Poster Session

Posters presented at the 7th Annual University of Massachusetts and New England Area Librarian e-Science Symposium held on April 9, 2015.

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Thursday, April 9th
12:00 PM

A Comparison of Student and Faculty Attitudes on the Management and Sharing of Research Data at UMMS

Rebecca Reznik-Zellen, University of Massachusetts Medical School
Lisa A. Palmer, University of Massachusetts Medical School
Nancy E. Harger, University of Massachusetts Medical School
Sally A. Gore, University of Massachusetts Medical School
Donna Kafel, University of Massachusetts Medical School

12:00 PM

Objective: This poster presents a comparison of student and faculty responses to surveys on data management attitudes that were distributed during 2014. In the Spring, the Lamar Soutter Library distributed a survey to UMMS students on their attitudes toward and awareness of research data management best practices. Similarly, in the Fall and using the student instrument as a guide, the library surveyed UMMS faculty on their attitudes and practices around research data management. Results from the surveys set a baseline and identified needed resources and training opportunities on campus.

Methods: Using both of these sources of data, we compare student and faculty attitudes on the management and sharing of research data at UMMS.

Results: Students and faculty survey results reveal some similarities between the two groups. While faculty self-scored higher for general familiarity with data management activities and awareness of data management best practices, students and faculty report similar responses to questions concerning time spent managing data, common data management challenges and solutions, and systems used to manage data. Survey data also informed targets groups for outreach and identified existing resources for data management support throughout the university.

Conclusions: Faculty and student responses to data management surveys at UMMS have revealed opportunities for collaboration and identified potential service areas for data management support. This feedback has been instrumental in informing the library’s strategic agenda for library-based research data management services.

Assessment of Data Management Services at New England Region Resource Libraries

Julie Goldman, University of Massachusetts Medical School
Donna Kafel, University of Massachusetts Medical School
Elaine R. Martin, University of Massachusetts Medical School

12:00 PM

Objective: Data management is a prominent topic in librarianship and therefore institutional libraries must incorporate this new area of scientific research into how they assist their users. This study looked at the processes medical and science libraries are taking to address new types of scientific research and provide needed services to their community.

Setting: The population for this study included the National Network of Libraries of Medicine New England Resource Libraries. Of the seventeen libraries, twelve are academic health sciences libraries: ten resource libraries are associated with Association of American Medical Colleges accredited medical schools, and two have long-established pharmaceutical and nursing programs. The remaining five are hospital libraries that serve multi-disciplinary health centers.

Methods: The forty-question online survey looked into New England Region Resource Medical Libraries’ services and programs for data management education and support. These libraries shared their processes for creating new data services and highlighted their institution’s needs and challenges.

Results: This survey resulted in mixed responses about the strategies these libraries are using to develop and provide data services. Results show few libraries currently integrate research data management into the libraries’ services, while others are still in the development process.

Conclusions: By understanding what this region is doing to support one of the country’s largest areas of hospitals and learning institutes, this information can lead to the understanding and expansion of data services to support the growing output and collaboration of scientific research and in supporting best practices and resources for data related areas.

Boot Camp World Tour

Maxine G. Schmidt, University of Massachusetts Amherst

12:00 PM

Purpose: A review of the history and growth of Science Boot Camps (SBCs) for Librarians across North America.

Methods: A panel of SBC planners gathered at the Midwinter meeting of the American Library Association in Chicago, IL, on January 31 2015 to share information with science librarians from across the U.S. and Canada.

Results: While the financing, scheduling and number of attenders of SBCs vary, they share the same goals-- informal, inexpensive, regional opportunities for professional development and networking. All planners emphasized the value of SBCs, and noted the heaviest workload fell on the venue organizers.

Conclusions: SBCs provide effective and economical opportunities for professional development. The SBC concept is robust, somewhat scalable, and is suitable for non-science disciplines as well.

Cataloging University Research Resources to Create DMPTool Templates and a LibGuide Research Portal

Margaret E. Henderson, Virginia Commonwealth University
Christopher Wimble, Virginia Commonwealth University

12:00 PM


Research data management plans require information about the resources used to create, store, and analyze the data. A table of resources in and outside the university was compiled for use when writing DMPTool templates for grants. The table was also used to create a LibGuide to help researchers learn about all the available resources.


Initially, resources directly related to data management such as storage availability, sharing options, and database programs available at the university were investigated to find boilerplate language to use in DMPTool data management plan templates. As the data librarian worked on more plans for grant applications, it became apparent that information about research resources related to the creation of data, and resources outside of the university would help provide more comprehensive data management plans, so further resources were investigated. Interviews with researchers had highlighted the lack of a centralized research resource catalogue at the university, so the information collected in spreadsheets by a graduate assistant was used to create a research portal LibGuide for all the documented resources. Plans are also underway to collaborate with the Coordinator for Research Development Services to create a boilerplate library for grants citing university resources.

