How to format text entries?

Open text fields are convenient for capturing data that are not known in advance (e.g. a phone number, an institutional ID etc.). In order to avoid writing complex validation rules, a mask can be defined to format the data when they are entered.

Step 1 - Select Short Answer field

Select the Short answer field type: the Mask setting will match the format of the data to capture. The mask can also be combined with a validation rule (to verify that all characters have been entered for instance).

Note that it is not recommended to use this open text field with a mask to capture date or time values. Use the Date, Date and time or Time specific field types instead.

Step - 2 Set the Mask

A mask is made of tokens, designating what type of character is expected at each position. The possible mask tokens are:






Letter, a to z, case insensitive


Alphanumeric, case insensitive for letters


Letter, transformed to uppercase


Letter, transformed to lowercase


Alphanumeric, transformed to uppercase for letters


Alphanumeric, transformed to lowercase for letters


The phone number (514) 286-0768 can be captured by the mask (###) ###-####.

The institutional ID CA32 4455 6E5Z can be captured by the mask AA## #### XXXX.