Soliciting and receiving feedback on writing is a normal part of the writing process and models the collaborative work that takes place in academic and professional settings. All writers—emerging to advanced—can benefit from sharing their writing with careful, supportive readers.
This checklist will help you participate in the peer review process.

First read-through
Read the manuscript in its entirety

Look for what the authors want to communicate and the direction of the manuscript and if it is clear.
Find out if it is original research or another type of article and what contribution the article makes to the field of study.
Discover if the overall study design and approach is appropriate.

Make detailed review

Find out if it expresses clearly what the manuscript is about, highlights the importance of the study, contains any unnecessary description.


Discover if it is a short and clear summary of the aims, key methods, important findings and conclusions and if it includes enough information to stand alone and avoids unnecessary information.


See if it clearly summarizes the current state of the topic, addresses the limitations of current knowledge in this field, clearly explains why the study was necessary, clearly defines the aim of the study, and if the research question is clear and appropriate.


Find out if the study design and methods are appropriate for the research question, and if it is clear how samples were collected or how participants were recruited.
Is there any potential bias in the sample or in the recruitment of participants?
Is the time-frame of the study sufficient to see outcomes?


Discover if the results are presented clearly and accurately, if they match the methods, if they have contained all the relevant data, and if the data described in the text is consistent with the data in the figures and tables.

Discussion and conclusion

Do the authors logically explain the findings and compare the findings with current findings in the research field?
Are the implications of the findings for future research and potential applications discussed?
Are the conclusions supported by the data presented?
Are any limitations of the study and any contradictory data discussed?

Tables and figures

See if data are presented in a clear and appropriate manner, and if the presentation of tables and figures is consistent with the description in text.
Find out if the figure legends and table headings clearly explain what is shown and if the figures and tables include measures of uncertainty, such as standard error or confidence intervals, where required as well as the sample size.
Write any concerns you may have about the manipulation of data.


Find out if there are any key references missing, if the authors cite the initial discoveries where suitable, if the cited studies represent current knowledge.

Final checks
Make final checks

Give a brief summary of the article and highlight the key messages. Give positive feedback as well as constructive criticism. Make it clear which of your concerns are major or minor. Give specific concerns , with examples where possible. Number your comments and refer to page/ line numbers in the article.
Give constructive feedback. Check the spelling and grammar in your report.


Do you like this checklist and want to see more? visit the Checklist everything. This website will give some sample checklists and checklists that you can have as samples to create your own list. Every checklist on this website is printable as PDF.

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