Personal Manuscript Acceptance Rates: Metrics for Self-assessment in Scholarship

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: There is no established baseline for how frequently clinical researchers personally encounter manuscript rejection, making it difficult for faculty to put their own evolving experience in context. The purpose of this study was to determine the feasibility of obtaining personal acceptance per submission (APS) and acceptance per manuscript (APM) rates for individual faculty members.

Methods: We performed a cross-section survey pilot study of clinical faculty members of two departments (family medicine and pediatrics), in one academic health center in the academic year 2017-2018. The survey asked participants to report the number of attempted submissions required per journal article they have had accepted in the prior 2 years as well as any submissions that did not lead to publication.

Results: Sixty-eight of 136 eligible faculty (50%) completed the questionnaire. Academic clinicians in the sample eventually published 80% of the manuscripts submitted, with 39% of papers rejected per submission attempt. Associate professors had the highest APS (0.71) and APM (0.88).

Conclusions: In this pilot, we demonstrated the feasibility of retrospectively collecting data that could identify baseline manuscript acceptance rates and were able to generate department averages and rank specific averages for manuscript acceptance and rejection. We confirmed that rejection is common among academic clinicians. The APS and APM can be used by academic clinicians to track their own progress from day one of their publishing careers as a method of self-assessment, rather than having to wait for citations to accumulate.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberDOI: 10.22454/PRiMER.2019.834349
Issue number25
StatePublished - Nov 14 2019

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article


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