Collaborating to Improve Collaboration: Informationist Team Support for an Interdisciplinary Research Group

Margaret E. Henderson, Virginia Commonwealth University
Julie Arendt, Virginia Commonwealth University
John W. W. Cyrus, Virginia Commonwealth University
Karen H. Gau, Virginia Commonwealth University
Martha Roseberry, Virginia Commonwealth University

12:00 PM


Three subject librarians and a data librarian, representing three departments and two libraries at a university, were awarded an NLM Informationist Supplement to support an interdisciplinary research group with an NIH grant. The Informationist Team developed a model to utilize the skills of multiple librarians to support the increasing number of interdisciplinary and interprofessional research groups at the university.


A pre-survey was administered to the Research Group to provide a baseline assessment of their use of librarian expertise and library services. The Informationist Team met to identify areas of expertise to support the objectives of the grant. Literature searching, bibliographic citation management and sharing, and data management were the first areas to be considered. Librarians routinely attended lab meetings and shared notes with each other to keep up with researcher needs. When possible, research questions were answered in the lab meetings by librarians. Interviews with Research Group members were used to develop a data management plan. Collaborative tools to facilitate team communication and support research being conducted in multiple buildings on two campuses were investigated. Future work will include publication support, assessing research impact, and appraising the usefulness of the Informationist Team to the Research Group.

Data in the Sciences at Colby College, a Case Study

Suzi Cole, Colby College

12:00 PM

Objective: this poster illustrates a sabbatical project conducted from August-December, 2014, intended to identify the data needs of the Colby science faculty and to determine how the Colby Libraries might be able to meet those needs.

Methods: An environmental scan was undertaken by the sciences librarian to identify data practices of Colby College faculty in the sciences and environmental studies.There were three primary questions: What data are they producing? What are they doing with their data? What needs do they have that new library services can meet? Interviews were conducted with 25 faculty and five administrative staff from IT and the grants office. A spreadsheet was created of faculty publications from 2011-2014 (since the NSF DMP mandate), and what granting agencies faculty operated under as identified in each publication. From this spreadsheet, faculty were prioritized for interviews and then contacted for scheduling. Prior to each interview, faculty were sent a link to the newly revised LibGuide (Data Management and Archiving) and a list of interview questions.

Results: Faculty expressed a broad array of concerns, challenges, and needs regarding their research data as well as the process of conducting research at Colby. Faculty concerns and misconceptions were discovered that touch upon services throughout the College. Two pilot programs have been initiated as a result of the interviews: a series of one-minute tutorials for student research assistants, and librarian embedding in a data management/curation project with an interdisciplinary group of faculty on a multi-year Maine lakes study. Several additional data projects have been referred to our Digital & Special Collections staff for ingestion into our Digital Commons repository.

Conclusion: Small liberal arts colleges such as Colby cannot afford the luxury of data management teams such as those being formed at larger or better staffed institutions. However, we can still contribute to our college's data management support. Before launching any new service, it is enlightening to interview individual faculty about their work. Librarians may discover surprising and unexpected areas for assistance and collaboration. Discussions with faculty colleagues about their research needs (especially regarding data) help faculty to see librarians in a different light and allow the library to strategically choose how to move services ahead into new areas.

DataQ: A Collaborative Platform for Sharing Knowledge and Developing Best Practices to Support Research Data in Libraries

Megan M. Bresnahan, Tufts University
Andrew M. Johnson, University of Colorado Boulder

12:00 PM


As librarians take on new roles in supporting the management of research data, they may require opportunities and tools for professional development. To address this need, librarians at the University of Colorado Boulder began exploring ways to offer librarians guidance for answering research data questions.


The DataQ project is an IMLS­funded effort by the University of Colorado Boulder Libraries, the Greater Western Library Alliance (GWLA), and the Great Plains Network (GPN) to develop an online knowledge­base of research data questions and answers curated for and by the library community. Content will be crowd­sourced and reviewed by an editorial team. The site will also include links to resources, best practices, and practical approaches for working with researchers to address specific research data issues.


The DataQ project is intended to address the growing need for resources to assist libraries with providing support for the research data needs of faculty and students. The project team is currently establishing its editorial team and designing the site and will be seeking content contributions during 2015. The project will also establish an online community of professionals who will collaborate in the development of practical, authoritative, and peer­reviewed answers to research data questions.


