The Data Orientation Checklist is intended to help a data user navigate an unfamiliar dataset, research material or digital collection. Whether joining a new research lab or downloading data from a public repository, navigating new data can be confusing and frustrating. This checklist was developed from the perspective of an archivist working with research data and borrows best practices from archival processing and research.
Archivists at Purdue University Libraries have been working with data curation initiatives since the mid-2000s. Early in the Libraries’ work with managing research data, Dean of Libraries James Mullins saw the value of archivists’ knowledge in areas such as raw “data” collection, sensitive or personal information management, and defining user groups. Mullins brought the University Archivist onto the Steering Committee for the Purdue University Research Repository (PURR) in 2011 and today archivists continue to collaborate with data librarians and faculty researchers on managing, curating, and preserving research data.
This checklist was created in 2016 for use in the Purdue G.R.I.P (Graduate Research Information Portal) course Data Management IV, instructed by Carly Dearborn and Megan Sapp Nelson.
archives, archivists, data curation, digital preservation, libraries
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