This section describes all of the possible options on the Import Data tab in Data Manager (shown below):
Data Import Data File Format
The data import data file must be a tab-delimited text file where the first line of the file contains variable names delimited by tabs that correspond to the survey variable names. Subsequent lines in the data file correspond to a survey participant entry or submission.
Tab-delimited text files created by Microsoft Excel are also supported, which includes triple-quoted data values. Triple-quoted data values are created by Excel whenever a data value in a cell contains one or more double quote characters. Whenever this type of data is included in a spreadsheet and the spreadsheet is saved as a tab-delimited text file, the values are written out with a leading and trailing double quote character and each double quote character in the original value is converted to two double quote characters.
For example, the phrase “Hello” will actually be written out as “””Hello”””.
Data Import Actions
The data import actions control how the data is imported or if it is at all.
- Test file for errors only (do not import data) – This is the default data import action. This action doesn’t actually import the data but rather checks the data for any errors. This action is the recommended first step when importing data. Any errors reported will need to be investigated and corrected before the data import will actually work.
- Import as test data – This action imports the data as test data and allows users to run queries against the data which can ensure that Data Import process worked as expected. The benefit of this action is that test data can be quickly removed and the data import can be re-tried again if necessary.
- Import as production data – This action will import the data as production data. This option should be selected after you have ensured the results of importing the data are correct using the other two actions. Once data is imported as production data it is difficult and time-consuming to delete it.
- Update existing submissions – This action allows for the addition or correction of existing survey submissions. This action must have the DatStat.SESSIONID as one of the columns in the upload file.
Data Cleanse Option
This option may be desirable if the survey contains questions or collections with Show-If. When this option is enabled responses will be discarded if Show-If would have caused this question or parent collection to not be shown.
Error Reporting Options
Data Import will only import data if there are no reported errors. These options allow for users to quickly suppress errors of a certain category especially if the error conditions are determined to be intentional or benign.
- Suppress unknown column errors – Selecting this option will prevent errors of type Unknown Column Error from being reported. This error condition is reported when there are column names in the first row of the data file that do not match any variable names in the survey. A data file might contain additional columns that are not in the destination survey. Checking this box will essentially ignore such columns.
- Suppress missing column errors – Selecting this option will prevent errors of type Missing Column Error from being reported. This error condition is reported when there are survey variables in the destination survey that are missing from the data file. A data file might not include all variables that are listed in the destination survey. Checking this box will ignore this condition as an error condition and will allow the data import to proceed.
- Suppress unknown scale value errors – Selecting this option will prevent errors of type Unknown Scale Value Error from being reported. This error condition is reported when there is a specific data value that is not defined in the scale of the corresponding survey variable. When this error is suppressed, the data is cleared and treated as unanswered for these types of conditions.
- Suppress response guide validation errors – Selecting this option will prevent errors of type Response Guide Validation Error from being reported. Errors of this type are reported when the values in the data file violate the following response guides specified for the survey question:
- Minimum/maximum length
- Format (meta-type)
- Lower/upper bounds
- Data type violation (e.g. non-numeric data specified when numeric data type expected). When this error is suppressed, the data is cleared and treated as unanswered for this question.