I submitted a research paper to a journal on 30th July 2015 and its status went 'under review' on 19th August 2015. I did not receive any communication from the journal, so I sent a gentle reminder on 11th Dec. 2015. Unfortunately I did not receive any response again. I then waited until 29th Jan 2016 and sent a reminder email again. Fortunately, the editor replied with "Your paper has been partially reviewed and we are waiting for remaining reviewers' response." The editor assured me that they will encourage the reviewer to submit the response.

Now, the status of the paper has changed from "Under review, date 19th Aug. 2015" to "Under review, date 2nd Feb. 2016".

I do not know what should I comprehend from this change in date?

  • "2nd Feb 2016"? – Ric Feb 3 '16 at 19:40

When the status remains the same, but the status date changes, this often indicates that some of the reviewer comments have been added to the database and the editor has started accessing the database to view the comments. This also corroborates with what the editor has mentioned in his email to you. Probably, one of the reviewers has submitted the review while the others have not yet done so. Once all the reviews come in, the status will change to "required reviews completed."


My guess is that the reviewer they were waiting for has withdrawn or been dropped and a different reviewer been assigned. There are other internal actions that might cause the same sort of visible change as well, but all of them likely signify progress toward receiving your response.

  • Thanks for your answer. Might be another silly question, can I expect final decision soon? I mean since the new reviewer has taken the manuscript which is declined/not-responded by other reviewer so he will make review faster. – user3563929 Feb 3 '16 at 20:45
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    @user3563929 Unfortunately, there's no way to tell whether the editor will be any more effective in picking a new reviewer this time than last time. I expect it's likely going to be quite bimodal: either you'll get a decision within a month or else you're going back into indefinite limbo again. – jakebeal Feb 3 '16 at 21:32

I have experienced such situations as an author, reviewer, and editor. Generally, the reason for such change is that due to delay in reviewer's response or unable to provide review on the paper due to lack of sufficient knowledge in that area. In such case, editor assign a new reviewer in order to review the paper. Normally, each paper must be reviewed by at least 2 independent reviewers, and some editors (like me) prefer 3 reviews so that it becomes easy to take appropriate decision in case any two reviews contradict. Also, if the editor already have received a review or two, he/she asks assigned reviewer to provide review strictly within the review period defined by the journal. I hope you will get the reviews of your paper within the review time of the journal (after Feb. 2'16).

  • Thanks for your answer. As a reviewer how long would you give to the reviewer to review it ? Also assuming that only one reviewer has given response as 'rejected', would (you as) editor again send it to review to another reviewer or directly reject it ? I just want to guess reviewer's response if only one has responded so far. Thanks in advance. – user3563929 Feb 5 '16 at 20:09
  • I'll give a full consideration to the paper while sending to other reviewer, even if one has rejected. However, I will strict to the time specified by the journal to review the paper. I think you know the fact that due to their busy schedule many reviewers send their reviews late. – user24094 Feb 5 '16 at 20:53
  • Today I checked the status and it has changed the date once again i.e. 15 Feb. 2016 under review. Does it mean the reviewer has once again changed ? – user3563929 Feb 16 '16 at 8:07

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