August 23, 2018

If you have been following Butterfly Classrooms for a while, you would know that I think any teacher who is not using Google Forms yet, has some masochistic tendencies. There is this tool that can save you hours and hours and you are not using it. Why?
But then I realised for all my love of Google Forms; I have never actually written a blog post explaining step-by-step how to create a Google Form (and make it a quiz as a bonus). So I decided to rectify that immediately.

Go to forms.google.com

Like most Google Apps you can get to Forms in different ways. The quickest is to go to forms.google.com. Alternatively, you can open Drive and click on NEW, scroll down to MORE and you will find Forms.
Once you are at Forms, you can decide to make use of one of the templates, or start from scratch. While there are not so many templates that would apply to the classroom, it is an easy way to get started. Especially if it is the first time you are creating a form.
Once you have the editor open, you can name your form and put it in the correct folder by clicking on the little folder icon.

Create the questions

When you are setting the questions, remember to think carefully about all the information you are going to need. Deciding on the questions and what type of answer I want is often the hardest part of a form. Try not to leave any room for variation. For example, if you ask for name and surname, some people would put the name first, others the surname. This makes it impossible to sort the results later. Instead, ask two separate questions. Don’t waste somebody’s time by making them type in the date since the form automatically records the timestamp, same with their email. Just remember to change the settings to collect email addresses automatically.

Think carefully which questions you want to make required. Making questions required is a handy feature since it prevents people from returning incomplete forms. A good tip somebody gave me was only to set the questions as required when you have completed the whole form. Otherwise, you have to complete all the questions everytime you want to test the form.

How to use Equatio to create maths/science questions

Since I have started using forms, Google has made strides in making it more user-friendly, but it still takes time to create a form. One thing that saves a lot of time is to create new questions by pressing, ctrl+shift+enter. Another is the fact that you can copy and paste answers from spreadsheets. I use that often when I want to create a tickbox grid for my whole class.

Short Answer – ideal for answers that consist of a sentence or less.

Paragraph – This option provides you with more space to type the answer in.

Multiple choices / Drop down – These two types of questions allow you to choose only one of the options. If you have a long list of options, I would suggest using Drop down, since it looks neater.

Tickbox  – Unlike multiple choice, you can tick as many boxes as you want to.

File Upload – This is a relatively new option and allows the person completing the form to upload a file. This is a quick and efficient way to collect documents.

Linear scale – A form of multiple choice question, that works very well for evaluations.

Multiple choice / Checkbox grid – Combine a bunch of similar multiple choice/tickbox questions.

Date/Time – There questions allow people to quickly add the date and time in a uniform style.

Settings

Before you send off your form, make sure that all the settings are the way you want them.

  • Collect email addresses – When you are sending a form to anybody in the school, always set it to collect email addresses. That way you know you have correct contact details. However, if you are sending the form to parents that are not necessarily using Google Accounts, you might want to untick this option.
  • Response receipt – This option emails the person who submitted the form a copy of the form. This is very useful because people tend to forget the options they selected. You can only choose this option if you have collected email addresses.
  • Limit to one response – If you are using the form for an assessment you might want to tick this box.
  • See a summary of responses – This provides an option to see the results once you have completed the form.
  • Show progress bar – If you have a very long form it is nice to give people a feel for how much is still to come.
  • Shuffle question order – This is a great option for a quiz.
  • Show link to submit another response – Remember to tick this box if you expect people to complete the form more than once.

Make it a quiz (optional)

Until recently you needed Add-ons if you wanted to use Google Forms as a self-marking quiz. But now Google has added some basic quiz features. Go to settings and click on the QUIZ tab. You will see a little toggle that allows you to make the form into a quiz. While you can use any type of question, the only options that can be marked automatically are multiple choice/tickbox and short answers. Currently, neither the multiple choice or tick box grid can be marked automatically. I suspect Google will fix that gap soon.

Once you have converted the form to a quiz, two new things appear, in the top right-hand corner, you will see the mark allocation for the question. (Save some time by setting a default mark allocation under preferences.) In the bottom left-hand corner, you will find the ANSWER KEY option. Think of each question as a little card, with the question on the one side and the answer on the other side. If you click on ANSER KEY, the card flips around. Not only can you add the answers, but you can add feedback and links to resources.

Send the form

There are three ways you can send out a form:

Add it to a Classroom Assignment – Create an assignment in Classroom, click on Add from Drive and select the form. A new feature that makes me very happy is that when learners submit their form, Classroom automatically marks the assignment as done. If you made use of the Quiz feature, you can even import the mark directly into Classroom.

Create a Google form

Create a Google Form

Share via email – You can send the form directly by just typing the email address. If it is a short form, consider adding the form directly to the email for the highest response rate.

Share a link – This option allows you to paste the link into any document or email or even to a Whatsapp message.  Just remember to click the box that will shorten the link.

Responses

Lastly, we get the responses. There are three (or four for a quiz) ways you can look at the responses:

  • Summary – Google Forms create beautiful graphs summarizing all the results. Often this is more than you need.
  • Question (only for a quiz) – You can see the responses question-by-question. What is especially nice is that you can the see the incorrect answers as well. This is very useful to spot misconceptions.
  • Individual – See each person’s results by itself.
  • Response sheet – By clicking on the little green Sheets icon, you can import all the results into a spreadsheet. This is the best way to have an overview. Always export the responses to a spreadsheet if you want to save them, that will enable you to use the form again next year, by deleting the responses. It is important to note that if you delete the responses from the form, it does not affect the results in the spreadsheet.
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