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Appearance

You can change the way questions are presented by setting the appearance for each question type. Add an appearance column to your spreadsheet to change the appearance and functionality of your survey questions.

Text

By setting the appearance value to multiline, a text question will be presented as a multiline text box.

By setting the appearance value to predictivetext or nopredictivetext, a text question will enforce that predictive text will be enabled or disabled, respectively, on mobile devices. By default, Android has predictive text disabled for text questions, while it is enabled by default on iOS.

Date

By setting the appearance value to year, a date question will be presented as a year-only button, with arrows to increase or decrease the year value.

Year selector

By setting the appearance value to month-year, a date question will be presented as a pair of buttons, one for the month and one for the year. Each has arrows to increase or decrease the value.

Month and year selector

By setting the appearance value to week-number, a date question will still be presented with a calendar picker for choosing the date, but once selected, the result will be displayed as the equivalent week number of the year. For example, if you chose the date February 24, 2016, Week 8 would be displayed as the result.

Week number

Select one

By setting the appearance value to minimal, a select one question will be presented in a drop-down menu.

Minimal appearance for select one

By setting the appearance value to horizontal, a select one question will be presented in a horizontal column.

Horizontal appearance for select one

By setting the appearance value to horizontal-compact, a select one question will be presented with options side by side.

By setting the appearance value to likert, a select one question will be presented as a Likert scale. A Likert scale is a rating scale that allows respondents to specify their level of agreement on a symmetric agree-disagree scale of a statement.

Likert appearance for select one

By setting the appearance value to autocomplete, a select one question will be presented with a text field and a drop-down menu. Entering text into the field will limit the drop-down display to only answers that contain that text. This is ideal for very long choice lists.

Autocomplete appearance for select one

Select multiple

By setting the appearance value to minimal, a select multiple question will be presented in a drop-down menu.

By setting the appearance value to horizontal, a select multiple question will be presented in a horizontal column.

By setting the appearance value to horizontal-compact, a select multiple question will be presented with options side by side.

Geopoint

By setting the appearance value to hide-input, a geopoint question viewed in the Survey123 web app will appear with a read-only coordinates value, as opposed to the default coordinate input box. This appearance value does not apply to the Survey123 field app.

Hide-input appearance for geopoint

Image

By setting the appearance value to signature, an image question will be presented as an empty box capable of capturing a signature or any other freehand text or drawing.

Signature appearance for image

By setting the appearance value to draw, an image question will display a button to load a canvas to sketch on. This canvas has a smart sketching tool to generate shapes and provides the ability to add text annotations to the image.

Draw appearance for image

By setting the appearance value to annotate, an image question will display a button to open a separate canvas. Unlike the draw appearance above, annotate also provides an option to capture an image from the camera or use an existing image, which can then be rotated and sketched on.

Defaults and calculations behave differently with image questions using draw and annotate. If the file name of an image in the survey's media folder is used as a default value or the result of a calculation, the image will be used as an initial background for the canvas. In the case of annotate, this image will be replaced by a provided image.

Spike images

Image questions also support appearance types to integrate Survey123 with Spike, a laser measurement solution developed by ikeGPS that allows you to capture the measurements and location of an object from a photo. By setting the appearance value to spike or spike-full-measure, an image question will display a button to open the Spike mobile app on iOS and Android devices.

Spike appearance for images

A photo taken with the Spike app and laser device allows you to record the coordinates of and distance to the object, and measure the dimensions of objects in the photo through drawing areas and lines. The photo with measurement markup will then be attached to your survey, and the metadata from the photo such as coordinates and measurements is made available to be recorded. Associated Spike and measurement metadata is recorded in the image file using standard Exchangeable Image File (EXIF) tags. The EXIF information can then be extracted and used to populate other fields.

The difference between the two Spike appearance types is the extent of values stored in the image. The spike appearance will only measure distance and location, while the spike-full-measure appearance type measures distance, location, area, and length.

For more information on these EXIF tags, see Media. For more information on Spike, see the ikeGPS products page.

Integer

By setting the appearance value to distress, an integer question will be displayed as a distress scale. A distress scale is a 10-point scale used to measure feelings such as stress, pain, and happiness.

Distress appearance for integer

By setting the appearance value to spinner, an integer question will be displayed with buttons to increase or decrease the value by one. Selecting the button will repeat the progression until the button is released.

By setting the appearance value to numbers, a highlighted integer question will be accompanied by a custom numeric keyboard to enter a value. The keyboard also includes a button to make the value positive or negative.

Numbers appearance for integer

By setting the appearance value to calculator, a highlighted integer question will be accompanied by a custom calculator keyboard to enter and modify a value.

Calculator appearance for integer

Decimal

By setting the appearance value to spinner, a decimal question will be displayed with buttons to increase or decrease the last digit of the value by one. Selecting a button will repeat the progression until the button is released.

Spinner appearance for decimal

Use a default to define the number of decimal places for a question, and the spinner will adhere to it. The following are examples of how the spinner handles different decimal values:

  • 1.0 increases to 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4
  • 3.07 increases to 3.08, 3.09, 3.10, 3.11
  • 2.000000 increases to 2.000001, 2.000002, 2.000003

By setting the appearance value to numbers, a decimal question will be accompanied by a custom numeric keyboard to enter a value. The keyboard also includes a button to make the value positive or negative.

Bar code

By setting the appearance value to minimal, a bar code question will display with only a single button to start the scanner. The text box that contains the value for the bar code question will not be visible.

Minimal appearance for bar code

Group

By setting the appearance value of a begin group question to compact, a group of questions will appear collapsed on startup and can be expanded by the user. This is useful for long surveys that can be difficult for the user to read and navigate. This appearance is defined in the begin group question.

Collapsed group compared to expanded group

The minimal appearance value has no effect on group questions.

By setting the style column in the settings sheet to pages and the appearance value of each begin group question to field-list, each group will display on a separate page of the survey. Pages can be navigated through by using the UI's back and forward buttons on the bottom of the app, while pressing and holding these buttons will take you to the start or end of the survey. It is also possible to go straight to the desired page by selecting the page number to convert it to a writable field and typing the desired page number. This is ideal for breaking down the display of your survey, organizing it, and decreasing load times.

Multiple pages in a single survey

Repeat

By setting the appearance value of a begin repeat question to minimal, a repeatable collection of questions won't be visible on startup. The user must click the plus sign button to see the questions in the repeat. This is useful when repeated questions don't always need to be completed in a survey. This appearance is defined in the begin repeat question.

Minimal appearance for repeat

If a repeat is set to minimal, and has a repeat count of zero, the repeat controls and their label will be invisible.

By setting the appearance value of a begin repeat question to compact, a repeatable collection of questions will appear in a collapsed state on startup, which can be expanded by the user. This is useful for large surveys that may be difficult for the user to read and navigate. This appearance is defined in the begin repeat question.

Unlike other appearance types, repeat can use both minimal and compact at the same time by setting the appearance value to minimal compact. This will present the questions in a repeat in both a collapsed (compact) and hidden (minimal) manner.

By setting the style column in the settings sheet to pages and the appearance value of each begin repeat question to field-list, each repeatable collection of questions will display on a separate page of the survey. This behaves the same as for groups.