General information on the reviewing process

About the submission process:

– Each abstract goes to two reviewers. The reviewer is asked to respond within 2 weeks.
– If the abstract needs corrections, it is returned to the authors. They are asked to submit the revised manuscript within 10 days.
– There is only one round of reviewing.
– The editor decides about the final acceptance of the abstracts.
– The editor makes any minor grammatical corrections.
– The abstracts are sent to the scientific committee of the AVA meeting, which has the final decision on oral/poster presentations. The editor may advise on oral/poster allocation, based on personal opinion and the reviewers’ suggestion.

The whole process takes 1.5-2 months, depending on abstract load and how fast the reviewers and the authors respond.

Guidelines for the reviewers:

We would like the focus of reviewing to be on ensuring that the authors have presented a well-written abstract, that’s of interest to the AVA, is ethical and contains enough detail that readers can make a basic assessment of the content. However, it will never be possible to include everything and we shouldn’t expect the authors to. The ultimate aim is to get people to conferences to discuss (and defend) their findings there and hopefully the review process will facilitate that.

What we are therefore looking for from reviewers is an answer to the following questions:
– Is the abstract of interest to the AVA?
– Is the abstract clearly and concisely written? You can find the author guidelines here: Please don’t worry about whether the word document contains a title, or the exact font/formatting as we will tidy all that up at a later date!
– Does the methods contain appropriate information, including doses, measurement methods and a summary of statistical testing?
– Are actual results presented? (Not just greater than… etc.)
– Are the study conclusions supported by the abstract content?
– Are there any ethical concerns? It should be noted that all authors, upon submission, have declared that their abstract complies with ethical regulations in the relevant country/institution, however, that does not guarantee they are acceptable.

Based on these questions for each abstract it should be possible to provide a recommendation to the abstract editor. This may be either accept (which is the expected outcome for most abstracts), reject (If the study is unethical or doesn’t present any data – but not simply if the reviewer doesn’t agree with the methods – that should be decided at the meeting!) or accept with minor changes. In the case of acceptance with minor changes, the authors will have a short period to make changes which will be approved by the abstract editor. There is no provision for re-review.

Suggestions for corrections should be limited to:
– Ensuring a succinct introduction to the subject
– Grammar to make the abstract easily understood
– Methods paragraph must contain objective information such as doses, measuring methods and summary of statistical tests used
– Results paragraph must contain real data (not just greater than.. or different from..)
– Ensuring conclusions follow from the result.