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Submission and Refereeing System - user guide for authors and referees

Several scholarly journals published by Monash University ePress use the Online Submission and Refereeing System to facilitate the peer-review process. This web page explains how to use the system.

Contents

URL for the Submission and Refereeing System

The Submission and refereeing system is available at http://www.epress.monash.edu/submission.

Alternatively, you can click the ‘Submission and refereeing’ tab in the black navigation bar at the top of any ePress web page.

Overview of the system

This web-based system streamlines the submission and refereeing process for managing editors, authors, referees and editors (i.e. board members). It can be used for submissions that require refereeing as well as those that do not (such as book reviews, announcements).

As this is a web-based system, users can access the system via their internet browser, regardless of location, and they do not need to download any additional software in order to do so.

Users are authenticated by a registration and login process that includes selecting the journal they are submitting to or refereeing for.

Files loaded into the system (i.e. papers, images, referee reports) can be viewed by users inside the browser; they can also be downloaded onto the user’s computer for viewing. The latter is the preferred option.

Papers are classified as one of two types:

  1. refereed - for papers requiring referee reports (for example, research articles)
  2. other - for papers not requiring referee reports (for example, book reviews)

Papers are classified as either 'refereed' or 'other' by the submitting author as part of the submission process. However, the managing editor can change a paper’s classification after it has been submitted, if needed.

Stages in the submission and refereeing process

A submitted paper goes through the following stages:

  1. Paper submission: the author submits paper through the system.
  2. Referee allocation: the managing editor allocates referees to the paper.
    This is restricted to papers classified as ‘refereed’. Where the paper is classified as ‘other’ (i.e. as not requiring referee reports because it is a book review, announcement or similar), the managing editor can
    • accept the paper for publication as is, or
    • reject the paper for publication
  3. Submission of referee report: the referees submit referee reports through the system.
  4. Release of referee report: the managing editor releases reports (it is possible to release each report one at a time, as well as both together).
    Note that this step can be skipped if the managing editor does not wish the author to see the report/s.
  5. Request for revised version of paper: the managing editor requests revised version of the paper from the author (only available for papers of the type ‘refereed’). Note that this step can be skipped if the managing editor does not wish the author to submit a revised version.
  6. Submission of revised version: the author submits revised version, if he/she has been asked to in stage 5 (only available for papers in the catogory‘refereed’).
  7. Acceptance (or not) for publication: the managing editor
    • Accepts the paper for publication, or
    • If the managing editor has asked the author to submit a revised version (step 5) and the author has submitted a revised version (step 6), asks the author to submit another revised version (this revision cycle can go on indefinitely until the managing editor accepts the paper for publication). Or
    • rejects the paper for publication.
  8. Status changed to ‘published’: After the paper has been published in an issue, the managing editor marks the paper as ‘Published in an issue’ and its status changes accordingly within the system.

Guide to the system for authors

Authors can use this system to:

  • Submit an article and accompanying files (i.e. images, cover letter).
  • Track the progress of their paper through the refereeing process (note that the system preserves the anonymity of the refereeing process by hiding the referee names from the author and vice-versa).
  • View a referee report on their paper after the managing editor has released the report through the system.
  • Upload a revised version of their paper, provided the managing editor has requested them to do so through the system.

Registration and logging in

Authors set up their login details as the first part of the process of submitting a paper. Authors are authenticated using a combination of paper number and PIN (personal identification number). The paper number is automatically allocated upon registration of the author’s contact details; the PIN is four digits long and selected by the author. Where an author submits more than one paper (i.e. ‘GIS in Australia’ and then a year later a different paper ‘GIS in Israel’), the paper-number part of their login will be different for each paper. This feature means that authors can only manage and view their papers one at a time.

Submitting a paper

A ‘Submit paper’ checklist, viewable once you have clicked the ‘Submit a paper’ link from the system homepage and then chosen a journal from the dropdown menu, guides you through this process.

The submit-paper process is two-part:

  1. Submission of contact and paper details (the registration process, above).
  2. Upload of paper and accompanying files (cover letter, and images, including charts, tables and graphs). At this point, follow the prompts until you see the screen that advises you that your paper has successfully been uploaded.

It is possible to register your details and upload your paper in the same session, or to do each part in a separate session (i.e. log off after submitting contact and paper details and then log in again later on to upload the paper).

Note that after you have submitted your paper, it is not possible to edit the paper title or subject, or to change whether the paper is a refereed paper or not. Nor is it possible to add additional authors. Please contact your managing editor if you need to change any of the these things.

Preserving your anonymity

It is important that uploaded files do not contain material that identifies the author/s as this compromises the double-blind peer-review process. Please note that managing editors cannot edit papers within the system: identifying material needs to be removed before the paper and other files are uploaded, or else they will need to be resubmitted.

So how are authors identified as the authors of their paper if these details are removed from the files? The author information supplied during the registration process is linked to the uploaded files through the automatically generated paper number. This is visible to the managing editors but hidden from referees. Only the authors and the managing editor of the particular journal are able to see the author details together with the submitted paper.

To ensure there is no identifying material in the files:

  • Do not include any part of the author names in the file names. For example, files named ‘Williams-paper’ and ‘Williams-table1’, etc, are not acceptable.
  • Within the paper itself, do not include your name, the name of any of your co-authors, or any contact or affiliation details.
  • Ensure that the ‘Properties’ box of the Word document does not contain an author name or affiliation. To check this, open the Word document, click on ‘File’ in the Word toolbar and choose ‘Properties’ from the dropdown list. In the ‘Properties’ dialog box, click the ‘Summary’ tab. In the pop-up box that opens, click the tag ‘Summary’: delete any author names, affiliations, or any other identifying information that may be there and click ‘OK’; then re-save the document.

