9. Running validations and diagnostics

The Metadata Editor includes a useful series of diagnostic and validation modules (see the drop down menu Tools): these range from very simple validations (such as the Tools-Validate Metadata) to complex visual displays that iterate through each variable and provides feedback to the archivist at the variable level.

  • Validate Metadata: verifies that all mandatory fields are filled in.
  • Validate External Resources: verifies all mandatory fields in the External Resources are filled in.
  • Health Check: displays a popup window that provides some information and diagnostics regarding the R package. The Metadata Editor uses R to import and export the data. The health check option tells the which version of R is being used on the machine. In addition, the Health Check will provide information on the Environment Path and the result of the execution of the R script.
  • Validate Dataset Relations: this option is used to validate hierarchically related datasets. The ‘Base key variables’ should be the variables that uniquely identify a case within that file.
  • Translation Manager: provides the user with the ability to translate the interface of the Metadata Editor into any language. Selecting this option will display the Translation Manager interface. When using the option for the first time, the English template will be displayed with all the labels that require translation.

In addition to these validations, it is recommended that you generate the DDI document (in the Editor, use the Export DDI” function) and verify the size of the resulting [.xml] file. A fully documented survey with a large number of variables should not produce a file larger than 10Mb. Very large DDI files often indicate errors in the selection of summary statistics (for example, frequencies are produced for a variable like the household ID in a sample household file).