Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Tech Tuesdays: Google Forms

Have you ever wanted to do a survey? Or just gather opinions about something? And then have all those opinions/ideas/answers compiled into one place? There is a really useful FREE and easy tool that can help you out--and you don't have to download anything, sign up for any new accounts (as long as you already have a google one), give any personal information, etc....

Google Forms

What are they?

Google forms, as I've used them, are really a survey tool.

Now what would I use a google form for?

So many things. Getting feedback on anything, gathering opinions, running a poll, etc...

For example, my friend Kaela is redesigning my blog. And to help her get started she sent me a survey to fill out. The survey came as a word doc, which was fine, but another way she could do this is with a google doc--sending a link to her clients, they answer the questions directly in their email, and the answers automatically are compiled into a spreadsheet for her to review.

How do I create a google form?

It's really really easy actually. Follow the steps below.

1. You need a google account. If you blog on blogger you already have one, or if you use Gmail, Picasa, etc...you have one. If not, sign up, it's free--and explore all the free applications google has to offer.

2. After you've signed in to your google account. Go to docs.google.com

3. You'll see a screen like this (yes I have A LOT of google docs, I use them all the time and forms are just one of the types they have). Click New and then Form.
(click on images to see more detail)
4. That will bring you to a page like this. For this example I'm doing a survey of hobbies and interests of the women in Relief Society so we can organize small groups to pursue those hobbies. Here you'll see I've named the document and added two questions so far. One is open text (they can type anything in) and one is multiple choice

6. To add additional questions click "Add a question" at the top and see that there are several different options
The question I'm going to add will have checkboxes, see below what it looks like during my adding of it (notice that you can add an "other" box at the bottom where people can type in their own suggestions:

And after I click done:

But my survey is kind of plain and I want to be cute, after all, all women would be taking this survey. So I can click at the top where it says "Theme: Plain" and it brings me to this page with 70 different themes to choose from,

I pick one, it shows me a preview (pictured here) and then I click apply.

Now that I have this little survey created I can distribute it two different ways:
1. Email (it will appear in their email and they fill it out right there, without going to any other website, cool huh?)

2. Embed it (click here and see the html you need, copy it and then copy that into your blog post--be sure to copy it into the "Edit Html" window rather than the standard "Compose"

I embed this play survey, below, I like it.

So after a few days pass I want to see the results right? (Or checking 4 times a day because I like to see results, maybe more, I'm on my computer ALLLL day)

Go back to Google Docs (docs.google.com) and you'll see on that home page your form, with the title you gave it. Click on it. That'll automatically bring up this spreadsheet--with one result for each person that fills it out.

But have I mentioned I like pretty things? So if you want to see graphs compiled of your survey click on the top where it says "Form" and then "Show Summary" and you'll get something like this:

Fun huh? Don't you want to survey everyone you know and see the results? So fun. And really there are so many applications for this have fun testing them out and let me know what you use them for. I'd love to see it.

You can read more about Google Forms on their website. Happy tech tuesday everyone. I'm loving this schedule bit. :)

2 little remarks:

Derek said...

Thank you for the tutorial Anna, seriously, I have been wanting to know how to do those surveys on google docs, but haven't taken the time because I didn't know how. Google is amazing. Also, how does this entry was posted on "Friday, June 19, 2009"?

Anna said...

This post is making me crazy. It's supposed to be Tuesday June 16th...and then not show up until June 16th, but apparently I'm technology impaired....oh well.

Yeah, do a survey in google, they really are amazing huh?

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