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April 4, 2008 / Ben Chun

Google Forms

I feel like I might be late to the party on this one, but this is so cool it doesn’t matter that this is turning into a Google fanboy blog. I just started using Google Forms to collect information from students, and it’s so obviously good that I think every teacher will see a potential use for it.

For example: I’ve been having my classes look at the web sites of other schools, answer some questions, and discuss what makes a school site useful and good. I was about to go through the Moodle forums and pull out all the URLs so I had a list of links to examples of other school sites. This was going to be a semi-tedious time-consuming task. But it seemed worth it to get the information organized.

However, using forms on Google Spreadsheets, I can have each student enter the information they found directly. It takes a little thought and care to make sure I’m presenting it to them in a way that makes sense — first we search, then we discuss and debate in Moodle, finally they submit these forms in summary. But it’s well worth the time it takes to structure it for the class, because then they populate your spreadsheet directly!

Here’s how it works: You can create a spreadsheet, share it as a form, and this lets you set up the way you want the questions to look (including multiple choice options). Then you share it to yourself. As long as you’ve kept “Invitations may be used by anyone”, you can then embed the form link anywhere (say, as a resource in your class Moodle page or on your homework/assignment blog) and students will be able to fill it out. No retyping, copy/pasting, or other hassles for anyone. What will you do with all the time you save???

One Comment

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  1. JR / Apr 4 2008 6:04 pm

    Just a quick note on that last part…
    you said:
    “As long as you’ve kept ‘Invitations may be used by anyone’, you can then embed the form link anywhere” …

    You don’t actually need that option checked – as it relates back to the collaborative sharing invitations, not the form sharing… The form sharing is more open and you really can post it anywhere if you choose to… in fact you can even play around with the html of the form to style it how you want, as long as you leave the POST url and the form input NAME attributes as they were.
    Have fun!

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