Category / writing

BU articles on academic writing & publishing

Last Friday ResearchGate informed us that ‘Writing an Abstract for a Scientific Conference’ [1] published by three Bournemouth University (BU) scholars (Prof. Vanora Hundley, Dr. Bibha Sinkhada and Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen and a BU Visiting Professor (Prof. Padam Simkhada) had reached 2,500 reads. This paper is one of a series of articles BU academics have published on several aspects of academic writing and scientific publishing.  The range of publications includes issue such as: predatory publishers, authors earning from copyright; finding the best title for your paper, and issues of authorship [2-13].  These are great resources for budding academic writers, especially as nearly are Open Access publications and hence freely available across the world.

Other useful BU resources include the work by Dr. Kip Jones, such as his blogs on Organising & Writing a PhD thesis or his advice on Writing Blogs.   Another great BU resource is the online publication by Dr. Miguel Moital, who wrote the e-book Writing Dissertations & Theses: What you should know but no one tells you, where he shares valuable practical information about the process of writing academic work, notably dissertations. The book starts with explaining the six criteria, expressed in the form of 6 ‘C’s, required to produce high quality dissertations: Confined, Corroborated, Critical, Coherent, Concise and Captivating. The e-book then goes on to share a range of ‘tips and tools’ which contribute to fulfilling the 6 Cs. 

Moreover, it is also worth pointing out that there are some great web resources on writing and publishing produced by BU Library staff, for example on plagiarism;  academic writing; or how to cite references.

 

Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

Centre for Midwife

References

  1. Simkhada, P., van Teijlingen E., Hundley, V., Simkhada, BD. (2013) Writing an Abstract for a Scientific Conference, Kathmandu Univ Med J 11(3): 262-65. http://www.kumj.com.np/issue/43/262-265.pdf
  2. van Teijlingen, E, Hundley, V. (2002) Getting your paper to the right journal: a case study of an academic paper, J Advanced Nurs 37(6): 506-11.
  3. Pitchforth, E, Porter M, Teijlingen van E, Keenan Forrest, K. (2005) Writing up & presenting qualitative research in family planning & reproductive health care, J Fam Plann Reprod Health Care 31(2): 132-135.
  4. Kretschmer, M., Hardwick, P. (2007) Authors’ earnings from copyright and non-copyright sources: A survey of 25,000 British and German writers, Bournemouth: Bournemouth University,  Centre for Intellectual Property Policy & Management.
  5. van Teijlingen, E, Simkhada, PP, Rizyal A (2012) Submitting a paper to an academic peer-reviewed journal, where to start? (Guest Editorial) Health Renaissance 10(1): 1-4.
  6. van Teijlingen, E, Simkhada. PP, Simkhada, B, Ireland J. (2012) The long & winding road to publication, Nepal J Epidemiol 2(4): 213-215 http://nepjol.info/index.php/NJE/article/view/7093/6388
  7. Hundley, V, van Teijlingen, E, Simkhada, P (2013) Academic authorship: who, why and in what order? Health Renaissance 11(2):98-101 www.healthrenaissance.org.np/uploads/Download/vol-11-2/Page_99_101_Editorial.pdf
  8. Simkhada P, van Teijlingen E, Hundley V. (2013) Writing an academic paper for publication, Health Renaissance 11(1):1-5. www.healthrenaissance.org.np/uploads/Pp_1_5_Guest_Editorial.pdf
  9. van Teijlingen, E., Ireland, J., Hundley, V., Simkhada, P., Sathian, B. (2014) Finding the right title for your article: Advice for academic authors, Nepal J Epidemiol 4(1): 344-347.
  10. van Teijlingen E., Hundley, V., Bick, D. (2014) Who should be an author on your academic paper? Midwifery 30: 385-386.
  11. Hall, J., Hundley, V., van Teijlingen, E. (2015) The journal editor: friend or foe? Women & Birth 28(2): e26-e29.
  12. Sathian, B., Simkhada, P., van Teijlingen, E., Roy, B, Banerjee, I. (2016) Grant writing for innovative medical research: Time to rethink. Med Sci 4(3):332-33.
  13. Pradhan, AK, van Teijlingen, ER. (2017) Predatory publishing: a great concern for authors, Med Sci 5(4): 43.

