• Manuscript Status

Q: What is the difference between 'Reviewers Assigned' and 'Under Review' in Springer's Editorial Manager (EM)?

What does the 'Reviewers Assigned' status mean in EM? Does it mean the reviewers have already started looking at the paper, or does that not occur until the 'Under Review' status is displayed?

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Asked by tamer aly on 23 May, 2020

Hi Tamer! Welcome back to the forum! Before we respond to this question, we thought we could utilize this opportunity to check with you about your earlier query (around the meaning of the With Associate Editor status ). We wonder how that submission went. It would be great if you could share with us, either there or here itself. :-)

Coming to your present query, we see you seem to have a sense of it already. So, the ‘Reviewers Assigned’ status means that the peer reviewers (usually two or three) have been assigned. This does not mean that they have started reviewing your manuscript or even taken a look at it. Sometimes, a reviewer may pull out after being assigned, for reasons of a lack of time, mismatch (with their subject area), or conflict of interest. It’s only when the status changes to ‘Under Review,’ as you have rightly understood, that the actual review begins.

From your query, it seems reviewers have been assigned for your manuscript. Which is already a good thing – as that means the associate editor (AE) believes the paper has merit and also matches the journal scope. Given that this is a Springer Nature journal, that’s a great start. So, congrats for completing this milestone!

Now, as you can understand, you’ll have to wait for the reviewers to actually begin reviewing your paper. In case the status remains at ‘Reviewers Assigned’ for a while, that would mean the AE is having challenges finding suitable peer reviewers. So, if you know of any, you could make send them a list of potential reviewers.

Hope that helps. For more information, you may look up the following resources:

For now though, all the best for the next steps for your manuscript! And do let us know how this one turns out too...

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Answered by Editage Insights on 27 May, 2020

what is assigning for review

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From Under Review to Assigning for Review?

Economist d2f0

seems strange that the submissions status changes from in review'' and under review'' simultaneously after submission, and after a few days, the status becomes assigning for review.''

scholarone system.

Economist f47a

One referee sent the report.

Editor didn't like it or thought it wasn't enough,

So editor is looking or adding a new referre,

Economist 91d2

Editor got referee reports but doesn't agree with them. He will likely keep on assigning new referees until one makes the recommendation that he wants to see.

Economist f136

Thanks! If that is the case, then which is more likely: the editor who dislikes the paper receives a positive report; the editor who likes the paper receives a negative report.

or another possibility is that, the report is not informative --- maybe some critical points are cared by the editor, which were not clearly judged by the report?

Economist 8b28

Thanks! If that is the case, then which is more likely: the editor who dislikes the paper receives a positive report; the editor who likes the paper receives a negative report. or another possibility is that, the report is not informative --- maybe some critical points are cared by the editor, which were not clearly judged by the report?

Sometimes two reports contradict each others. Then the editor is unsure, which one to follow and contacts a third party. It might thus be neither a good nor a bad sign

Economist db2b

For some journals, the status becomes "under review" automatically after successful submission.

After that, the editor invites referees, and then the status becomes "Assigning for Review."

You can think of "under review" in this case as "being reviewed by the editor."

^ One more thing: the status may change to "under review" again later, which means that the manuscript is being reviewed by referee(s).

By reading your post, it is obviously not the case in which referees have reviewed your paper. It is very likely the case I pointed out above.

Economist b8ad

Does status "Assigning for Review" imply that you have passed the desk?

Send Post »

Markup: a blockquote code em strong ul ol li .

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The peer review process

The peer review process can be broadly summarized into 10 steps, although these steps can vary slightly between journals. Explore what’s involved, below.

Editor Feedback: “Reviewers should remember that they are representing the readers of the journal. Will the readers of this particular journal find this informative and useful?”

Peer Review Process

1. Submission of Paper

The corresponding or submitting author submits the paper to the journal. This is usually via an online system such as Scholar-One Manuscripts. Occasionally, journals may accept submissions by email.

2. Editorial Office Assessment

The journal checks the paper’s composition and arrangement against the journal’s Author Guidelines to make sure it includes the required sections and stylizations. The quality of the paper is not assessed at this point.

