REDCap News and Updates

December 2020 REDCap updates

November 2020 REDCap updates

Rush REDCap updates to version 10.0.0 on December 19th, 2020

  • New feature: Field Embedding
    • Field Embedding is the ultimate way to customize surveys and data collection instruments to make them look exactly how you want. Field Embedding is a Shazam-like feature that allows you to reposition field elements on a survey page or data entry form so that they get embedded in a new location on that same page. Embedding fields gives users greater control over the look and feel of your instrument. Users may place fields in a grid/table for a more compact user-friendly page, or they can position fields close together in a group if they are related.
    • To use Field Embedding, users simply need to place the REDCap variable name of a field inside braces/curly brackets - e.g., {date_of_birth} - and place it in the Field Label, Field Note, Section Header, or Choice Label of any other field on that same instrument. Field embedding will not work across instruments but only on the current instrument/survey being viewed. If on a multi-page survey, then the embedded field must be on the same survey page as its host field.
    • No action tags or custom HTML is required to use Field Embedding. Users can simply use the rich text editor in the Online Designer to design their layout and then place the field variables inside that layout. The layout does not have to be a table/grid (although tables are common for this), and fields can be embedded inside *any* field type (not just Descriptive fields).
    • We wish to thank Andy Martin (Stanford) because his popular Shazam external module served as the conceptual inspiration of the Field Embedding feature.
    • Note: When installing or upgrading to v10.0.0, a new project “Field Embedding Example Project” will be automatically added as a project template to allow users and admins to easily see some examples of Field Embedding in action.
  • Change: A new link to “REDCap Administrator Videos” has been added to the Control Center’s left-hand menu under the “Administrator Resources” section, in which this link points to a page that consolidates many REDCap videos aimed at administrators on various topics.
  • Change: Removed the thick black border seen on input fields that have focus for Chrome 83 and higher, which was by default adding the black border to all input fields on all webpages.
  • Change/improvement: Added better error detection to make the data import process more accurate and informational by ensuring that any datetime_seconds values that are missing a “seconds” component will be reformatted to append “:00” and if any datetime values are missing a “minutes” component it will be reformatted to append “:00”, in which it will display a warning to the user on the Data Import Tool page to inform the user that these modifications are happening. Also, if the first two digits of the “year” component are missing for a date or datetime value, it now displays a warning to inform the user that the full year value will be estimated and will note the resulting estimated year value.
  • Change: On the Survey Settings page, The Save & Return Later option “Allow respondents to return without needing a return code” now has a note immediately below it to encourage users not to use this survey option if they are collecting identifying information (PHI, PII) on their survey.
  • Change/improvement: If the Twilio SMS and Voice Call services are enabled at the system level, the Twilio module can now be disabled (if desired) at the project level by an administrator on the “Edit a Project’s Settings” page in the Control Center. If disabled for a given project, all references to the Twilio functionality will no longer appear in the project.
  • Bug fix: Clicking on the “What is an E-signature?” link in the “Editing existing user” dialog on the User Rights page would mistakenly not do anything and would result in a JavaScript error.
  • Bug fix: If a project does not contain any date or datetime fields, then when creating/editing an Alert or Automated Survey Invitation, the third “send time” setting’s text would mistakenly be missing the text “after time lapse of” immediately after the text “Send the invitation/alert”, which could cause confusion for users. (Ticket #84929)
  • Bug fix: Report B would return incomplete returns when viewed on a webpage (but not when exported) under certain conditions, especially if the project is longitudinal. (Ticket #84937)
  • Bug fix: When piping data into a drop-down field on a survey or data entry form that is a repeating instrument or exists on a repeating event, although piping would occur correctly when initially loading the page (using saved values), it would mistakenly not perform real-time piping on the page as fields were modified if those modified fields’ values were being piped into drop-down fields on that same page. (Ticket #84951)
  • Bug fix: When the Double Data Entry module is enabled in a project, the Current Users table on the Project Home page might mistakenly get partially covered by the Project Statistics table. (Ticket #84903)
  • Bug fix: When setting a Missing Data Code for a field, it would mistakenly hide all buttons in that row instead of only the Today/Now button for date/datetime fields. (Ticket #84909)
  • Bug fix: When composing multiple batches of survey invitations on the Participant List page without refreshing the page in between batches and the user uses their mouse to highlight the existing email body text and then pastes new text using Ctrl-V into the email body without typing on the keyboard while the cursor is inside the email body text box, then the new pasted text might mistakenly not be used in that batch of invitations being sent, but instead it would send invitations using the default email body text. (Ticket #84351)
  • Bug fix: When executing a custom Data Quality rule that has logic containing fields from both repeating and non-repeating contexts, in some cases the hyperlink for the data value displayed in the discrepancy dialog popup might mistakenly be pointing to a repeating context (e.g., URL contains “&instance=??”) even though the field does not exist on a repeating instrument or repeating event. (Ticket #84934)
  • Bug fix: The left-hand instrument menu in a project would mistakenly denote the maximum instance number of a repeating instrument rather than the total count of repeating instances, which can be confusing to users if some instances had been deleted after having been created. If the total count of repeating instances does not match the maximum instance number, then it will now display “max: X, total: Y” next to the instrument name to provide this distinction. Also, the “plus” icon next to a repeating instrument on the left-hand menu would mistakenly not appear if the first instance of the instrument had been deleted (this would occur when viewing the left-hand menu while on another instrument). Additionally, if a repeating instrument had its first repeating instance deleted, the form link on the left-hand menu would still mistakenly point to the first instance by default, which is not intuitive. It now points to the lowest existing instance of that instrument as the default. (Ticket #84943)
  • Bug fix: The note “You may use HTML formatting in the email message…” was mistakenly still being displayed below the rich text editors when composing survey invitations in various places in a project. That note no longer makes sense now that the rich text editor must be used in these places, so the note has been removed.
  • Change: If enabling the Survey Login feature in a project containing repeating instruments or repeating events, it now displays the clarifying message in the Survey Login setup dialog to users so that they are aware: “NOTICE: Fields existing on repeating instruments/events will not work as login fields”. (Ticket #85208)
  • Bug fix: In some situations where a data entry form or survey is being submitted after an External Module has relocated some fields on the page (e.g., Shazam), it may prevent the page from being saved successfully due to a JavaScript error. (Ticket #47120)
  • Bug fix: The color picker popup used for Project Folders and for Survey Themes would not be displayed correctly after being opened, so the preset color palette of squares in the color picker had to be removed since they could not otherwise be fixed.
  • Bug fix: When using Missing Data Codes in a project and a radio button or checkbox field has been assigned a missing data code for a given record, and then the user clicks one of the seemingly disabled choices of the field and then clicks Save, it would mistakenly change the value of the field to the choice that was clicked, even though it did not appear as if the field’s value changed prior to saving it. (Ticket #85220)
  • Change: The REDCap cron job now logs all events in the redcap_log_eventX table using the current time that the activity is logged - via PHP’s date(“YmdHis”) - whereas previous versions would log all cron activity using the time at which the cron job script began. This is more optimal since cron jobs can sometimes last for many minutes, which makes it more difficult to troubleshoot the timing of certain issues with cron jobs. Regular non-cron scripts will still continue to log events using the time at which the script began.