I try to push data from Aggregate to REDCap, and I saw there is an option [REDCap Z-ALPHA Server] under the [Publish] function of ODK Aggregate.
Is there anyone can help me to explain what is "REDCap Z-ALPHA Server"? I tried to googled and searched on this forum but nothing related. I would like to learn what and how to get this application.


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Hi @Alexander, you've got great timing!

I filed an issue at a few days ago to remove this publisher from Aggregate because I don't think anyone uses it and I think your post confirms this.

The REDCap publisher was added years ago, and the most detailed documentation we have on it is at The latest information about whether or not the publisher works is at REDCap To ODK - #30 by Mitch_S. In that topic from March 2016, Mitch says..

A RedCap publisher was contributed many years ago.

Upon later testing, it was discovered that the RedCap server requires a specific ordering of Header fields in requests sent to it (this is a non-conformance with HTTP protocols). This may or may not have been fixed. If it has, then everything should work. i.e., give it a try.

If it has not been fixed in the RedCap source code, then you will need to work with RedCap developers to fix their server implementation.

REDCap is only available to institutions who join the REDCap consortium and that makes it really hard for the ODK community to engage with their team. If you belong to the consortium, perhaps you can ask the REDCap developers if they could test the publisher?

If it works and people use it, great, we should keep it. If it doesn't work, I'd love to remove it in the next release of Aggregate.

Thanks for adding me to this discussion.

There is a lot of interest in the Research World for ODK and REDCap to share data. I could be wrong but I haven't seen much effort from the REDCap side but the ODK enthusiasts have been trying to see how this could work.

Please don't remove the feature in ODK, let's keep trying to make it work.


I love your enthusiasm, @paul_macharia! Perhaps you can track down some of the ODK and REDCap users and have them comment in this thread?

Can you please contact the REDCap developers as well and have them participate? Without their help, we are limited in what we can do.

Thanks @yanokwa!!

@Matt_Dunbar you are one of the enthusiasts!!

I work with people who have been using REDCap for many years and have perfected their research workflow around it. Most of these researchers admire ODK 1's ability to collect survey data. The only bottleneck is thus far, there don't seem to be a success story of integration.

@yanokwa, sorry to say, REDCap seem keen to perfect their mobile app (I am sure it will take many years to get to where ODK is). In my thinking, only the ODK Community with make the integration a reality.


Without the REDCap team's help, what we'll need to move this forward is:

  1. Someone (a somewhat technical user) with a REDCap server who is willing to try out the existing functionality and document what works and what doesn't.
  2. Someone (a developer) who can commit to making the changes in the streamer to make sure the functionality works.

Any volunteers?

@yanokwa thanks!

I could provide the REDCap instance for the setup and testing. However, we will need experts in REDCap to work with....

Thanks for your reply. As you mentioned the REDCap is restricted its source distribution, I was also unable to access the REDCap source code, and this is also why I am wondering how the Z-alpha things can do for me, otherwise I might need to use REDCap API to feed/push the data from database into REDCap.

And as other people mentioned, REDCap has its mobile app which claimed meet the HIPPA compliance and data encrypted on device and while transmit. However, it would be hard for remote area field worker to implement this app since most of the form load need the internet connect to its server.

My boss want me to use institutional REDCap Server for data preservation (?!) even we use ODK in the field for years and we are not doing clinical trials, and I also explain to him this does not make any sense. Anyway, I wish there is a handy tool can let me pass data from ODK Aggregate to REDCap Server very simple and easy, otherwise I need to dig in the REDCap API or change our field data collection into REDCap system.

I've spent some more time poking around at the REDCap website and I can't even see their API. @Alexander, can you see if the REDCap API has the functionality we'd need to push all the submission data into REDCap?

It mentioned in REDCap feature and Help:
REDCap API - Have external applications connect to REDCap remotely in a programmatic or automated fashion.
als check this out:

But I couldn't find any document or training material for API either. I am not the REDCap administrator and don't have the right to "touch" the source codes. I sent out e-mail to ask for those things from our University REDCap administrator, but not sure if they WILLING to give it to me or not.!

This all but confirms it for me. REDCap integration should be deprecated because without that team's help, it's mostly guesswork.

OK, I figured out something. There are couple way can find the REDCap API document:

  1. the official API Help will be in {your REDCap landing page}/api/help/, for example, if the REDCap landing page is:, the help will be in However, you need a REDCap account or go to here ( apply a one-week trial account
  2. There are couple of tools using REDCap API on github, here is a project:
  3. There is a R-package call "REDCap API" which connect R with REDCap,
  4. Here is the example for "Using REDCap API to Import Data"
  5. Another github project for REDCap API

I would like to say it eventually would be something like how we setting Google Map can be used in the Aggregate, we need to enter several parameters on Aggregate before ODK can communicate with REDCap

I also attached the official REDCap API Example. You also can find it in the API help. (102.9 KB)

I discussed this with the TSC and during that conversation, @aurdipas said he saw the ODK/REDCap integration working a few years back. I've asked him to see if he can find the person who did that work so we can try to understand what currently works.

If anyone else has had a working ODK/REDCap integration, please do chime in!

FYI you might be able to accomplish this already, without using REDCap. I did very similar to show and dynamically update submissions in Google Earth; by publishing submissions from Aggregate to another server, converting them to KML and appending to a file, and finally pointing Google Earth to fetch from a corresponding URL and specifying a refresh interval. And it looks like you can do similar - ie load placemarks from a URL and refresh - using Google Maps [I've not done it with Google Maps myself, but according to!topic/maps/_FeDteewt2I it appears possible].

I contacted @osayouba that was the person that was using it 2 years ago. Waiting his feedback.


Hi @yanokwa. After an exchange with @osayouba, I can confirm that "REDCap Z-ALPHA Server" is not working anymore. Now he uses a manual way to import the data to redcap manipulating the csv export.

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