New paper by Dr. Caroline Ellis-Hill

Congratulations to Dr. Caroline Ellis-Hill on the publication of her article ‘We are not the same people we used to be: An exploration of family biographical narratives and identity change following traumatic brain injury’.  This paper was accepted for publication in 2017 and will now be finally published in its final format in the September issue of Neuropsychological Rehabilitation.

This scientific paper focuses recovery and rehabilitation following traumatic brain injury. Accumulation of subjective changes over time has led many to examine the question of “continuity of self” post-injury. Vacillation between feeling the same and different is common and often at odds with the medical narrative preparing families for permanent change. This position of ambiguity was examined in a qualitative narrative study. The aim of this paper is to describe the narrative structures used by uninjured members of a family to understand change. These changes relate primarily, to their perspective of whether and how the injured person had changed, but also secondarily to whether and why they themselves felt they had changed in the first year post-injury. Nine uninjured family members from three families took part in three unstructured interviews during the first twelve months post-injury.

In-depth narrative analysis showed family members used biographical attendance; biographical disruption; biographical continuity; and biographical reconstruction to understand change. Dr. Ellis-Hill and her co-authors argue that concentrating on a narrative of change is too limiting and that engaging in biographical narratives may help humanise care provided to injured individuals and their families. Implications for research and practice are discussed

Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

CMMPH

Migration & health research in Middle East & Malaysia

Yesterday the Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health published the final version of Dr. Pratik Adhikary’s paper ‘Workplace Accidents Among Nepali Male Workers in the Middle East and Malaysia: A Qualitative Study’ [1].  This is the fourth paper originating from Pratik’s Ph.D. research conducted in the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences, the first three papers appeared in the period 2011-2018 [2-4].

The paper highlights that many Nepali men work in the Middle East and Malaysia and media reports and anecdotal evidence suggests they are at a high risk of workplace-related accidents and injuries for male Nepali workers.   Pratik’s Ph.D. study used face-to-face interviews to explore the personal experiences of twenty male Nepali migrants of unintentional injuries at their place of work.  His study found that almost half of study participants experienced work-related accident abroad. The Participants suggested that the reasons behind this are not only health and safety at work but also poor communication, taking risks by workers themselves, and perceived work pressure. Some participants experienced serious incidents causing life-long disability, extreme and harrowing accounts of injury but received no support from their employer or host countries.

The paper concludes that Nepali migrant workers are at a high risk of occupational injuries owing to a number of interrelated factors poor health and safety at work, pressure of work, risk taking practices, language barriers, and their general work environment. Both the Government of Nepal and host countries need to be better policing   existing policies; introduce better legislation where necessary; ensure universal health (insurance) coverage for labour migrants; and improve preventive measures to minimize the number and severity of accidents and injuries among migrant workers.

 

References:

  1. Adhikary P, van Teijlingen E., Keen S. (2019) Workplace accidents among Nepali male workers in the Middle East and Malaysia: A qualitative study, Journal of Immigrant & Minority Health 21(5): 1115–1122. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10903-018-0801-y
  2. Adhikary P., Keen S., van Teijlingen E (2011) Health Issues among Nepalese migrant workers in Middle East. Health Science Journal 5: 169-75. www.hsj.gr/volume5/issue3/532.pdf
  3. Adhikary, P, Sheppard, Z., Keen, S., van Teijlingen, E. (2017) Risky work: accidents among Nepalese migrant workers in Malaysia, Qatar & Saudi Arabia, Health Prospect 16(2): 3-10.
  4. Adhikary P, Sheppard, Z., Keen S., van Teijlingen E. (2018) Health and well-being of Nepalese migrant workers abroad, International Journal of Migration, Health & Social Care 14(1): 96-105.  https://doi.org/10.1108/IJMHSC-12-2015-0052

 

