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FAQs for participants experiencing technical difficulties completing UK Biobank online questionnaires

If you encounter technical difficulties when completing a questionnaire, please email with the following information:


  1. The date and time you encountered the issue;
  2. The device you were using (e.g. the brand and model of your desktop computer, laptop, phone or tablet);
  3. Your device’s operating system (e.g. Windows, iOS [Apple], Android);
  4. Your internet browser (e.g. Safari, Firefox, Chrome);
  5. A screenshot or photograph of the problem, if possible. If not, please give details of which page you were attempting to access and what the issue was.


This will help our IT team to try and resolve the problem for you and other participants.

If you are unable to supply this information, please call the Participant Resource Centre (PRC) on 0800 0 276 276 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm) to discuss the issue.

The way that your mobile phone has been set up (via its ‘Settings’) can affect the way that the questionnaire is displayed. For example, if you have altered the text size and weight from the default settings to make the text larger and bolder, this may have an impact upon elements of the questionnaire, such as page titles, section names and web links. If you are finding that this is the case, we would suggest that you complete the questionnaire using a desktop computer or laptop instead of your mobile phone.

If you use the browser back button, we cannot guarantee that the answers you have already provided will display correctly. Please only use the navigation buttons on the questionnaire itself if you wish to move backwards and forwards through the questionnaire, not browser buttons.

This is the way that our online questionnaires are designed. You have to click the ‘Save/continue’ button at the bottom of each page to ensure that your answers on that page are saved. If you go back to the previous page without having clicked this button, your answers on the current page will not be saved and you will have to enter the information again. 

 Check the highlighted text at the start of the page. It is possible that you have not answered one or more of the questions on the page, and the system is waiting for you to do this before allowing you to move on. If this is the case, the system will alert you with the text ‘Please alter the answer to the highlighted question/s. Thank you.’ You should then scroll down the page to the highlighted question(s) and answer it/them. When you click on the Save/continue button after doing this, the system should allow you to proceed to the next page.

You will need to redo the identity check (the first section) every time you close and then come back to the questionnaire. We ask you to complete this again in case an error was made the first time or in case someone else, for example someone you share an email address with, started your questionnaire or tries to use a web link to a partially completed questionnaire.

If you take a break from completing a questionnaire (for example, you make no clicks or selections) for more than 30 minutes, you will be automatically logged out of the questionnaire. If you click ‘Save/continue’ more than 30 minutes after the last time you saved, you will have to restart the module from the original questionnaire link. When you return to the questionnaire, you will have to complete the identity check module and you will be redirected to the module that needs to be completed.

Please open the section and then simply click ‘Save/continue’. It is important that you do complete all sections of the questionnaire, otherwise you will continue to receive our automated reminders asking you to finish it. 

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