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Top Four Takeaways from REDCap 2014 Conference

Top Four Takeaways from REDCap 2014 Conference

The Institute of Translational Health Sciences’ REDCap Administrator, Bas de Veer, was among the more than 180 attendees at this year’s REDCap Annual Conference in Park City, Utah. REDCap, which was developed by Vanderbilt University, is a free, web-based application for Electronic Data Capture that ITHS offers to researchers in the five-state WWAMI region.

The conference, which was hosted last week by the University of Utah, was the largest annual REDCap gathering to date. It brought together a mix of experienced REDCap administrators, new administrators from new Clinical and Translational Science Award sites, and non-administrators from existing sites.

“The exchange of ideas at this conference really helps to spur breakthroughs for the entire REDCap research community in the areas of programming, documentation, and support,” said de Veer. “Seeing what others are working on has me really excited for what we can accomplish with REDCap in the coming year.”

According to de Veer, his top four takeaways from the conference were:

  1. Standardization — The keynote session made the case for why standardization of common data elements does not necessarily need to occur with the user at the project level, but that it still has to happen behind the scenes with the informatics team. Collation of standardized data captured by projects in REDCap could be a real boon for future research.
  2. Plugins and Hooks — A major focus of the conference was on the extension of REDCap to other systems through the use of new plugins and hooks. The development of useful hooks by the REDCap consortium is usually a prelude to widespread incorporation into the standard REDCap releases.
  3. New Features — A number of new features were introduced in the last year, including dynamic data pulls, survey queues, and the combining of data exports, reports, and statistics into a single module. These new features ensure REDCap’s future viability by being based on the wants and needs of the research community at large.
  4. Upcoming Features — There are a number of exciting new features that will be released in the coming year, including SMS and voice calling, two-factor authentication, customize survey designs, a mobile application, and more. The overarching themes of these new features are mobile application and security, both of which are highly relevant in today’s evolving landscape of information technology.
    The conference also included the first-ever poster presentation, which was won by de Veer and colleague Justin Prosser. Their poster, as well as the others that were presented, can be viewed by visiting the conference website.

To learn more about REDCap, please visit the ITHS REDCap site or email de Veer, the ITHS REDCap Administrator.