I recently shared some of my favorite features of Google Docs and how they can be used to promote collaboration between staff and students. They provide opportunities to get work done on and offline and work well with middle and high school students. Another Google product that has clear classroom applications is Google Forms. This fantastic tool is perfect for collecting information throughout the school day.
What is a Google Form?
A Google form is a user created survey tool that gives teachers the power to customize how they would like to collect data. Any information that is put into the form goes straight to a spreadsheet in your Google drive account. All of the responses go to one place. Google Forms can include short or long responses, checklists, multiple choice questions and more. You can even input videos and customize the background to include pictures of your choice. You’ve probably filled out a Google Form when responding to a questionnaire or RSVPing for an event. Once data is entered and the user presses submit, all of the responses can be accessed by the person who created the form.
How can teachers use them?
Teachers can use Google Forms to collect information about their students. You might create a interest survey to learn more about your students at the beginning of the school year, then distribute the link to the form to your students. They can enter their responses and you can read all about their favorite subjects, periods in history and interests outside of the classroom. Many teachers also use Google Forms to collect formative assessment data on their students. You can create a form that lets you put in information about student participation or who has mastered the day’s objective. It’s also a great way to keep track of what happens during small group work or one on one conferences. You can use the same form multiple times to submit information about different students, and all of the data you collect will automatically go to the same spreadsheet saved in your Google Drive.
How can students use them?
When you create Google Forms to distribute to students, you’ll eliminate extra papers and make your workflow simpler. Students can fill out a Google form that answers a set of questions on a reading assignment, or asks them to respond to prompts during a scavenger hunt. Google Forms are great for field trips where students have access to a mobile device and you want to reduce the amount of things filling up their backpack. Any student with access to the Internet can open up a Google Form you’ve created and submit information.
Where do I start?
Getting started with Google Forms is easy. You’ll need to have a Google Drive (or Gmail) account which is free to set up. Instead of creating a document or presentation, you’ll choose the form option under the create button. Then you’ll have the option to add all sorts of elements, including a box for student name and multiple choice or short answer questions. Begin by thinking about what kind of information you collect from students already and ask yourself whether or not a form will make this workflow smoother in your classroom.
Have you used Google Forms to collect information?
Monica Burns is an Education Consultant, EdTech Blogger, and Apple Distinguished Educator. Visit her site ClassTechTips.com for more ideas on how to become a tech-savvy teacher.
This is the next big thing!