BMC blog on latest HSS paper

Dr. Rachel Arnold’s recent paper in BMC Pregnancy & Childbirth was highlighted in a blog promoted by the publisher.  The paper ‘Villains or victims? An ethnography of Afghan maternity staff and the challenge of high quality respectful care‘ reports on the everyday lives of maternal healthcare providers working in a tertiary maternity hospital in Kabul, Afghanistan (1). BMC Pregnancy & Childbirth is an Open Access journal so the paper is available free of charge to anybody in Afghanistan (and elsewhere) with an internet connection.  The aim was to understand the staff’s notions of care, their varying levels of commitment to providing care for women in childbirth, and the obstacles and dilemmas that affected standards, and thereby gain insight into their contributions to respectful maternity care, whether as ‘villains’ or as ‘victims.’

Dr. Arnold is Postdoctoral Midwifery Researcher in the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health (CMMPH).  This is the third paper from Rachel’s excellent PhD project, the previous two papers appeared in BJOG and Social Science & Medicine (2-3).

Click here for BMC Blog post:

Villains or victims? The role of maternity staff in decreasing or enhancing respectful care

Reference:

  1. Arnold, R., van Teijlingen, E., Ryan, K., Holloway, I. (2019) Villains or victims? An ethnography of Afghan maternity staff and the challenge of high quality respectful care, BMC Pregnancy & Childbirth 19 :307 https://rdcu.be/bPqlj
  2. Arnold R., van Teijlingen E, Ryan K., Holloway I. (2015) Understanding Afghan health care providers: Qualitative study of culture of care in Kabul maternity hospital, BJOG 122: 260-267.
  3. Arnold, R., van Teijlingen, E., Ryan, K., Holloway, I. (2018) Parallel worlds: an ethnography of care in an Afghan maternity hospital, Social Science & Medicine 126:33-40.

 

Academic Publishing – Writing Days

A series of writing days have been organised to help support BU authors work on their publications by providing some dedicated time and space, away from everyday distractions, supported by RDS staff.

The days will have a collaborative focus on productive writing with other BU authors and the RDS team will also be on hand to provide authors with help and guidance on all areas of the publication process. The objectives for the day are :

  • To give authors time and space with like minded individuals to produce publications
  • To gain some insights and tips into how to manage writing time within daily routine

Writing Days have been scheduled on the below dates:

  • Thursday 5th September
  • Wednesday 6th November
  • Monday 13th January
  • Friday 6th March
  • Thursday 14th May
  • Tuesday 14th July

See the page on the intranet to book

RKEDF: Research Training and Events in September 2019

We have some great events coming up over the next few weeks to help support you in your research activities. These events are delivered as part of the overarching Research and Knowledge Exchange Development Framework –  RKEDF.

Wednesday 4th September:

Introduction to Research Data Management and Open Data,

11:00 – 13:00 on the Talbot Campus

For any academic or PGR who wishes to develop their Research Data Management (RDM) best practice.

Booking and more information.

 

Thursday 5th September:

Research Output Writing Day

09:00 – 17:00 at a Bournemouth venue

For BU authors to work on their research outputs, free from everyday distractions and with a collaborative focus on productive writing with other BU authors.

Booking and more information.

 

Tuesday 10th September:

British Academy Visit

11:00 – 14:00, Talbot Campus, Fusion Building, FG04

Members from the British Academy will provide an overview of the British Academy, the type of funding offered, their grant-awarding processes, key considerations and short presentations from current award holders.

Booking and more information.

 

Thursday 12th September:

GCRF Best Practice Workshop

09:30 – 16:00, Talbot Campus, Fusion Building, FG04

The GCRF Panel invites academics involved, or wishing to be involved in ODA related research projects to a one–day workshop/’wash-up’ to review best practice, identify future synergies and to highlight common issues and challenges confronting GCRF projects at the University.

For booking and more information contact RKEDF.

 

On the RKEDF intranet page, training events have been grouped around your needs, so if, for example, you are an Early Career Researcher or need to know about external funding, you can click on the link to find a tailored list of all the RKEDF sessions that may assist you. You can also find related events by using the link on each session’s page.

You can also see all the Organisational Development and RKEDF events in one place on the handy calendar of events.

