REDCap: data capture from humans with a valuable and sustainable platform. Challenges and opportunities for REDCap administrators

Dr Christopher McAvaney1, Mr Aidan Wilson2, Mr John Liman3, Dr Weisi Chen2, Mr Shaun Grady2, Dr David Jung4, Ms Yelena Fridgant5

1Deakin University, Waurn Ponds, Geelong, Australia
2Intersect Australia, Sydney, Australia
3Monash University, Melbourne, Australia
4University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
5Sydney Local Health District, Sydney, Australia

REDCap (Research Electronic Data Capture) is a secure web application for building and managing online surveys and databases that supports multi-centre clinical trials with appropriate security/audit trail features. REDCap was built by Vanderbilt University and offers free licences for not-for-profit organisations. It has an increasingly broad international community of 4k consortium members and 1.4m users.

REDCap is free software and is distributed to consortium members under a license that provides no warranties or provisions of support from Vanderbilt. As such, licensees are generally responsible for administering and supporting their own instances.

A growing number of universities and research institutions in the Australasia region have REDCap instances, and generally, local administrators are responsible for providing all user support in addition to maintaining the application and any integrations with other institutional systems. Often this can be challenging to research support personnel without systems administration experience.

This BoF session will bring together a number of administrators of REDCap instances at universities and research institutions around Australasia, to present and discuss the range of support models, and share experience in administration, governance, user support, training and integration with other institutional systems. Following these presentations the administrators will participate in an open discussion with each other and the audience.

This BoF will benefit representatives from institutions who wish to install REDCap and want to know what is required to adequately support it, as well as from institutions who have REDCap installations and are looking for ways to improve systems, support and integration.


Christopher McAvaney is Services Manager, eResearch at Deakin University. He is responsible for establishing an eResearch program of work at Deakin which includes REDCap.  Christopher has extensive research administration experience at Deakin and is keen to leverage as much as possible from REDCap via its extensible design.

Aidan Wilson is Intersect’s eResearch Analyst for ACU, and one of ACU’s REDCap administrators. He also delivered REDCap training and user support to ACU’s researchers.

John Liman is Helix’s Snr. Analyst Programmer at Monash University.  John is the Monash REDCap Administrator supporting researchers with REDCap design, training, project consultation and customisations.

Weisi Chen is Intersect’s eResearch Analyst for University of Technology Sydney, and one of his routine responsibilities is to act as the UTS REDCap administrator. With more than seven years of eResearch experience, Weisi has expertise in a broad range of eResearch technologies.

Shaun Grady is the Intersect eResearch Analyst at the University of Newcastle and key provider of REDCap training and the support at the University. Shaun originally trained as a Radiation Therapist so has a strong interest in Healthcare data management and research and will complete a Master of Information Technology in Data Science at Charles Sturt University in 2020.

David Jung is Research Data Support Officer at the UNSW Sydney and one of his roles is supporting researchers as a REDCap administrator.

Yelena Fridgant is a research data management consultant with over twenty years experience in data management. In 2015, Yelena was responsible for establishing the Sydney Local Health District district wide REDCap installation, the first in  a Local Health District in NSW. She is passionate about  supporting clinicians with their research project methodology, workflows, database designs and resolving their data management headaches.

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