getting negative feedback and corrections that you would have to implement later down the line.
Reviewer’s criticism – what to focus on to avoid it?
The first big thing is plagiarism. Obviously, don’t do it. Make sure you cite or reference even your own work. If it’s a previously published journal article, if it’s your data, make sure that you cite it.
Don’t skew your data or make up data. Read the authors guidelines and the journal style guide. At the very beginning they will check if you’re not using the right font, if you don’t have the right margins, if you don’t have your figures put in the correct way, they won’t even read it. So it’s very important that you follow their guidelines. It goes without saying that you also have to focus on the language, writing and spelling.
Another important question to ask yourself is if your research adds to the body of knowledge. There are so many interesting things that we can study. It’s a matter of if we should study.
Last but not least, we want to remind you to only use trustworthy sources. Imagine you’re a doctoral student – this is my true life story. I was a doctoral student and I had got my topic approved. I had already done my review of literature and I had already picked my methodology and my models. I was ready to do data collection. Everything had been approved by my committee. I was good to go. I accidentally typed in one of the authors who forwarded my theory and my model into Google instead of into like Google Scholar or one of my other databases and discovered that the entire foundation of my dissertation was based on a man and his theory, his model, in which he made up data. It was all made up, fake. You definitely need to be careful in who you are citing and how much document you put into what they say.
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