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I have submitted a paper. The reviewers might agree to accept its publication, but they have asked that I revise it. I have not yet submitted the revision to them. What can I say about the paper ? Should I say that the paper is under revision or under review, or something else ?

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  • For which purpose do you have to declare the state of that paper? Sep 30, 2016 at 18:31
  • I am writing my resume, but besides that, I would like to know the correct way to describe the state of the paper.
    – Jack
    Sep 30, 2016 at 18:32
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    In general, I'd simply say "submitted to XXX", but if you specify the country you're applying to, someone more familiar with the specific hiring system can give you better advice. Sep 30, 2016 at 18:36
  • Ah, I wanted to insist on the fact that it has been submitted, and that now it is "in revision". But I do not know if the correct way to say that is "in revision".
    – Jack
    Sep 30, 2016 at 18:43
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    The usual denomination is "under review". Sep 30, 2016 at 18:44

3 Answers 3

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I would use some of the following:

  1. submitted
  2. under review
  3. submitted to …

and do not stress that there is already a revision going on. Even revised papers may get rejected, so being in revision is no guarantee to get the paper published. I also would not state the journal to which the paper is submitted to because I do not see how this says anything about the quality of the paper. If you think, that the paper is good and interesting for whoever reads the CV, make it available as a preprint and provide a link.

I myself have a section "Preprints" in my CV where I list submitted but not published papers with links to the arXiv and add the line "submitted, month, year".

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    I would definitely not list whom I have submitted a paper to if it has not been accepted.
    – David
    Oct 1, 2016 at 3:03
  • Me too. I am not really sure why, but probably I have the subconscious impression that people who do this usually shoot too high with their papers (or are bigshots who do great work, know where to submit and get everything accepted that way…).
    – Dirk
    Oct 1, 2016 at 14:14
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A. Scientist. My Brilliant, Albeit Slightly Flawed Work. Journal of Sciencing. (in revision)

Is the standard way I note these on my CV, when I feel like doing so.

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  • 'in revision' may imply to some fraction of readers that you are claiming that paper is 99%-100% accepted with 'small revisions' requested by editor. I would use @Fomite example, but as "A. Scientist. My Brilliant, Albeit Slightly Flawed Work. Journal of Sciencing. (in review) or simply just use 'submitted'. The care that one uses probably depends on where the CV goes. (If it is to a Tenure and Promotion committee, anything that looks like a candidate is trying to be a bit sly tends to raise red flags causing everything to be scrutinized to see if there is a pattern of sly problems.
    – Carol
    Sep 30, 2016 at 23:06
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    @Carol My issue is that "in revision" at least implies that it hasn't been desk rejected, or killed in the first round of review. It can be major, it can be minor, but it has a shot. Anything can be "Submitted" - I can submit an incoherent screed to Nature, Science and Cell today. But generally, I do agree that these should be very limited in number, and in their own section.
    – Fomite
    Sep 30, 2016 at 23:08
  • I figure a typical consumer of a CV puts pubs in three classes - 1) accepted/published/in-press and verifiable 2) submitted (at least it exists) and 3) 'in preparation'(wishful). Putting more precise information makes the candidate feel better but can backfire if it appears deceptive- or if it appears the candidate doesn't understand the review process (i.e., many ways to lose it until it is in print!). As you mention - it looks best to put the in review or in revision etc in their own section away from the accepted and published. It is usually more expected in early career CV than mid/
    – Carol
    Sep 30, 2016 at 23:45
  • @Carol I've encountered enough "Pfft, who do they think they're kidding" responses that I don't include submitted or in prep unless it's super relevant.
    – Fomite
    Sep 30, 2016 at 23:46
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Be as honest as possible.

1) If the paper has been accepted pending revisions, then say this.

2) If the paper has not been accepted, and all you're doing is responding to reviewer's comments, then it has not been accepted. I would put it on my CV as "in submission" without saying where it has been submitted. Your specific field might have different norms about this.

As a practical matter, you don't want to misrepresent yourself to potential employers. You especially don't want to create a situation where they think you've accomplished something when you really haven't, and it comes out later that there was a misunderstanding. That's a real good way to kill your career before it starts.

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