The LabArchives Research Notebook offers many options and features for managers, project leads, research integrity officers, and legal representatives to review, audit, and capture notebook activities. We have featured several common scenarios and how you can use the tools available in LabArchives to perform your notebook audits.
Scenario #1: You would like to check on the frequency of logins and activities for the members of the notebook.
There are several features available in LabArchives to locate this type of detail and we have provided additional guidance on when one option may best be suited over another option.
The Activity Feed in LabArchives provides a chronological view of all the activities in your LabArchives account and the notebooks you have access to. Use this tool to identify activities in a specific notebook, by a specific user, across any notebook in an account, as well as specific notifications. It is important to note that an activity in LabArchives is any action taken in your notebook such as a login, a share, a view, a deletion, a comment, etc.
Access the Activity Feed from the Bell Icon in the main LabArchives toolbar or from the Triple Dot icon menu. From there, choose a category and then filter by the appropriate activity.
As a notebook owner, you can select a category or type of activity to review. The Activity Feed provides the option to filter by various activities, from login to page signing, and includes entry modifications. As an example, to view recent edits by a certain user, select the user category, select the user, then select the “notebook modifications” option. If you are the owner of multiple notebooks for your team, you can view all details about a specific notebook or you can use the account category to review recent activities across all notebooks that you are associated with.
To learn more, about the activity feed click here.
The notebook dashboard provides you an overview of your entire notebook including a summary of data contained in your notebook, activities of notebook users, and information on recent entries. It is
accessed by clicking the notebook name at the top of the notebook hierarchy. You can also access the Dashboard via the Triple Dot icon in the top right corner.
The Notebook Dashboard provides you with an overview of your notebook which includes Notebook Properties (size and stats), recently created or modified entries, and the ability to view entries by a user. To learn more, about the notebook dashboard click here.
Tip: Remember that each entry in LabArchives includes a name, date, and timestamp that cannot be altered. Use this to see when the entry was last modified. For more details, view the original entry by navigating to the page that contains the entry.
From the entry toolbar, select the More Menu (triple dots), and select View revisions. This is the complete revision history for the entry and will list separately each time the entry was modified including when and by whom.
The Advanced Search feature in LabArchives allows you to run a more detailed search of a Notebook, utilizing various filters to quickly locate content.
From the notebook you wish to search, click on the down triangle in the search box at the top of the page to open the Advanced Search. To learn more about advanced search click here
You can search across one, multiple, or all notebooks. You can filter user to see the entries in which they were the last person to edit the entry (the current person’s name on the timestamp). You can also search for a user even if they no longer have access to the notebook. To find an entry last modified within a certain date range, you can use the “entries from” option.
Once the results have been found, you can sort the results by relevancy, newest to oldest, oldest to newest, and alphabetically by user name.
Scenario #2: You would like to check on experiments that are closed as well as open to see what is still pending completion.
Page signing in LabArchives can be used to lock a page so that no additional edits can be made to the page and to indicate the final version of the page. This is commonly used when an experiment has been completed and no further changes should be made to the data. To learn more, click here.
Witnessing can be used as an additional layer of approval that can be used to accept (permanently freeze the page) or reject the user’s signature (unlock the page). This is commonly used by teams that would like a supervisor, project lead, or lab manager to verify the Signing request. To learn more, click here.
Tip: If you want to locate pages that have been signed recently, this can be achieved through the Activity Feed. Keep in mind, when pages are signed or witnessed, the icon on the lefthand side updates.
Consider setting policies with your team for all page names. Pages can be renamed or moved within the notebook structure as the experiment progresses. As an example, in the page name include an experiment number, researcher initials, start date, and end date. This way, a page titled “101 JD 1.27-1.29” would be known to be experiment 101 by Jane doe completed January 27th to January 29th. In advanced search, you can search by page title to find a specific page.
Consider setting policies with your team on the folder structure of the notebook. As example, when a certain experiment is open, keep the page in a folder named “Open experiments” or “In progress.” If it’s a large team, the folder could be named “Assigned to Jane Doe” so it’s clear to everyone who is working on a particular experiment. As the experiment progresses, it could be moved by drag and drop to another folder such as a “Quality assurance review” folder or a “completed” folder. Often, completed experiments are organized into subfolders for the date. Keep in mind, you can always search within a specific folder in LabArchives by using the “search from here” option. To learn more about folders in LabArchives, Click Here.
Scenario #3: You would like to do a notebook check to be sure that team members are following the established structure and naming conventions.
Establishing notebook policies is integral to having efficient workflows and it makes it much easier to perform an audit. If you know where to find the data
Notebook structure and naming conventions can be established at the organization level so that everyone at the company follows the same guidelines, or it could instead be established at the smaller project team level.
We recommend establishing a schedule for your notebook audits and checks. This way, you can ensure compliance early on and address any issues that may come up. Visiting notebooks more frequently in your earlier stages of implementation would be ideal so that you could catch these errors and correct them sooner and catch them before they multiply.
Tip: If you have an established structure in place, simply browse the notebook at the folder and page levels to check to be sure your team is following the guidelines. If you come across issues, and need to communicate them with your team, remember that each level of the notebook has a Share URL that you can grab when you need to point your team to a particular section of the notebook. To locate the Share URL, simply right click on the folder or page, or navigate to the Entry toolbar. To learn more, click here. Additionally, at the entry level, you can use the Comments feature to communicate with your team. To learn more, click here.
Scenario #4: You have questions about the changes made to a page and a specific entry and would like better insight to who contributed.
Under Scenario #3, we discussed how you can communicate with your team through the Entry comments should you have questions about an entry or need to recommend changes. When reviewing a notebook or going through an audit, you can also find out more detail by examining the Revision History that is available at the Entry and Page Level. From the revisions history and the activity feed, you can see a summary of the action, you can revert to earlier versions and undelete any entries that may have been deleted. To learn more, click here.
Tip: Use the information available from the Revision History to paint a clearer picture of all the activities and users tied to a particular page or entry. This will include a list of items that may have been deleted. Keep in mind that if a page or folder was ever deleted in LabArchives, you can locate it through the Trash-can icon at the bottom of the notebook structure.