“Refereeing Template”: A Guide to Writing an Effective Peer Review

Curtis Berlinguette The University of British Columbia


We offer here a “Refereeing Template” to guide a more constructive and systematic peer review process. This template provides the following algorithm for constructing a peer review: (i) list the key claims of the manuscript; (ii) determine if the data (and interpretations of the data) support said claims; and, only as a last step, (iii) offer an opinion as to whether the supported claims deserve publication in the targeted journal. The Refereeing Template is designed to improve the quality and clarity of reviews by emphasizing claims, arguments backed by supporting evidence, as the basis for evaluating the quality of a manuscript, and translating that evaluation into an assessment of impact and significance.

Version notes

Version 1.0 with file


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