General description and quality assurance of the data

tekijä: Tiia Marjaana Puputti Viimeisin muutos tiistai 29. kesäkuuta 2021, 15.30

Questions in the data management plan:

1. What kind of data is your study based on? What kind of data do you collect, produce or reuse? What are your research questions? What is your field of study (discipline)? Are you a master’s student or a doctoral student? These questions are usually not part of the DMP, but here they are to help the teacher understand you DMP. Do not yet write about data protection or data privacy.

2. How do you ensure the coherence and quality of your data? E.g. how do you make sure the data doesn’t accidentally change as you process it?


Related to the FAIR principles of Findable, Accessible and Re-usable.  

At the beginning of your data management plan (DMP), describe briefly

  • what kind of data you intend to collect or produce, or
  • what kind of existing data you will use, or
  • what archived data you will reuse.
For example: interviews, surveys, texts, figures, photos, measurement results, statistics, physical samples or code. 
Your data is usually not a static piece of information!
  • Layers of data. You might create something new from the original data: tables, figures and compilations. These create new layers of data.
  • Moving the data. Data are often transferred from one form or place to another. E.g. from the survey forms to analysis software or from recordings to transcriptions.

How you will ensure the coherence of your data? In other words, how do you ensure with quality assurance that the data do not accidentally change and that they remain faultless during their entire life cycle? For example:

  • Take a copy of the original data and work on the copy, not the original files, if possible.
  • Make sure the original content is preserved if data are exported from one system or place to another.
    • E.g. from the survey forms to analysis software or from recordings to transcriptions.
  • Let someone else check the transcriptions of recorded and/or filmed materials.
    • This is only possible if you work in a research group or with a thesis partner, since recorded/filmed materials contain personal data.
  • Store backup copies of different versions.
  • Verify that your digitised data correspond precisely enough to the original physical or analogue data.
  • Check the calibration of measuring equipment.
  • Use checksums if the software provides them.

Source

If you want, you can check some examples at DMP Tuuli’s public data management plans. Remember that copying is not recommended.  Note that the public plans do not follow the same framework and their content may contain gaps or errors.