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Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews

Technical editing of research reports in biomedical journals

Overview of attention for article published in Cochrane database of systematic reviews, October 2008
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (94th percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (90th percentile)

Mentioned by

blogs
2 blogs
twitter
9 tweeters
peer_reviews
1 peer review site
facebook
1 Facebook page

Citations

dimensions_citation
35 Dimensions

Readers on

mendeley
88 Mendeley
citeulike
3 CiteULike
Title
Technical editing of research reports in biomedical journals
Published in
Cochrane database of systematic reviews, October 2008
DOI 10.1002/14651858.mr000002.pub3
Pubmed ID
Authors

Elizabeth Wager, Philippa Middleton

Abstract

Most journals try to improve their articles by technical editing processes such as proof-reading, editing to conform to 'house styles', grammatical conventions and checking accuracy of cited references. Despite the considerable resources devoted to technical editing, we do not know whether it improves the accessibility of biomedical research findings or the utility of articles. This is an update of a Cochrane methodology review first published in 2003. To assess the effects of technical editing on research reports in peer-reviewed biomedical journals, and to assess the level of accuracy of references to these reports. We searched The Cochrane Library Issue 2, 2007; MEDLINE (last searched July 2006); EMBASE (last searched June 2007) and checked relevant articles for further references. We also searched the Internet and contacted researchers and experts in the field. Prospective or retrospective comparative studies of technical editing processes applied to original research articles in biomedical journals, as well as studies of reference accuracy. Two review authors independently assessed each study against the selection criteria and assessed the methodological quality of each study. One review author extracted the data, and the second review author repeated this. We located 32 studies addressing technical editing and 66 surveys of reference accuracy. Only three of the studies were randomised controlled trials. A 'package' of largely unspecified editorial processes applied between acceptance and publication was associated with improved readability in two studies and improved reporting quality in another two studies, while another study showed mixed results after stricter editorial policies were introduced. More intensive editorial processes were associated with fewer errors in abstracts and references. Providing instructions to authors was associated with improved reporting of ethics requirements in one study and fewer errors in references in two studies, but no difference was seen in the quality of abstracts in one randomised controlled trial. Structuring generally improved the quality of abstracts, but increased their length. The reference accuracy studies showed a median citation error rate of 38% and a median quotation error rate of 20%. Surprisingly few studies have evaluated the effects of technical editing rigorously. However there is some evidence that the 'package' of technical editing used by biomedical journals does improve papers. A substantial number of references in biomedical articles are cited or quoted inaccurately.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 9 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 88 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Indonesia 1 1%
United Kingdom 1 1%
Croatia 1 1%
Unknown 85 97%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Researcher 19 22%
Student > Master 11 13%
Student > Ph. D. Student 10 11%
Other 8 9%
Student > Bachelor 6 7%
Other 17 19%
Unknown 17 19%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 34 39%
Social Sciences 11 13%
Nursing and Health Professions 6 7%
Computer Science 3 3%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 3 3%
Other 10 11%
Unknown 21 24%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 20. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 18 August 2020.
All research outputs
#1,124,736
of 16,975,484 outputs
Outputs from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
#2,993
of 11,600 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#7,471
of 130,712 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
#12
of 121 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 16,975,484 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 93rd percentile: it's in the top 10% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 11,600 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 24.5. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 74% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 130,712 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 94% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 121 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 90% of its contemporaries.