3. Appraisal by the Editor-in-Chief (EIC)

The EIC checks that the paper is appropriate for the journal and is sufficiently original and interesting. If not, the paper may be rejected without being reviewed any further.

4. EIC Assigns an Associate Editor (AE)

Some journals have Associate Editors who handle the peer review. If they do, they would be assigned at this stage.

5. Invitation to Reviewers

The handling editor sends invitations to individuals he or she believes would be appropriate reviewers. As responses are received, further invitations are issued, if necessary, until the required number of acceptances is obtained – commonly this is 2, but there is some variation between journals.

6. Response to Invitations

Potential reviewers consider the invitation against their own expertise, conflicts of interest and availability. They then accept or decline. If possible, when declining, they might also suggest alternative reviewers.

7. Review is Conducted

The reviewer sets time aside to read the paper several times. The first read is used to form an initial impression of the work. If major problems are found at this stage, the reviewer may feel comfortable rejecting the paper without further work. Otherwise they will read the paper several more times, taking notes so as to build a detailed point-by-point review. The review is then submitted to the journal, with a recommendation to accept or reject it – or else with a request for revision (usually flagged as either major or minor) before it is reconsidered.

8. Journal Evaluates the Reviews

The handling editor considers all the returned reviews before making an overall decision. If the reviews differ widely, the editor may invite an additional reviewer so as to get an extra opinion before making a decision.

9. The Decision is Communicated

The editor sends a decision email to the author including any relevant reviewer comments. Whether the comments are anonymous or not will depend on the type of peer review that the journal operates.

10. Next Steps

An editor's perspective.

Listen to a podcast from Roger Watson, Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Advanced Nursing, as he discusses 'The peer review process'.

If accepted , the paper is sent to production. If the article is rejected or sent back for either major or minor revision , the handling editor should include constructive comments from the reviewers to help the author improve the article. At this point, reviewers should also be sent an email or letter letting them know the outcome of their review. If the paper was sent back for revision , the reviewers should expect to receive a new version, unless they have opted out of further participation. However, where only minor changes were requested this follow-up review might be done by the handling editor.

Assigning Reviewers

If you wish to have an author’s content reviewed before he/she submits a final paper, you can proceed to assign a Reviewer.

NOTE: The Editor cannot assign a Reviewer to papers that are handled by an Associate Editor. The Editor can only assign Reviewers to papers that are being handled via the Fast Track method.

Assigning Reviewers Using Paper Details

Go to Papers >In Progres s to access the View Papers screen.

Click on the paper number to reach the Paper Detail page. All details relevant to the paper are included on this page.

At the bottom left you will see a button, Assign Reviewer . Click here.

You can select a reviewer from the pull-down menu at the left.

Insert a due date, following the date format specified.

Modify the text of e-mail if you wish. The top part is customizable; the bottom part, which contains paper data and instructions, is not.

When complete, click Assign Reviewer at the bottom of the screen.

If you wish to review the status or find details on a specific reviewer assigned to the journal, you may access this information on the right-hand side of the screen, from a pull-down menu entitled, Reviewadex . Once a reviewer is selected you can click on Bio , Workload or History for specific details.

Assigning Reviewers Using Editor Center

Go to Editor Center > Reviewers > Assign from the administrative toolbar. You can also access this page by choosing the link Assign Reviewers from the footer of the screen.

This will bring you to the Assign Reviewers page where you will be able to view papers awaiting assignment. The following fields will be shown.

Paper number. This is the unique identifier associated with an author’s work. It consists of the journal abbreviation, the year of submittal, and a five-digit number.

Paper type. This indicates the type of submission.

Paper title. To view the full title, click on View Title . The title will pop up. (The full title is not shown to save space.)

Author Name. The primary/corresponding author of the technical work.

Assign Reviewer. This section will contain a pull-down menu of current Reviewers assigned to the Journal.

Due date. The date this review should be completed.

Choose a Reviewer from the pull-down menu under the Assign Reviewer box.

To search for a Reviewer, choose the link Search . This will allow you to obtain the Reviewer’s e-mail address so you can ask him/her if they wish to review a paper.

