Research is a time-consuming and effort-intensive process in which a researcher puts in hours of dedicated study on a specific topic. The aim is to gain an in-depth understanding of the chosen field as well as contribute to existing scholarship on the subject. As a natural extension and culmination of the research process, the publication of a research manuscript assumes critical importance in establishing a researcher’s contribution to a specific field of study. After a researcher submits a manuscript for publication in a journal of repute, acceptance for publication is considered as a factor that will cement the researcher’s reputation as a professional in the field. Writing a research manuscript mandates adherence to specific codes of communication, style, and format that may have been specified by the target journal/publication. Often, adherence to a journal’s style guide and requirements determines whether a research manuscript will be accepted for publication or rejected outright.
Most researchers are subject-matter experts in their field of study. However, they may not always be the best writers or editors. Moreover many authors from non-English speaking backgrounds face a language barrier that prevents them from successfully publishing their research in English journals of repute. Most journals expect manuscripts to meet a particular standard or quality benchmark for them to even consider forwarding it to the peer review stage. This is where a professional editing service provider can step in to help authors increase their chances of publication. Professional editors can help authors by polishing the language in their manuscript and ensuring that they meet international publication standards.
For a journal to consider publishing a researcher’s manuscript it must first go through a stringent peer-review process. While a peer-review does not guarantee publication, it is an important evaluation tool for both the researcher and the publisher. More information on the importance of a peer review can be found here: http://www.editage.com/insights/peer-review-and-editorial-decision-making-journals?page=0%2C0
The role of an editor in the manuscript publication workflow
The role an editor plays in enhancing the quality of a manuscript at different levels is akin to that of a skilled chef. What a chef is to a memorable dining experience an editor is to a successful manuscript. Considering the time and intensive efforts a researcher invests on research, a research manuscript deserves the attention of a skilled editor who can bring the manuscript to life.
According to Editage expert Lavanya Rajagopalan, an editor’s contribution to a manuscript is invaluable and it spans the entire process of putting a manuscript together—from collating raw data to the submission of the finished paper to a journal. An editor can help the author structure and present a manuscript better by incorporating journal guidelines on language and formatting and ensuring that the manuscript is at the level expected by international English-language journals. An editor can also help an author save time by optimizing each stage of the publication process. This includes putting the initial draft together (beginning with the Results, followed by the Methods, Introduction and Discussion, and finally the Abstract), structuring each section (setting the stage in the Introduction and fleshing out the significance and relevance of the research in the Discussion), and ensuring grammatical accuracy and lucidity throughout.
Read more on what Lavanya has to say about the role of an editor: http://www.editage.com/insights/meet-our-expert-lavanya-rajagopalan
A seasoned editor brings to the table invaluable editing experience that will help a researcher understand and appreciate the finer nuances of writing for publication. Sometimes a researcher may find it difficult to write about a particular aspect of his research or may simply overlook an important prescribed detail. Scientific enquiry and communication should be impartial. A researcher may be biased, albeit unwittingly, about his research and manuscript, while an editor can add a neutral perspective—as a professional and a subject-matter expert—to finalize a well-structured and well-researched draft that is likely to be accepted for publication in a journal.