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Statistics and Data

Manage Your Data

Data Management Plans

If you're applying for a grant and are required to submit a Data Management Plan, please contact the USF Office of Contracts and Grants for assistance.

A data management plan is a document describing how you will manage your data through all the stages of the research process. 
Here are templates and instructions for developing a data management plan:

  • Guidelines for Effective DMPs from the ICPSR (Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research)
  • DMPTool from the University of California
  • IEDA DMP Tool from Integrated Earth Data Applications, ideal for research in earth sciences

Data Archiving

Data archives store and preserve data, and also typically provide a means of sharing the data with other scholars. If you are looking for a suitable repository to store and/or share your data, or are looking for an existing dataset to validate research findings or mine for a new research inquiry, here are some key resources to explore:

  • Harvard Dataverse is a repository developed by Harvard and is open to all researchers worldwide to publish research data across all disciplines.
  • openICPSR is a service of the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) and is a self-publishing repository for social, behavioral, and health sciences research data.
  • FigShare  allows users to upload any file format so that figures, datasets, media, papers, posters, presentations and file sets can be disseminated.
  • Dryad  is a curated general-purpose repository that makes the data underlying scientific publications discoverable, freely reusable, and citable. Dryad charges a data publication fee of $150, but fee waivers are available.
  • Open Science Framework (OSF) is a free, open source, online platform that enables researchers to transparently plan, collect, analyze, and share their work throughout the entire research life cycle.
  • Mendeley Data is a free and secure repository where you can store your data, ensuring it is easy to share, access and cite.
  • is a registry of research data repositories - a great starting point if you want to see what repositories exist in your area of research.
  • PLOS ONE Recommended Repositories is a list of repositories recommended by PLOS One, an open access journal published by the Public Library of Science (PLOS).

ACRL Primer for Protecting Sensitive Data in Academic Research

The ACRL Primer for Protecting Sensitive Data in Academic Research was prepared by the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) Research and Scholarly Environment Committee (ReSEC) as a communication resource about providing protections for sensitive data that may be used or produced in the course of conducting academic research. This primer provides a quick grounding in the whats, whys, and hows of current regulations and practices for protecting sensitive data.


Metadata is the backbone of data management. To enable the discovery, access and use of a dataset, the dataset needs to be labelled and organized in a standardized way. Metadata standards serve this purpose, by providing a structured set of elements which describe the dataset. 

Metadata standards vary by subject area. See the Digital Curation Centre's Disciplinary Metadata Guide for commonly used metadata standards arranged by subject area. 

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