Custom Variables Overview

Custom Variables Overview

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Creating a Custom Variable

Custom variables are created and managed at the study level. Only a user with Study Admin permissions for a study can add new custom variables to a study. To add a new custom variable, navigate to the Study Settings tab:

Screen_Shot_2019-11-18_at_2.33.11_PM.pngNext, go to the Requirements section on the left side of the Study Settings page:

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Scroll to the bottom of the Requirements page where you will find the Create a New Custom Variable button:

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This will open a window to create your new custom variable, where you can choose the type of variable, the name of the variable, and the variable options (if applicable):

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The variable Type selector is a drop down menu of all the option types, while the Name and Options fields are text fields. Name is a short-text field that is a short description that will appear on the participant profile when you enter the data. Options can collect multiple short-text field answers, shown below:

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Once saved, your custom variable will now appear in each participant’s profile card in this specific study:

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To delete an answer, click the red garbage can button:

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To enter an additional option, click Add Option and a new field will appear:

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Then type in the new option in the blank field.  

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The final view of what this example custom variable will appear as in a participant’s profile card:

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Global Custom Variables

Global Custom Variables will appear on a participant’s profile card in the registry as well as any other study the participant is added to. Any custom variables not marked Global will only be visible in the study in which they were created.

For example, if I add the Preferred Day of Contact Variable, to both Study A and Study B.  If I enter Sunday on a participant’s profile in Study A, the value will be the same in Study B.  If you change the value in the Study A that change is reflected in Study B, and in the registry. 

Blind Custom Variables

Blinded Custom Variables will only be visible to users with Study Admin permissions and is only visible on the study profile card.  The content in a Global Blinded variable is never visible in the Registry. When a variable is blinded, this is what non- Study Admin users will see:


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Additional Features

The Convert button will change a custom variable that is a single-select variable into a multi-select variable. This can not be reversed once it has been converted.

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Editing a Global Variable

The Unlock button will open a global variable to be edited. When a global variable is locked, it is unable to be edited. Using the unlock button is the only way to update a global variable.. Once you update the global variable it will lock when the page is reloaded.


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The Add an Existing Global Variable button allows you to add an existing global variable created in a different study to your study:

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This window shows you all of the existing Global Variables for your Ripple site that you can add to your study:

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Reordering Custom Variables

You may wish to reorder the way the custom variables appear on a participant profile card, putting the most important variables first.

The Reorder tool allows you to drag and drop your custom variables to select the order in which they appear on a participant’s profile card.To use this tool, do the following:

  1. Hover over the custom variable you would like to move and click and hold a section of the variable with the four-pronged cursor

  2. Using the mouse scroll or keyboard arrows, move the custom variable up or down your list to its preferred spot

  3. Unclick the mouse to drop the custom variable in its new position

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