REDCap: Survey Settings

Status Icon Basic Icon Design Icon Customization Icon Access Icon Termination Icon
Survey Status Basic Survey Options Survey Design Options Survey Customization Survey Access Survey Termination Options

Survey Status

At the top of the Survey Settings page there is a box to make your survey Active or Offline.  Surveys will default to Active status when you enable an instrument as a survey.  If you wish to take your survey offline, you can change this drop down to "Survey Offline." 

Optionally, you can customize the text that is displayed to survey participants when they try to access an Offline survey by entering your text in the text window below the drop down menu.  If you choose to not add custom text, the default will display "Thank you for your interest, but this survey is not currently active."

Survey Status
Survey Status options in Survey Settings

Basic Survey Options

Under Basic Survey Options, you can change the Survey Title and customize the instructions that will display at the top of a survey page.  By default these will display the title of the instrument and a generic "Please complete the survey below. Thank you!" message to survey participants. 

Basic Options
Basic survey options in Survey Settings

Survey Design Options

Survey Design Options allows you to modify the look and feel of your survey as it is displayed to survey participants. 

  • Width of survey on page - Changes how much of the screen uses a survey.  Can choose default, or set to 50% - 100% screen width. 
  • Logo:  Uploads a file to be used as a logo that is displayed at the top of a survey page.  Can also choose to hide survey title to replace the title with a logo. 
  • Use enhanced radio buttons and checkboxes: Changes the display of radio and checkbox buttons. Example:
Enhanced checkboxes
Enhanced checkbox updated look when selected
  • Size of survey text:  Changes the size of survey text.
  • Font of survey text:  Changes the font of survey text.
  • Survey theme:  Selects color palette for survey display.  Several options to choose from, or can customize. See below. 
Survey Design Options
Survey Design options in Survey Settings

If you select "Customize" for Survey theme, REDCap will display a color selection menu which will allow you to select any color for text and backgrounds for your survey by using a color picker or by entering the HEX color value. Once you have selected your colors, you can save the theme by selecting "Save custom theme" which will create a pop up where you can name your new theme to use on other instruments in your project. This theme will now appear in the drop-down for you to select elsewhere in your project. 

Customize Theme
Survey custom theme options in Survey Settings

When selecting custom colors, test their readability.  Use dark colored text on light backgrounds, and white text on dark backgrounds for readability. 

Survey Customization

Survey Customization allows you to select a variety of options to change the look for function of your survey.

  • Question Numbering: 
    • Allows auto-numbering or customization of numbering of survey questions.  If custom, will need to add numbering in Online Designer or Data Dictionary
  • Pagination: 
    • Select if Section Headers will be used as page breaks to create multiple page surveys.
  • Allow Participants to download a PDF of their responses:  
    • Allows survey respondents to download a copy of their responses (not available for auto-continue or survey queue surveys)
  • Save a PDF of completed survey response to File Upload field:  
    • Saves a PDF of the survey responses to a designated upload field 
  • Survey-specific email invitation field: 
    • Specifies which email field to use for survey invitations.  If project email is set in Project Setup, this does not need to be set. 
  • Required field asterisk and text: 
    • Changes Required Field denotation between "*must provide value" text and a simple red asterisk (*) notation. 
  • Display font resize options: 
    • Displays font resize options at top of survey.  Enabled by default.
  • Allow survey respondents to view aggregate results: 
    • Allows survey respondents to view group data from ALL respondents in graphical and/or descriptive statistic format.
  • Text-to-speech functionality: 
    • Enables a speaker icon to reach each question out-loud on survey device. 
  • Show or hide Submit buttons:  
    • Choose to show or hide the Submit, Next page, and Previous page buttons on a survey.  Always display selected by default. 
  • Customize text of Submit buttons:  
    • Choose custom text for Submit, Next page, and Previous page buttons.
Survey Customizations
Survey Customizations Continued
Full list of survey customization options in Survey Setings

Survey Access

Survey Access allows you to set limits and access to the REDCap survey.

