Format your data

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"Create well organised and sustainable data"

Research data exist in many different forms: textual, numerical, databases, geospatial, images, audio-visual recordings, and data generated by machines or instruments. Digital data exists in specific file formats which are coded so that a software programme can read and interpret these data.

Using standard and interchangeable or open lossless data formats ensures longer-term usability of data. For longterm preservation, digital data is converted to such formats.

Data files should be clearly named, well organised, structured and quality and version controlled throughout the research. It is vital to develop suitable procedures before data gathering starts in order to adhere to any conventions, instructions, guidelines or templates that will help to ensure quality and consistency across a data collection.

Find out more:

File formats and software

Recommended formats

Organising data

Quality assurance

Version control and authenticity

Transcription

Digitising data

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Essential maintenance to our systems is planned for the morning of 19 December 2017. Users are likely to experience disruption to online services during this period.

The UK Data Service offices are closed from 12.30 GMT Friday 22 December 2017 and will re-open on Tuesday 2 January 2018. Online services will run unattended during this period. Season's Greetings to all our users.

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