Does your manuscript need to have its English improved?


Manuscript Language Assessment

All manuscripts are subject to a standard Manuscript Language Assessment when first submitted to a Dove Medical Press journal, prior to undergoing any Editorial checks. This is to ensure that the Editor and peer reviewers receive a clear and well-presented manuscript, allowing for a quicker and more accurate review process.

The Manuscript Language Assessment utilizes artificial intelligence screening to identify English language errors including missing articles, the misuse of prepositions, subject-verb agreement errors, verb tenses, noun numbers, and spelling. The language quality of the manuscript is then determined based on the number of errors detected.

After completing the Manuscript Language Assessment, we may require that a manuscript undergoes English editing before it can proceed to peer review. In these cases, the contact author will be notified to advise that English editing is required. At this time, we will also provide a copy of the Manuscript Language Assessment report, which will highlight the errors identified.

The Manuscript Language Assessment report categorizes language errors into two broad categories, which are highlighted in different colors. These categories are spelling errors (highlighted in yellow) and grammatical errors/missing words (highlighted in blue).

A full list of the types of errors identified, including examples of errors and how to correct them, can be found at the bottom of this page.

Please note that the Manuscript Language Assessment report is automatically generated, and thus some errors may not have been identified. As such, while any identified errors will be highlighted for your reference, we still recommend that your full manuscript undergoes a complete copy-edit to ensure that all language errors are addressed. This generally provides better results compared to individually addressing highlighted errors.

Further, please note that Manuscript Language Assessment reports are only sent out in cases where we have determined that a manuscript requires English language revision. If you have not received a report, then your manuscript has passed this assessment and has moved to the next stage in the editorial process.

Professional English Language Editing Services:

For professional English language copy-editing services, we recommend the use of The Charlesworth Group. 

The service checks and corrects English language grammar and style. When the editing is complete you will be sent a sample page to approve. When you have approved the sample you will then be asked for payment and the full, edited paper will be made available to you.

Please contact The Charlesworth Group for details of this service and to request a quote.

If you require funding, you may wish to contact Author Aid.

Note that use of this editing service does not guarantee your manuscript will be accepted for publication in a Dove Press journal.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Is the Manuscript Language Assessment Report sent to Peer Reviewers and/or the Editor?

No, the Manuscript Language Assessment Report is not sent to Peer Reviewers or the Editor.

Does Dove Medical Press offer in-house copy-editing services?

No, Dove Medical Press does not offer full in-house English language copy-editing services. For professional copy-editing services, we recommend The Charlesworth Group.

Can I correct the identified English language errors after peer review?

No. While minor corrections can be made later in the process, we require that major English language errors are corrected prior to being sent to peer review. This ensures that the Editor and peer reviewers receive a clear and well-presented manuscript, allowing for a quicker and more accurate review process.

My manuscript has failed the Manuscript Language Assessment, but I have already paid for professional editing services. What should I do?

It is a fair expectation that paying for a copy editor to polish your paper will result in the paper passing assessment for English language with a publisher. Unfortunately, in some cases, a paper may not have been sufficiently improved to pass our language assessment. In these cases, we would recommend that you request a refund for the service and use another copy editor.

Is professional English editing required for Dove Medical Press to consider my manuscript?

No, professional English editing is not a requirement for consideration of a manuscript; however, it is recommended in cases where manuscripts have failed the Manuscript Language Assessment. As an alternative to professional English editing, we would recommend seeking the assistance of a colleague who is a native English speaker.

The Manuscript Language Assessment Report is highlighting medical terminology/brand names/proper nouns as spelling errors – how do I proceed?

We apologize for the inconvenience. The artificial intelligence tool that is used to generate the Manuscript Language Assessment report is a relatively new tool, and we are still optimizing the algorithm to accurately identify areas where improvements are needed. The artificial intelligence tool has a particularly hard time identifying medical terminology, brand names, and proper nouns. Please be reassured that these terms do not need to be corrected for spelling.

The Manuscript Language Assessment report has highlighted a word as containing a grammatical error; however, the word highlighted is grammatically correct – how do I proceed?

Please double check to ensure that no words are missing from the sentence containing the highlighted word. The Manuscript Language Assessment report highlights missing words in the same manner as grammatical errors. In the case of a missing word, the word after the missing word will be highlighted. Please see the “Commonly Identified Errors” table below for an example of how an identified missing word error appears in the Manuscript Language Assessment report.

Should I use American English or British English? Will I be penalized if I use one over the other?

The Manuscript Language Assessment does not discriminate between American English or British English (e.g., “utilize” vs “utilise”). You will not be penalized for using one language style over the other.

What happens if my manuscript fails the Manuscript Language Assessment more than once?

Manuscripts can fail the Manuscript Language Assessment up to three times. If the manuscript subsequently fails the Manuscript Language Assessment for a fourth time, it will be withdrawn so that you may amend your manuscript further.

Please note that, if your manuscript is withdrawn for failing the Manuscript Language Assessment, this does not preclude resubmission once the English language errors have been corrected.

Why was my manuscript rejected after correcting for English language?

The Manuscript Language Assessment is the first step in our Editorial policy, and manuscripts must pass this assessment before they can be sent to our Consulting Editor team for review. Upon receiving your manuscript, the Consulting Editor team may determine that your manuscript cannot be accepted based on a range of separate criteria, such as the scope of the journal, research ethics, novelty, or research integrity.

Does the Manuscript Language Assessment check for plagiarism?

No, the Manuscript Language Assessment does not check for plagiarism. All manuscripts are subjected to a separate plagiarism check using the iThenticate software. Passing the Manuscript Language Assessment does not mean that plagiarism or recycled text will not be detected.


Commonly Identified Errors (By clicking on this link a pdf file will be downloaded which displays examples with common errors identified in the Manuscript Language Assessment report and how to correct these types of errors.)

Updated 5 December 2022