If you have any questions about this, please contact your managing editor.

Tracking the progress of your paper

To track the progress of your paper through system, login with the paper number and your PIN. On the author home page, in the middle of the 'Quick Summary' you can see the status of your paper at a glance.

For more information, click the ‘Refereeing status’ link from the menu at the left of the screen. (Note that if the managing editor has not allocated any referees, the ‘Refereeing status’ link will not be available in the left-menu bar.)

Viewing a referee report

You will not be able to see a referee report unless the managing editor has released the report. When the managing editor releases the report, the system automatically generates an email to you advising you that the report is available to be viewed.

To see a released report:

  1. Login with the paper number and PIN.
  2. Click ‘Refereeing status’ from the left-menu bar.
  3. Click the report you wish to view - you will be able to view the report in your browser, or to save the report to your computer.

Submit a revised paper

You will not be able to submit a revised paper unless the managing editor has requested a revised paper. When the managing editor requests a revised paper, the system automatically generates an email to you advising you of this request. Note that unless the managing editor has also released the referee report/s (step 4 of the 8 stages in the submission and refereeing proces), you will not be able to see the referee report/s.

To submit a revised paper:

  1. Login with the paper no. and PIN.
  2. Click the ‘Upload revised paper’ link from the left-menu bar. From here, the process here is similar to when you first uploaded your paper.

The managing editor will advise you of the outcome of your submission.

Guide to the system for referees

Referees can use the system to:

  • Offer to referee for the journal.
  • View a paper and submit a referee report on it, provided the managing editor has allocated them as a referee of that paper.
  • Track the progress of the paper through the refereeing system (note that the system preserves the anonymity of the refereeing process by hiding the author names from the referee).

Offer to referee

If you wish to make yourself available to referee papers for a journal, click ‘Offer to referee’ from the system homepage. An ‘Information for referees’ page, viewable once you have clicked ‘Offer to referee’ and then chosen a journal from the dropdown menu, will guide you through the process of offering to referee.

After you have successfully completed your offer to referee, you will receive an email with your password. Please note that the password only becomes active after you have been allocated a paper to referee.

View an allocated paper

You can only see papers that the managing editor has allocated to you. When the managing editor allocates a paper to you, the system automatically generates an email to you advising of this.

To view an allocated paper:

  1. Click 'referee login' on the system homepage.
  2. Select your journal from the dropdown menu, and login with your email address and and password.
  3. Click ‘View all papers allocated’ from the left-menu bar.
  4. From the ‘Submitted files’ table click the paper you wish to view. You will able to view the paper in your browser or to download the paper onto your computer for viewing later.

Preserving your anonymity in referee reports

It is important that uploaded referee reports do not contain material that identifies the author/s as this compromises the double-blind peer-review process. Please note that managing editors cannot edit papers within the system: identifying material needs to be removed before the referee report is uploaded, or the referee will have to be reallocated so that the report can be re-uploaded..

To ensure there is no identifying material in the files:

  • Do not include any part of the referee's name in the file name for the report.
  • Within the report itself, do not include your name or any contact or affiliation details.
  • Ensure that the ‘Properties’ box of the Word document does not contain an author name or affiliation. To check this, open the Word document, click on ‘File’ in the Word toolbar and choose ‘Properties’ from the dropdown list. In the ‘Properties’ dialog box, click the ‘Summary’ tab. In the pop-up box that opens, click the tag ‘Summary’: delete any author names, affiliations, or any other identifying information that may be there and click ‘OK’; then re-save the document.

If you have any questions about this, please contact your managing editor.

Submitting a referee report for an allocated paper

Before submitting a referee report, please read the ePress Refereeing Policy (Microsoft Word, 50kb). As well as outlining general principles, it also provides useful guidelines on the criteria that the report should address. Please ensure that your report is constructive.

To submit a report:

  1. Click 'Referee login' on the system homepage.
  2. Select your journal from the dropdown menu, and login with your email address and password.
  3. Click ‘View all papers allocated’ from the left-menu bar.
  4. Read the information under the heading ‘Referee’s report’
  5. Click the ‘continue to submit referee report’ button and follow the prompts until you see the screen that advises you that your referee report has successfully been uploaded. (If you don't reach this screen the report hasn't uploaded.)

Viewing and editing your details

After you have had a paper allocated to you (which activates your password), you can view and edit (i.e. update with any changes) your contact details. To do this:

  1. Click 'referee login' on the system homepage.
  2. Select your journal from the dropdown menu, and login with your email address and and password.
  3. Click the ‘View/edit user details’ link from the left menu bar.
  4. To edit your details, click the ‘Edit’ link (next to the heading ‘Personal details’).
  5. When you have finished making changes to the form, click the ‘Save changes’ button.

If you need to update or edit your contact details but have not yet been allocated a paper (hence your password is not yet active), please please contact your managing editor, who will be able to update your details on your behalf.

Lost or forgotten your password?

If you've lost or forgotten your password, from the system homepage click the appropriate login button (author or referee). On the page that opens, under the 'login' button there is a link to use if you have are unable to find or remember your password. The password will be sent to your email address.

Please note that if you are a referee and have not yet been allocated a paper to referee, this will not work. It will only work once a paper has been allocated to you, upon which your password will become active. The email advising you about the paper you have been allocated will also include your password.

Note that managing editors are unable to view author or referee passwords.

 

 

Submitting and refereeing - useful links