REDCap User Guides

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Getting Started

Creating a REDCap Account

How to register for a REDCap account or to change the email or name associated with your account.

Project Setup Page

This guide describes REDCap’s Project Setup page, which contains the checklist of items to be completed before moving the project into Production (going live).

Making Changes to a Project in Production

This guide describes how to make changes to your project once it’s in production and best practices for making database changes.

Optional Modules and Customizations

This guide describes all of the features found in the Optional Modules and Customizations header under the Project Setup page, such as repeatable instruments and events, auto-numbering for records, the randomization module, designating an email field to use for survey invitations and setting a custom record label.

Project Creation User Guide

Covers how to create a new project, how to add or edit data fields, field types available and branching logic and piping.

Deleting a Project in REDCap

REDCap is primarily a data collection tool and is not intended for long-term storage of study data, especially if it contains PHI. This guide describes how to delete a project from REDCap so that is does not remain on the REDCap servers indefinitely.

Updating Project Ownership, PI Info and IRB #

It may be necessary to update the PI Name, IRB Number or Project Ownership information due to staff changes. This guide describes how to update the Project Owner, PI information and IRB Number in REDCap.

Building Guides

Using Branching Logic

This guides describes how to format and apply branching logic, also known as skip logic, to questions using the Online Designer method to build a database in REDCap.

Using Calculated Fields

This guide describes how to create and format calculated fields, such as BMI, using height and weight fields and a subject’s age using two date fields.

User Rights

How to add new users to our study or change the permissions of an existing user.

Using the Matrix of Fields

This guide describes what a Matrix of Fields is and how to create one in REDCap.

Repeating Instruments and Events

REDCap has the ability to repeat a data collection instrument or an entire event of instruments an unlimited number of times without having to specify the amount needed.

Remotely consent new research participants by setting up e-consents in your REDCap project

The IRB has approved REDCap as a platform to perform informed consents remotely and electronically using REDCap’s survey features. Using this PDF guide (link to guide), you can set up an e-Consent for your REDCap project to remotely obtain a subject’s consent. Note: IRB approval is needed to perform e-consenting through REDCap.

Action Tags

Action Tags provide a way to customize the data entry experience for surveys and forms. They are special terms that begin with the ‘@’ sign that can be placed inside a field’s Field Annotation box when adding or editing a field. Each action tag has a corresponding action that is performed for the field when displayed on data entry forms and survey pages.

Data Entry and Surveys

Longitudinal Data Entry

This guide describes how to enter data into a project that is collecting data longitudinally.

Creating and Distributing a Single Survey

This guide describes how to create and distribute a single survey, methods for collecting anonymous and non-anonymous survey data, how to set up longitudinal survey collection and how to get notified when a participant submits a survey.

Distributing Multiple REDCap Surveys

This flowchart describes the ways you can send out multiple surveys to participants at one time point or longitudinally, either using the Public Survey URL (anonymous) or using the Participant List (not anonymous).

Modules Help

Creating a Customized Report

This guide describes how to create a customized data report in REDCap.

Data Exports

This guide describes how to export your project’s data from REDCap into Excel or a statistical package, such as SPSS or SAS.

Using the File Repository

This application may be used for storing and retrieving project files and documents, such as a blank copy of your consent forms or data entry guides. You may upload files here to save for retrieval later or download previously uploaded files. After a data export, the resulting data and syntax files are stored here also.

Randomization Module

The randomization module in REDCap will help you implement a pre-defined randomization model within your project, allowing you to randomize your subjects (i.e. records in your project). This guide describes how to set up and use the Randomization Module within REDCap.

REDCap Orca Search Module

The Orca Search REDCap External Module is an alternative to the built-in Add/Edit Records. It is a customizable, searchable list dashboard.

Alerts and Notifications

The Alerts and Notifications feature allows you to construct alerts and send customized email notifications. These notifications may be sent to one or more recipients and can be triggered or scheduled when a form/survey is saved and/or based on conditional logic whenever data is saved or imported

Custom Record Auto-Numbering

This module allows users to create a custom record auto-numbering schema for their REDCap project, such as having the first record ID created start at 1000 or 001 instead of 1, append all record IDs with a prefix (ABC-1, ABC-2, ABC-3, etc.), or having the DAG name appear in the record ID (UF-1, UF-2, UF-3) instead of the DAG ID (98-1, 98-2, 98-3, etc.) when utilizing DAGs in a project.

DAG Switcher

Using the DAG Switcher, users assigned to Data Access Groups (DAGs) can optionally be assigned to multiple DAGs, in which they may be given the privilege of switching in and out of specifically assigned DAGs on their own. Users can also be given “No assignment” in addition to being assigned to a DAG (or DAGs) so they can switch back-and-forth between their assigned DAG(s), allowing them to easily create/update/view records within that DAG, or create/view/update all records across the entire project when they switch to “No assignment.”

Prevent Past or Future Dates External Module

This REDCap module adds the new actions tags @PREVENT-FUTUREDATE and @PREVENT-PASTDATE that can be applied to date fields – i.e., a text field with date or date/time validation applied – to disallow entry of dates in the future or past, respectively


Twilio-REDCap Setup

REDCap has the capability to send SMS text messages to survey respondents by using a third-party web service named Twilio. In this way, you could invite a participant to take a survey by sending them an SMS message instead of an email invitation.

REDCap Mobile App Setup

The REDCap Mobile App adds a new dimension to the software’s versatility by providing users with a tool for offline data collection when an internet connection is not available.

Linear Data Entry Workflow

This REDCap external module forces a linear data entry workflow across REDCap forms and events by removing access to any form which does not immediately follow the last completed form. This module also prevents users from marking a form as “Complete” if any of the required fields on a form are blank, thereby blocking access to the next form until all required fields have data in them. Additionally, LDEW can be configured to automatically lock forms upon completion for certain user roles.

Form Render Skip Logic

This REDCap external module functions as branching/skip logic for entire REDCap forms and surveys. It provides a means for hiding or displaying entire forms/surveys based upon one or more control fields or conditions. FRSL hides unneeded forms for a specific record on the list of Data Collection Instruments due at each event, and grays out the colored buttons for the unneeded forms on the Record Status Dashboard and the Record Home Page.

Save Survey PDF to a Field

This REDCap external module generates a PDF of a survey upon completion and automatically saves it to a file upload field within that subject’s record. It is configured at the project level with source instrument (survey) / target field (file upload) pairs. In the event of save errors, the PDF is sent to a backup email address. This module is especially helpful for those using eConsenting in REDCap.

Image Map

This REDCap module replaces a text, radio, or checkbox field with an image that users can interact with to select one or more options. Specific applications include a body map (the over 70 body regions), a smile scale from 1-7 with facial expressions, and 3 representations of teeth and teeth surfaces.


This REDCap module protects a public survey with a CAPTCHA. This option will allow users to add protection to their public survey using Google’s CAPTCHA functionality, which can prevent bots from entering trash data into a public survey.

REDCap PDF Action Tags

This REDCap External Module provides action tags for controlling PDF output. The action tags allow you to suppress data in text fields, the enumerations in radio and checkbox fields, hide field notes and add whitespace to a field label to push down the next field on the PDF page.