Asst. Prof. Sawsan Kareem Zghayyir Al-Saaidi (Ph.D.)

Peer review of journal articles is generally seen as a cornerstone to academic publishing by enhancing peer perspectives and imparting credibility. This is presented through scrutinizing the submitted reviewing reports by referees/reviewers (mutually used in this research) who are experts in the same field. The corpus of this research consists of twenty-four reports for twenty-one manuscripts submitted to twenty international journals that operate either single or double blind peer review in various disciplines namely: Engineering, Pure Sciences, Medicine, and Humanities and Social Sciences solicited from Iraqi academicians. To analyse such data, a framework based on Bhatia’s (1993) cognitive structuring approach, Fortanet’s (2008) model of moves, and Mungra and Webber’s (2010) model of content and language comments is adopted. A qualitative descriptive analysis is employed to analyse generic, discoursal, and comment aspects. The findings reveal that the referees follow a special format in their peer review reports in relation to structural organization of the reports along with the use of positive and negative comments. The macro-level analysis (generic analysis) of the selected data consists of four substantial rhetorical moves. In the present study, these moves are mostly recurrent in the discipline of Medicine whereas the least moves frequency is in the discipline of Pure Sciences. Moreover, the most frequent move is move 3, Points of criticism, while move 1, Summarizing judgments regarding the suitability for publication, is the least frequent move in the analyzed reports. At the micro-level of analysis, the referees employ some lexico-grammatical features to achieve their communicative purposes such as the use of the present simple tense to indicate the general truths and the scientific facts in the submitted works.