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To publish a dataset on VTechData please contact The ability to create and edit data on VTechData is restricted as we move to a new repository platform.


1) User Actions
2) Support Documents
3) Video Tutorials
4) VTechData Vocabulary


Dashboard - where you manage your research content after logging into VTD. The are five main components of the Dashboard; My Dashboard, Upload, Describe, Organize, and Publish.

  • My Dashboard: The Dashboard homepage provides quick access to your recent activity in the repository.
    • User Activity: Records all changes that occur to a user's files.
    • User Notifications: Records system status of batch uploads and reports errors when updating files.
    • Manage Proxies: Allows account holder to designate other system users the ability to upload data on their behalf.
    • Transfer of Ownership: Records all Item records transferred to and from other users.
  • Upload: The first step when using VTechData is to upload your research content (i.e. your research data files). Before uploading your content you must first accept our Deposit Agreement. It’s also helpful to consider the following questions prior to uploading your content:
    • Can I deposit and/or openly share my data? (see Deposit Agreement)
    • Who do I expect to make use of my data?
    • How should my data be organized?
      • a) for my intended audience
      • b) to fit with VTechData’s technical specifications
    • Currently VTechData can accommodate data uploads of up to 2GB per file upload and up to 100 separate files at one time
  • Describe: Once you’ve upload data to VTechData you can use the describe page to edit the metadata associated with the Item records you’ve created. The describe page can also be used to associate Items with Datasets. Datasets are the organizational (data model) level at which a DOI (digital object identifier) can be associated with your research data. There are three tabs to work within on the Describe page, My Files, My Highlights, and Files Shared with Me. Below is a description of each category along with the respective actions that occur on those pages.
    • My Files: page with complete list of Items created by user.
      • Single Item Actions
        • Single-Use Link to File - Generates a URL which provides read only access to the associated Item. This Action is typically used to provide access to restricted Items and/or access to researchers not associated with Virginia Tech.
        • Edit File - Directs users to the metadata editing page of the associated Item.
        • Download File - Downloads a copy of the associated file to a user's desktop.
        • Highlight File on Profile - Adds a copy of the associated Item to the Highlight section of the Describe page. This action is used to provide quick access to specific Items.
        • Transfer Ownership of File - Transferring ownership of a file will remove it from your Describe page and will remove your edit access to the associated file. When accepting a file transfer there are three options to choose from:
          • Allow depositor to retain edit access
          • Remove depositor access
          • Authorize depositor as proxy
    • My Highlights: Page that lists all files highlighted by user. This page makes it easier to find and edit recent or popular datasets.
    • Files Shared with Me: Page lists all files transferred to your account from other VTechData users. This function makes it easier to collaborate with other researchers, especially students who may be helping contribute data to your repository dataset.
  • Organize: The Organize page is where you create, edit, and organize Datasets. Datasets can be created before or after files are uploaded to VTechData.
    • Single Item Actions
      • Edit Dataset - Directs users to the metadata editing page of the associated Dataset.
      • Delete Dataset - Only deletes the record for the dataset. Associated Items will still be available on a users describe page.
      • Add Files - Allows users to select from a list of Item records that have been transferred to them or that they’ve created.
  • Publish: The Publish page is where you can request a DOI for your Dataset.
    • Publishing is accomplished in VTechData by uploading data, creating Items, associating Items with a Dataset, and requesting DOIs for your Dataset. Before requesting a DOI users must agree to the Publishing Agreement and are encouraged to review our VTechData Publishing Requirements to ensure they’ve met all of the Publishing criteria.
    • Users should only request a DOI a) when they feel their dataset will not be altered further, or b) when data need to be made available for peer review. The VTechData Administrator can provide DOI placeholders to those users who require DOIs for publication when the data are not yet finalized.
    • The VTechData Administrator reviews and approves all DOI requests promptly. Throughout this process users are encouraged to create and include as much documentation as possible. Documentation is key to increasing your research data’s impact and reuse.



VTechData Vocabulary

  • Item – Upon upload, each file becomes an item. An item consists of a file and associated metadata about that file. One or more items may comprise a dataset.
  • Dataset – In VTechData the term dataset refers to one or more items that make up a single project or a phase of a larger project.
  • DOI - A Digital Object Identifier is a unique alphanumeric string assigned by a registered agency (University of California EZID) to identify content and provide a persistent link to its location on the intranet (
  • Curation - the process of preserving research.
    • documenting field/lab work
    • creating data visualizations
    • creating metadata
    • creating archival file formats
    • publishing - I.e. assigning data a DOI
  • Downloadable Component - A downloadable component is a file or set of files directly related to a single metadata record and that can be downloaded from VTechData. Files which have been uploaded to VTechData and assigned metadata are referred to as items. An item can be up to 2 GB in size. Items can be associated with datasets for publishing purposes. Please refer to our data model for more information and contact us to discuss how you can organize your data after you upload it.