E-COBIDAS: a webapp to improve neuroimaging methods and results reporting

remi gau Presenter
Institute of Psychology, Université Catholique de Louvain
Louvain la neuve, Wallonie 
Software Demonstrations 
In any scientific study, a complete and precise method section is necessary to understand and evaluate the results, plan replications, seed new research and compare outcomes across studies. However, a large number of neuroimaging studies fail to report important details necessary for independent investigators to achieve these goals [1].
In order to improve this situation, the Committee on Best Practices in Data Analysis and Sharing (COBIDAS) of OHBM released a report to establish a set of best practices for methods and results reporting in f/MRI research [4]. This has been recently followed by a similar initiative for EEG and MEG [5].
The COBIDAS reports are accompanied by checklist tables meant to help authors ensure that their methods and results description complies with the Committee's recommendations. These checklists are a valuable resource, but the static PDF tables do not lend themselves to an actionable format, and users may be required to scroll through pages of items that do not concern their specific use-case. Moreover, while these checklists help generate a human readable method section, they do not provide ways to create a machine-readable equivalent that would encapsulate a large part of the metadata in a study.
The goal of the eCOBIDAS webapp is to provide a user-friendly solution for researchers to fill out the COBIDAS checklists, while generating a machine-readable summary of a methods section. This summary can then be used to automate methods section writing for authors, or to facilitate the assessment of a study quality during peer-review.