Assigning User Permissions - Global and Survey Level

Global user permissions

Note: Click to learn how to create user accounts.

Global permissions apply to the whole survey installation. If you want to set permissions only for a specific survey you can use the Survey permissions settings.

Setting global permissions for a user

To set global permissions for a user just click the lock symbol.

The system use CRUD (Create, read, update and delete) like the Survey permission setttings. Checking the first input checks all the CRUD permission for that row. To fine-tune permission we strongly recommend to extend the view using the arrow button on top of the checkbox column.

You can now add or remove the following permissions.

  • Surveys: This gives access to all surveys. To allow a user only to create and manage their own survey survey, only give the user the 'create' permission. A creator of a survey is the owner of this survey and will always be able to manage it. Remember that each survey can have specific permission, the global permission is applied before survey specific permission.
  • Settings & Plugins: With this permission a user can check data integrity, save the SQL database to an .sql file, manage global setting, and manage all plugins.
  • Users: With this permission a user can create, modify and delete his own administration users. The newly created users cannot have higher permissions than the parent - also you will not be able to edit users owned by other administration. If this has to be done then a Superadmin permission has to be granted.
  • User groups: This permission allows a user to create/view/update/delete user groups.
  • Templates: It allows the user to use all design templates and edit all non standard templates. A person with this right should have sufficient knowledge in terms of  HTML, Javascript and CSS. If a user is not familar with these things and is supposed to use a specific design template it would be better to give him only acccess to read permission. Each template can have specific permissions.
  • Label sets: Permission to create, update, use (view/read) and delete label sets. The label sets don't have specific permissions (unlike design templates).

  • Participant panel: Grants access to the central participants panel

Setting permissions for a single survey

These permissions only apply for a single survey. If you want to set permissions for the whole system you can use the global permissions.

Please note: An existing user account is required to set permissions for a single survey. If the account doesn't exist you have to create it first and then change the survey permissions. You don't have to apply any global rights to the user, it is just necessary that the user account itself exists.

Setting user permissions for a single survey

To change the survey permissions you have to select Survey permissions from the Survey properties menu.

In the next step you select the user you want to change the survey rights and click Add user.

After you click Set survey permissions the survey permissions matrix for the survey and user will be shown.

In this matrix you can set the rights for the different features and parts. You simply click  a checkbox if you want to add or remove this right. If you click a checkbox in the first column all rights for this line will be selected/removed.

In the other columns you can choose whether a user can do a single actions from this feature/part.

After you finished editing the survey permissions click Save or Save and close in the upper right corner.

Use cases

In this part of the article we'll provide a few ideas which use cases may exist and how and which rights would be a good choice.

A new person in charge for administrating the system will be added

  • Login with your primary admin user name
  • Create a new user account
  • Grant all permissions at user level

A new user wants to create own surveys

  • Login with your primary admin user name
  • Create a new user account
  • Set global permissions for user to Create survey
  • Set template permissions for user to the template/s that should be used by the user/user-group
  • not necessary: Setting the survey permissions (The creator of a survey has all permissions for his/her surveys)

The creator of a survey needs another person to edit his/her survey

  • Login with your primary admin user name
  • Create a new user account
  • Set no global permissions for user
  • Set no template permissions for user
  • Set the survey permissions the way you want. It depends on what the new user should do and how much permissions he/she needs. If he/she should have all permissions for the survey you can select the first checkboxes in the first column with checkboxes (the one with the << or >> button as header).

A person responsible for the survey wants to see the results of the survey and export them

  • Login with your primary admin user name
  • Create a new user account
  • Set no global permissions for user
  • Set no template permissions for user
  • Set survey permissions to: Responses: View/read and export , Statistics: View/read

Change survey owner and grant additional non-admin users survey access

  • Login with your primary admin user name
  • Verify non-admin users are indeed non-admin (go to Manage survey administrators, check global survey permissions, and remove Create permission for Surveys
  • Create new admin users and do not grant Create permission to Surveys.
  • Edit your survey.
  • Click Settings->General settings and select the new survey administrator from the Survey owner dropdown. Change Administrator name and email address if desired. Click Save.
  • Click Settings->Survey permissions
  • Verify the list of existing users should have access. Delete those who shouldn't have access. 
  • From the User dropdown, select user to grant access to the survey. Click Add user.
  • Click the Edit icon under the Action column.
  • From the permissions gride, you can click the Expand arrow at right, and then deselect any survey permissions you do not want the user to have.
  • Click Save at top right.
  • Repeat for any other users you wish to whom you wish to grant access.

To be moved somewhere else once better defined:

There are several classes of possible people who access a LimeSurvey installation.  But only one set of people is actually termed a user in the code and documentation.  So lets understand what these classes of people are so we can better understand the terminology of the program.

Class Description
Primary user account Those people who create login user accounts to allow others to create, edit, activate and/or view surveys and their results.  Often can be given access to edit the templates, labelsets and other key features independent of any particular survey stored.
Survey Administrator A person with a login account that is given some management access to a particular survey.  Each survey can have its own set of users with specific rights to manipulate the survey.  These rights can be as broad as to activate a survey and possibly edit its question base.  They can be as minimum as simply able to review the results to date.
Participant Those people who simply respond or participate in taking a survey.  They may or may not have token access.  They do not need a login account to the administrative interface and thus are not termed users.
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