Select a Reviewer from the pull-down menu. You may also enter/select more information as needed.

Choose the Search button to see your results.  

If there are no Reviewers available, click on the link Add Reviewer to create a new Reviewer account. A new window will open, where you must provide the following information. You can also add a Reviewer by going to Editor Center > Reviewers > Create | Edit and choosing the appropriate button.

E-mail address * .  Provide a valid e-mail address for the Reviewer.

First Name/Middle Initial * . Input the Reviewer’s first name.

Last Name * . Input the Reviewer’s last name.

Phone * . Provide a phone number for the Reviewer.

Note: Fields marked with an asterisk (*) are required.

Fax . Provide a fax number for the Reviewer, if available.

If you’re unsure of which Reviewer to choose, pick a name from the Reviewadex pull-down menu and click on the links Bio , Workload or History to find out more information on a specific reviewer.

Enter a due date.

Choose the Assign Reviewers button to submit your information.

The site will automatically "assign" a reviewer and send an e-mail to this effect. Please note the text portion of the e-mail is modifiable so you can tailor your request. However the instructions on accessing the site (paper) and information on the paper are not modifiable. Editors and Associate Editors are not copied on this auto-generated e-mail.

NOTE: The customizable e-mail is accessed through the Assign Reviewer function on the Paper Details screen.

Assignment of a reviewer presupposes that you know or have had contact with the reviewer to ensure their willingness and availability to review. This "invitation" so to speak is assumed to take place off line, unless the reviewer is already in the database (found in the Reviewadex ), in which case you can compose an e-mail upon finding his/her name.

We will be officially closed during the Winter and New Year holiday periods from Friday, December 23 through Monday, January 2, 2023. Support tickets submitted during this timeframe will be reviewed after we re-open on Tuesday, January 3, 2023.

eScholarship Help Center

Created by: Justin Gonder

Modified on: mon, oct 23, 2017 at 8:05 am, before you begin.

Steps in this guide

1. Launch the Select Reviewer tool

2. Add reviewers to your journal, if necessary

Note: The actions in this step build a list of potential reviewers for the manuscript. Reviewers will not be notified of the review request until you also complete step 4 of this guide.

3. Determine which reviewer(s) should be invited to review the manuscript

4. Send review request email(s) to the reviewer(s)

Next step(s)

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Does in review mean an external reviewer is assigned ? [duplicate]

Three weeks ago, I have submitted a paper to a journal that has a reputation for fast publication process. On their website, they mention that decision on acceptance or otherwise are taken quickly normally within a month of receipt of the paper. One week after submission the status of the paper changed from waiting assignment to in review . The journal use OJS for submissions. in review page something like this appear:

Peer Review Round 1

Review Version Final version.pdf 2018-11-24

Initiated —

Last modified —

Uploaded file None

Does that mean still no external reviewer is assigned to the paper? Giving the circumstances is it too early to ask if any reviewer is assigned?

Random Visitor's user avatar

'Under Review/In Review' can mean that your manuscript is currently assessed or 'under review' by the assigned editor. This could be very likely, since you mentioned the status changed straight from 'waiting for assignment' to 'in review'. During this time your manuscript could be checked for formatting guidelines, the editor might judge the article himself or he might be in the process of trying to find suitable reviewers. For details on the different status messages of journal's workflows, here's a great answer .

Especially around holidays it might additionally be hard to find reviewers, and get back their scores within a certain time period. Also, even if a journal claims to normally take one month until the first decision, I suspect these times can have a big variance.

I suggest to wait until the holiday season has passed, and then follow up if the status has not changed yet.

L_W's user avatar

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After submitting

In this section:

The review process

what is assigning for review

1. Awaiting Editorial Production Assistant Processing

The Editorial Production Assistant will carry out quality checks on your article at which point you may need to provide further information before your article is sent for Peer Review.

2. Awaiting Editor Assignment: 

Your article has passed initial quality checks by the Editorial Production Assistant and is in the process of being assigned to an appropriate Editor who will evaluate your article for scope, quality, and fit for the journal. Papers that do not meet these criteria will be rejected.

