I have data that has 5 fields with unique values that I need to symbolize at one time. Is there a work around to allow me to do this or a python code I can run to use more than three fields?

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    If you really needed to, you could concatenate a couple of fields into one, and still have the same number of unique values in your symbology. – TDavis Jan 30 '14 at 19:59

Besides the obvious, the ArcMap interface really isn't suitable for so many fields. Even three fields is pretty cumbersome.

A workaround is to recode your five fields into a single, master symbology field. Then you can use the regular unique values symbology for this. Here's an example with some made-up data:

║ Field 1 ║ Field 2  ║  Field 3  ║ Field 4 ║ Field 5  ║ Master ║
║ USA     ║ New York ║ Buffalo   ║ Type 1  ║ Active   ║      1 ║
║ USA     ║ New York ║ Buffalo   ║ Type 2  ║ Active   ║      2 ║
║ USA     ║ New York ║ Rochester ║ Type 1  ║ Inactive ║      3 ║
║ Canada  ║ Ontario  ║ Toronto   ║ Type 2  ║ Active   ║      4 ║
║ Canada  ║ Ontario  ║ Toronto   ║ Type 2  ║ Inactive ║      5 ║

By recoding the fields into the Master field, you can create a set of unique symbologies as needed. You could even concatenate values so that the master field had a value of USA, New York, Buffalo, Type 1, Active in the first row.


You could also load multiple copies of the same feature class into the map and then limit the features displayed using a definition query to sort out the first two columns, then use the three available in the symbology properties for the remaining three.

So, to build on the example from @dmhar: Load one copy and set the definition query to only show the USA and New York features, then use the symbology properties to show Type 1 or 2, and Active or Inactive.

Load another, set the definition query to show Canada and Ontario features and use the same symbology for the last three classes.

Another thing to consider is what you are trying to show with the map. Needing to categorize your symbology for five levels will likely be very confusing for the map user. Perhaps it's better to make more maps, each showing a subset of the data. That would probably provide your user with a more approachable map.

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