With the management and curation of research data becoming a priority for many institutions, libraries, as campus centers for research services and infrastructure, are often looked to as a point of support for research data questions, and practical tools, such as DataQ, are essential for supporting this work in libraries.

Developing a Data Management Plan for a Corporate Laboratory: Using a Case Study Method for Teaching

Eric M. Kuzma, Simmons College

12:00 PM

This poster looks at the importance of developing a Data Management Plan (DMP) in the biological sciences. Grant applications increasingly require applicants to attach a DMP to their research proposals to outline the creation, storage, and dissemination of research data and information. One way to understand and assess a corporation's current DMP is to use the case study method, and this poster will walk through a DMP using this research method. This particular case study looks at the industrail scientific research process and how data is created, named, and stored, with attention to record keeping deficiencies and prospects. It also looks at the issues surrounding animal experimentation.

Facilitating Librarian Research on Data Literacy: The Institute for Research Design in Librarianship

Daina R. Bouquin, Weill Cornell Medical College of Cornell University

12:00 PM

Background: Librarians conduct research to better understand the communities they serve and to develop new services. For librarians in rapidly evolving dataintensive settings, research is especially crucial. However, librarians regularly encounter obstacles that stymie their abilities to complete necessary research projects. To address these barriers, librarian researchers at Loyola Marymount University developed The Institute for Research Design in Librarianship (IRDL).

Setting/Participants: In June 2014, a data librarian (D.B.) was accepted into the inaugural class of scholars attending the IRDL in Los Angeles, CA. During IRDL, scholars received training in research processes, including topics surrounding the formation of research questions, qualitative and quantitative research methodology, as well as mixed-methods research.

Purpose: Using the skills and network acquired during the IRDL, library researchers have been able to pursue studies for which they previously had little support. One such study is a protocol designed by a data librarian (D.B.) at Weill Cornell Medical College to assess perceptions of data literacy competencies and socio-technical barriers impeding data literacy and data management practices among biomedical research teams. The study makes use of a novel interview protocol designed to rapidly assess these issues and their impact on research data workflows. The Weill Cornell Medical College Institutional Review Board has approved this library study.

Conclusion: Participation in the IRDL has been instrumental in facilitating the execution of research aimed at examining socio-technical barriers impeding data literacy and hindering data management practices among biomedical research teams at academic medical centers.

From Idea to Action: Creating a Research Data Services Program at the University of Connecticut

Jennifer M. Eustis, University of Connecticut - Storrs
Carolyn Mills, University of Connecticut - Storrs

12:00 PM

The University of Connecticut Libraries (UCL) has long provided aspects of research data assistance to the UConn community focusing on education, training and consultations. UCL have a history of collaborating with UConn’s central IT, Sponsored Program Services and the Office of the Vice President for Research. Building on these efforts and collaborations, UCL has recently launched our Research Data Services Program in conjunction with building a Research Data Archive to service the needs of the research community. Our work is coming together into a unified set of library services.

Integrating External Resources into Health Informatics and Computing Instruction: Emerging Roles for Librarians and Information Professionals

Daina R. Bouquin, Weill Cornell Medical College of Cornell University
Michael E. Bales, Weill Cornell Medical College of Cornell University

12:00 PM

Background: In informatics courses, instructors often present materials in a didactic, module-by-module fashion; however, they may not readily integrate outside materials to facilitate learning. This may be due to a lack of time or expertise in identifying appropriate external resources. Librarians are uniquely suited to address this gap.

Setting/Participants: A librarian (D.B.) and a digital curation fellow (M.B.) taught a graduate level course on computational methods in health informatics. Students were mainly from basic science and informatics programs and had varying levels of computational experience.

Purpose: The objective of the course was to promote critical thinking about various algorithmic approaches to working with bioscience data. To encourage students to explore outside resources throughout the course, the instructors created an online subject guide containing summary-level information and online resources on the programming language R, data mining, and identification of bioscience datasets. A primary goal of the guide was to introduce students to resources that would lower barriers for them to learn to work with R. The guide was also designed to improve students’ ability to execute on their new knowledge of algorithmic approaches to data analysis. To optimize the usefulness of the guide for future course sessions, the instructors will conduct a formal assessment of how students interact with the materials.

Conclusion: Information professionals are uniquely suited to curating supplemental online resources in educational settings. Providing resources tailored to students’ changing information needs is an emerging opportunity for information professionals who wish to take an active role in fostering computational literacy.

Preparing to Share Social Science Data: An Open Source, DDI-based Curation System

Limor Peer, Yale University, Institution for Social and Policy Studies
Stephanie Wykstra, Innovations for Poverty Action
Jeremy Iverson, Colectica
Dan Smith, Colectica
Ann Green, Digital Lifecycle Research & Consulting

12:00 PM

Objective: This poster will describe the development of a curatorial system to support a repository for research data from randomized controlled trials in the social sciences.

