How Does Participants Database Work?

Participants Database stores information as a series of records or entries in a database. It uses the same database as WordPress, but it adds it’s own tables for storing that data, so the plugin data is completely separate from WordPress.

The data stored in those records is a set of user-defined fields. There can be as many fields in the database as you need. Each field can be a different type of information such as text, a block of text, dates, images, etc.

The records are created by either entering the data manually using a form, or imported as a CSV file. These records can then be presented as a list or single record. These displays are controlled by a template which can be customized to produce any desired output.

User Signups and User Record Editing

A unique feature of Participants Database is the ability for users to access their record and edit it or add new information without being registered users. This is accomplished with the use of a “private link” which allows only the person possessing that link to edit the record. There is no need for them to log in, they just use their private link.

Note that this is one of several different ways to use the plugin. For instance, you can use only the signup form, or no signup form at all, if your records are imported or entered by an administrator.

Displaying the Records

The records can be displayed as a list in a table, and each item on the list can be clicked to open a detail page for that record. Which columns are shown is determined in the field configuration.


In the administrative backend, records can be added, edited or deleted. The database fields can be defined and organized. Data can be imported from outside sources such as another database or spreadsheet using a CSV file. The admin interface has it’s own list display that gives you many ways to visualize the data and access each record for viewing or editing.

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