Once you’ve created a project in BioCollect, you will be able to create one or more surveys for the project. To create a survey, you must make sure that:
- You are an admin of the project you wish to create a survey within
- You have selected the option to record your project data within BioCollect in the project configuration
To create a survey, go to the Admin tab and click on Survey Settings, and then the Add survey button.
You can then fill in all the details of your survey. The information you provide here will form the metadata for your survey, which is important for people who may use your data later, if you choose to share it.
All fields marked by a red asterisk are mandatory and must be completed before you can save the project. There is no draft status of the information, but you will be able to come back later and edit it.
If you have more than one survey, make sure you have the correct survey selected in the drop down next to ‘Select survey’.
Once you’ve entered the survey information you can set up the survey form and configure other survey options:
- Selecting a survey form
- Configuring species in a survey
- Setting up alerts for record creation
- Controlling record visibility
- Configuring location settings
Survey method type
Survey and sampling methods help users to assess dataset suitability for their purpose. It helps in understanding sampling bias and limitations which may/may not make the data compatible with the user’s intended application for it.
If your survey is just recording ad-hoc sightings, you should select ‘Opportunistic/ad-hoc observation recording’ as the survey method type and the sampling method will be pre-filled for you.
Otherwise, you should select ‘Systematic method-based survey’ as the survey method type. If you select this, you will then need to select the method which best fits your methodology from the drop-down list in the survey/sampling method used question. You will also need to fill in at least one of the additional fields which appear (see below), or attach a document describing your sampling method. These additional fields won’t appear if you selected ‘Opportunistic/ad-hoc observation recording’ as the survey method type.
Start and end dates
The dates form part of the survey metadata, and also control when users will be able to add records to the survey.
Allow public users to enter data
When you create a survey it is automatically restricted to being accessible only by project members. If you want to open it up to the public to enter data, you will need to check the tick-box on this field.
Comments on records allowed
You can configure surveys to allow discussion threads and commentary on individual records in the view mode. This can be useful as part of a suite of measures to improve data quality and species identification. This field is disabled by default and you will need to check the tick-box to enable it.
Data sharing license
You must choose a Creative Commons license to make your data available under. You can find more information on Creative Commons licences here.
Data quality questions
All the questions from the dataset reliability tags question form part of the survey metadata and, like the survey method questions, help potential users of your survey data to make informed decisions about its suitability for their use.
We encourage you to take the time to fill out these questions to help make your data useful to researchers, decision-makers and other potential users.
Publishing your survey
Once you’re happy with everything in your form, you can publish it so users can start entering data.
If you'd like assistance in creating a survey or have a question that isn't covered above, please get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.