Close your eyes and picture the following (it probably won’t be difficult):
Your academic department is full of hard-working researchers and practicing physicians. Cutting edge research and innovative clinical experiences are everywhere. Trusted veteran physicians and up-and-coming stars are working together. All of your department’s faculty and residents know that their collective work is making a difference. Worthy of praise, funding and patient referrals.
But does anyone else know?
By partnering with Cureus you can ensure that fellow physicians around the world are updated on the latest and greatest from your department. All Cureus channel partners receive their very own branded, quarterly email digests that are managed and sent by Cureus.
Featuring hand-picked, recently published articles from your department as well as author head shots, a Cureus quarterly digest is an excellent way to raise awareness surrounding your department, boost the profile of up-and-coming faculty and even gain patient referrals.
We invite each of our channel partners to customize their quarterly’s messaging to fit their department’s unique goals. With thousands of recipients and sky-high open and click rates, we’re confident that a Cureus quarterly digest is the best value for your department’s marketing budget. Take a look at the examples below, and contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn how your department can reach physicians and researchers around the world.
Here at Cureus we take author and reviewer satisfaction very seriously. We strive to respond to all questions, comments and complaints as soon we can, often within just a few hours. If you’re familiar with the Cureus mission, you know that constructing a publication process devoid of politics (and supporting the increased transparency that comes with it) are our primary goals.
With that in mind, we’d like to share a recent exchange between an anonymous Cureus peer-reviewer unhappy with the amount of time he received to review an article.
Reviewer: Less than a week for an academic neurosurgeon to provide a review? Hmmmm.
Cureus: I was forwarded your recent email lament about the review period ending on a paper to which you were recently invited to comment. I wanted to reach out to you by email to firstly, thank you for responding, and secondly to explain a little bit more how the Cureus review process is designed to work, which as you perhaps noted is quite different than traditional journals.
As an academic neurosurgeon myself, I am all too aware that sometimes it can be impossible to find the time to review a manuscript just because one is just too darn busy. That is a given!! What happens in traditional journals routinely is that such busy academics plan to review a paper but for a range of reasons never get around to it. Therefore, the editor in chief and staff of most journals spend most of their time (and journal money) chasing down reviewers and as a result the process of review can last for months in many cases. We at Cureus have tried to do something quite different in our review process. We invite a number of reviewers to review but we fully expect most to be too busy and decline. If anyone is busy, it is quite ok to decline, our Cureus editorial team totally understands. However, the expectation is that a few of the invited reviewers will have both the time and the interest to perform a timely review……in fact, we are eventually hoping to achieve a review cycle of just a few days.
While this review cycle is better than nearly all other medical journals, it should be noted that NEJM does offer a turn around time in a week for some selected topics so this objective is not totally beyond current trends at the most selective journals. By resetting expectations for reviews, Cureus hopes to avoid the many month review cycles that are commonplace with JNS or Neurosurgery for example. The beauty of a faster review cycle is that the reviewed article remains fresh in everyone’s mind so that a lot of time is not wasted reacquainting oneself (both author and reviewers) with the article and any reviewer comments that emanate with each review cycle. Moreover, Cureus’ in-browser reviewing tool makes it easier than ever for a reviewer to comment on a paper and communicate their critique directly to the author. In the process hopefully everyone wins. The ultimate objective is to accelerate the process of publishing/documenting medical science, which I believe to be a net positive.
Clearly your first interaction with Cureus was less than ideal. I am hoping that after my explanation here you might give Cureus another try? In particular I would love you to perhaps even consider publishing your own article in our totally FREE open access journal, an experience first hand how a faster/easier review process can even make publishing peer reviewed papers FUN!! I note that you are a DBS guy and by virtue of such you clearly must be comfortable with new ideas and technology. As Cureus seeks to innovate in the medical journal space, we especially welcome early adopters like yourself.
I am happy to answer any further questions should you have any or address any other concerns your might have.
Reviewer: Many thanks for your email and clarification. I do agree that the review process is often too lengthy, especially with the journals you mention. Sadly, even with the best will in the world, the pressures of clinical work and other academic deadlines do not make it feasible for me to provide a thorough review on a paper within a week of receiving the request.
That said, now that I understand the philosophy behind the Cureus review process and I do like the idea. It is a clean and workable solution, but I fear it may work against the clinical scientist, especially in the surgical field where time is more limited.
I do find publishing fun … especially the debate with constructive reviewers. I will think of Cureus if I have any suitable material in the coming months.
Would you like to raise money for your research fund or a charity related to your research or clinical efforts? Now you can with a Cureus contribution link! Each contribution link features a custom image or logo representing a fund or foundation of your choosing. Clicking on a contribution link enables anyone viewing a Cureus article to quickly navigate to the donation page of that research fund or charity organization.
How are contribution links added to articles?
We’ve made it a very simple process. To get the ball rolling, just email us at email@example.com. Include the name of your previously published or soon-to-be published article as well as a link to the donation page of the research fund or charity website that you’d like to support. We ask only that the contribution recipient be somehow related to your work (it doesn’t have to relate to the specific article). For example, it could be your own research fund or a charity organization dedicated to fighting lung cancer.
