Getting started for new editors

Dr Henry Knipe et al.

This article is aimed at new editors to assist them in getting started

The role of editors is to support the senior and managing editors in the day-to-day content review as well as special projects. Everybody has a different amount of time they can volunteer on but as a rule of thumb, at least a weekly contribution is expected.

Every edit on is listed on the all edits page and its status as being reviewed is indicated by a green thumbs up (positive review) or a red thumbs down (negative review):

  • green thumbs up:
    • articles: no or minor editing required; fits within the style guide; correct spelling, grammar and punctuation
    • cases: patient confidentiality and privacy maintained; correct diagnosis; correct spelling, grammar and punctuation
  • red thumbs down: everything else
    • for every red thumbs down you should contact the user, you can use the automated inserts or write your own, explaining the reason and coaching them so that the user’s next edit is perfect

The little number next to a user’s name is their “karma score”, which indicates the number of positive vs negative reviews. A karma score of >10 is required for edits to become automatically published. 

The style guide that has been developed at is one deliberately chosen to ensure clarity, consistency and quality. Below are listed some of the most common errors that should be kept in mind when reviewing article edits and cases:

  • diagnostic certainty set at "Certain" instead of "Almost certain"
  • general spelling and punctuation issues
    • incorrect case title formatting: only the first word and proper nouns should be capitalized
    • including spaces before a comma / full stop and double spacing after a full stop
    • capitalizing the first letter and terminal punctuation of a bullet point
  • incorrect headings and/or order (see: standard article structure)
  • incorrect referencing (see: references)
    • including the in-line reference missing or after the punctuation
  • do not moderate your own edits - this defeats the purpose of peer-moderation
  • bookmark the all edits page so you can easily and quickly access it; one or two reviews a day makes a huge difference
  • if there is something that you are not sure about then escalate by emailing a senior editor
Help and Style Guide

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