March 2014
Volume 55, Issue 3
Editorial  |   March 2014
Reviewers Rise to an “Exceptional” Level
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science March 2014, Vol.55, 1616. doi:10.1167/iovs.14-14019
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      David C. Beebe; Reviewers Rise to an “Exceptional” Level. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2014;55(3):1616. doi: 10.1167/iovs.14-14019.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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In the last year IOVS initiated a program to recognize reviewers who do an exceptionally good job in reviewing manuscripts. When an Editorial Board Member or Associate Editor feels that a review goes “above and beyond” to assist authors in improving their work by making helpful suggestions or providing new insight about the topic being studied, he or she can grade the review as “Exceptionally Good.” When this is done, the reviewer receives an e-mail from me thanking him or her for the special contribution to IOVS and to vision science. 
I am pleased to report that 409 of the 2094 reviewers who donated their time and expertise to maintain and enhance the quality of the journal in 2013 received at least one of these accolades. Given that there were more than 4000 reviews submitted to IOVS in the last year, slightly more than 10% of reviews received this recognition. Those who were honored for their exceptional contributions should feel especially proud of the service they provided to their peers and to IOVS
In the past, reviews were graded as “Sufficient,” “Below Average,” or “Not Returned.” I felt that this scoring system did not adequately recognize the effort expended to evaluate the work submitted to IOVS. In addition to recognizing “Exceptionally Good” reviews, we've now added “Good Review” to the list of choices. That means that every review receives a score from 1 (Not Returned) to 5 (Exceptionally Good). These scores are kept for every reviewer to assist Editorial Board Members in choosing reviewers who can be counted on to critically assess and enhance manuscripts submitted to IOVS. I expect that the addition of the “Good Review” category may result in fewer reviews scored as “Exceptionally Good,” since both categories are available for reviews that clearly exceed the level of “Sufficient.” That means that if you receive an e-mail from me in 2014 thanking you for an “Exceptionally Good” review, you have even more to be proud of. 
In addition to those who received special recognition for their reviews, I would like to thank every one of my more than 2000 colleagues who reviewed manuscripts for the journal during the past year. Without your generous and expert contributions we could not provide a journal like IOVS to serve the broad vision research community. Thank you! 

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