Database FAQs

Top > General FAQs for Faculty
  1. How do I log in?

    Go to and click on the large Login button in the center of the screen. It will take you to Duke's WebAuth authentication screen. Use your normal DukeNet ID and password to authenticate.

    If you have difficulty logging in, or questions, please contact

    If you are a member of more than one department, you will be prompted to select the group you wish to work in when you log in.  If you plan to work on your annual report, it is important to select the department in which you will be evaluated.

  2. How do I find my data?

    All data entered for you is available via the set of links under the Database heading in the left-hand sidebar menu viewable after you have logged into the Faculty Database System.

    When you click on the word Database a complete set of links will appear to provide direct access to the different types of information. Clicking on a type such as Publications generates the list of all publications.

    Entries annotated "noWeb" are available only through the Database view.

  3. How do I edit an entry?

    To edit an entry, click on the small edit text that appears at the end of each entry.

    After making desired changes, be sure to click the Update button that appears at the upper right-hand side of the screen.

  4. How can I manage my information in the database?

    There are three main "views" of your data in the database.  These are:

    Each of these views can be accessed via the links on your "welcome" page: the first page you see after you log into the database and select your department.  (Once you are logged in, you can always return to this page by clicking the "welcome" link in the upper right-hand corner of your screen.)

    Each of these views displays information based on

    To view and manage all of your database entries in a certain category (e.g., publications, lectures, teaching, committees/service) use the links that appear under the "Database" link on the left-hand side of your screen.

  5. How can I add or update my photo?

  6. How can I select and order the publications I want to appear on my web page?

    By default your web page displays your 5 most recent publications.  You can prevent an entry from appearing on this list by editing it and checking "omit from recent publications" in the privacy options section of the form.

    Alternatively, you may select your own set of publications to display on your web page:

  7. Is my CV available on the web?

    By default, the CV view of your data (available when you click the "Curriculum Vita" link in the left-hand links under "Webpage" while you are logged into the database) is not available on the web.  Only you, your department chair, and your departmental FDS managers have access to it.

    If you wish to make it available, you may do so by clicking the "edit your personal information" link on your "welcome" screen, or the "edit" link beside your name on your web page.  On the resulting "General Info" form, scroll to the bottom and check the box beside "Do you want to display your vita on the web?"  A link to the CV will then appear on your web page.

    Note that if you choose to publish your CV to the web, any entries you have marked "omit from web" in the privacy options will not appear on your published CV (although you will continue to see them on your CV when you are logged into the database).

  8. How can upload a copy of my CV in my own format?

  9. I have my own website: how can I link to it from my FDS web page?

  10. How can I have my FDS contact information automatically updated from the university directory?

    On the general info form, each field containing contact information that is also listed in the university directory has a linked chain icon beside it. If the chain is broken by a red x, the FDS entry does not match the university directory and won't be automatically updated if the university directory is updated. If the chain is not broken, then the entries DO match and any change made in the university directory will be passed along to FDS in a nightly update.  To have your FDS contact info automatically updated from the university directory:

  11. Can I upload and link a PDF or other file attachment to an entry, such as a publication?

    Yes. In most FDS forms, including the publications form, a small paper clip icon appears at the bottom of the form:
    To attach a file to an entry:

  12. How can I display additional images or other files on my web page?

    The following instructions are in two parts.  The first explains how to upload the file to the database, so it will have a web address.  The second part explains how to link to it from your web page.

    Uploading a file to the database
    Please note that no one else can upload shared files on your behalf (department managers will only end up uploading the file to their own shared files areas.  Write to for workarounds if you are a department manager and this poses a problem).

    1. Log into FDS.
    2. In the navigation links on the left hand side of the screen, click "Database" to expand it, then click the "Shared Files" link in the list that appears below.
    3. You'll see a page titled "List of Files for [your name]."  Click the "new" link beside your name.
    4. On the "Add a New File for..." page, click the "Browse" or "Choose File" button to locate and select the file you want to upload.
    5. In the File Name field, enter a name for your file.  It can be anything, but one option is to enter the name as it appears in the "select a file..." field.  This name will become part of the file's url.
    6. In the "Who can access this file" field, click the radio button beside "world."
    7. Click "Update."
    8. Now you will return to the "List of Files for ..." page, and you'll see a link to the new file you have uploaded.
    9. Right-click on the link to the file and choose the option that will allow you to copy the web address of the file: "copy shortcut," or "copy link location" are two possible phrasings. (This will copy the web address of the file to your computer's clipboard, so you can paste it into another location later--see below.)

    Displaying the file on your web page:

    The simplest way to display an image is to enter it in one of the input fields for an entry that already appears on your web page. Suppose you want to add an image of your book cover along the right-hand side of your "Research Interests:"
    1. click the Edit link beside "Research Interests;" you'll see the text field for "Research Description".
    2. Enter the following somewhere among the existing text
      (you might need to try a few times to get it positioned just right):
          <img src="" align="right">
    3. Click between the 2 "s and press Control-V (PC) or Command-V (Mac) to paste the link location from Step 1 there.
    If you simply want to add a link to the file, instead of displaying an image,
    1. enter the following in the place you'd like to link to appear:
      <a href="">Enter link text here</a>
    2. Click between the 2 "s and press Control-V (PC) or Command-V (Mac) to paste the link location from Step 1 there.
    3. Enter your link text
    4. Click the Update button on the General Info form to submit and view your changes.

    1. Can I give someone else access to update my information without sharing my password?

      Yes. To give another person "proxy" access so they can enter and update information for you:

    2. Can I format the text I'm entering into the database?

      Yes. A built-in text editor has been added to the database so you can format text without having to use HTML.

