REDCap Survey Settings

Tags REDCap


From the Survey Settings page, users can customize a variety of settings, including survey status, basic survey formatting, survey completion options, enable e-consent, and more. These settings are customizable per instrument in the project and do not impact the data entry forms. This document walks through each customizable setting found on the Survey Settings page.

Survey Setting Options

Survey Status

  • Status drop-down – Users can change the survey status here for an individual instrument here by switching the status drop-down “Survey Active” to “Survey Offline”.
  • Offline Message – For offline surveys, users can set a custom message alerting individuals who navigate to the survey that the form is now offline.

Basic Survey Options

  • Survey Title – The survey title is the header participants see when they access a survey.
  • Survey Instructions – Users can include instructions or additional information the survey title for participants to see when they access the survey.

Survey Design Options

  • Width – The width of the survey can be changed as a percentage of the webpage that the survey will take up using this drop-down. Note: The custom width of the survey doesn’t get applied when viewing on mobile devices
  • Logo – Another option is to include a logo above the survey title which can be upload from the user’s computer.
  • Use enhanced radio buttons and checkboxes? – Users can toggle between standard and enhanced radio buttons here. This feature impacts standard radio, checkbox, yes/no, and true/false fields
    • Standard
    • Enhanced

  • Size of text – REDCap defaults text size “Large”, however, there are “Normal” and “Very large” options. Users can change the overall font size of surveys using the text size drop-down.
  • Font of survey text – REDCap default text font to Open Sans, however, there are several options to choose from. Users can change the overall font using the Font drop-down.
  • Survey Theme – Users can change the color theme of individual instruments on the survey settings page. REDCap has numerous preset color options; however, users can customize a variety of background and font colors using the “Customize” button. Users can also save their customizations to use that color theme on other instruments and in other projects by using the “Save custom theme” button.

Survey Customizations

  • Question Numbering – REDCap defaults by numbering fields on the survey view. This automatically changes to custom numbering if the surveys utilize branching logic, otherwise, users can come manually change the question numbering here. When surveys are in custom numbering, each question’s number will be blank unless manually added via the online designer or data dictionary.

  • Pagination – REDCap defaults by having the survey questions/fields on one page. There is an option to create multiple pages by change the drop-down field to “Multiple pages”. When using the “Multiple page” option, REDCap utilizes the field type “Section header” to serve as the page break in a multiple page survey. There are additional options to hide/show page numbers at the top of the survey page as well as hiding the previous page button to prevent survey participants from going back during the survey.

  • Allow participants to download a PDF of their responses – Enabling this feature displays a button for the participants to download a PDF file of their responses once they submit the survey. (Note: This option will not be available if this instrument is Auto-continue or Survey Queue auto-start is enabled. Also, if a field on the form uses the action tag @HIDDEN, that field will not show on the PDF)

  • Save a PDF of completed survey response to a File Upload field – A PDF copy of the survey response will be immediately stored in the field identified in the drop-down whenever a participant completes the survey. (Note: This option requires a File Upload field to populate options in the drop-down)

  • Survey-specific email invitation field – This feature utilizes an email-validated text field for sending survey invitations for this instrument only. (Note: This option will override the project-level email invitation field and will also override any email address originally entered in the Participant List. Also, if this field has no value and the project-level email field is enabled, then the project-level email field's value will be used instead)

  • For “Required” fields, display the red “must provide value” text on the survey page? – Users can display or hide the “*must provide value" text on required fields. If this drop-down is “No”, then the “*must provide value” text will not appear beneath the field.

  • Display the font resize options at the top of the survey page – Users can hide or show the font resize options at the top of the survey page using this drop-down.

  • Allow survey respondents to view aggregate survey results after completing the survey? – Participants can view ALL response in aggregate graphical format and/or descriptive statistics. (Note: The minimum number of responses required for users to see aggregate data defaults to 10, however, users can change the minimum value)

  • Text-to-speech functionality – Allows text on survey page to be read audibly to participants while on the survey. When enabled, icons will be displayed next to all text on the survey, and when clicked, the text will be read aloud (computer speakers must be turned on). (Note: Users can designate which language the survey is read in, but this does not translate the text, rather reads it in the language identified here)

  • Show or hide the Submit buttons – Show or hide the submit button displayed at the bottom of the survey page (including the “Next Page” and “Previous Page” buttons. (Note: this is a static feature. If there is a need to hide/show the submit button based on some logic, there is an External Module called “HIDESUBMIT Action Tags” that allows users to customize logic in combination with action tags to hide/show the submit button. Be on the lookout for an article describing External Modules.)

