September 21, 2007

Statistical Software

Quite a few faculty members have been asking about getting either SPSS or SAS. I am working on getting the school-wide license for a package and should have some news to report very soon.

September 18, 2007

Entering into Digital Measures

As I enter my data into Digital Measures, I am thinking aloud and recording my experience with it...Starting out, a simple help text displayed next to the fields and options as faculty enter their data would go a long way in reminding them what they are supposed to be entering. We all forget after a while :-). After entering the title and the names of the authors (which was quite convenient using the drop-down list), I notice that the first entry is Journal/Publisher. It would probably be a good idea to separate those two (i.e. a field for the title of the Journal and another for the publisher) so that we can track both separately. They are also very different items. Maybe an ISSN number would be useful here to prevent mistakes (oops, I see it down below-probably a good idea to have that entered first, the system could actually fill out the rest of the fields from the ISSN). The next field asks for the City/State of the journal. Hmmm, many journals are international. Why not add the Address field and group them all (Address, City, State (or Province), Country) since most are there already? The rest of the fields (Vol, Issue, pages) really should be moved up because they form part of the main citation. What should I do if my article has been accepted, but is not published? Maybe a check box to say "Forthcoming"? The system can remind authors to update those with forthcoming check marks after say a year or two. When I was entering the submission and acceptance dates, it's interesting to note that they use different formats (mm/dd/yyyy and mm/yyyy) but don't inform the user which formats to use. More observations to come...