Please note that all sessions are now targeted, so look closely at the event page to ensure that the event is suitable for you. In addition, many RKEDF events now require the approval of your Head of Department (or other nominated approver). Please follow the instructions given on the event page and the template email for you to initiate the booking request.

If you have any queries, please get in touch!

 

 

Promoting Nursing CPD in Nepal

Bournemouth University facilitated a Strategic planning meeting to develop a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Framework for Nepal last week in Kathmandu. The planning meeting was held on 30th July 2019 at the Institute of Medicine IOM Maharajgunj Nursing Campus.  Midwifery is not formally recognised in Nepal, i.e. as a profession separate from nursing, therefore when refer to nursing CPD in this blog we mean both ‘nurses’ and ‘nurse-midwives’.

Bournemouth University is collaborating in this project with Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) in the UK, the IOM Nursing Campus, the Nursing Association of Nepal (NAN), MIDSON, the Nepal Nursing Council (NNC) and several other key stakeholders in Nepal to support nursing regulatory bodies to establish mandatory CPD and/or post-registration training programmes relevant to their current practice in nursing. 

The Bournemouth team (led by Dr. Bibha Simkhada with Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen and Dr.Pramod Regmi) argued that CPD offers nurses the opportunity to maintain, improve and broaden knowledge, expertise and develop their personal and professional qualities to enhance practice and career development. Nepal has had limited process and progress in ensuring CPD for nurses and the uptake of post-registration education and training  programmes or CPD tends to be ad hoc.  Generally, CPD in Nepal remains under-developed as showing evidence of having received CPD is not currently a requirement of nurses when they re-register every five year.

This project is a good example of a BU FUSION project as our earlier Research in the form of a needs assessment will to the introduction of CPD which is of course, post-registration Education in nursing, helping to improve Practice in a low-income country.  We think we have had at least some impact on nursing in Nepal as the general feeling of our strategic planning meeting positive towards introducing CPD in the near future in Nepal.

 

 

BU PhD student Peter Wolfensberger has article accepted in Brit J Mental Health Nursing

Congratulations to FHSS PhD student Peter Wolfensberger whose article ‘Uncertainty in illness among people living with mental ill health – a mental health nursing perspective’ was accepted yesterday by the British Journal of Mental Health Nursing [1].   The paper introduces the concept of ‘uncertainty in illness’, which is a well-known concept in health care literature  and a considerable volume of research has investigated how people adapt to different health conditions and how the concept of uncertainty in illness relates to those populations. However, while there is substantial literature focusing on coping strategies and personal recovery, there is a paucity of research about uncertainty in illness among people living with mental ill health. 

This paper therefore, explores uncertainty in illness among mental health nurses and to provide an understanding of its relevance to people living with mental ill health.  The paper concludes that even though mental health nursing does not directly address uncertainty, the concept and its implications need to be considered and raised further among mental health professionals in order to improve support for people living with mental ill health in their process of personal recovery.

This paper originated from Peter’s PhD research on insights into mental health nursing in Switzerland, which has had input from Prof Fran Biley (before he passed away) and Dr. Zoe Sheppard (before she moved to her new job in Dorchester).  His current BU supervisors are: Dr. Sarah Thomas and Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen and his Swiss supervisor is Prof. Sabine Hahn (Berner Fachhochschule/ Bern University of Applied Sciences).

 

Reference:

  1. Wolfensberger P. Thomas, S., Sheppard, Z., Hahn, S, van Teijlingen, E.  ‘Uncertainty in illness among people living with mental ill health – a mental health nursing perspective’  British Journal of Mental Health Nursing (Accepted)

 

 

 

 

Congratulations on academic paper by BU PhD student Orlanda Harvey

Congratulations to Orlanda Harvey, PhD student in the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences on her PhD publication “Support for people who use Anabolic Androgenic Steroids: A Systematic Scoping Review into what they want and what they access” in the Open Access journal BMC Public Health [1].  Since there is a paucity of research on support for people using Anabolic Androgenic Steroids (AAS), this article searched and synthesised the available evidence in this field. Gaining an understanding of the support both accessed and wanted by recreational AAS users will be of use to professionals who provide services to intravenous substance users and also to those working in the fields of public health and social care, with the aim to increase engagement of those using AAS.

