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Quick start guide for reseachers


Who can use the tool?

DMP Tool is free for anyone to create data management plans. As a user, you can:

Overview of My Dashboard

When you log in, you will be directed to “My Dashboard.” From here, you can create, edit, share, download, copy, or remove any of your plans. You will also see plans that have been shared with you by others.

If others at your institution/organization have chosen to share their plans internally, you will see a second table of organizational plans. This allows you to download a PDF and view their plans as samples or discover new research data. Additional samples are available in the list of public plans.

Screenshot of the My Dashboard page

How do I create a data management plan?

Start a plan

Click the “Create plan” button on My dashboard or the top menu to create a plan. This will take you to a wizard that helps you select the appropriate template:

Screenshot of the Create plan page

  1. Enter a title for your research project. If applying for funding, use the project title as it appears in the proposal.
  2. Select the primary research organization. This field will be pre-populated if you are associated with a participating institution/organization. You have the option to clear the field and select another organization from the list. You will be presented with institution-specific templates and guidance based on your selection. You can also check the box “No organization is associated with this plan.”
  3. Select the primary funding organization. If you must include a data management plan as part of a grant proposal, select your funder from the list. You may be presented with a secondary dropdown menu if your funder has different requirements for specific programs (e.g., NSF, DOE). See the complete list of funder requirements supported by DMP Tool. If your funder is not on the list or you are not applying for a grant, check the box for “No funder associated with this plan;” this selection will provide you with a generic template.

If you are just testing the tool or taking a course on data management, check the box “Mock project for test, practice, or educational purposes.” Marking your plans as a test will be reflected in usage statistics and prevent public or organizational sharing; this allows other users to find actual sample plans more easily.

Once you have made your selections, click “Create plan.”

You can also copy an existing plan (from the Actions menu next to the plan on My Dashboard) and update it for a new research project and grant proposal.

What are the different features of the DMP Tool?

The tabbed interface allows you to navigate through different functions when editing your plan.

Share plans

You can share your plan with colleagues in the Collaborators tab. Input the email address(es) of any collaborators you would like to invite to read or edit your plan. Set their permissions via the radio buttons and click to "Add collaborator." Adjust permissions or remove collaborators at any time via the drop-down options in the table.

The "Finalize" tab is where you can set your plan visibility.

By default, all new and test plans will be set to Private visibility. Public and Organizational visibility are intended for finished plans. You must answer at least 50% of the questions to enable these options.

How do I get help from someone at my institution?

After logging in, you will find an email address and URL for help at the top of the page.

There may also be an option to request feedback on your plan. This is available when research support staff at your institution have enabled the service. Click on “Request feedback,” and your local administrators will be alerted to your request. Their comments will be visible in the “Comments” field adjacent to each question. You will receive an email notification when an administrator provides feedback.