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Peer Review

VJTM is actively recruiting peer reviewers! If you have any interest in professional development in your field or academics in general, we highly encourage you to sign up - peer reviewing is a great way to refine your professional skills, stay up-to-date with your field, and contribute to scholarly discussion on what you are passionate about.

Unsure if you should sign up? Anyone can be a peer reviewer! All it takes is some education and experience in a theology or ministry-related field, and the time to read through an article every once in a while. To find out more, keep reading below:


How do I set up my peer reviewer Account?

Start by reading through the information below, and then fill out this Form. You will get a welcome email when we have created your account with further instructions. 


What’s a peer reviewer?

A peer reviewer is someone who reads an article that has been submitted to the journal and offers edits, suggestions, and a recommendation to the editorial team on whether the article should be accepted, accepted with revisions, or rejected. All articles in Vanguard Journal of Theology and Ministry will be reviewed by two or more peers before they are published. Our peer review process is double-blind, which means that neither the author or reviewer knows the identity of the author.


How do I become a peer reviewer?

The first step is to create a Peer Reviewer Account on our website (see instructions below). We will follow up with you to provide you with everything you need to become a peer reviewer, including training, detailed guidelines on the peer review process, and a form for you to follow when it comes time to peer review an article.


How much time does this require of me? 

When we send you the invitation to review an article you have a week to either accept or decline the invitation. If you are too busy that week, or you open up the article and discover it is too long for you to review, you can decline the request. If you decline a request to peer review an article, you can recommend someone else who would be able to give some peer feedback on it. If you accept, then you have four weeks to read through the article and submit your edits and recommendation. How long it takes to review an article will depend on its length and quality. We may require some more time beyond this initial review to clarify suggestions and edits. 


What kind of articles can I review?

The key to a proper peer review is that the article is reviewed by a qualified peer. For example, someone with an undergraduate degree will review undergraduate articles and ordained pastors will review pastoral articles. It is also important that the peer reviewer has expertise in the subject matter. We ask you to indicate your interests and education when you register as a peer reviewer, and will assign you articles for which you are qualified to provide feedback.


How do I review an article? (Peer Review Guidelines)

Reviewing an article happens in three stages as outlined in this helpful guide. Read through the submission twice. Use the provided form to organize your observations and comments. Keep in mind that you are not proof-reading the article, but reviewing its contents. The purpose of your review is to improve the work, not discourage the author. Feel free to upload an annotated (or tracked changes) copy of the article but this is not necessary. Please summarize the findings of your review, noting strengths and weaknesses. Include your acceptance/rejection recommendation as well as your rationale. This summary is what you will post online to inform the section editor’s decision. 

What if I am asked to review a creative submission or book review?

Book reviews are assessed by the book review Section Editor using an editorial review process, and may or may not involve a peer reviewer. If you are asked to peer review a book review, you will follow the same guidelines above for reviewing articles, but using a book review-specific form.

Creative submissions are assessed using an editorial review process. This means that the creative submissions Section Editor makes an acceptance decision based on certain pre-established criteria, without involving a peer reviewer. As a peer reviewer, you will only be asked to review either articles or book reviews.