This systematic scoping review identified 23 papers and one report for review, which indicated that AAS users access a range of sources of information on: how to inject, substance effectiveness, dosages and side effects, suggesting this is the type of information users want. AAS users sought support from a range of sources including medical professionals, needle and syringe programmes, friends, dealers, and via the internet, suggesting that, different sources were used dependent on the information or support sought.

The authors argue that AAS users tended to prefer peer advice and support over that of professionals , and access information online/specialist fora, reflecting the stigma that is experienced by AAS  users. These tendencies can act as barriers to accessing services provided by professionals.  The paper concludes that support needs to be specific and targeted towards AAS users. Sensitivity to their perceptions of their drug-use and the associated stigma of being classified in the same sub-set as other illicit drug users is relevant to facilitating successful engagement.

 

Reference: 

  1. Harvey, O., Keen, S., Parrish, M., van Teijlingen, E. (2019) Support for people who use Anabolic Androgenic Steroids: A Systematic Literature Review into what they want and what they access. BMS Public Health 19: 1024      https://rdcu.be/bMFon

 

 

New CMMPH publication on health promotion in post-earthquake Nepal

Today saw the publication of a new paper from an international research team from the UK, Japan and Nepal.  Our research article ‘Assessing knowledge and behavioural changes on maternal and newborn health among mothers following post-earthquake health promotion in Nepal’ has been published in the Open Access journal PLoS ONE [1]. 

The paper reminds us that natural disasters often disrupt health systems affecting the whole population, but especially vulnerable people such as pregnant women, new mothers and their babies. Despite the global progress in maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) programmes over the years, emergency responses after a disaster are often poor. Post-disaster health promotion could play an important role in improving MNCH outcomes. However, evidence remains limited on the effect of post disaster health promotion activities in low-income countries such as Nepal.

The paper reports on an post-disaster intervention study aimed at women in Nepal following the 2015 earthquake. In total, 364 mothers were recruited in the pre-intervention group and 377 in the post-intervention group. The post-intervention group was more likely to have knowledge of at least three danger signs in pregnancy (AOR [Adjusted Odds Ratio] = 2.96, P<0.001), at least three danger signs in childbirth (AOR = 3.8, P<0.001), and at least five danger signs in newborns (AOR = 1.56, P<0.001) compared to the pre-intervention group. The mothers in the post-intervention group were also more likely to ever attend ANC (AOR = 7.18, P<0.001), attend a minimum of four ANC sessions (AOR = 5.09, P<0.001), and have institutional deliveries (AOR = 2.56, P<0.001).

Religious minority groups were less likely to have knowledge of all danger signs compared to the majority Hindu group. Mothers from poorer households were also less likely to attend four ANC sessions. Mothers with higher education were more likely to have knowledge of all the danger signs. Mothers whose husbands had achieved higher education were also more likely to have knowledge of danger signs and have institutional deliveries.  The paper concludes that the health promotion intervention helped the disaster-affected mothers in improving the knowledge and behaviours related to MNCH. However, the authors also comment that vulnerable populations need more support to benefit from such intervention.

 

Reference:

Dhital R, Silwal RC, Simkhada P, van Teijlingen E, Jimba M (2019) Assessing knowledge and behavioural changes on maternal and newborn health among mothers following post-earthquake health promotion in Nepal. PLoS ONE 14(7): e0220191. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0220191

The British Academy Funding Call – Writing Workshops 2020

Funding Call: Writing Workshops 2020

 

The British Academy, as part of the UK’s Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF), is inviting proposals for writing workshops in developing countries. These workshops should aim to support early career academics, promote the uptake of research emanating from developing countries in international journals, and further intellectual interaction globally.

Aims
The intention of the Writing Workshops is to cultivate professional networks and mentorship and provide access for early career researchers in developing countries to the academic requirements of journals, including international journals, and to equip them with the necessary knowledge and skills to publish in these journals. This will support the progression of their academic careers and promote the visibility of their research.

