RDS, in collaboration with Scholarly Commons, regularly hosts several data management and data publishing workshops each semester. We are also happy to visit labs and other research units to provide specialized talks and workshops. Let us know what your group would be interested in hearing about, or get more information about our service.

Need directions to a workshop? Directions to our most common locations are here (or scroll down to the bottom of this page).

Looking for previous material?  Check out our Past Workshops page!

Request a Workshop

Would your department, team, or student group like a customized data management talk or workshop? RDS regularly works with teams of all sizes and disciplines to remix our core data management presentations and activities for their needs. Take a look at our Past Workshops page to preview our core content. Contact us to schedule a workshop or training session, or let us know if we can advise your team on any other area of data management.

2016-17 Workshops

Spring 2017

Intro to Data Management

January 31, 10-11am, Main Library 314 (registration link) (room directions)
March 16, 1-2pm, Grainger 335 (registration link) (room directions)
Worksheets and slides forthcoming

Have a mess of data floating around your computer or lab? Data management is an essential task for students and faculty but a hard one to start. Go no further! In this workshop you will identify, group, and plan on how to reorganize your current and future data. We will discuss strategies for organization, folder structure, and create an organizational plan.

Data Documentation

February 7, 10-11am, Main Library 314 (registration link) (room directions)
March 30, 1-2:30pm, Grainger 335 (registration link) (room directions)
Worksheets and slides are available at

Writing project, code, and data documentation doesn’t need to be the worst part of your day. This hands on workshop will give you experience using various types of documentation, discuss strategies for writing documentation, and get you started writing a template for your projects. Bring a dataset you’d like to work with but examples will be provided.

Data Sharing

February 21, 10-11am, Main Library 314 (registration link) (room directions)
April 6, 1-2:30pm, Grainger 335 (registration link) (room directions)
Worksheets and slides are available at

Making research data public is becoming a reality for many disciplines, but for many researchers and disciplines there is a complicated set of issues to consider before publication or sharing data. This workshop will cover the basics steps of research data publication, from considerations to depositing. Participants will work through guidance to help them make decisions about when and how to publish or share data.

Data Workflows

February 9, 1-2pm, Main Library 314 (registration link) (room directions)
March 1, 1-2pm, Grainger 335 (registration link) (room directions)
Worksheets and slides are available at

Workflow mapping is a useful tool for teams of all sizes to understand how data, code, and other resources are being shared and passed around.  Like retracing your steps after losing something, tracing a project through workflows identifies all the essential products and dependencies of the research process, and can be one of the most useful places to get started with data management.  This workshop focuses specifically on computational research processes, but can be adapted to most types of projects.

Smart and Simple Data Management

February 17, 10-11:30am, Funk/ACES 509 (registration link) (room directions)
April 4, 10-11:30am, Grainger 335 (registration link) (room directions)
Worksheets and slides forthcoming

Note:  This is a blended workshop combining materials from our Intro to Data Management and Creating Data Documentation workshops, with a special focus on creating Data Management Plans.

This session aims to provide you with data management best practices and tools to increase your research efficiency and impact. We’ll present a basic introduction to data management using a data management plan framework, hands on activities, and discuss how to find and vet resources for making data publicly accessible.

Data Help Desk drop-in hours

Drop in hours may be subject to change in case of illness, weather, or special events.  Please be sure to check the RDS Twitter for updates, or contact us to check on specific days/times.

Tuesdays from 3-5pm in the Scholarly Commons beginning August 23, 2016

RDS has partnered with the Scholarly Commons to provide weekly drop-in hours to help researchers with data management, Python, R, SQL, etc. help.  This service is free and open to all of the Urbana-Champaign campus.  Some cancellations are to be expected depending on travel, illness, etc.  These will be posted here as soon as they are known, but you are welcome to email Elizabeth ( to check the status of any open hours.

Room Directions

Our regularly scheduled workshops usually take place in the same room each semester. However, that is subject to change due to class size or room availability. If the workshop is scheduled for a different location than those listed below, different directions will apply.

Main Library workshops are usually in Room 314. Take the north stairwell (Armory and Wright Street entrance) to the 3rd floor of the Main Library, and make a left as you exit the stairs.

Grainger Library workshops are usually in Room 335. Take the stairs or the elevator to the third floor. Room 335 is next to the restrooms, overlooking the Gallery.

The Funk/ACES workshop is usually in Room 509. Take the stairs or the elevator to the second floor. The elevator to the fifth floor is to the left of the reference desk, next to the women’s restroom. After you exit the elevator on the fifth floor, Room 509 is the second door on your left.