Google Apps for Education schools have Google Forms for surveying staff and quizzing students, but you needn’t feel left out if you are using Microsoft’s Office 365. An Excel Survey does very much the same thing, and it’s easy to set up. You can even do it with a free, individual OneDrive account if your school does not use Office 365. Here’s what you need to know.
Note: An updated version of Excel Surveys – Microsoft Forms – is now available for schools who subscribe to Office 365 Education. See my blog post How to Use Microsoft Forms for more information.
Excel surveys are created online. So, you first need to log in to your OneDrive for Business account and click “new”. Select “Excel survey”, then give your document a name and click “OK”.
On the next screen you can enter a title for your survey and a short description or introduction for those that are filling out your survey. You can then click on the box that says to “Enter your first question here”. This opens a pop up box that gives you more options to do just that. So, enter your question, a question subtitle/help text (optional), and choose the type of question you want to ask. There are currently seven types of questions:
- Text questions – for short one or two word answers
- Paragraph text – for longer written responses
- Number – for a numerical answer that you can sort, total or average later
- Date – for answers you want to sort by date later
- Time – for answers you want to sort by a specific time
- Yes/No – for simple yes or no responses
- Choice – for multiple choice answer
As with any type of survey that you may require, think about how you want to handle the data when it comes back to you, because this can help you choose the type of question that you may want to specify when creating your Excel form.
Once you have entered all your questions, look for your options in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. From here you can choose to share your survey with others, or simply save and view what you have done so far to preview it as a viewer. If you choose to share the survey, you will get a URL link that you can use to email or add to a website for others to access.
Responses are collected in an Excel workbook online. You can then filter and sort the data as you need by clicking the drop-down options at the top of each column, or you can opt to download the file and open it in the desktop version of Excel for further analysis.
One exceptionally convenient feature of Excel Surveys is that your survey and the responses are grouped together as one file. When you create a Google Form you get two files, one for the survey and one for the responses. Having them together in the one file helps save a lot of confusion. It also makes it easy to view, edit and share your survey at any time from the toolbar in your online excel workbook, (see image below).
So, whether you are surveying your staff, or creating a quick quiz for your students, Excel Surveys in OneDrive for Business are a great option for doing just that.