Fields may use a prompt list to restrict values to selectable options. Fields that use prompt lists can be configured to store either multiple values for each record or a single value per record. In addition to making data entry more manageable, users can query precisely on data stored in these fields. An academic interest field is an example of a field that should use a prompt list.


Some prompt keys are reserved for standard Slate fields and other system-wide functions. These special keys are listed at the top of the Prompts tool.

Configure a Prompt

  1. Select Database on the top navigation bar.
  2. Select Prompts.
  3. Select Insert. A popup appears (pictured).
  4. Configure each setting* as necessary.

  5. Click Save.

*Click here for a complete listing of all setting descriptions.

Prompts Based Fields vs. Text Based Fields

Prompts offer a controlled list of options for students and administrative staff to select as field values, while free-text values can contain anything. Therefore, using prompt lists for custom fields allows for easier reporting on data than using custom fields that store free-text values. In general, if there is a finite list of possible values for a field, then using a prompt list is preferred.

If a field stores non-standard data (for example, descriptions, explanations, or values to capture an “Other” item),  use a text value.

 Where are my prompts?

Just created a prompt and need to use it on a form right away? Cached values are refreshed approximately every 5 minutes in production—once refreshed, any new fields and prompts will be made available for use throughout forms and queries. If the prompt is needed instantly, force-refresh the cache by navigating to Database > Prompts and clicking on the force-refresh hyperlink. You'll see a message that reads "OK" acknowledging that the prompt is now available for use.

To use it in a Configurable Joins query, you may also need to refresh the Configurable Joins library by navigating to Database > Refresh Configurable Joins Library. You'll see a message that reads "Refresh Completed" acknowledging that the refresh is complete.


If a prompt's key is associated with 1,000 or more prompts, it will not appear in the Prompts tool. To see these prompts, run the Current Prompt List query in the Standard Query Library.

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