How to Use Microsoft Forms in Office 365 Education

How to Use the New Microsoft Forms

Have you seen the new Microsoft Forms? One of the most popular articles on my blog in the last 12 months was related to its predecessor – Excel Surveys. Not only did that post get a lot of views, but it also got a lot of comments from people with questions about the features of Excel Surveys, or more importantly for some, the features it did not have. You can still use Excel Surveys, but Microsoft are in the process of transitioning to something better – Microsoft Forms. This version includes automatic grading and built-in student feedback. Here’s what you need to know.

Getting Started

You can find the homepage for Microsoft Forms by going to forms.office.com, or you may see Forms listed in the Office 365 App Launcher. Both links go to the same place. Technically, Forms is still in Preview but you can sign in with your Office 365 Education account today and start creating surveys and quizzes. The new Microsoft Forms work on desktop and mobile browsers.

Once you are logged in, click the New button to create your first form. Replace Untitled Form with a title of your choice, and add a description underneath if you want to provide any directions or information for students or parents who are filling out your Form.

Building a Form

Tapping the Add Question button gives you access to the question types that are available to you in this new version of Microsoft Forms. The options include:

  1. Choice: for creating multiple choice questions! Tap or click the slider to allow people to select multiple answers. You can also tap or click the ellipses button to shuffle answers.
  2. Quiz: a multiple choice question that you allows you to select a correct answer for automatic grading. Tapping the comment icon on each answer choice lets you add student feedback for each selection. Multiple answers and shuffled answers are also available to you when working on Quiz questions.
  3. Text: to collect short (or long) text answers use the Text question type. Tap or click the ellipses button to include number restrictions like greater than, less than, equal to, and more.
  4. Rating: for adding a star or number rating. Could be useful as part of an exit ticket or for voting on class favorites. Ratings can be out of 5 or 10, and tapping the ellipses button will allow you to add a label at either end of this Likert scale.
  5. Date: a question type that only allows for an answer in date format.

Microsoft Forms Question Builder

More Tips & Tricks:

  • Any question type can be marked as a required question by sliding the Answer required switch to the right. This means students can’t submit the Form until they have answered all of these questions.
  • You can rearrange questions by clicking on them and tapping the up and down arrows to move them to the order you need.
  • Deleting questions is as simple as clicking the trash can while editing a question
  • Create a duplicate of any question by tapping the copy icon to the left of the question order arrows. This is ideal for adding similar question types, (E.g. Q1. First name, Q2. Last name).

Preview and Themes

You can see a live view of your Form at any time by clicking the Preview button on the toolbar at the top of the page. This will show you the view that students or parents will get when they access your survey. Clicking Back in the top left-hand corner returns you to the question editor.

Use the Theme button to choose from a variety of colorful designs that you can use to add more personality to your Form. The current selection is a little limited but I expect this will be expanded before too much longer.

Microsoft Forms Themes

Sharing Microsoft Forms

When you are ready to share your survey or quiz with others, click the Send Form button in the top right-hand corner of your screen. This opens a sidebar on the right-hand side of your screen with a variety of sharing options. These options include:

  1. Copy and Paste the Link: This is the public facing URL for your Microsoft Form. This is the link you will want to share with students, parents or whoever else might be filling in your Form. It is a pretty long link, so if you are not using anchor text, I would suggest sharing with a URL shortener like tinyurl.com or bit.ly.
  2. Email the Link: Click this button to open a new email in your default Mail client (e.g. Outlook) with the link to your form pre-pasted into the compose window ready to send.
  3. Download & Send the QR Code: In an age of mobile devices I especially like the inclusion of this option. It generates a QR code that links to your Form. You can download the QR code as an image and print it or add it to a website or electronic document.
  4. Embed in a Webpage: If you want to put your Microsoft Form directly on to a school or classroom webpage, you can use this option to generate the HTML code you need to allow people to fill out the Form on your website. You can even add a Form to a Sway and it works great with an LMS too!

sharing settings for Microsoft forms

The remaining option, Who can fill out this form, is an important one. Make sure you get this right before you send the Form to other people. These options let you choose the visibility and privacy for your Form. If you leave the default option selected, only those with an Office 365 account at your school will be able to fill in your Form. Users will need to log in with those credentials to even see the Form. The advantage here is a modicum of privacy and accountability because it will automatically collect the names and email addresses of those filling in your Form unless you uncheck Record the names of responders.

