EOL Content Partners: Contribute Using Spreadsheets

What Is It?

EOL has several ways for content partners to contribute content, some more technical than others. The Excel Spreadsheet import option lowers the barrier to become an EOL contributor by only requiring you have access to a version of Microsoft Excel to populate a spreadsheet template we provide.


The template is compatible with older and newer versions of Excel. We provide one for Excel versions 1997 to 2004 in XLS format, and a version in XLSX format which is the default for versions of Excel from 2007 onward.

The template consists of a document with 5 sheets representing Media, Taxa, Vernacular Names, References and Agents. Each sheet has two fixed rows which contain the label of the field represented by the column and a brief description of what the field is expected to contain. Fields which are required have an orange background and must contain a value in order to be a valid document. Some fields values will be based on a controlled list of recommended values and will provide a drop-down list of values to choose from. It is not required that a value from the provided list is selected, but in some cases EOL may not consider a file valid if we do not recognize for example the data type or license as we have our own requirements about the types of content we can accept and the rights under which the content is provided.


You can test your archive for structural or data problems by checking it with our Archive and Spreadsheet Validator. This tool will perform several tests:

  • verify that required fields are included
  • validate certain field values such as data types and licenses
  • perform some data type-specific validation such as verify text object contain descriptions and images contain accessURIs

It will then return with a summary of the validation status. Any errors or warnings will be displayed, as well as a brief summary of the data included in the archive. Errors should be addressed before the archive is registered with EOL. Resources failing validation will not be harvested.


Spreadsheet files populated using the template provided can be uploaded by using the Content Partner tab on your user profile and following the instructions provided. A more detailed step by step set of instructions is provided here.

See Also