Fields Settings

Details

Settings within the Details tab of fields

Setting Description
Status  Set the status to 'Active' for currently used Fields.

Inactivate fields that are no longer used without fear of losing data associated with them.
Folder Keep organized by maintaining a clear folder structure for internal use.
Dataset If the field is for use with a Dataset, select the Dataset from the drop-down list.
Scope Category

The scope setting will dynamically show based on the category selected.

Scope

Scope describes the entity to which the field is related.

Do not change the scope of a field once data exists for the field. Changing the scope of a field will not update existing values, resulting in orphaned data. Also, existing filters and exports will continue referencing data with the original scope. If data should be scoped differently, create a new field with the desired scope. Then, export the existing data and import it to the new field using Upload Dataset.

Set the scope for any field that is not associated with a Dataset:

  • Person - Person-scoped fields are associated with a person record. Each person record can have a value for this field. Biographical information or data that is unlikely to change between different applications is typically person-scoped. Data points about prospective students before becoming applicants may also be captured using person-scoped fields. 
  • Application - Application-scoped fields are associated with a specific application. If a single person has multiple applications associated with it, each application has its own set of application-scoped fields. Items that are specific to an application and are likely to change if the same applicant applies again at a later date. Examples include program information, entry term, and enrollment status.  
  • Course - Course-scoped fields are associated with a specific course within the course widget. Each course can have its own value for a course-scoped field. Add a custom course-scoped field to capture additional information that is not a standard course field.
  • Interest - Interest-scoped fields are associated with a specific interest within the interest widget. Each interest can have its own value for an interest-scoped field. Add a custom interest-scoped field to capture additional information that is not a standard interest field.
  • Job - Job-scoped fields are associated with a specific job within the job widget. Add a custom job-scoped field to capture additional information that is not a standard job field. Each job can have its own value for a job-scoped field.
  • Material - Material-scoped fields are associated with a specific material. Each material can have its own value for a material-scoped field. To store information about a specific material, add a custom material-scoped field.
  • Reference - Reference-scoped fields are associated with a specific reference submitted through Slate. Each reference can have its own value for a reference-scoped field. Add a custom reference-scoped field to capture additional information that is not a standard reference field.
  • Relation - Relation-scoped fields are associated with a specific relation within the relation widget. Each relation can have its own value for a relation-scoped field. Add a custom relation-scoped field to capture additional information that is not a standard relation field.
  • Report - Report-scoped fields are associated with a specific school report submitted through Slate. Each school report can have its own value for a report-scoped field. Add a custom report-scoped field to capture additional information that is not a standard school report field.
  • School - School-scoped fields are associated with a specific school within the school widget. Each school can have its own value for a school-scoped field. Add a custom school-scoped field to capture additional information that is not a standard school field. 
  • Sport - Sport-scoped fields are associated with a specific sport within the sports widget. Each sport can have its own value for a sport-scoped field. Add a custom sport-scoped field to capture additional information that is not a standard sports field. 
  • Test - Test-scoped fields are associated with a specific test within the test widget. Each test can have its own value for a test-scoped field. Add a custom test-scoped field to capture additional information that is not a standard test field.
ID 

This is the code that Slate will use to store fields in the database. It is best practice to have this ID be all lowercase with no spaces or special characters other than an underscore.  

Once this ID is set, and in use, you should never change the ID. 

This ID is used to store the data in the database.

Name Give the field a name. This name will be visible administratively only. It is acceptable to change the name, even if data already exists for the field.
Folder Adding fields to folders provides for better organization and filtering options. Select a folder or select Other and enter the name of a new folder. It is highly recommended to organize your content with folders.
Category Select an existing category or select Other and enter a new category for the field. Fields can be queried by using category.
Field Type Select one of the listed field types. The most commonly used types are:
  • Free Text - Select Free Text when storing a response that does not require a predetermined list of values. For example, if you are asking someone their favorite book, there are too many to list in a drop-down. Instead, ask the person to provide their answer using free-text.
  • Single Value - If a record should only have one associated value, set this to Single Value.  

    This means that if the field is application-scoped and configured to store a single value, each application can have one value for this field, even if the person record has more than one application.  