Description: The Institution for Social and Policy Studies (ISPS) at Yale University and Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) are partnering with Colectica to develop a software platform that structures the curation workflow, including checking data for confidentiality and completeness, creating preservation formats, and reviewing and verifying code. The software leverages DDI Lifecycle – the standard for data documentation – and will enable a seamless framework for collecting, processing, archiving, and publishing data. This data curation software system combines several off-the-shelf components with a new, open source, Web application that integrates the existing components to create a flexible data pipeline. The software will help automate parts of the data pipeline and will unify the workflow for staff, and potentially for researchers. Default components include Fedora Commons, Colectica Repository, and Drupal, but the software is developed so each of these can be swapped for alternatives.

Results: The software is designed to integrate into any repository workflow, and can also be incorporated earlier in the research workflow, ensuring eventual data and code deposits are of the highest quality.

Conclusions: This poster will describe the requirements for the new curatorial workflow tool, the components of the system, how tasks are launched and tracked, and the benefits of building an integrated curatorial system for data, documentation, and code.

Preserving Scientific Research Data at Middlebury College

Wendy Shook, Middlebury College

12:00 PM

Middlebury College is a small undergraduate college which nevertheless produces significant volumes of research data created by both faculty and students. Many funding agencies now require robust data management planning, including data archiving, but not all the data locally produced with such funding fits naturally into national, discipline specific repositories. Thus, we are attempting to create a local repository to curate this data. We began a pilot with the repository software that was already available on campus, but it has become clear that a more flexible platform is needed, so a second phase of the pilot has begun.

Usability Testing Driven Redesign of Dataverse, an Open Source Data Repository

Elizabeth Quigley, Harvard University

12:00 PM

Purpose: This study focuses on improvements in the usability of the Dataverse data repository open source software over the course of development of the latest version, 4.0, through iterative usability testing.

Subjects:Thirty current international users of Dataverse comprised of researchers, librarians, and data archivists.

Method: Users were selected to participate after either volunteering or being recommended by a member of the Dataverse development team. Users participated either in person or remotely (via Skype, Google Hangout or and sessions lasted for around 45 minutes. Each session involved a user completing specific tasks in Dataverse 4.0 to validate design decisions made for workflows. Each session was recorded with Morae software in order for the data to be later analyzed. Qualitative and quantitative data were collected through observation and surveys. The System Usability Scale was used as the post­session questionnaire as a way to track the perceived usability of Dataverse 4.0 as it was developed. To identify patterns in workflow issues, affinity diagrams were used to determine which usability issues happened most frequently and when workflows were interrupted.

Results: This study began in December of 2013 and concluded in February 2015 lasted throughout the development of Dataverse 4.0 therefore results varied depending on what piece of functionality or feature was being developed at the time. With iterative usability testing, the taxonomy for Dataverse 4.0 was able to come straight from users not understanding labels that had been used and suggesting labels that were more logical to them, ways to provide users with multiple entry points to editing datasets was added based off user feedback, and faceted navigation for searching dataverses, datasets, and files was improved to allow users to narrow down to only one type easily.

Conclusion: Overall, Dataverse 4.0 was able to quickly be tested and designs were able to be validated when they were developed rather than waiting months for users to interact with them. Most importantly, the Dataverse development team was able to release a product that had already been through extensive user review therefore eliminating potentially large issues that could or would impact a user being able to find or add data to Dataverse.

Virginia Data Management Bootcamp: A Collaborative Initiative in Data Education

Margaret E. Henderson, Virginia Commonwealth University

12:00 PM

Academic research libraries are quickly developing support for research data management, including both new services and infrastructures. In particular, libraries have actively engaged in providing data services through data training and workshops at their own institution and/or within inter-university collaborations. In this collaboration, two research university libraries in Virginia took the lead, and built partnerships, in designing and offering a bootcamp to educate early career researchers about issues and best practices in research data management. The first bootcamp in 2013 was held by University of Virginia and Virginia Tech. By 2015 there were five additional institutions: George Mason University, James Madison University, Old Dominion University, Virginia Commonwealth University, and the College of William & Mary. The bootcamp covers a range of topics, and currently includes: Finding and Reusing Data, Documentation and Metadata, Data Wrangling, Rights and Access, and Database Creation. This collaborative project highlights: 1) the prominent role of the library in data education; 2) the effective application of training to good data management practices; 3) the development of training materials and curriculum that speak to a variety of institutions with different constituents; and, 4) the benefit of a multi-institutional approach for sustaining a program.