How do I set up a file to import descriptor data and fields?

Jose Gamez -

Preparing and importing your data in Dedoose is one of the most important parts of having a productive project.  Without data, there is nothing to interact with or analyze. This article will explain how to set up a spreadsheet file to import descriptor fields and data into Dedoose.

1. First, you want to add your descriptor fields.

First, you want to add your descriptor fields.

This is an example of what your spreadsheet should look like. Below is an explanation of what each column should contain.

Field – This is the title for that particular descriptor field.

Memo – This is a short optional description of the field that will appear in a smart tip when floating over the field in Dedoose.

Type – This will tell Dedoose how you want to represent the data for the particular field.  Dedoose descriptor fields can take one of four types: List (or categorical type), Number, Text (or string type), or Date.  Note that only List, Number, and Date type fields will be available in many of the Dedoose visualizations that populate off of these data.  Further, we recommend maximizing use of List types to assure the fullest control over these interactive visualizations.

Options – If your field is a List type, the possible valid values need to be listed here and comma separated.

IsDynamic – This tells Dedoose whether or not your field is to be set as Dynamic.  (For more information on Dynamic Descriptors check this blog out

2. Next, prepare the descriptor data spreadsheet.

Next, prepare the descriptor data spreadsheet.

Again, this image is an example of what the spreadsheet should look like.

Importing your descriptor data is simple if you have your data in an Excel file.  Each row should correspond to one descriptor's information. Make sure the column headers are an identical match to the descriptor field definition titles.

Note that there is not a problem with missing data and those cells will simply be blank in Dedoose. You might wonder why the Phase column is blank. ‘Phase’ is a dynamic field and you will be prompted to select the value for any dynamic fields when you link that descriptor to a media file.

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