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Submitting a Data Dictionary

Data Dictionaries, which contain variable-level metadata, describe each variable within a dataset. Examples of variable-level attributes include the variable name, description (or variable label), type, format, terminology, source, and derivation.


Data dictionaries must conform to the HEAL variable level metadata schema.

Submissions should not include data of any kind. Submissions containing data will be removed from the Platform.

More information and submission templates can be found here.

Login to the HEAL Data Platform

Find Your Study

From the Discovery Page, find the study for which you wish to submit a data dictionary.
Please note that at this time only the individual who registered the study is able to submit a data dictionary for that study. Please contact us at if you wish to submit a data dictionary but did not register the study yourself.

  • Click on the study to open the Study Page
  • At the top of the Study Page, select ‘Submit a Data Dictionary’ to navigate to the Data Dictionary Submission Form.

Complete the Data Dictionary Submission Form

  • The Study field will already be filled in
  • Choose the Select File button to browse your local computer for your data dictionary.
  • Only TSV, CSV and JSON files can be submitted
  • While multiple dictionaries can be associated with a study, the process currently supports one submission at a time. Please repeat this process for each data dictionary you wish to submit
  • Submissions should not include data of any kind. Submissions containing data will be removed from the Platform.
  • Enter a unique name for your data dictionary. This name will be used to identify the data dictionary for users on the Platform.
  • Previously submitted data dictionary names are displayed, if applicable - using the same name for a new submission will overwrite the existing record.
  • To facilitate processing of your submission, some administrative information is needed to allow HEAL Data Platform staff to contact you should the need arise:
    • First and Last name
    • E-mail address
    • Note that this information is not stored on the Platform, but is simply needed to support you throughout the submission process.
  • Submit your data dictionary

Processing Your Submission

Upon receipt of your successful submission, HEAL Data Platform staff will:

  • Review your submission for compliance with the HEAL Data Platform variable-level metadata schema
  • Ensure no data are included. Files containing study-generated data of any kind will not be accepted.
  • HEAL Data Platform staff will contact you with any questions and/or to work through any issues that may arise. If there are no issues, you will be notified when processing is completed.

Additional Help

More information about the HEAL variable-level metadata schema, as well as submission templates, can be found here.

If you have issues with a submission, or have a general inquiry, please contact us at