How to Aggregate a Table

Table aggregation establishes how data from a table will appear if more than one record will be returned. For example, a collection object may have more than one determination or collector. Aggregating the determination or collector tables would establish how those would appear in an export or query return.

  1. Log into Specify as an administrator or manager.

  2. In Specify, go to the top left menu, open System. Select Schema Configuration.


  1. In the Schema & Localization Tools window, select English under Available Locales, then select Edit a Schema.


  1. In the Tables box, choose the table for which you want to change the aggregator. In this example, we will be editing the Preparation table.

  2. In the main top panel, click the ellipses button next to the Table Aggregation field.

  1. If there is an aggregator listed, you can either select that one or you can create a new one.
    To modify an existing aggregator, select it from the list of Available Table Aggregations, then click the yellow pencil.
    To create a new aggregator, click the green plus.

  1. In the Table Aggregation Editor, make sure you have your separator, count, ending, and sort by option the way you like. I’ll give an example for a preparation aggregation.
    Separator: The punctuation that separates multiple preparations, usually a comma and a space or semicolon and a space. ***a space must be put after whatever punctuation you choose

Count: The number limit of how many preparations will be returned. I usually set this to the highest limit, 10.

Ending: The ending punctuation after the list of specimen preparations. This can be nothing (you will need to enter a space at least to be able to save), or a period if you like.

Sort by: These are all the fields in the preparation table, even if they are hidden in your database. You can choose to sort by a certain field, Count, for example. This is usually left blank.

  1. Once the above fields have been filled out, click the ellipses button next to the Display field, highlighted below, which opens up the Table Format Editor window.


The Table Format Editor is where you actually choose how the data for each record will be presented when aggregated. Check the format there already. If the fields are in the order and separated the way you want (with a semi-colon, a comma, a space, etc.), click Cancel, return to the Table Aggregation Editor, and continue to step 12. If you do not like the format, continue to step 9.

  1. In the Table Format box, backspace to delete the grey fields that are present. Your window should look like this now.


  1. Next, select the fields you want in the aggregator format from the Available Fields list, and use the Add Field ^ button to add them to the Table Format.
    For example, if you want your preparation to be “1 skeleton, 2 jars, 1 box”, then you want fields to be “Count, Prep Type”. Note the Prep Type is actually the “Name” field in the Prep Type folder. You might have to do this for other tables or fields. Also note that the fields are separated by whatever is in the Separator field. This can be changed to be different between different fields. Remember to add a space if you want a space between the fields.

  1. When the format is the way you want it, click OK.

  2. Keep clicking OK or save until you’re out of the schema configuration. The changes will take effect with any record you open after you have saved the change (new record or existing record). You do not have to restart Specify.