Colectica for Excel has been released today by Colectica. It is a new free tool that allows researchers to document their data directly in Microsoft Excel. Variables, code lists, and the datasets can be globally identified and described in a metadata format based on open standards. Data can also be directly imported into Excel and documented from SPSS and Stata files. The standardized metadata is stored within the Excel files so it will be available to anyone receiving the documented file. Code books can also be customized and generated by the tool, and output in PDF, Word, Html, and XSL-FO formats.
Colectica for Excel can export your data documentation to an XML file in the DDI Lifecycle metadata format, the standard for data documentation. These standard XML files can be opened and edited from Colectica Designer, Colectica Express, or other DDI applications.
"Many organizations have data in Excel spreadsheets," stated Dan Smith, a Partner at Colectica. He continued, "We are happy to release a new free tool to document data stored in Excel files, and provide an easy first step for organizations wishing to document their data using open metadata standards."
There is often inadequate transparency of research methods when data sets are shared. Colectica allows organizations to increase their openness and credibility through standardized documentation of their data collection, research process and resulting data. The software implements leading open standards including the Data Documentation Initiative (DDI) Lifecycle version 3 and ISO 11179. Using this software allows organizations to both better educate funding agencies, clients, and the public on their methodology and increases the organization’s reputation for performing credible scientific research.
Additional software tools from Colectica enable documenting of data, data collection, survey methodologies, survey instruments, questions, variables, and datasets. Colectica Repository manages changes to the recorded information and allows multiple people and groups to work together on a shared system. Colectica Portal allows for publication of this recorded information on the web. All of these products use Open Standards to allow for interoperability with other tools. Colectica products, training on Open Standards, and customized software solutions are available through www.colectica.com .