As with all aspects of Cureus publishing, adding a contribution link is 100% free, so don’t miss this great opportunity to raise some money and do some good, whether it’s for a medical charity near and dear to your heart or your own research fund. Give your audience a chance to make a difference and contact us today.
Good news for all the innovative neurosurgeons out there! Summer is a busy time of year – with holidays, vacations, the new residency year, and the long hours demanded by the neurosurgery profession, we know that your time is scarce. That’s why we’ve elected to extend the entry deadline for our Intraoperative Fluorescence Publishing Competition!
We’ve had more than a few potential authors express concern regarding their ability to submit research before July 28th. After considering their requests, as well as the effects an extension would have on the competition, we’ve decided to push the article submission deadline back to Monday, July 28th. That’s a whole extra month to gather your research, write your article and submit it to Cureus. All of the upcoming dates are listed below:
As a reminder, you can visit the competition page to find out more about the competition. Questions? Just leave a comment below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get back to you right away. We can’t wait to see all the exciting new research submitted over the next six weeks. Good luck!
Our team has been hard at work creating the best possible experience for the Cureus community, and while hard work is its own reward, we were lucky enough to escape the office recently for a day of good old-fashioned team building. How did the fine folks at Cureus elect to spend the day? Hunting for crayfish (aka crawfish aka crawdads) of course!
The gang packed up nets, bacon (for bait!) and picnic lunches before heading down the coast to Pescadero, California. Home to the appropriately-named Pescadero Creek, Pescadero is a wonderfully secluded and picturesque town just a few short miles from the Pacific coast. It was here, along the muddy banks of the Pescadero Creek, that the Cureus team went to work, baiting and trapping crawfish with the same verve and zeal normally reserved for design, development and customer support.
Utilizing skilled techniques passed down through generations of Barrettos (Chris Barretto, Cureus VP of Engineering), we set bait with mouthwatering raw bacon and proceeded to wait, and wait, and wait and finally poke and prod the delightfully plentiful crawfish into our awaiting nets. It was messy business, and there were more than a few cuts, spills and even one unfortunate crawfish attack, resulting in a well-deserved wound to the finger. But just as with web design and editorial duties, these trials eventually gave way to well-earned rewards. The final tally? 55 crawfish, 8 dirty but happy Cureus team members and 1 very nice dinner
The team made it back to work the next day, all in one piece and now the march continues as we work to bring you the very best medical journal on the web. We’re very excited about our recent channels and competition, and we’ll be ready to announce new features very soon. Thanks again for your continued support. Don’t forget to contact us with suggestions, criticism and the like!
If you’ve spent much time around Cureus you’ve probably (hopefully?) heard of Scholarly Impact Quotient, or SIQ. At Cureus we’re committed to reducing the barrier to publication for physicians and medical researchers and a big part of that is making it easy to assess the merit of published articles.
Backing up for a second, I think we can all agree that Impact Factor is showing its age. Long considered the be-all, end-all when it comes to measuring article quality, Impact Factor has devolved into the proverbial snake that ate its tail, with article importance determined by journal importance, when clearly it should be the other way around.
We created SIQ as a means to improve the way an article’s “impact” is deciphered. SIQ allows all registered users to assess the relative merits of a published article. Although the judgments of an individual, or even a limited number of peer reviewer(s), can be flawed, there is an innate “wisdom of the crowd” that is harnessed by SIQ. Furthermore, SIQ is grounded in statistical power; the judgment of “the many” can diminish the biased influence of “a few.” In this way, the Cureus review process results in a more accurate measure of article quality.
So now you’re probably thinking, “Ok, great – but how does that help me?” Well, as a published author with Cureus, it’s in your best interest to have a high SIQ score. Once you’ve published, the natural inclination is to lean back in your chair, exhale and maybe have a celebratory glass of your favorite beverage. And to that I say, “Well earned.” BUT – your work isn’t quite done yet! The hard part is definitely over, no need to worry, but by sharing your published article with your friends and colleagues (and urging them to honestly assess your article with SIQ) you will boost your article’s visibility and its perception amongst the Cureus community. So next time you publish with Cureus, take an extra 5 minutes and share your article with the world.
We’re excited to debut an enhanced navigation system designed to make reading, reviewing and publishing articles a smooth and efficient experience. The next time you navigate to the Cureus homepage you’ll be greeted by an entirely new navigation bar along with a “ticker” highlighting recent Cureus activity, including new articles, comments, SIQ scores and more. We’ve also brought back the “Submit an article” button. This button strips away everything but the essentials to get you on the road to publication ASAP.
