Got feedback or spotted a mistake?

Leave a comment at the end of this page or email

How to Evaluate OpenSpecimen?

In an attempt to improve the evaluation experience, we have introduced a new feature called the ‘Evaluation Sandbox’. This feature is available on our demo site.

What is the Evaluation sandbox?

The Evaluation Sandbox is a personalized space with some populated data for new users to evaluate how OpenSpecimen can fit their requirements.

How to sign up?

You can visit and click on the ‘Evaluate’ button on the top right corner. You’ll be taken to a sign-up page where you’ll need to enter details like Name, valid email ID, etc. After submitting you’ll receive the login details on the email ID that you provided.

What’s inside?

This section gives an overall idea for new users to navigate their way through the application and utilize the features in their best possible way. The features mention hereafter can be accessed from the left-hand side menu.

At every page, you can click on the help button on the top right corner to know more about the features on that page.


Since OpenSpecimen allows managing multiple sites, the sandbox comes with a default site, in addition to which, you can create more sites as per your requirements. 

This is relevant if:

  • You track specimens across multiple sites (eg: Clinic, laboratory, repository, etc.)

  • You conduct studies across multiple sites (OpenSpecimen allows linking a study to multiple sites so that collaborators from each site can have access to the study details)


For more details, visit:


By default, the sandbox comes with one user account- that is the one who signs up. Once you sign up and log in, you can create more accounts for your team members.

For details on how to create new users, visit:

Roles and Privileges

Roles define the privileges of different users. You can create and assign roles to a user based on what data and operations they should have access to.

For more details, visit:


Containers refer to freezers, tanks, racks or boxes in OpenSpecimen. The sandbox comes with a default -80 freezer. You can create more freezers to mimic something that you use. 


OpenSpecimen does not impose a fixed hierarchy, dimension or type of container. Rather, it allows you to design the dimension and hierarchy of the freezer as per your needs.

For more info, visit:

Collection protocols

The collection protocols (CP) is a standardized plan/protocol of collecting specimens. It can be a longitudinal study, a prospective collection of leftover samples from hospitals or a clinical trial.

In OpenSpecimen, you have the option to create CPs that involve participant data (PHI, demographics, etc.), called participant centric CP. These collections can be planned (with specific time points and specimen requirements) or unplanned (open-ended collections).

Additionally, you can also create CPs that do not involve participant data and is more useful for prospective collection of left-over specimens. These are called specimen centric CP.

For more details, visit:

Distribution Protocol

Similar to CPs, you can track the distribution of specimens to outside researchers using the Distribution Protocol (DP). Under a DP, you can manage things like- which investigator/institute you are sending the specimens to, pricing and invoicing and additional details.

The sandbox comes with a default distribution protocol:


Under a DP, there can be multiple instances of specimen distribution, and each instance is called an ‘Order’.

For more details, visit:


The Query interface lets you create general and complex reports from the user interface without any IT support. All kinds of data related to a specimen or participant, that exists in the system, can be queried from the interface.

You can generate reports, count-based queries/pivot tables and graphical data called ‘dashboards’. 

For more details, visit:


The forms feature lets you create custom data entry forms for collecting additional data like clinical data, pathology data or specimen annotations. It also allows you to add additional fields at the data entry pages while adding a new participant or specimen.

For more details, visit:

Data Entry

Got feedback or spotted a mistake?

Leave a comment at the end of this page or email