Want to use an external file (collecting data on KoboCollect)


I am working for a humanitarian organization. We collect data on KoboCollect. For one of the select_one questions, I want to host a list of choice options in an external file, rather than directly in the project XLSForm as it has thousands of options.

However, I understand that using select_one_from _file only works on Enketo web.

I write to ask if their are any alternatives to this I can use. Attaching the form and the external file. Row 19 has the question.

Welcome to the community, @kcsachin! Kindly please be informed that the select_one_from_file question type is also supported by Collect android app. We will update our support article soon for that. To learn more on the same, please feel free to go through our support article Select One or Many From External File Question Type.

Besides, as an alternative approach, you could also design your xlsform for the select_one_external as discussed in our post discussed previously:

Hello Kal,

Thank you for your quick reply and warm welcome.

Unfortunately, while the tool works in Enketo on the web, I am not able to download it on the Kobo Collect android app.

Sending you the files for your perusal. The select_one_from_file is on Row 19.

Endline_Tool 2021 v5.xlsx (634.0 KB) settlements.csv (646.4 KB)

@kcsachin, which version of the Collect android app do you use? Could you kindly try this out in the latest version that is available in the play store?

@Kal_Lam I am using v1.30.1 which appears to be the latest. It is still not working.

@kcsachin, could you make some slight adjustments in your CSV file as shown in the image below. Change the - to _ from i.e. NC-3913-N15-001

Image 1

to NC_3913_N15_001 as shown in the image below:

Image 2

This should solve your issue.

Maybe this post discussed previously should be helpful while proving name when designing a survey project:

Hey @Kal_Lam . I did as instructed. But am reaching the same error. Works on Enketo but does not on Collect.

settlements.csv (646.4 KB)

Endline_Tool 2021 v5.xlsx (255.8 KB)

I still see duplicates under the name. They should be unique.


Maybe you could rename them as other_1, other_2, other_3 and so on.

Hello @Kal_Lam

I had allowed duplicate choices in the settings so as to enable this. However, I have now differentiated them by number. I checked and there are no duplicates anymore.

settlements.csv (646.6 KB)
Endline_Tool 2021 v5.xlsx (255.7 KB)

Still not opening on Collect unfortunately.

Thank you for persisting. I really appreciate it. I would buy you coffee for your efforts if I could but I am in Somalia as we speak.

Great! So now could you kindly validate your xlsform with this online validator? It should be able to identify you the syntax issues that is present within your xlsform. When quickly validating, I could see the following issue:

Maybe you will need to fix the issue and validate in loop to fix all the issues.

Hey Kal,

Validated the form as suggested.

Problem persists. Collect will not read it.

Endline_Tool 2021 v5.xlsx (257.2 KB)
settlements.csv (646.6 KB)