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A list of projects are in the Choice field already. As new projects are started a user (without designer access) wants to add a new project and in the future be able to select it from the drop down, not type it in every single time.

I can only use web-based editing. Would someone need Designer to do this?

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You should be using a lookup list instead of a choice column. So a new project would be a new item in the Projects list, and the lookup would pick it up with no extra effort.

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You can add/remove Choices by editing the column in List Settings.

As far as I know you need some customization to support permanent insertion beside this. For example you could inject a button which adds choices with JavaScript and Client Object Model.

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