Editorial Policy

AMEE MedEdPublish – Editorial Policy
Version 02: December 2018


1.      Scope of this Policy
2.      Qualifications and Affiliations
3.      Conflicts of interests
4.      Confidentiality
5.      International Composition of Editorial Board
6.      Choice of Panel Reviewers
7.      Timeliness of manuscript processing
8.      Deletion of rejected manuscripts
9.      Unavailability
10.    Editorial Freedom
11.    Themed Issues
12.    Procedures for Article Retraction
13.    Procedures for Dealing with Scientific Misconduct 14.    Procedures for handling author complaints and appeals
15.    Description of the Editing process
Please note that this Policy is intended to conform to the COPE Ethical Guidelines for Peer Reviewers available at: https://publicationethics.org/files/Ethical_Guidelines_For_Peer_Reviewers_2.pdf
and the ICMJE Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals, Updated December 2017, available at: http://www.icmje.org/icmje-recommendations.pdf
In addition, Policies and Guides on Authorship and Reviewing contain details about Editors’ roles and responsibilities, and so need to be consulted. 

1. Scope of this Policy

Unless specifically stated to the contrary, this Policy document applies to all AMEE MedEdPublish Editors, Associate Editors, Theme Editors and Co-Theme editors.

2. Qualifications and Affiliations

Editors must ensure that their qualifications and affiliations are described accurately on all AMEE MedEdPublish material.
At this stage, ORCID numbers are not required, but, if Editors have ORCID numbers, they are strongly urged to include these in their details.

3. Conflicts of interests

Editors must ensure any potential conflicts of interests are described accurately on all AMEE MedEdPublish material.

4. Confidentiality

Editors must ensure that they maintain strict confidentiality of materials and communications with authors, and that the only public commentary should be made on final published versions of documents.

5. International Composition of Editorial Board

The Editorial Board shall be made up of people from the international community.
As of July 2018, the following 16 countries were represented on the Board (The number in brackets indicates the number of representatives): Australia (2, including the EiC); Canada (1); China (1); Germany (1); Hong Kong (1); Mexico (1); Oman (1 [Associate Editor]); Pakistan (1); Portugal (1); Qatar (1); Russian Federation (1); Saudi Arabia (1); Singapore (2); South Africa (1); United Kingdom (7 [incl. an Associate Editor]); United States (4 [incl. an Associate Editor]).

6. Choice of Panel Reviewers

When selecting Panel Reviewers (including those recommended by the authors), Editors must take all reasonable steps to ensure that they select reviewers who are suitably qualified to perform the review, and have no known conflicts of interests. For reviewers suggested by the author, especially if those reviewers are not already on the Panel, Editors must take extra care to ensure that the email address given by the author matches the reviewer (by checking on the institution’s website) and is not a “spoof” of that email address. (e.g. [email protected]  instead of [email protected]).

7. Timeliness of manuscript processing

When processing a manuscript, Editors must take all reasonable steps to ensure timely processing of manuscripts, including selection of, and corresponding with, reviewers.

8. Deletion of rejected manuscripts

In case of a rejected manuscript, Editors must take all reasonable steps to ensure that the manuscript has been deleted from the AMEE MedEdPublish system.

9. Unavailability

If, for any reason, an Editor is unavailable during their term of responsibility, they should inform the AMEE MedEdPublish Editorial Team immediately, so that suitable steps can be taken.

10. Editorial Freedom

Although AMEE MedEdPublish Editors share a common purpose with AMEE, Editors have complete editorial freedom, and should be guided only by best editorial practices. Editors do, however, have access to AMEE management in case they wish to consult on issues that may involve liability, and logistical issues.

11. Themed Issues

From time to time we publish themed issues which reflect a substantial topics of interest to medical educators. AMEE members may contact the Editorial Board with suggestions for Themes and Theme Editors, but the choice of Themes and Theme Editors is at the discretion of the Editor, Associate Editors and the Editorial office. Themes may not be sponsored to have any commercial influence. 

12. Procedures for Article Retraction

Grounds for an article’s retraction include (but are not limited to) submitting an author’s name without their knowledge, evidence of plagiarism, evidence of unethical procedures (including supplying false ethical approval information, not or falsely declaring conflicts of interests, deceptive manipulation of data, images, videos and audio files, manipulation of the editorial or review process, or selling authorship).
AMEE MedEdPublish follows the COPE Guidelines for article retraction and corrections as given at: https://publicationethics.org/files/retraction%20guidelines_0.pdf
See also:
Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals, Updated December 2017, available at: http://www.icmje.org/icmje-recommendations.pdf
See also procedures outlined in the next two sections of this document.

13. Procedures for Dealing with Scientific Misconduct

From the ICMJE Guidelines, “Scientific misconduct includes but is not necessarily limited to data fabrication; data falsification, including deceptive manipulation of images; and plagiarism.” Further, AMEE MedEdPublish bases its procedures on the COPE guidelines at https://publicationethics.org/misconduct. The following COPE flowcharts (reproduced with permission) summarise the procedures to be followed by AMEE:

13.1 Concerns raised on social media or other external discussions



13.2 Concerns raised directly with the Journal



13.3 Concerns raised by suspicion of an ethical problem with a manuscript



13.4 Concerns raised by suspicion unethical image manipulation in a published paper



13.5 Suspected manipulation of the publication process: before publication


13.6 Suspected manipulation of the publication process: after publication


14. Procedures for handling author complaints and appeals

In order to avoid a lengthy and resource-intensive appeal process in the case of a retraction or similar action, the Editors must ensure that they
  1. Follow the COPE Guidelines as closely as possible.
  2. Document explicitly (with reference to these Guidelines, the Terms and Agreement, and any other pertinent documentation) exactly the nature of the offence and the reasoning behind all decisions.
  3. Ensure that the author is sent all relevant documentation.
Any appeal on a decision must state explicitly the issue of contention. The Editor has the right to then consult with any third party over the issue, and make a final decision. That final decision shall be binding, and the matter shall be deemed closed.

15. Description of the Editing process

(See the Guidelines for Editors for more detail).
For AMEE MedEdPublish to publish any paper, those papers must meet basic minimum standards:  These are:
  • The papers are in readable and intelligible English;
  • The papers are within the scope of the journal. That is, the papers concern health professions’ education, and are in a format (research paper, case study, etc.) acceptable to the journal, and
  • Appropriate ethics statements are provided for all papers reporting research or evaluation of educational interventions, and any other papers (such as case studies) where students or patients may be involved.
In addition, the similarity checker (iThenticate) will assist Editors in ensuring that there is no plagiarism.