You need to know certain facts about your project before creating in REDCap. The following list provides a starting point but will vary on a case-by-case basis. In some projects, you may have more than this planned out already, while others may still be defining the basics.
This module allows you to create new data collection instruments and surveys or edit existing ones. Changes are made by using the
Online Designer or
Upload Data Dictionary. You can use either method or both - the
Online Designer helps build some initial fields/forms quickly and is a good place to make quick edits. Using the
Data Dictionary file is more helpful when adding a large number of fields.
This module is used for making changes to the project, such as adding new fields or modifying existing fields, by using an offline method called the
Data Dictionary. The
Data Dictionary is a specifically-formatted CSV (comma delimited) file in which to construct project fields for upload.
Online Designer allows you to make project modifications to fields and data collection instruments using a web browser. You may then enable the instruments to be used as surveys in the
NOTE: While in development status, all field changes take effect immediately in real time.
Allows you to define "events" for your project to
utilize data collection forms multiple times. Often used when collecting longitudinal data. An "event" may be a temporal event in the course of your project, such as a participant visit or a task to be performed. After events have been defined, designate the data collection instruments to use for any events, thus allowing you to use a form for multiple events for the same project record. You may
group events into "arms," where there are one or more arms/groups for your project. Each arm can have as many events as you wish.
Customize data. For example,
Auto-numbering for records,
Scheduling module for longitudinal only,
Randomization module or designate an email field to use for invitations to survey participants and additional customization.
Create custom bookmarks to web pages that exist inside or outside REDCap. These bookmarks are links on the left-hand project menu and are accessed by users with privileges to do so. Custom settings allow control over a bookmark's appearance and behavior.
Grant users project access or edit current users' privileges from the
User Rights page. Additionally, to limit user access to certain records and responses for this project, use
Data Access Groups - users within a given
Data Access Group can access records created by users within that group.
It is important to test the essential components of your project before moving it into production.
The best way to test a project is to use it as if you were entering real production data. Create test records and enter data for each to ensure the data collection instruments look and behave as you expect, especially branching logic and calculations.
Create reports to review and export to Excel or a statistical analysis package. Complete any surveys as if you were a participant by using the
Public Survey Link or
Participant List by sending a survey invitation to yourself. If other project modules will be used regularly, test them as well. It is always helpful to have colleagues (especially team members) look at your project with a fresh pair of eyes.
When ready, move the project to production status so real data can be collected.
NOTE: Once in production, you will not be able to edit the project fields in real time anymore. However, you can make edits in Draft Mode, which will then need to be approved by a REDCap administrator before taking effect.