The other choice is Anyone with the link (sign-in not required). This is ideal if you are sending a survey to parents or collecting data on a more public scale because you do not need an Office 365 Education account in order to access this kind of Form. Note that this option has no way of automatically collecting user identification so if that is important you will need to add questions in your Form for names and email addresses.

Finally, make sure you check out the additional options under See all settings. From here you can apply a deadline that shuts the Form down on a given day and time. You can shuffle questions so no two Forms look alike. You can choose to display the correct answers to students after the Form has been submitted, or to close the Form so it is no longer accepting responses. Regardless of whether you want to use these options or not, you will want to check these settings because some are on by default, and they may not be the ones you want.

Analyzing Data

All the data you receive from people filling out your Form is stored in the Responses tab. You can view all your results here, or click the Open in Excel button to view the results in the desktop version of Excel. In the Responses tab there is a summary of all the data collected as well as a visual breakdown for each question. Clicking the Details link next to each question will show you a more in-depth view of how each individual student answered the question.

Form Responses

Managing Microsoft Forms

Microsoft Forms are not stored in OneDrive like Excel Surveys are. They live on the Microsoft Forms website. Your Forms are sorted by date with the most recently created Forms at the top and older Forms further down the page. Right now there is no facility to group them into folders, but this would be a useful future addition.

On the Forms homepage, clicking the ellipses button on the thumbnail of a Form will let you copy or delete a Form. No response data is copied when you duplicate a Form, only the questions in the order that you built the original survey or quiz.

Further Information

Advertisements

29 thoughts on “How to Use Microsoft Forms in Office 365 Education

    1. Maria Pickering

      How would you use the same quiz but keep the data separate for multiple classes of the same subject without creating the same additional quizzes?

      Like

      Reply
      1. jonathanwylie Post author

        You can copy quizzes from the Dashboard area by clicking or tapping on the three dots in the corner of a quiz. You can also go to the Share menu and share as a template if you want other teachers to be able to use your quizzes. Does that help?

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Pingback: How to Collect Data with an Excel Survey & Office 365 Education | Jonathan Wylie: Instructional Technology Consultant

  2. Pingback: OTR Links 07/21/2016 | doug --- off the record

  3. Pingback: Newsletter – Episode 74 – Belarus SharePoint Community Blog

  4. Pingback: 18. Insights into learning – 23 teaching things

  5. Pingback: UP Tech Tip: Introducing Office Forms (New to Office 365 1/2)

    1. jonathanwylie Post author

      Well, Google Forms have been around for years and they only just added that feature this summer. Microsoft Forms is brand new this summer, so I am sure new features like this will be added soon. Hopefully sooner than it took for Google to add it 🙂

      Like

      Reply
  6. Linda

    Do you know if there is a way to share a form with a colleague, so they can make a copy, rename and possibly edit it, assign it, and get his or her own results?

    Like

    Reply
  7. Pingback: 18. Insights into learning – 23 Teaching Things2

  8. Jamie

    Is there any way to stop a microsoft form from accepting responses? I have a form that I don’t want any more responses on at this time and want to open it up again in the future and it looks like my only option is to delete.

    Like

    Reply
      1. Linda

        Click on Send form, then See all settings, then Apply deadline and you can add a closing date and time for your form. Simply go back in and remove the deadline when you want more responses to come in.

        Like

  9. Graham

    I’ve created a form for another person on my account is there a way to share the actual form with someone so that they are able to edit it and see the responses?

    Like

    Reply
  10. Arlene

    I was actually seeking a way to share permissions so other colleagues can have access to the survey (not just the EXCEL formatted data).
    I know I can do this in Google Forms but could not find a way to do so in MS Forms.

    Like

    Reply
  11. Amol Singla

    Do you know if there is a way to link a form to an online excel file so that if I have the file already, and a new response is received, then it is automatically added to that file? That is how Google Forms works and I’m hoping that feature is available as I need my form to work indefinitely with a running tab of the responses in a spreadsheet, which I will also manipulate and edit on my own.

    Like

    Reply
  12. Dave

    Jonathan, I know that the forms and the responses are saved on the site forms.microsoft.com

    Is there a way to
    1. create the form as a member of an 0365 group. So that
    a. if the form created leaves the form does not get deleted (and responses).
    b. The form will be listed under the Group’s files

    I am looking everywhere and I do not know if this answer exists.

    Like

    Reply
  13. Ben

    Hey Jonathan,

    Thanks for the post.

    Do you know if there is a way to reset the xlsx file’s data at a specified interval?

    Just wanting to use data collected for account creations and then reset the data once other scripts have gotten the required data.

    Thanks.

    Ben.

    Like

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s