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Scholarly Communications@TCU: Data Management Services

Information about scholarly publishing and open access issues at TCU

Data Management Services

The TCU Library is pleased to work with all faculty, staff, and students to find a place to publish and preserve digital data. As part of this process, the library will work with you to ensure that the data are in formats appropriate for long term use and preservation, and that the data are described appropriately.

We can:

  • Help you build a data management plan
  • House your data in our online repository
  • Work with you to find an outside subject-based repository for your data
  • Write letters to support your grant proposals.

If you choose to house your data in our online repository, we will assign a DOI (Digital Object Identifier) number that uniquely identifies your data.

Fill out the application form to get started!

Apply Now

About Data Management Plans

A Data Management Plan (DMP) or Data Management and Sharing Plan (DMSP) is a document that outlines all of the data that you will generate, acquire, use, analyze, store, or share as you complete a research project, as well as the mechanisms to accomplish those tasks. Often, grant funders require a data management plan as part of the grant application.

Here are DMP requirements for major funders:

One way that many people build data management plans is with DMPTool, which is administered at the University of California.

TCU Data Repository Collection Policy

If you would like to house data in TCU's online repository, please read the policy below.


Who may deposit data?

All TCU faculty, staff, and students may deposit data in the repository. If the data has multiple contributors, then at least one contributor must be a TCU faculty member, staff or student.

What types of data may be deposited?

The TCU Library accepts data that is in support of research and teaching conducted by faculty, staff and students. Research data includes a variety of formats, including but not limited to numerical data, notebooks, spreadsheets, photo, and video. In all cases, the data must be in a final form, ready for publication in the repository. It must not contain any sensitive, private, legally protected, or confidential information. The library will consider very large data projects on a case-by-case basis.

What file types are acceptable?

The library prefers file types that are not dependent on specific software packages, but may make exceptions when necessary. For example, .csv is preferred over .xlsx format. Please see the Library of Congress Recommended Formats Statement for more information. The use of file types that are not dependent on specific software packages supports the goal of long term preservation and usage.

How must the data be prepared?

All data must be described appropriately. The aim is to make your data easily findable and re-usable by others. Describing your data includes:

  • Using descriptive file names that are easy to understand.
  • Developing a README file that provides a general overview of the data and lists the files with their respective purpose(s).  The README should include the title of the dataset, name and contact information for the contributor(s), and the date(s) of the data collection. Lastly, it should contain any other information, such as names of variables, column headings in tables, units of measurement, or definitions of other terms that would be helpful for someone to reuse the data. Please review the Cornell University Guide to writing “readme” style metadata for additional guidelines on crafting an effective readme file.
  • Including any additional files such as user manuals, data dictionaries, or other information to assist the end user.
  • Review your data to ensure that it contains no sensitive, private, legally protected, or confidential information.


The TCU Library anticipates providing this service at no cost to the contributor for all or nearly all data projects. The library will contact you if it anticipates that fees will need to be charged.

Intellectual Property

As part of the deposit agreement, you will be agreeing to assign a Creative Commons CC0 waiver to your data, which is akin to putting it into the public domain. The library recommends the CC0 in most cases as it avoids many obstacles to reuse of the data, including the problem of attribution stacking. If you prefer a different license than CC0, please contact the TCU Library to consider other options, such as CC-BY.  

What you agree to when you deposit data with the TCU Library

When you fill out the form to request housing data with the TCU Library, you will agree:

  • That you are the creator and/or have the right to deposit the data with the TCU Library.
  • To assign a CC0 waiver to your data, unless you come to an agreement with the TCU Library for an alternative license agreement.
  • That there is no sensitive, private, legally protected, or confidential information included in the data, and if at a future time you discover that it is does contain such information, that you will contact the TCU Library immediately.


Contact to contact us about your data needs.


With permission, some information on this webpage was re-used from the Duke University Libraries website.