3. Awaiting Reviewer Selection

Your article meets the Journal’s scope and has been approved for peer review. The Editorial Team are in the process of finding suitable external expert reviewers that are available to review your article. Your article may also be sent to relevant Associate Editor’s for internal review. For most articles, a minimum of two reviews are required. Articles can be sent to multiple prospective reviewers before the required number are secured.

4. Peer Review in Progress

Your article has secured the minimum number of required reviewers. Peer reviewers are given 2 weeks to submit their review of your article. On the occasion that a reviewer withdraws from the process, the Editorial Team will begin the reviewer selection process again.

 5. Awaiting Editor Decision

Your article has now received the minimum number of reviews required to make a decision. The Editor will take into account the expert reviewers’ opinions to make an informed decision of accept, reject or revise.

6. In Production

Your article has been accepted and you will receive an email to confirm. Your article will move through the final quality checks and in to Production where it will be processed for publication. You will be emailed by the Production Editor with a timeline and be provided with a link to a platform called Publishing at Work where you can continue to track your article’s progress. More information about the Production process can be found here .

Arrow Down

Table of Contents 1    Assigning Reviewers to a Submission 2    Assigning Submissions to a Reviewer 3    Automatic Assignments of Reviews 4    Unassigning Reviews 5    Activating the Review Phase 6    Contact the Reviewers 7    Hints

How to Assign Reviews in ConfTool

For the review process, the submitted contributions have to be assigned manually or automatically to users with the status reviewer or PC member. After the reviewing phase has been enabled ,   these users can access the contributions assigned to them, view the abstracts and download the manuscripts of these contributions.

This page describes how chairs can assign submissions to reviewers (and vice versa) in the ConfTool system. 

If you want to allow Chairs, PC Members or Meta-Reviewers to send out reviewer invitations for each submissions separately , please have a look at the alternative review request function . It allows different user groups to send out requests to other persons in which they are asked if they would like to review a specific submission. It can also be used to allow these user groups to add more reviewers to the system themselves. You can find more information in the   Review Request Manual .

1 Assigning Reviewers to a Submission

Please log in as a user with the status  Chair ,  Conference Chair   or  Administrator and go to: Overview =>  Submissions & Reviews  If you cannot find this option after login, please contact the conference organizers.

Here, you have the option to either list all  contributions  or list all  reviewers  by choosing the according links. This section deals with assigning reviewers to submissions, please look further below if you want to assign submissions to specific reviewers .

Please go to the "List of Submissions" : Overview => Submissions & Reviews =>  List of Submissions

Here, you will find a list of all submitted contributions. Above the list are several filter options, a search field and a link to "Show more filter options" . You can use all three to narrow the number of contributions down, e.g. to specific topics or tracks. This can be useful if several chairs share the work of assigning submissions to the reviewers.

In the second-to-last column "Reviewers / Reviews", click on the link "Reviewers" in order to get to the list of already assigned and available reviewers. The number tells you how many reviewers have already been assigned. When you click on the link "Reviews" (only available when reviews have already been entered), the reviews that have been entered for this submission will be displayed. The number shows how many reviews have already been submitted (see image 1).

For each list entry, in the right hand column "Actions", click on "Assign" to access a new page on which you can  assign reviewers to this contribution . On the new page, all available reviewers for this contribution will be displayed. The list is ordered by the preferences of the reviewers (from the "bidding" phase, if used) and the number of matches between topics of the submission and areas of expertise of the reviewer. This data is displayed in the second column (see image 2).

Please select the required number of reviewers for the contribution by marking the checkbox " Assign " in the third column. (NB: If you assign a user to a contribution as  meta-reviewer , this user will have  access to all other reviews  of the same submission .)

Select "Set Conflict" if you want to exclude a reviewer from participating in the  online discussion forum  about that specific contribution later on.

When you have assigned all reviewers, please go to the bottom of the page and click the " Save New Assignment "   button to confirm your settings.

You can now verify and edit your assignments for this submission. Select the link "Submissions" in the main navigation bar to go back to the list of submissions and to continue assigning other submissions.

what is assigning for review

2 Assigning Submissions to a Reviewer

Alternatively you can use the list " Program Committee and Reviewers ".

