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Editorial process

Upon article submission or transfer, a manuscript is assigned to an Editor. If a manuscript does not meet the general criteria for publication, it will be returned to the authors without being peer reviewed, typically within ~5 working days. Before making such a decision, the Editor might discuss a paper with an editorial colleague or with a member of the journal's Editorial Advisory Board to seek a second opinion. For manuscripts that have been transferred from other Company of Biologists' journals with reviews, the Editor may make a decision without further review, but may also request additional review. For manuscripts that have been transferred from other Company of Biologists' journals without reviews or that have been directly submitted to BiO, the Editor may review the manuscript themselves or, more usually, they will solicit additional review. We operate single blind peer review. All reviewers are requested to complete their reviews within 7 working days. For manuscripts sent for peer review, we aim to notify authors of the Editor's decision within 10 working days of submission. Authors can check the status of their manuscripts in the Author Area of the BiO online submission system or by contacting the Editorial Office.

If revisions are a condition of publication, we allow three months for a revised manuscript to be resubmitted (unless an author has specific reasons for requesting an extension). Articles that are resubmitted after this time are considered as new submissions. We do not accept resubmissions of manuscripts that have been previously rejected for publication by the journal, unless the Editor has specifically indicated that a resubmission would be considered in their decision letter.

Authors may appeal decisions by contacting the Editorial Office if there are strong grounds to believe there have been errors or misunderstandings on the part of the Editor or reviewers. All appeals are carefully considered by the Editor and, if necessary, Editor-in-Chief. Where appropriate, additional advice may be sought from other members of the Editorial team or Editorial Advisory Board.

Post acceptance

Upon article acceptance, all manuscripts undergo ethics checking, including screening for plagiarism (using the iThenticate software provided by Crossref) and image manipulation. Most Research articles and Methods & Techniques papers are posted on the journal web site as accepted author manuscripts (Accepted manuscripts) before proofing and layout, and in advance of publication of the online issues in which they will appear. Authors who would prefer their accepted author manuscript NOT to be posted as an accepted manuscript should tick the relevant check box during the submission process or contact the BiO Editorial Office.

Proofs are sent to the corresponding author in PDF format and authors are given 48 hours to check them, answer queries outlined in the proof, and return their proof corrections and license agreement. Articles are then processed for rapid publication on the journal's website in both full text and enhanced PDF format. Any major changes made to a paper after its acceptance can be subject to review and may delay publication.

BiO operates a continuous publication model. As soon as an article is ready to be published, it is immediately released online in the ‘issue in progress’, rather than waiting for other articles in the issue to be completed, resulting in faster access to the final version of the article. Issues build gradually, with articles being added at the top of the contents list as soon as they are ready. After about a month (around the 1st of each month), the issue is closed and becomes the ‘latest complete issue’.

Promoting your paper

For information on how to help your paper reach a wider audience, see our guidelines on Promoting Your Paper.

Optional copyediting

Clear and accessible language is a requirement for publication, and a language edit may be requested by the Monitoring Editor at revision. If you believe your manuscript would benefit from professional editing, we would encourage you to use a language-editing and copyediting service.

After acceptance, your manuscript will be processed by our typesetter in order to generate XML and interactive PDF files. At the author's discretion and expense, it is also possible to include a language edit as part of this process (please contact the Editorial Office for more information).

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