However, if the language is poor but you understand the core message, see if you can suggest improvements to fix the problem: Your primary role is judging the research content. Editors will make sure that the text is at a high standard before publication.
Following the invitation to review, when you'll have received the article abstract, you should already understand the aims, key data and conclusions of the manuscript.
If you don't, make a note now that you need to feedback on how to improve those sections. It will help you form an initial impression of the paper and get a sense of whether your eventual recommendation will be to accept or reject the paper. If methodology is less of an issue, it's often a good idea to look at the data tables, figures or images first.
The detailed read-through should take no more than an hour for the moderately experienced reviewer.
"Offer clear suggestions for how the authors can address the concerns raised.
This point is only valid if researchers can point to recent developments in data gathering techniques or to research in indirectly related fields that suggest the topic needs revisiting.
Clearly, authors can only do this by referencing recent literature.It is also important at this stage to declare any potential Conflict of Interest.The structure of the review report varies between journals.In other words, if you're going to raise a problem, provide a solution." (Jonathon Halbesleben, Editor of Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology) Editors say, "If a manuscript has many English language and editing issues, please do not try and fix it.If it is too bad, note that in your review and it should be up to the authors to have the manuscript edited." If the article is difficult to understand, you should have rejected it already.Such issues include: After the initial read and using your notes, including those of any major flaws you found, draft the first two paragraphs of your review - the first summarizing the research question addressed and the second the contribution of the work.If the journal has a prescribed reporting format, this draft will still help you compose your thoughts.Some follow an informal structure, while others have a more formal approach.Many journals don't provide criteria for reviews beyond asking for your 'analysis of merits'.It need not be fully complete research - it may be an interim paper.After all research is an incomplete, on-going project by its nature.