Please open it here: Overview => Submissions & Reviews => Program Committee and Reviewers

This list will give you an overview of all available experts (PC members and reviewers). This page also lists the number of submissions already assigned to each person and the reviews already completed (see image 3). By selecting "Assign Reviews" in the right column you get the option to  assign or   cancel  ("unassign") contributions or set a conflict  for this person. This works according to the function "Assign Reviewers to a Submission" " as described above.

(NB: Experts are identified by the conference chairs in the back-end of ConfTool.)

what is assigning for review

3 Automatic Assignments of Reviews

ConfTool Pro also allows to assign submissions to reviewers automatically. Please note that this is only available to administrators and conference chairs, not to track chairs.

Please go to (see image 4): Overview => Submissions & Reviews => Automatic Assignment of Reviews

This function considers the "bids" of the reviewers, the number of matching topics between submission and reviewer as well as the number of already assigned reviews per person during the assignment process. The algorithm is explained in this entry in the forum:  Automatic review assignments .

In addition to that, the system tries to identify and to consider “conflicts of interest”. During the process, ConfTool Pro  compares e-mail addresses, names and organizations of the reviewers to those of the authors and co-authors . This is one of the many reasons why authors should be asked to list the e-mail addresses of their co-authors.

Although the automatic assignments of reviews normally yield good results, we advise to check, and – where required – to optimize, the final result via manual assignment.

what is assigning for review

4 Unassigning Reviews

You can manually unassign reviews when you think that the automatic review process needs to be refined or when reviewers have retracted their willingness to do reviews. This can be done on the same pages on which papers are assigned to reviewers or reviewers to papers. Please refer to the instructions above.

In both cases, tick the box “Unassign” to cancel the review assignment. If a review has been handed in already, tick the box "Unassign & Delete Review"; in this case, the review assignment will be cancelled and the review will be deleted (see image 5). You can find more information here:  How can I delete reviews?

what is assigning for review

5 Activating the Review Phase

After assignment, the  review phase has to be enabled: Overview => Settings => Conference Phases and Deadlines ... in order to make the submissions accessible to the reviewers.

6 Contact the Reviewers

To inform the reviewers about the start of the review process, their next steps and the review deadlines, please use the  bulk mail functions of ConfTool . Please note that  instructions for reviewers and PC members  are available, too.

Page last updated: November 19, 2020 · © 2022 by Dr. Harald Weinreich & ConfTool GmbH, Germany · Contact and Legal Notice · Privacy Statement


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  1. What does it mean if the status has been changing between 'Under

    The present status of 'Assigning for Review,' which has remained for a month, probably means the editor is still looking for reviewers for your

  2. What is the difference between 'Reviewers Assigned' and 'Under

    Coming to your present query, we see you seem to have a sense of it already. So, the 'Reviewers Assigned' status means that the peer reviewers (

  3. From Under Review to Assigning for Review?

    After that, the editor invites referees, and then the status becomes "Assigning for Review." You can think of "under review" in this case as "being reviewed by

  4. The Peer Review Process

    4. EIC Assigns an Associate Editor (AE). Some journals have Associate Editors who handle the peer review. If they do, they would be assigned at this stage.

  5. What does it mean to change status from under review to reviewers

    It can mean that the verdict given by the earlier reviewer on your revised manuscript is not compatible (at that time status would be under

  6. Assigning a Reviewer

    Assigning Reviewers · Go to Editor Center > Reviewers > Assign from the administrative toolbar. · This will bring you to the Assign Reviewers page where you will

  7. Assigning and inviting reviewers

    The Select Reviewer page contains information such as reviewing interests, number of reviews completed, number of active / outstanding reviews

  8. Does in review mean an external reviewer is assigned ? [duplicate]

    'Under Review/In Review' can mean that your manuscript is currently assessed or 'under review' by the assigned editor.

  9. The review process

    Your article has passed initial quality checks by the Editorial Production Assistant and is in the process of being assigned to an appropriate Editor who

  10. Assigning Reviews

    It allows different user groups to send out requests to other persons in which they are asked if they would like to review a specific submission