    Likewise, if the field is sport-scoped and configured to store a single value, each sport on the student record can have one value for this field.  
  • Multiple Values - If a record can have more than one value associated with it, set this to Multiple Values. 

    If each record should have more than one value for the field (for example, each application should be able to have multiple values for a Concentration field), then this should be set to allow multiple values.
  • Bit - When looking to store a yes/no response
Depending on the type selected, additional configuration fields may appear
Prompt This setting will appear when Single Value or Multiple Values is selected from the Field Type setting. Select from any prompt lists that are available within your database.
Ordered This setting is available for fields that store multiple values. This setting is used for field values that are grouped together.
  • Unordered Values - This field value should typically be set to Unordered values.  
  • Order Values - Fields that use a replicate widget will use the setting Ordered values.
Appendable This setting is available for fields that store multiple values. This will set the behavior for form submission or data imports for the field when a value for this field already exists for a record.
  • Replace existing values upon form submission or dataset import - This option will remove all of this field's values for the record that are not included in the new set of values and then add the new values.

    For example, if an Academic Interest field exists and stores multiple values, and the record already has the values: Biology, Chemistry. When importing the values Biology and English:

    With the setting Replace existing values upon form submission or dataset import, the values on the record will become: Biology and English.
  • Append to existing values upon form submission or dataset import - This option will keep all existing field values for the record intact and add the new values. 

    For example, if an Academic Interest field exists and stores multiple values, and the record already has the values: Biology, Chemistry. When importing the values Biology and English:

    With the setting Append to existing values upon form submission or dataset import, the values on the record will become Biology, Chemistry, and English.
Unique for Merging Use this setting with caution.

When configured as value containing a unique ID that identifies a single record for merging, Upload Dataset and Form/Event/Interview submissions will use this field's value to match onto records automatically. Consolidate Records will also use this field to find potential matching records. Fields should only be configured as unique if each record is guaranteed to have a unique value for this field.  

Examples of unique fields include:

  • SIS IDs, including: Banner ID, EmplID, ColleagueID
  • CommonApp ID
  • Questbridge ID

Advanced Settings

Settings within the advanced settings tab of fields

Setting Description
Unsafe Use this setting with caution. Typically, institutions will mark data originating from their institution as Unsafe, including institutional IDs.
  • Unsafe - If a field is configured as Unsafe, then the safe setting for files uploaded through Upload Dataset and form submissions will always be ignored for that particular field. The Unsafe setting means that the field value will be updated by a source/form submission, even if the record has an application in an active application period.

    Application-scoped fields are always considered Unsafe.

  • Safe - Since applicants will give accurate information when completing an application, the Safe setting will protect biographical data, such as race/ethnicity, from being updated by less accurate sources.
Data Type This setting provides the ability to specify if the field will contain free-text or conform to specific types of values. Filters will become available in the Slate Template Library for text-based fields based on the Data Type selected. Numeric types (Real, Int), as well as Date and Date/Time types, will be available as filters with comparison operators (<, <=, =, >=, >).    
XML Configuration Data This is a legacy setting that, in the past to drive conditional logic on legacy XSLT application pages. This can be handled within each form in a less technical format via forms.

Display

Instead of the display settings below, we recommend using custom tabs to display custom fields as necessary within records.

Settings within the display settings tab of fields

Setting Description
Read Permission This optional setting restricts the ability to view particular fields on a tab by setting a custom read permission. Left blank, anyone with the ability to view the field's tab on the student record can see the value of this field.
Write Permission This optional setting restricts the ability to edit particular fields on a tab by setting a custom write permission. Left blank, anyone with the ability to view the field's tab on the student record will be able to update the value of this field.

Notes

Notes are internal-only for each field. These notes might include the field's purpose, why it's important to your institution, etc.

Settings within the notes tab of fields

Snapshots

Once a field has been created, a new tab will appear. The Snapshots tab will display all updates to a field. Each timestamped update can be clicked to see what the field settings looked like previously.

Settings within the snapshots tab of fields

Was this article helpful?
6 out of 7 found this helpful