Better understanding of the reasons why manuscripts are rejected, and recognition of the most frequent manuscript flaws identified by reviewers, should help submitting authors to avoid these pitfalls. Of 219 manuscripts submitted to Veterinary Radiology & Ultrasound in 2012, none (0%) was accepted without revision, four (2%) were withdrawn by the authors, 99 (45%) were accepted after revision, and 116 (53%) were rejected. All manuscripts for which minor revision was requested, and 73/86 (85%) manuscripts for which major revision was requested, were ultimately accepted. Acceptance rate was greater for retrospective studies and for manuscripts submitted from countries in which English was the primary language. The prevalences of flaws in manuscripts were poor writing (62%), deficiencies in data (60%), logical or methodological errors (28%), content not suitable for Veterinary Radiology & Ultrasound (26%), and lack of new or useful knowledge (25%). Likelihood of manuscript rejection was greater for lack of new or useful knowledge and content not suitable than for other manuscript flaws. The lower acceptance rate for manuscripts from countries in which English was not the primary language was associated with content not suitable and not poor writing. Submitting authors are encouraged to do more to recognize and address manuscript flaws before submission, for example by internal review. Specifically, submitting authors should express clearly the potential added value of their study in the introduction section of their manuscript, describe completely their methods and results, and consult the Editor-in-Chief if they are uncertain whether their subject matter would be suitable for the journal.
Keywords: journal; manuscript rejection; publishing; research.
© 2014 American College of Veterinary Radiology.