Starting Your Journey as an External Reviewer: Tips and Tricks for Getting Started

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Are you looking for a way to expand your professional experience and boost your resume? Have you ever considered becoming an external reviewer? As a freelance position, being an external reviewer can provide numerous benefits for both your career and personal growth. But where do you even begin? In this article, we’ll guide you through the process of starting your journey as an external reviewer, giving tips and tricks along the way to help you become successful in this role. So let’s dive in!

What is an external reviewer?

An external reviewer is someone who evaluates the quality and correctness of work produced by others outside their organization. They can be hired to assess academic papers, research proposals, grant applications, or even books before publication. External reviewers are usually experts in their field with relevant knowledge and experience to offer valuable feedback on the subject matter.

External reviews provide an alternative perspective that can help improve the quality of work produced. The role of an external reviewer is not limited to identifying errors but also includes suggesting potential improvements for future work. They help ensure that research complies with ethical standards while providing constructive criticism that benefits both authors and readers.

Being an external reviewer requires a significant amount of time commitment, attention to detail, communication skills and expertise in your field. It’s not enough just to have a degree; you need hands-on experience as well as up-to-date knowledge on current trends in your industry.

Being an external reviewer is a challenging yet rewarding opportunity for those passionate about helping improve the quality of work within their fields.

What are the benefits of being an external reviewer?

Being an external reviewer comes with a lot of benefits. First and foremost, it allows you to expand your knowledge and experience in your field of expertise. It gives you the chance to work on different projects, learn from other professionals, and broaden your horizons.

As an external reviewer, you also get the opportunity to collaborate with esteemed professionals in your industry. You’ll have a chance to network with people who share similar interests as yours, build valuable relationships that can open doors for future opportunities and collaborations.

Another advantage is that being an external reviewer enhances your critical thinking skills; it enables you to analyze data objectively and make informed decisions based on evidence rather than emotions or biases. This skill not only makes you better at evaluating research but also helps improve problem-solving capabilities outside academia.

Being an external reviewer is rewarding both financially and professionally. You have the flexibility to choose which projects interest you most while earning extra income plus recognition for contributing to academic discourse.

Becoming an external reviewer opens doors for personal development growth within one’s career path as well as providing numerous advantages worth considering!

How to get started as an external reviewer

Getting started as an external reviewer can seem overwhelming at first, but it’s actually quite simple. The first step is to identify your areas of expertise and research the journals or organizations that align with those interests. This will give you a better idea of where to start looking for opportunities.

Next, reach out to potential contacts in your network who may be able to connect you with relevant organizations or editors. Networking is key when it comes to finding review opportunities.

Once you’ve established some connections, start submitting your CV and cover letter detailing your qualifications and experience in the field. Be sure to highlight any previous reviewing experience or publications related to the topic area.

It’s important to remember that being an external reviewer requires a significant time commitment, so make sure you have the availability before accepting any assignments. When you do accept an assignment, be sure to read all guidelines carefully and meet all deadlines.

In addition, always maintain objectivity during reviews by focusing on the quality of research rather than personal biases or opinions. Don’t be afraid to ask questions if anything is unclear during the reviewing process – clear communication leads to successful collaborations between reviewers and editors alike!

Tips and tricks for becoming a successful external reviewer

As an external reviewer, it is essential to maintain objectivity and uphold the standards of academic integrity. Here are some tips and tricks for becoming a successful external reviewer:

Always prioritize your workload and manage your time effectively. Set realistic deadlines and communicate with the journal editor if you need more time.

When reviewing a manuscript, read it thoroughly and critically evaluate its strengths and weaknesses. Provide constructive feedback by highlighting specific sections that require improvement or revision.

Maintain confidentiality throughout the review process. Do not disclose any information about the manuscript or authors without permission from the editor.

Fourthly, stay up-to-date with current research in your field of expertise to enhance your credibility as a reviewer.

Be open-minded towards different perspectives and approaches presented in manuscripts. Avoid personal biases or preconceptions when evaluating the quality of research.

By following these tips and tricks, you can become a successful external reviewer who contributes to enhancing the quality of scholarly publications while maintaining impartiality in your evaluations.


Becoming an external reviewer can be a rewarding experience for those looking to expand their professional network and gain valuable insights into their field of expertise. By following the tips and tricks outlined in this article, you can increase your chances of success as an external reviewer and make a positive impact on the academic community.

Remember to always approach each review with professionalism, objectivity, and attention to detail. Take advantage of opportunities to learn from other reviewers and authors, build relationships within your industry, and enhance your skills as a researcher or scholar.

Whether you are just starting out or have years of experience under your belt, there is always something new to discover in the world of external reviewing. So why not take the first step today? Start exploring ways to become an external reviewer in your area of interest – who knows where it might lead!