Why Is Peer Review Important In The Publication Of Medical Research at Congestive Heart

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Why Is Peer Review Important In The Publication Of Medical Research

Why is Peer Review Important in the Publication of Medical Research?

When seeking information on the latest updates in the field of medicine the best place to look is in a peer reviewed scientific journal. It is essential that a journal be peer reviewed to ensure that information is as accurate and up to date as possible.

Many publications do not utilize the process of peer review for its articles. Many common periodicals are examples of this. Magazines such as Cosmo, Good Housekeeping, and Time magazine are examples of this. It is up to an editor to decide whether or not to make an article available for public consumption. The flaw in this system can be found in the simple fact that no one is able to know everything about everything. Editors can make mistakes based on their own lack of knowledge. In addition, articles written based upon personal opinion, unfounded statements or biased research may be printed, which is fine if the periodical is searching for an opinion but not so valued when the reader is searching for cold, hard fact. By using peer review, much of this possibility is eliminated.

The process of peer review (or refereeing, as it is also known as in the scientific community) is very simple. All articles written concerning research projects to be published will be submitted to the editor of the journal in question. Copies of the article are then distributed to two or three experts in the field of which the article is written (for example, an article concerning congestive heart failure would be submitted to several experts in the field of cardiology). These professionals (the author's "peers") will then evaluate the article for accuracy, quality and relevance to the journal the author wishes it to be published in and submit their evaluation to the editor of the article in question. In this way a great pool of knowledge is being combined to decide if an article is fit for publication.

In the past reviewers have normally retained anonymity, both to the author whose work they have reviewed and the general public, preventing an author from launching a personal vendetta against a specific reviewer; however, in some instances editors have allowed an author to make a rebuttal to a reviewer who had criticized their work, particularly if an article received mixed reviews. This system is gradually changing, as cries for accountability are becoming heard. The Journal of Interactive Media in Education was among the first to utilize an open peer review system, by which reviewers names are made public and they may be held accountable for their statements.

Peer reviewed journals are generally easily distinguished from other periodicals. They present a much more sedate appearance and utilize a great deal of technical language, and all sources will be cited. Topics will focus on scientific research rather than general events, and are quite obviously focused towards fellow professionals in the field rather than the average reader. If they are unsure as to whether a publication has been peer reviewed a number of sources are available for scholars which provide a listing of peer reviewed journals across the country.


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