IT Connect

Information technology tools and resources at the UW

Definitions and Metadata

Knowledge Navigator

The feature-packed Knowledge Navigator ( is your one-stop metadata repository, designed to give context to the Enterprise Data Warehouse (EDW) business and technical data you use for decision-making.

  • Explore term, database, table and column definitions
  • Understand changes between old and new HR/Payroll data
  • View relationships between concepts, terms, tables, columns, and reports
  • Filter by subject area
  • View inbound and outbound dependencies for tables and reports
  • Quickly find Tables, Columns, Reports, and Business metadata with a simple search
  • Learn more about the metadata from user comments and expert advice
  • Find elements that are related to others because they are similarly tagged within the system
  • Learn which security roles are able to view which EDW tables

1-Minute Overview of Features

Knowledge Navigator Overview

Institutional Definitions

The University maintains agreed upon definitions of record used when developing enterprise reports. The Data Management Committee maintains this site and the definitions are provided by various data custodians. All UW personnel responsible for producing enterprise reports should strive to incorporate these high-level institutional definitions into those reports, and document when reports use definitions that are not aligned.

Institutional Definitions in EDW

The EDW Initiative integrates different data sources and provides standardized business terms and definitions for data warehouse tables and columns. These business terms and definitions help EDW users understand what data means and assist in creating and explaining reports. View the glossary definitions in the Business Intelligence portal, or peruse the interactive models to see table and column definitions, as well as relationships between tables.

Source System Metadata

This is a collection of metadata resources as they currently exist and serve different functional databases at the University of Washington. These metadata sources contain both business metadata (e.g. business term definitions) and technical metadata (e.g. database column name, data type). The databases which those metadata described are the sources of Enterprise Data Warehouse. This list is not exhaustive. Financial Metadata – The Financial Desktop Initiative Glossary is best used for finding individual field definitions. Student Metadata – The Student Data Dictionary provides table and field definitions.

Other Existing Glossaries

Below is a list of glossaries defined by different operating units for the purpose of explaining operation related terms.