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Research data management training modules in Archaeology (Cambridge)

Lloyd-Smith, Lindsay

DataTrain: research data management training modules in Archaeology

Authors: Lindsay Lloyd-Smith 
Created: 1 October 2011, by Lindsay Lloyd-Smith

Looking after digital data is central to good research. We all know of horror stories of people losing or deleting their entire dissertation just weeks prior to a deadline! But even before this happens, good practice in looking after research data from the beginning to the end of a project makes work and life a lot less stressful. Defined in the widest sense, digital data includes all files created or manipulated on a computer (text, images, spreadsheets, databases, etc). With publishing and archiving of research increasingly online we all have a responsibility to ensure the long-term preservation of archaeological data, while at same time being aware of issues of sensitive data, intellectual property rights, open access, and freedom of information. The DataTrain teaching materials have been designed to familiarise post-graduate students in good practice in looking after their research data. A central tenet is the importance of thinking about this in conjunction with the projected outputs and publication of research projects. The eight presentations, followed by group discussion and written exercises, follow the lifecycle of digital data from pre-project planning, data creation, data management, publication, long-term preservation and lastly to issues of the re-use of digital data. At the same time the course follows the career path of researchers from post-graduate research students, through post-doctoral research projects, to larger collaborative and inter-disciplinary projects. The teaching material is targeted at co-ordinators of Core Research Skills courses for first year post-graduate research students in archaeology. The material is open access and you are invited to re-use and amend the content as best suits the requirements of your university department. The complete course is designed to run either as a four hour half-day workshop, or 2 x 2 hour classes. Alternatively, individual modules can be slotted into existing data management and core research skills teaching.

Published: 4 July 2013, by DataTrain project at the University of Cambridge. Funded by the JISC Managing Research Data programme.

Keywords: RDMTrain, archaeology, research data management, graduate training 

Licence: Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported

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