The University of North Carolina is the legal owner of all student and post-doctoral fellow research data obtained to meet degree requirements or as part of a grant to the University. University Policy requires that faculty maintain custodianship of student research data and that students be able to have copies of their data.
Therefore, the School of Nursing is implementing the following policy beginning with students graduating May 2004.
- This policy applies to doctoral students, post-doctoral fellows, and other students obtaining data through grants to the university or using data from faculty grants.
- Faculty are expected to maintain custodianship of the raw data (e.g., questionnaires, videotape scoring, transcripts of audiotapes, field notes, etc.) and any final analysis runs for a minimum of 5 years from the last publication. Submission of a dissertation or research project to meet degree requirements is considered one form of publication. Files originally in electronic form, such as analysis runs or audiotape transcripts, may be kept in either electronic format or as hard copies. Data originally in hard copies (e.g., questionnaires, field notes) must be maintained in the original hard copy format. Data that the IRB requires be destroyed, such as audiotapes and videotapes, are not considered original data and should not be maintained.
- Custodianship means the faculty member has possession of the data and can produce it for auditors or others who might have questions about it. Custodianship does not automatically grant publication rights. Publication rights are determined by standard scientific principles.
- To guarantee that faculty are given these data, the final copies of dissertations or research projects are not to be signed until the faculty member is in possession of the data. Post-doctoral fellows are not to be given their final pay check until the faculty member is in possession of the data.
- Students have the right to make copies of these data at their own expense and take these copies with them when they leave the University. They also have the right to access the data at the University. They have the right to publish the data consistent with standard scientific principles and any agreements they made with the faculty or collaborators at the time that the data was collected.
- Student data may be stored in faculty offices, faculty research rooms, or RSC approved archives.