At this stage, the only thing you can do is wait. Besides, you should also prepare yourself for any possible results. The chief editor might accept your article quickly. This is rare and happens only when your research topic is new and interesting. But usually, after an initial review by the chief editor or the editorial board, your article is given to several reviewers for evaluation.
Reviewers should review the article during a particular period of time and announce their opinion. They are provided with a form, based on which they evaluate the novelty, quality, strengths, and weaknesses of the article. They must be impartial in their reviews. Some journals try to accomplish this goal by giving the articles to the reviewers anonymously. If you want to know more about the reviewing process, you can read our article on journal reviewers here.
Although hiding the reviewer’s name from the authors is common, but some journals ask the author to suggest a reviewer for their article. For example, for BMC journals, suggesting a reviewer is mandatory, so that if you don’t, your article will not be reviewed. In the BMJ Journals, it is optional, meaning that you have the option to suggest 3-4 reviewers. Nowadays suggesting reviewers has become a trend among journals. The best way to find reviewers is to choose them from your own article’s references because your research is in line with the research of those working in the same field. But do not choose the ones who disagree with your ideas. The important thing is that you have no right to contact the reviewers you choose, even if you know them.
The time it takes to review and deliver results vary in different journals. For some journals, this can take up to a year. But usually, it is better to contact the journal if you did not receive an answer 6 months after receiving the editor’s letter. You can contact them via telephone, fax, email or mail. If you still do not receive an answer within two months, call them again and if you do not receive a response even after that, do not submit any articles to this journal anymore.
Final Fate of the Article
Your article will be submitted to the editor after being reviewed. The chief editor plays the most central role in deciding the fate of your article. The status of the article after the editor’s decision will usually be:
- Accepted for publication
- Accepted for publication after minor corrections
- Acceptance for publication after major corrections
- Probable review for publication after major corrections
- Probable review for publication in the form of a letter to editor or short communication