Wikibooks:Editorial board guidelines/Editorial review

The purpose of the editorial review is to ensure that a textbook is factual and as free from error as possible. The editorial board should concentrate on accuracy. Clarity of presentation is also important - confusion is a form of error. Minor issues of style are less important - the board might advise on "scrappy" illustrations etc. but these are not mission critical and even a scrappy illustration may transmit more understanding than a thousand words.

Editors should provide as much guidance as possible in the answers to the questions below so that authors can correct faults.

Composition of the Board edit

Enter the userid's of the board members below:

Lead expert:

Second expert:

Administrative editor:


(Any challenges to the composition of the board must be made within 2 weeks of the above date and before any editor has devoted substantial time > 1 hour to the review)

PDF File edit

Enter a link to the book's PDF below. The PDF must not be revised whilst the review is in progress except at the request of the editorial board.

(ie: media:biology.pdf bracketed with double square brackets.)

Preparation by Editorial Board edit

Each expert member of the board should state which outside textbooks they will use for comparison with the book. Links should be included with e-books.

Lead Expert edit

(ie: Grays Anatomy)

Second Expert edit

First Pass edit

The administrative editor should answer the questions below with yes/no or an appropriate response.

  • Is there an acceptable front cover?
  • Is there a link to Wikibooks on the front cover?
  • Is there an edition number?
  • Is the title appropriate for the contents?
  • Is there a Table of Contents?
  • Are there any copyright violations?
  • Is there adequate content for this level of textbook?
  • Is the book a "Guide", "Textbook" or "Complementary/Supplementary text"?
  • Are illustration/text/maths legible?

Second Pass edit

This phase of the review should be dedicated to assuring the accuracy of the content. Any biassed point of view should be noted. Once the review is complete the editor should note this at the bottom of their section. The authors should then correct the faults and produce a new PDF and submit this again.

Each editor should note errors here:

Review of initial book edit

Errors noted by lead expert edit

Errors noted by second expert edit

Review of Revision 1 edit

Errors noted by lead expert edit

Errors noted by second expert edit

Third pass edit

The editorial board should state here whether the book has passed review:

Has the book passed review? .....

If the book has not passed the authors should spend the next 6 months digesting why it failed and correcting the problems. Alternatively the authors may leave the book as an unapproved text.

If the book has passed then the authors should insert the edition date on the second page, the seal of approval on the front cover (if desired) and the following text on the second page:

This (textbook/study guide/Supplementary text) has been approved by a Wikibooks board of experts. It is a stable edition that will not be changed.

In the case of Supplementary Texts the following warning should be added:

This is a Supplementary Text for a course of study. It may be intended to stimulate debate. Where the authors have treated the subject from a particular point of view this has been noted in the text. Students should be aware that particular points of view may not be acceptable for answers in examinations and should seek guidance from seminar leaders, teachers or further texts.

When ISBN numbers are available for Wikibooks, the ISBN number should be added to the second page.

The administrative editor should review these changes and note that they are sufficient below:

  • Has the edition date been inserted? ...
  • Has the approval text been added on the second page? ...
  • Is the book ready for upload? ....

The authors should then upload the file as:

Appr_(book name)_ed(edition number).pdf

The editor should then ask Wikibooks administrators to amend any links to the PDF for the book on the Main Wikibooks page to the format required for approved texts. Authors should amend any other links to the PDF to link to the approved version.