      Note: This feature was made possible by new web-browser technology and is only available in the following recent browser versions  (contact your local computer support if you need  one of these browsers installed):
      Windows: Internet Explorer 4.0 and later; Mozilla 1.3 and later
      Mac: Mozilla 1.3 and later
      Linux: Galleon

    3. How does the custom date field work?

      Some of the forms used to enter information (e.g., Publications, Lectures, Committee/Service) have a "Custom Date" field. The Custom Date field shows the date that will be displayed in the citation.

      By default, the Custom Date field is autofilled with a text version of the numeric date entered in the fields above it.

      To display a different date than the one filled in automatically, just edit the text of the custom date field.

      Note:  Say you enter a publication, edit the custom date text so it's just right, and submit the form.  Later you edit the entry and change the year or the month, causing your carefully composed custom date to be overwitten by the autofill.  All is not lost: simply click the green cycling arrow icon to the right of the Custom Date field    to restore the previous custom date. 

    4. What is the "database full date?"

      The "database full date" will appear in place of the year/month/day fields in most forms if you have javascript turned off in your browser settings. Although you can use the database full date field in place of the year/month/day fields, it is a less flexible view, and it is recommended that you turn on javascript if you see this field in your forms. See below for instructions:

      Internet Explorer 6.0 (PC)

      Firefox (PC)

      Firefox (Mac)

      Safari (Mac)

    5. How can I customize the text of links to online publications?

      When you included a link to an online publication in the "Web URL" field of the publication form, the link that appears in the citation is the last part of the URL that was entered.

      To specify other text for this link, enter the URL of the publication in the "Web URL" field on the publication form, then append a space at the end, followed by the desired text.
      For example, if the URL of your publication is:

      and you want the link to be [MyArticleX] rather than [pdf],  enter the URL like this: MyArticleX

      The link can be any word, but it cannot contain any spaces.

    6. Can I use the FDS to send email to groups within my department?

      Yes. The FDS makes it very easy to send email messages to groups or subgroups of people within your department. This service allows members of a department to send email to other members of their own department via the FDS--it cannot be accessed by outside spammers or by members of another department who are logged into the FDS.

    7. Can I upload a file containing my publications, instead of entering them one by one?

      Yes, you can upload your publications from a file of any of the following types:

      1. Open a blank "Add a new publication" form.
      2. Scroll to the bottom of the form and find the "BibTeX/EndNote/Refer/ProCite/MedLine Upload" section: click the Upload button.
      3. Select the type of file you wish to upload.
      4. Browse for and select the file. Then click the Submit button.
      5. At the top of the form is a table with the publication types indicated in your file on the left and the FDS publications types on the right. Select the type on the right that corresponds with the type on the left--once you have done this the first time, the FDS will remember your choices.
      6. Specify the criterion by which the system should identify duplicate entries (the "Title with" options only work if the fields match exactly).
      7. Choose Update or Overwrite (the difference is explained on the form).
      8. Click the Submit button.
      9. Finally, you will see a list of all the publications that will be uploaded. From here you can choose not to upload certain entries, and to do some last-minute editing. Then click Submit one more time to upload the publications to the database.

      :  While it is possible to upload a publications list from Endnote, you must first export your Endnote library to BibTeX format and upload to FDS as a BibTeX file:

      1. Open EndNote. In the drop-down menu in the toolbar at the top of the screen, click on Edit > Output Styles > Open Style Manager
      2. Select “BibTeX Export”
        (Hint: click on any Name, and type bib very fast. It will go straight to the “BibTeX Export” listing)
      3. Back in the main EndNote toolbar, click Edit > Output Styles > BibTeX Export
      4. Open the database that you want to convert to the BibTeX format.  Make sure that all entries have been given a Label. You can specify a Label for an individual Endnote entry, or a number of Endnote entries all at once.  To specify for a number of entries:
        • Select the Endnote references you wish to export to BibTeX.
        • Go to "Tools > Change and move fields".
        • Select "Label" and "replace whole field with".
        • Enter a Label -- the word "Article" will do.  Click 'Ok'.
        • Save as a text  file.  During the save, change the ".txt" extension to ".bib".
      5. Click File > Export. Give the filename a .bib extension. Click on Save.
      6. In FDS, select this file for upload, and select BibTeX as the file type for upload.

    8. I received email that a "secure message" was sent to me via the faculty database. Is this legitimate?

      A person sending you email via the form linked from your faculty database web page can elect to "send it securely" by clicking a checkbox on the form. If the sender chooses this option, the message will not be sent to your regular email account. Instead, it will be saved in the faculty database where you can read it once you have logged in. You will receive automated email alerting you to the secure message and telling you how to access it.  The feature allows you to receive sensitive information that should not be entrusted to ordinarly email, such as passwords or account information.

      To access the secure message:

    9. I do not want to receive secure messages through the faculty database. How can I turn this off?

      If you do not wish to receive secure messages, you may turn off the option:

    10. Can I create my own categories for grouping my publications?

      Yes, you can create your own "tags" for categorizing your publications. Note that these tags operate in addition to the required "Types" field at the top of the publications form, and not as a replacement. The "Tag" field is near the bottom of the publications form. You can select an existing tag from the drop-down selector, or add a new tag using the text field. You can add multiple tags for one publication--click the green + icon to access additional fields. If you create a new tag, it will be available to other users within your group (appearing in their drop-down lists as well as your own). If you don't want your tags to be available to others in your group, you can check the "private" checkbox when you create the tag. On your Publications list web page, tagged publications will have the tag name as a link appearing at the end of the citation, and clicking the link will result in a list of publications with that tag.

    11. Is there a way to edit or delete multiple entries at the same time?

    Last Update: 2011/01/25 14:26:39.