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University of Texas University of Texas Libraries

Integrative Biology

This guide is designed to help researchers in integrative biology navigate library and information-related resources.

Metadata Standards

What is Metadata?

Metadata is data about your data. It is used to help humans and computers interpret the topics and parameters of your data. Even if you are not sharing your data, it's a good idea to think about creating documentation to go along with your data. This documentation will make it easier to refer back to previous projects and for new users to familiarize themselves with prior and ongoing work.

Metadata Standard & Ontology Resources

Texas Data Repository & Life Sciences Metadata

The Texas Data Repository offers specific sets of metadata for several domains, including the life sciences. These additional metadata fields can be selected after an initial deposit is created, and basic metadata fields have been entered. To access these fields:

1.) Navigate to your dataset within the Texas Data Repository and make sure you are logged in to your account so that you' will have editing privileges. 

2.) Go to the metadata tab. This should be next to the "files" tab, and below the basic metadata such as description, keywords, and licensing. 

3.) Click "Add / Edit Metadata"

4.) Scroll to the bottom of the screen to access the domain-specific metadata fields, including those for life sciences. 

These are all optional fields and have a listing of controlled terms to select. You may select more than one option from each dropdown list of terms. If the specifics of your research are not included in the dropdown list, there is a free text option that is available for each field. The metadata fields are as follows.

  • Design type
  • Factor type
  • Organism
  • Measurement type
  • Technology type
  • Technology platform
  • Cell type

Access the metadata dictionary, complete with definitions for each of these fields.


Resources & Related Guides

What is an ontology?

An ontology is a standardized set of terms agreed upon by a community. Using an ontology will help others to know what specifically a term means. The use of ontologies promotes reuse, understanding, and efficiency across a field.

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