Transforming education research through open video data sharing

Rick O. Gilmore, Karen E. Adolph, David S. Millman, Andrew Gordon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Open data sharing promises to accelerate the pace of discovery in the developmental and learning sciences, but significant technical, policy, and cultural barriers have limited its adoption. As a result, most research on learning and development remains shrouded in a culture of isolation. Data sharing is the rare exception (Gilmore, 2016). Many researchers who study teaching and learning in classroom, laboratory, museum, and home contexts use video as a primary source of raw research data. Unlike other measures, video captures the complexity, richness, and diversity of behavior. Moreover, because video is self-documenting, it presents significant potential for reuse. However, the potential for reuse goes largely unrealized because videos are rarely shared. Research videos contain information about participants' identities making the materials challenging to share. The large size of video files, diversity of formats, and incompatible software tools pose technical challenges. The Databrary ( digital library enables researchers who study learning and development to store, share, stream, and annotate videos. In this article, we describe how Databrary has overcome barriers to sharing research videos and associated data and metadata. Databrary has developed solutions for respecting participants' privacy; for storing, streaming, and sharing videos; and for managing videos and associated metadata. The Databrary experience suggests ways that videos and other identifiable data collected in the context of educational research might be shared. Open data sharing enabled by Databrary can serve as a catalyst for a truly multidisciplinary science of learning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAdvances in Engineering Education
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2016


  • Digital library
  • Open data sharing
  • Video

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • General Engineering


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