Through the Writing Workshops programme, the British Academy aims to encourage and support early career researchers in developing countries to publish in high impact journals in the fields of the humanities and social sciences, and enable them to develop connections with academics and journal editors based nationally and internationally.

Eligibility Requirements
The lead applicant must be based at a UK university or eligible research institute, and be of postdoctoral or above status (or have equivalent research experience). The lead applicant must either be in a permanent position at the institution or have a fixed-term position for the duration of the award. Each application must have at least one co-applicant based in an ODA eligible country.

All proposals must be ODA-eligible: only projects that have a primary objective which is directly and primarily relevant to the problems of developing countries may be counted as ODA. ODA eligibility is an essential criterion – projects will only be deemed eligible for funding if they can demonstrate that they satisfy ODA eligibility criteria.

All workshops must take place in ODA eligible countries.

Value and Duration
Awards are set at a maximum of £20,000. Funding must be used in the direct delivery of the workshops, and can cover travel and related expenses, subsistence costs, clerical assistance and consumables, networking, meeting and / or conference costs.

All workshops must take place before 15 December 2020.

Application Process
Applications can only be submitted online using the British Academy’s online Flexi-Grant® Grant Management System (GMS) system.

Application deadline: Wednesday 6 November 2019, 17.00 UK time.

Please contact your Funding Development Officer in Research and Development Support (RDS) who will be able to assist you with your application.

Contact Us
Should you have any queries, please contact:
international@thebritishacademy.ac.uk
+44 (0) 207 969 5220

 

Dr. Rachel Arnold’s first paper as BU staff

Congratulations to Dr. Rachel Arnold in the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health who had her first paper accepted since she started working at BU two months ago. Her paper ‘Villains or victims? An ethnography of Afghan maternity staff and the challenge of high quality respectful care’ is co-authored with her former PhD supervisors Professor Kath Ryan (BU Visiting Faculy), Professor Emerita Immy Holloway and CMMPH’s Professor Edwin van Teijlingen [1].  The paper is Open Access funded by Bournemouth University’s Open Access Fund which will help promote the visibility of the paper before REF 2021.

I was tempted to head this blog ‘Dr. Arnold only two months at BU and first paper published’, but I decide this would perhaps send the wrong message to other new BU staff.  Rachel completed her PhD in CMMPH and this is paper is the third publication from her thesis.  The other academic publications by Dr. Arnold on Afghanistan have been in BJOG and Social Science & Medicine [2-3].

 

References:

  1. Arnold, R., van Teijlingen, E., Ryan, K., Holloway, I. (2019) Villains or victims? An ethnography of Afghan maternity staff and the challenge of high quality respectful care ,     BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth (accepted).
  2. Arnold R., van Teijlingen E, Ryan K., Holloway I. (2015) Understanding Afghan health care providers: Qualitative study of culture of care in Kabul maternity hospital, BJOG 122: 260-267.
  3. Arnold, R., van Teijlingen, E., Ryan, K., Holloway, I. (2018) Parallel worlds: an ethnography of care in an Afghan maternity hospital, Social Science & Medicine 126:33-40.

New collaborative paper BU-NHS colleagues

The month saw the publication of the latest collaborative paper between FHSS academics, BU Visiting Faculty and NHS clinicians.  Our paper ‘Design errors in vital sign charts used in consultant-led maternity units in the United Kingdom’ [1] is available for a free download from Elsevier until August 28, 2019. Till then no sign up, registration or fees are required, click here.

The authors, as part of the Modified Obstetric Warning Score (MObs) Research Group, lead by BU Visiting Faculty Richard Isaac, argue that obstetric observation charts in the UK contain poor design features. These charts have common errors such as an inappropriate use of colour, poor alignment and axes labelling.  Consequently, these design errors render charts difficult to use and could compromise patient safety. The article calls for an evidence-based, standardised obstetric observation chart, which should integrate ‘human factors’ and user experience.

