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What is REDCap?

REDCap is a secure, HIPAA compliant, web-based application for building and managing online surveys and databases. Administered by BNI Informatics  Team, REDCap may be used for research and quality/performance improvement by the entire Research community.

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Learn more by watching summary video:Brief Overview of REDCap (4 min)

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REDCap Overview

The Research Electronic Data Capture (REDCap) system and REDCap Survey are powerful software programs created by Vanderbilt University and supported by the REDCap Consortium to facilitate Institutional Review Board (IRB)-approved clinical research and basic research. Data collected in the course of the research are managed by the program, and can be analyzed by commonly used statistical packages, including SAS, Stata, SPSS, Prism and Excel.

The REDCap system provides functionality and features to enable researchers to rapidly develop databases and online surveys. These databases, data entry forms, and surveys are intuitive, easy to use tools for collecting data, including data validation.

Access to REDCap

The BNI provides two instances of REDCap. The first is a Training/Sandbox Solution. The Sandbox system is used for testing REDCap projects and REDCap training. The second REDCap instance the BNI Production supports is an Enterprise solution build with high availability clustered enterprise hardware, Data is distributed among two independent clustered data storage system which is used for general development and production.The design, use, and maintenance of REDCap are managed by the Barrow Informatics REDCap team. The  Barrow REDCap  team supports and enhances study design, data capture, and analytics for all discipline research. 

click on links to access:  REDCap Sandbox and Training  , BNI  Enterprise REDCap

REDCap Key Technologies

REDCap has a flexible and fine-grained authorization matrix, allowing different members of the study team to have different levels of access (none, read-only or edit) to data entry forms, and access to database management and data export tools. There are provisions to restrict access to data export to allow export of de-identified data only. Advanced features of the system include branching logic for dynamic data entry form generation, file uploading, data importing, and embedded calculated database fields. REDCap enforces authorization granted to each user by providing and/or enabling certain functions, tabs, links and buttons according to granted privileges. REDCap includes a full audit trail, recording all operations on the data, including viewing and exporting. The audit log records operation, date and time, and the user performing the operation, permitting review of the audit trail as necessary. REDCap enforces data integrity protection by design; all “databases” created by users are logical data sets on top of a relational database with built-in integrity protection controls. Additionally, REDCap can help to ensure data quality through use of Double Data Entry mode, forms and records locking and electronic signatures.

Regulatory Compliance and Polices

REDCap approval for storage of sensitive data follows HIPPA guideline.The Project Owner is responsible for the following:

  1. Obtain approval prior to using REDCap for studies involving human participant research.
  2. Build the REDCap database (entry forms) in such a way that it corresponds to the study design that will be submitted to the IRB for approval and provides proper data collection tool for all the data necessary for testing study hypothesis (hypotheses).
  3. Collect all the data necessary for testing study hypothesis (hypotheses) Collect only minimally-necessary set of PHI, in addition to those required by study design or operational requirements, to positively identify study subjects during data entry phase.
  4. Any PHI identifiers must be properly tagged as Identifier.
  5. REDCap administrator will review and approve all Databases. In the case of data regarding patient or subjects of BNI, all users must comply with HIPAA Privacy Policies and Information Security for Protected Health Information (PHI) and Education Records covered under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) REDCap is installed in environment that is compliant with such standards as HIPAA, 21 CFR Part 11, FISMA (low, moderate, high), and international standards. Because “you” have direct and total control over your system, REDCap is fully personalized to meet your security policies and user needs.
  6. Any authenticated user has a right to access REDCap, review public databases (e.g., demo databases) and create a new database or modify a database to which a corresponding authorization is granted (e.g., his/her own). Currently, the Barrow Neurological Table Based Directory services serves as the authentication source. This will shortly be upgraded to Directory services.
  7. Export only when necessary – One of REDCap’s greatest strength is the security of your data. Take precaution when exporting data and only export data if you need to run reports or analyses outside of REDCap. Limit user privileges to only allow export rights to those who really need it.

Training and Learning Resources 


REDCap software is licensed through the Project REDCap  at Vanderbilt University. The Barrow Neurological Institute joined the REDCap Consortium in 2013.


If you are experiencing problems with your REDCap project, please fill out a trouble ticket REDCap Support