Get started with Symplectic Elements

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Symplectic Elements (‘Elements’) is a system that holds data on research activity - outputs, grants, profile, and professional activities. It is managed by Research Services.

Elements harvests the metadata of published outputs from a variety of online sources (e.g. Scopus, PubMed) based on your name. You then 'claim' these manually or automatically using your ORCID. In this way you can maintain a complete record of your research outputs.
You can also enter data manually, such as your outputs (pre-publication), profile or professional activities. Grants data is imported directly form the University finance system and harvested from external data sources, and  cannot be entered manually.

Use of the data includes

  • Populating publications on your departmental web profile
  • Preparation and Submission to research assessment exercises such as the REF
  • Populating your profile on Research@Oxford, the University's expertise search portal.

Elements is also the tool for depositing texts to the Oxford Research Archive (ORA) in order to make your research discoverable and freely available. 

An account is set up automatically for all staff employed on a research contract by the University. Other staff should complete the new account form

You can nominate another user(s) with an account to be a 'delegate' to act on your behalf (Menu > My Profile > Manage Delegates).

We have a range of information at our website including user guides for researchers and FAQs.

You can log in to Symplectic at using your SSO (Single Sign-On) credentials.

1.    Check your name variants in search settings (Menu > My profile > Name-based Search).
2.    Claim/connect to your ORCID (and other author identifiers) (Menu > My profile > Automatic Claiming). See user guide ‘Add your ORCID’,
3.    Claim any pending outputs (Menu > My profile > Publications --> Pending tab)
4.    Update your Elements profile overview for use in Research@Oxford (Menu > My profile > Edit profile). See user guide ‘Edit your profile’.
5.    'Act on acceptance' when your next paper is accepted.  See website Open Access Oxford for further details.

You can contact the Symplectic Helpdesk at

To learn how the University collects and uses your personal data see the Staff privacy policy

Within Symplectic Elements, the following categories of data are by default set to Public which means that data may be shared publicly by the University of Oxford, including on departmental websites:

- Research outputs
- Grants
- Professional activities
- Profile

You can change privacy levels for the above categories. Please see our webpage ‘Privacy settings in Symplectic Elements’ for further details.

Depositing to the Oxford Research Archive (ORA) grants an ORA license - notwithstanding any privacy settings in Elements. Bibliographic details, abstract and full text of your research will be made publicly available by ORA subject to any publisher terms and conditions or copyright restrictions. Please contact the ORA Helpdesk with any queries about privacy in ORA.

If you have a particular query not covered by the above, please contact the Symplectic Helpdesk.

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