This research team, earlier published ‘Vital signs and other observations used to detect deterioration in pregnant women: Analysis of vital sign charts in consultant-led maternity units’. [2]

References:

  1. Isaacs, R., Smith, G., Gale-Andrews, L., Wee, M., van Teijlingen, E., Bick, D.E., Hundley, V. on behalf of the Modified Obstetric Warning Score (MObs) Research Group. (2019) Design errors in vital sign charts used in consultant-led maternity units in the United Kingdom, International Journal of Obstetric Anesthesia 39:60-67.
  2. Smith, G., Isaacs, R., Gale-Andrews, L., Wee, M., van Teijlingen, E., Bick, D., Hundley, V. (2017) Vital signs and other observations used to detect deterioration in pregnant women: Analysis of vital sign charts in consultant-led maternity units. International Journal of Obstetric Anesthesia 30: 44-51.

 

An epidemic of invitations

Once you have submitted you manuscript to a scientific journal, the editor has a (quick) look at it and sends it out for review.  As I remind students and colleagues in training sessions on academic writing and publishing, the editor and the peer reviewers are academics like me and my colleagues who do both the editing and the reviewing, for free and over and above the day job.  Being an editor and a reviewer are part of being any academic’s so-called scholarly activity.  We are expected to do this as part of the wider scientific community for the benefit of our academic discipline(s).

When an academic receives an invitation to peer review, the journal will send you a copy of the paper’s abstract.  On reading this abstract you then decide whether you wish to do the review.  If the paper sounds interesting and it is in your field and you have the time you may volunteer to conduct a review.  Once you have agreed you will get the full paper (or more likely you are send a link to the publisher’s website).  The requirements of the review report varies between disciplines and often between journals. Some follow an informal structure, but others have a more formal approach, sometimes with scoring systems for sections of the paper.

Unfortunately, academics across the globe are experiencing an ‘epidemic’ of invitations to review for scientific journals.  And I am not talking about so-called predatory publishers, i.e. journals and publishers that are only in it for the monetary gain, no I am talking about legitimate journals sending out invitations to review for them.   Especially scholars with a few decent publications receive several emails a week from often high quality scientific journals.  The photo of my email inbox shows three invitations in a row I received in the space of two hours last week (10th July), two are even from different Associate Editors for the same journal!

I would like to stress that doing peer reviews is very important.  It is the backbone of academic publishing.  Reviewing is part of our overall scholarly responsibility so we all do it, although some more than others.  We all have are favourite journals to review for, perhaps because the journal is high quality, or we like to publish in it ourselves, because we know the editor, or our reviewing is recognised on websites like KUDOS.  I would like to urge colleagues who don’t manage to review at least once a month to step up and agree to review a wee bit more often.

Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health

Research Events in July

Preparing Practice-Based Research Outputs for Assessment (REF 2021)

Wednesday 17th July 11:00 – 15:30 on Talbot Campus

The focus of this session will be on :

  • The information to include in your submission, and how it is presented
  • Looking at worked examples – good and bad practice
  • Providing individual support

By the end of this workshop you will have knowledge of the information which reviewers need in order assess research outputs, and how this should be presented to reviewers. You will also have made progress in developing the supporting information for outputs due to be submitted in future REF Mock exercises.

See here for more details and to book.

Research Outputs Writing Days

The Research Outputs Writing Days are very popular. These aim to give authors time and space with like minded individuals to produce publications , and provide insights and tips into how to manage writing time within daily routine.

The event on Tuesday 16th July is now fully booked, but the next is on Thursday 5th September. See here for to book and for details of other dates.

Congratulations to PhD student Alice Ladur

FHSS PhD student Alice Ladur has been awarded a small but very competitive grant by FfWG, the Funds for Women Graduates.  FfWG is the trading name of the BFWG Charitable Foundation and the BFWG (British Federation of Women Graduates), which is affiliated to the International Federation of University Women.

Alice is based in the Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health (CMMPH).  Her PhD research in Uganda is supervised by Prof. Vanora Hundley and Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen. Her thesis research has already resulted in an academic paper published in the international journal BMC Pregnancy & Childbirth, which Open Access.