The Cureus library is now organized into two sections: peer-reviewed and non-peer-reviewed content (articles and posters, respectively). Clicking on “Articles” in the journal dropdown menu will take you to the same article overview page as before. (But don’t worry, it’s going to be redesigned too!) Clicking on a specific article, however, reveals our brand new article page:
Article tabs provide easy access to author and article information, as well as figures and tables. Meanwhile, the article’s SIQ score, disclosures, acknowledgements and audience discussion are all highlighted along the left side of the page. Speaking of SIQ, we’ve also revamped our Scholarly Impact Quotient system to make rating articles more straightforward:
Here at Cureus, we’re a medical journal first, and with everything we do we aim to craft a better publishing experience for our growing community. That said, we’re also very cognizant of our position at the forefront of the online, open access journal movement and we’re confident that our enhanced look and feel will make the Cureus experience even better. Remember, we’ll be overhauling the rest of Cureus in the near future so stay tuned for more updates!
The goal of any change in peer review is to improve the quality of review. Whether your journal conducts single-blinded, double-blinded or open peer review, it’s never a bad idea to take a step back and assess the review process. Are your reviewers productive and efficient? Notice any articles getting stuck in the review process? Authors eagerly (and perhaps impatiently) awaiting approval for publication?
So which should it be? Let’s take a brief look at the review types most often seen:
Single-blinded review – reviewers know the identity of the author, but reviewers remain anonymous
Double-blinded review – both reviewers and authors remain anonymous
Open review – both reviewers and authors are known to one another
We currently offer single-blinded review at Cureus, but we’re open to whatever results in the best possible process. What are the pros and cons of blinded and open review? Well, single-blinded reviewers don’t have to hold back when it comes to criticism.
We recently polled the Cureus community, looking for insight into the review process. Roughly 60% of respondents indicated they’d be less likely to levy harsh criticisms if participating in open peer review. OK, so then the answer must be blinded review, right? Well, not so fast – there’s also the question of review motivation. Now this problem is nothing new – indeed, most every journal has difficulty getting their reviewers to, well, review. Making the review process public could serve as a way to recognize reviewers for their contributions, while also bolstering their profiles with publicly recorded reviews.
So which is the right style for your journal? Unfortunately, there is no clearly defined right answer. How about giving reviewers the option? Would you choose blinded or open if given the chance?
The medical science community, indeed all scientific research communities, are often so wrapped up in the seemingly insurmountable task of getting published that it has become increasingly rare to stop and think about what comes next.
At Cureus, we’re working hard to ensure that your journey doesn’t end at publication. That’s why we greatly value post-publication review in the form of SIQ (Scholarly Impact Quotient). The review process should never stop when it comes to ensuring the best possible science is available to the public. Why limit the review period to a few weeks prior to publication? Doesn’t it make sense to allow for further evaluation as more eyes see an article? Of course we value the efforts of our reviewers, but the huge jump in sample size from half a dozen reviewers to a thousand interested readers shouldn’t be ignored. With our SIQ system in place, any reader can quickly and easily rate an article across five different categories. Will this result in the occasional uninformed review? Perhaps, but we feel strongly that, over time, the wisdom of many will outweigh the errors of a few readers, resulting in a dynamic evaluation of every article within the Cureus journal.
We want readers to engage with your research through assigning SIQ scores and entering into discussions, and we’re more than happy to promote your article across social media in the days and weeks following publication. With Cureus, you don’t need to worry about your article being buried and forgotten as soon as it’s published. Publication is just the beginning of the journey here at Cureus. Remember – publishing and reviewing articles at Cureus is entirely free, so stop by today and have a look around. Cureus could be the place for you to launch your research into the social stratosphere!
Does important scientific writing mandate the close supervision of professional editors and other high priests of science? Or is it possible that an interested community can curate scientific writing equally well? The conventional wisdom (and 200 years of history) strongly sides with the need for experts, but this conviction is increasingly at odds with the interaction and communication made possible by the internet.
One of the great challenges that Cureus faces is the assumption that because we’re an open access journal, the science we publish is not reaching the highest realms of scientific quality. “Open access” is still a scary term for many people, with many worried that the process compromises the quality of peer review and ultimately the scientific quality of published papers. At Cureus, we are fighting back against this misperception by publishing powerfulandaccuratescience. Open access medical journals are still a new concept, but you don’t have to look far for what is perhaps the ultimate example of open access on the internet today. Yes, I’m referring to Wikipedia, the seemingly omnipresent internet resource. Featuring articles on everything from Ghostbusters to spinal stenosis, Wikipedia is a shining example of the power of open access.
A recently published study by Rayagopalan, et al. tested the accuracy of medical data provided in Wikipedia compared with that provided in the National Cancer Institute’s Physician Data Query (PDQ) website. The researchers, hailing from an assortment of universities and medical centers, sought to test their hypothesis that Wikipedia would suffer from a lack of complete and accurate content.
Their conclusion? That Wikipedia had similar accuracy and depth when compared with the professionally peer-reviewed PDQ. Granted, this is not exactly an apples-to-apples comparison. Cureus, although an open access journal in every sense of the word, still relies on a group of expert editors to ensure the accuracy and quality of all published articles.
Open access is a viable method for quickly gathering and publishing valuable information. It’s 2014 and more and more of the world is connected – there should be no excuse when it comes to delivering and sharing potentially life-saving medical science for free.