Peer Review

What is the purpose?

The Peer Review module facilitates the initial evaluation of research grant applications in a secure environment by peer review groups, composed of scientists who are experts in the relevant fields of research.

The Peer Review module allows scientific review staff to prepare for, conduct and record outcomes of review meetings (including summary statements that summarize the review of grant applications). The module covers coordination, planning, conducting reviews, making award recommendations and providing review output. The module allows review staff to enter and reuse key information including application data, list of prospective reviewers, committee rosters and reviewer assignments.

What are the features of the Peer Review module?

The Peer Review module allows scientific review officers and their assistants to:

  • Invite prospective reviewers to 'Recruitment Phase,' which allows them a restricted view of the grant applications to identify any conflict(s) of interest.
  • Prepare list of applications and associated documentation for the meeting (using the Application Administration link on the module)
  • Assign applications to each reviewer (using the Reviewer Assignments link)
  • Conduct pre and post meeting administration including creating meeting rosters, agendas and reports, and assigning a review order to applications prior to the meeting
  • Generate various reports in PDF or Excel format for pre and post meeting information (using the 'Reports' link), including a report that provides a big picture of the review meetings to the administrators who supervise scientific review officers and their assistants
  • Provides for an automatic purge of sensitive data at some time after the meeting, with the timing determined in accordance with policy

These optional features are also available:

  • Optionally generate and build a percentile base table, determine which applications receive percentile and generate reports of the created tables (using the 'Percentiles' link)
  • Create and maintain lists of prospective reviewers (using the Reviewers and People Lists link) to be used outside the meeting
  • Maintain the list of scientific terms associated with applications and reviewers (using the 'Data Maintenance' link)
  • Provide review data for each reviewer with assigned grant applications, along with meeting-specific instructions for the review meeting, and prior summary statements,

[Note: Reviewers access these meeting-specific materials directly from the Internet Assisted Review module].

What are the benefits? 

The Peer Review module:

  • Facilitates the peer review of research grant applications, maintaining an information infrastructure that caters to all facets of peer review
  • Creates/reuses an enormous database of potential reviewers
  • Allows early screening and communications with potential reviewers through the 'Recruitment Phase' option
  • Allows scientific review  officers to create, maintain and share lists of prospective reviewers
  • Allows scientific review officers to determine the types of reviewers appropriate for the review and provide them access to specific applications based on their type
  • Provides notifications to applicant organizations, Principal Investigators and signing officials about review outcome
  • Automatically checks for conflicts of interest between reviewers and applications
  • Generates peer-review related reports, most downloadable to Excel spreadsheets
  • Facilitates streamlining of the review meetings by assisting scientific review officers s in identifying non-competitive applications prior to review meeting
  • Peer Review seamlessly uses meeting data as set up in the Committee Management Module, to meet the guidelines of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA)
  • Remembers custom options chosen by each user and sets those options as a default

Allows assistants to perform a full range of functions to assist the scientific review officer in his or her job.

Who can use the Peer Review Module?

The Peer Review module can be accessed by authorized review staffers using their NIH or agency log-in credentials.