  • Customize the text of the Submit Buttons – Alternatively to hiding the “Submit”, “Next Page”, and “Previous Page” buttons, users can edit the language displayed in those buttons.


Survey Access

  • Response Limit (optional) – Prevents respondents from starting the survey after a set number of responses have been collected. If left blank, the response limit will not be enforced. Users can also customize the language participants will see if they attempt to complete the survey once the limit is reached.  (Note: Users can designate if partial and completed response go into the set number of responses or if it will exclude the partial responses.)
  • Time Limit for Survey Completion (optional) – The amount of time each respondent is allotted to complete the survey based on when they were initially sent the survey invitation. If left blank, the time limit will not be enforced. (Note: This feature excludes public survey links and is not applicable for survey links sent via Alerts & Notifications)

  • Survey Expiration (optional) – Time after which the survey becomes inactive for participants.  If left blank, the survey expiration datetime will not be enforced.

  • Allow “Save & Return Later” option for respondents – Allows respondents to save the survey at any time and return to it later. It is highly recommended that respondents are required to enter a return code for privacy reasons. This feature also allows determines whether respondents can modify previously completed responses if they save and come back to the survey. This feature by default is turned off and requires users to activate it if they wish.

Survey Termination Options

  • Auto-continue to the next survey? – Automatically starts the next survey instrument after finishing this survey. This feature is optional and allows users to build out customized conditional logic for Survey Auto-Continue if desired.

  • Redirect to URL – Redirects survey participants to designated URL after submitting this survey. This feature cannot be used in conjunction with Survey Completion Text but can be used with Auto-Continue as an alternative survey end screen if the participant doesn’t meet the needs to move to the next survey.

  • Survey Completion Text – Customized language that is displayed after a survey is completed. This feature cannot be used in conjunction with Redirect to URL, but can be used with Auto-Continue as an alternative survey end screen if the participant doesn’t meet the needs to move to the next survey.

  • Options related to Survey Stop Actions:
    • Prevent Survey responses from being saved if the survey ends via Stop Action – If a Stop Action triggers an end of survey for a participant, users may choose to keep the submitted responses or discard the responses from being saved in the project. By default, the data is saved regardless of Stop Action being triggered. For more information use this link here: Survey Stop Action.

    • Alternate Survey Completion Text (Optional) – If a Stop Action triggers an end of survey for a participant, users may designate specific Stop Action survey completion text that the participant sees instead of the Survey Completion Text or Redirect to a URL options identified above.

  • E-consent Framework – The 'Auto-Archiver + e-Consent Framework' survey option adds two things to the typical survey-taking process. 1) Before a participant completes the survey, an extra certification page is added to end of the survey that displays an in-line PDF copy of their survey responses in which they will be asked to confirm that all information in the document is correct. Once they confirm all is correct, the survey will then be marked as complete. The survey will not be considered complete until they fulfill the certification step. 2) Upon completion of the survey, a static copy of their responses in the form of a consent-specific PDF will be stored in the project's File Repository. The consent-specific PDF will have the values of the e-Consent Framework Options inserted at the bottom of each page in the PDF. These values (i.e., name, date of birth, etc.) are added to the PDF as extra documentation of the identity of the person who is consenting. (Note: It is highly recommended that you have a discussion with the local Institutional Review Board (IRB) if you wish to do e-Consent in REDCap.)

  • Send confirmation email? – Emails the respondent when they complete the survey. There are additional options to customize the email language, include an attachment, and/or include a PDF of the respondents survey responses as an attachment.


Save/Cancel/Delete Survey Settings

  • Save Changes - Save any edits made to the Survey Settings page
  • Cancel - Cancel any edits made to the Survey Settings page
  • Delete - Allows users to delete this surveys settings without deleting any previously collected responses. Also, this feature will revert the survey back to a data-entry form.
Print Article


Article ID: 1082
Tue 3/28/23 11:12 AM
Wed 8/30/23 11:51 AM

Related Articles (9)

This article describes the steps to enable surveys in REDCap
How to break out of a survey
Primary methods on how to add multiple participants with unique identifiers
Instructions on how to set up Automated Survey Invitations (ASI) in REDCap
This article summarizes the REDCap data collection/management tool, Field Embedding by describing its capabilities, limitations, best practices and detailed instructions on how users can create an embedded field.
Instructions on how to enable the Form Display Logic in a REDCap Project
Describes the Instrument Management, Survey Settings, and other features found on the Online Designer
Instructions on how to set up Survey Login in a REDCap project
Instructions on how to enable the Survey Queue in a REDCap Project