Data Sharing: Disclosure, Confidentiality, and Security
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A primary mission of educational research is to champion excellence in education. Through the design of research that is generalizable and replicable and also through the successful implementation of research results, higher levels of learning, achievement, and performance for students can be obtained. Given this mission, data and information become essential resources to the success of such research. Data come in many forms—numeric, text, images, audio, and video—and are essential for the translation of research into knowledge, products, and procedures to improve education. Recognizing the costs, both monetary and time, of collecting and maintaining rich data, the concept of data sharing is often promoted with educational research. The sharing of data encourages diversity of analyses and perspectives, promotes new research, and makes possible the testing of new or alternative approaches and methods. Sieber (2006) supported the sharing of data and emphasized the value to secondary users who “can verify, refute, or refine original results, building upon those existing data, develop and test new theories, generalize or extend tentative findings and answer new empirical questions” (p. 48).
Yore and Boscolo (see Chap. 2) indicate that the US National Research Council (NRC) taskforce report Advancing Scientific Research in Education (US NRC, 2004) focused on ways to improve the quality of, and substantive foundation for, education research, which in part involved professional development of researchers and funding evaluation panels, and the ethics, structures and procedures for sharing data. Data sharing also promotes the extension and expansion of previous research and helps to facilitate the work of new researchers. The sharing of data permits the creation of new datasets when data from multiple sources can be combined to create an even richer dataset.
KeywordsData Sharing Match Rate American Educational Research Association Disclosure Risk File Transfer Protocol
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