  • Response Limit:
    • Set maximum number of responses to collect.  Respondents will not be able to start the survey after the limit has been hit.
  • Time Limit for Survey Completion:
    • Set time limit for survey completion based on when they were sent the automatic survey invitation.  Does not apply to public survey links or Alert & Notification messages.
  • Survey Expiration:
    • Allows you to set the time after which the survey will become inactive (i.e. go offline) so that respondents may no longer take the survey. After expiration, the survey can be brought back online again (if needed) on the Project Setup page.
  • Allow Save and Return Option:  
    • Provides respondents with a 'Save & Return Later' button on the survey page, which allows them to save their progress and return where they left off to complete the survey any time in the future. Can be combined with "Survey Login" option in the Online Designer.

Survey Access
Survey access options in Survey Settings

Survey Termination Options

Optional Conditional logic for Survey Auto-continue:

Allows users to only auto-continue surveys when specific criteria have been met as defined by logic entered in the text box. 

Auto-continue new feature
New auto-continue custom logic for surveys

Survey Termination Options allows you to set rules for ending a survey.  


  • Auto-continue to the next survey: Automatically starts the next survey instrument after finishing the current survey.


  • Redirect to a URL:  Provide a URL to send the respondent to after completing the survey.


  • Survey Completion Text:  Set text to display after completing the survey.  Defaults to "Thank you for taking the survey.  Have a nice day!"

Optionally, you can offer to repeat the survey which will show a button to display a prompt to take the survey again.  This can be placed before the survey is completed or after the survey is completed.

Survey Termination Options
Survey termination options in Survey Settings

Options related to Survey Stop Actions:

  • Prevent survey responses from being saved if the survey ends via Stop Action
    • If a Stop Action triggers the end of the survey you can save or discard the responses.  Default saves all responses. 
  • Alternate Survey Completion Text
    • Text to display when a Stop Action triggers the end of the survey.  If left blank then standard Survey Completion Text will be used. 
Survey Stop Actions
Stop action survey options in Survey Settings

e-Consent Framework:

Electronic-Consent (e-Consent) is a platform for consenting patients or research subjects either on site or at home using a computer-based consent form rather than traditional paper documentation. Consent forms can be implemented in a REDCap survey via computer, mobile phone, or tablet. 

Most importantly, it is highly recommended that you have a discussion with the Institutional Review Board (IRB) if you wish to do e-Consent in REDCap. REDCap e-consent is NOT currently FDA 21 CFR  part 11 compliant for FDA regulated clinical trials. We are working towards part 11 compliance in 2024 and will alert users once this is available. 

How the e-Consent Framework works

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.

Patients/subjects can 'sign' their consents by typing in their name or by utilizing REDCap's 'Signature' field type (i.e., 'wet signature') on the survey. One might also assign PIN numbers to prospective participants to aid in the signature process. 

e-Consent version and type are both text fields whose value will be inserted at the footer of each page in the PDF.  The e-Consent 'type' is optional and is just a text label that you might want to display in the PDF footer to signify the type of e-Consent that this survey represents (e.g., pediatric). The type is often used to distinguish between multiple e-Consent forms within a project.

eConsent Framework
eConsent Framework setup and options in Survey Settings

Confirmation Email:

Choose to send a confirmation email to the survey respondent upon survey completion.  User can customize the sender, subject line, and message like other email settings.  Optionally, can choose to include a PDF of the complete survey responses as an attachment to the email to be sent to the survey respondent. 

Confirmation Email
Confirmation email setup in Survey Settings

    If you have a UW-Madison REDCap project and have questions about REDCap Survey Settings, please send them to

    KeywordsREDCap, Survey, Settings, Customize, Custom, Design, Options, Access, Termination   Doc ID121171
    OwnerAmanda Y.GroupSMPH Research Informatics
    Created2022-09-08 09:47:37Updated2024-03-20 09:59:05
    SitesSMPH Research Informatics , SMPH Research Informatics TEST
    Feedback  2   0