Best Practices for Research Documentation

During the course of writing your results up into either a Thesis or Article, you will need to bring files from the project folder, such as figures you have created, into your local drive where they can be added to your manuscript. This section will outline how you can and should do that.


Unlike Data Acquisition Collections and Data Sharing Collections, Research Documentation Collections are intended to never have data files in them. Instead, these memorandize the ultimate motivation and reasoning for conducting the analyses you are conducting in the way that you have chosen to conduct them. So, in part, the RDC should house your process logs for conducting analyses. However, this is not all that should be in your RDC.

A very important function of the RDC is to provide a concise rationale for conducting your analyses in the way you have done. A researcher who is knowledgeable in your field but previously unfamiliar with your specific project should be able to read your so-called Rationale Letters and then read through your analysis script(s) and have an opinion about these two important questions:

  1. How reasonable is the underlying rationale of your analysis?
  2. Are the choices you have made in your analysis consistent with your rationale?

Request a Research Documentation Collection

To request an RDC, fill out this form.