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Research Data Management Self-Assessment

A self-assessment and introductory guide to research data management for researchers

Self-Assessment Rubric for researchers

Ad Hoc


Active and Informative

Optimized for Re-Use

Planning your project

When it comes to my data, I have a "way of doing things" but no standard or documented plans.

I create some formal plans about how I will manage my data at the start of a project, but I generally don't refer back to them.

I develop detailed plans about how I will manage my data that I actively revisit and revise over the course of a project.

I have created plans for managing my data that are designed to streamline its future use by myself or others.

Organizing your data

I don’t follow a consistent approach for keeping my data organized, so it often takes time to find things.

I have an approach for organizing my data, but I only put it into action after my project is complete.

I have an approach for organizing my data that I implement prospectively, but it not necessarily standardized.

I organize my data so that others can navigate, understand, and use it without me being present.

Saving and backing up your data

I decide what data is important while I am working on it and typically save it in a single location.

I know what data needs to be saved and I back it up after I'm done working on it to reduce the risk of loss.

I have a system for regularly saving important data while I am working on it. I have multiple backups.

I save my data in a manner and location designed maximize opportunities for re-use by myself and others.

Getting your data ready for analysis

I don't have a standardized or well documented process for preparing my data for analysis.

I have thought about how I will need to prepare my data, but I handle each case in a different manner.

My process for preparing data is standardized and well documented.

I prepare my data in such a way as to facilitate use by both myself and others in the future.

Analyzing your data and handling the outputs

I often have to redo my analyses or examine their products to determine what procedures or parameters were applied.

After I finish my analysis, I document the specific parameters, procedures, and protocols applied.

I regularly document the specifics of both my analysis workflow and decision making process while I am analyzing my data.

I have ensured that the specifics of my analysis workflow and decision making process can be understood and put into action by others.

Sharing and publishing your data

I share the results of my research, but generally I do not share the underlying data.

I share my data only when I'm required to do so or in response to direct requests from other researchers.

I regularly share the data that underlies my results and conclusions in a form that enables use by others.

Because of my excellent data management practices, I am able to efficiently share my data whenever I need to with whomever I need to.