For years, educators have been using Google Forms to gather data, assess learning and create fun techy learning experiences.
Recently, Google Forms got a facelift, and even more recently, it added some new features. These features make some new things possible in the classroom, and they make some things easier — and prettier — than before.
Here are some of the changes and what you can do with them in class. If you’ve used Google Forms before, please keep your favorite uses of Forms in mind and add them as a comment at the end of the post!
1. Hustle through student responses to quizzes, assignments and surveys. Responses in Google Forms are much easier to review now. Before, you could view them in a spreadsheet or see a brief summary of them. Now they’re all gathered right in the form editor under the “responses” tab. You can now view a summary of answers (all in one place … nice!) OR click through each individual response.
You can still view results in spreadsheet view. However, as I learned on Twitter from Google guru Alice Keeler, Forms won’t automatically create a spreadsheet for you like it did. You’ll have to click the little green spreadsheet icon to create one now.
2. Get an email when students submit forms. Before, to see whether there were new submissions to a form, you had to go into the form (or the spreadsheet of results) and check. Now, you can opt to have Forms email you with new submissions.
This is GREAT for infrequently-used forms, and it’s GREAT to turn on after most of your student submissions have come in. I would NOT turn it on right before giving a quiz or test in Forms. Your inbox will be flooded!
CLASSROOM USE IDEA: Create a “late work submission” form. Since Google Classroom (and other assignment collection options) won’t notify you when late work comes in, a form for that (with email notifications on) would notify you! It’s great for absent students, too.
3. Use add-ons and scripts. This was possible with the old Google Forms, but it was just added with new Google Forms. Add-ons and scripts let you add new functions to your Google Forms for your specific needs. They’re available by clicking the three dots in the top right and clicking “Get add-ons …” or “Script editor …”.
Unless you write code or have some to copy into a form, you probably won’t use the script editor.
ANYONE can use add-ons, though, and there are a few that are really useful in education. I’ll show you one here and one later.
CLASSROOM USE IDEA: Add math equations to Google Forms with the g(Math) add-on.
- Click the three dots in the top right and choose, “Get add-ons …”.
- Find the g(Math) add-on by searching or clicking on its icon.
- Click the “free” button and install it.
- Click the puzzle piece icon in the top right and choose “g(Math) for Forms”.
- Choose which type of entry you want. (At first, if you’re not sure, experiment. If you don’t like what you create, you can always delete it!)
- Add all the details you need. It will add an image to your question!
4. Make sharp-looking forms with templates and themes. If you’re not exactly sure how you want to make a form, there might be one already created for you. Forms has a library of templates you can choose from as soon as you load it up.
PRO TIP: Type “forms.google.com” in your browser to get to forms quickly. (In the past, you had to go to Drive and click “New” and “Google Forms.”)
Some of the templates available:
- Contact information (users submit their name, address, email, etc.)
- T-shirt sign up (users give their name, t-shirt size, etc.)
- Exit ticket (students say what they learned, whether they were prepared, and what would have made the lesson more effective)
- Assessment (students fill in their name/email and answer quiz questions that you add)
- Worksheet (students fill in their name/email and answer questions that you add)
- Course evaluation (students fill in class name and instructor and rate the course in various areas … this one is a good example of how a multiple choice grid works!)
Once you choose a template, you can customize it however you’d like (i.e. add text, images, videos, different kinds of questions, etc.).
Customize your forms by clicking the paint palette in the top right. Choose a color for color scheme or click the photo icon in the bottom right to choose a theme. Themes provide colors and images for forms. You can also upload your own photo to create a theme.
OTHER USES OF FORMS: In a recent reader survey, many people said they wanted to better understand Forms and how it could be used in the classroom. The following ideas were possible in the old Google Forms and are still available in new Google Forms.
5. Create and grade a quiz or test with Flubaroo. Host your quizzes, tests and other assessments digitally with Google Forms. Then, with responses in a spreadsheet, autograde the closed-ended questions (multiple choice, true false, matching) with Flubaroo, an add-on for educators using Google Forms.
- Create your quiz in a Google Form (from scratch or using one of the templates). If you want to email results to students later, make sure you make a short-answer question called “Email”.
- Click the eye icon in the top right to view the assessment. Fill it in with all the correct answers and use the words “ANSWER KEY” as the name. Submit it with the button at the bottom.
- Deliver your quiz to your students:
- Use the “send” button to get a link to the assessment that you can give students
- Use the “send” button to email a link to students
- Add the form to an assignment in Google Classroom
- When students have taken the assessment, click the “responses” tab and click the green spreadsheet button to see responses.
- Go to that spreadsheet and click “Add-ons > Get add-ons …”. Search for Flubaroo and add it. (If you already have Flubaroo installed, you won’t need this step.
- Go to “Add-ons > Flubaroo > Enable Flubaroo for this sheet”.
- Go to “Add-ons > Flubaroo > Grade assignment”.
- Use the drop-down menus to tell Flubaroo what to do with each question. Click “Continue.”
- Choose the answer key you created earlier. (This will be easy if you made the name “ANSWER KEY”!)
- Flubaroo will create a grading report for you with student scores and more.
Get more information about Flubaroo and its advanced features at the Flubaroo website.
6. Create a place for you to store quick grades. When students completed simple assignments for me, sometimes I would walk around the room, quickly grade their assignments on the students’ desks and write a grade on them. Instead of collecting those assignments, I wanted a place where I could store those grades to transfer to my gradebook later.
I created a Google Form with all of my students’ names on them. As I walked around the room, I had the form loaded on my iPad. I put each student’s scores into that form. Later, I pulled up the responses and transferred them to the grade book.