The new Google forms have been out for a while. Like any change, they do take some getting used to, but there are some really nice new features. One of the biggest changes I had to adapt to was the fact that Forms no longer create a Sheet automatically to store responses. All responses are kept within in the Form itself. If you want a Sheet to hold the gathered data, you need to manually tell the form to create the Sheet. More on that in a second. At first, I thought the new look was rather clunky. But, now that I’m used to it, I think it’s great! Here are a few of the other changes:
New Templates: Just like the rest of the Google Suite, Forms got new templates. There’s a lot of new content here for teachers — exit slips, assessment, worksheet, course evaluation, etc… To find these new templates, go to forms.google.com. To see all of the new templates, be sure to click the “more” link in the upper right corner.
More Robust Response Analysis: Again, I found it off-putting that Forms were no longer automatically creating Sheets to store the response data. But, the more I use it the cooler it seems. To view responses, simply click the “Responses” button next to the “Questions” button when editing the form. The Form edit screen will also display the current number of responses as well. In the “Responses” page, you can click a button to create a Sheet if you need one.
There are a couple of other cool features here, too. By clicking the “Individual” button, you can view each response. This might make a Sheet unnecessary, particularly if you don’t plan on really analyzing or sifting/sorting the data. You can also toggle responses on or off here. By clicking the “three dots” in the upper right (just to the right of create a Sheet button), there are a whole array of other options at your fingertips. From this menu, you can delete all responses, download a .CSV file of the responses, change the destination sheet of the form, and get configure notifications on responses — more on that next.
Form Add-ons: The new Forms have some really cool, free, and easy to use add-ons. One addon is loaded by default, “Notifications.” To configure this, click on the “puzzle piece” in the upper right corner of the Forms screen. With “Notifications” you can decide if you wish to be emailed each time a new response is submitted. You can also toggle on/off if the recipients will get an email. To do this, just click the “puzzle piece” and select “Notifications.” Then click “Configure Notifications.” A new window will appear on the right allowing you to toggle on/off email alerts for you and the form recipients.
In addition to the “Notifications” add-on, there are several other free add-ons available, too. To view these, click the “three dots” in the top right corner of the Forms screen (just to the right of the “Send” button). The menu that appears will have an item that says “Add-ons.” When that’s clicked, a new window loads that shows a whole array of add-ons. While a lot of them perform a very specific niche function, there are a couple that are pretty cool.
Track Responses: If you invite individual responses by email/Google account, you can see who has responded and who has not. There’s even a button to send a reminder email to the recipients who have not added a response. This report displays automatically at the top of the “summary” page when looking at responses.
Handy Settings: While these are not new to Forms, here are some features in the “Settings” area that might be helpful. By clicking on the “Settings” gear icon in the upper right corner of the Forms screen, you’ll get a popup window that has lots of cool options. From here, you can set the visibility of your form — can be used by only people who have CRPrairie.org accounts or anyone. You can also set it so your form automatically collects the responder’s CRPrairie.org account info. This is also the place where you can limit one response per account or if users can edit their respons.
I would love to hear how teachers are using features in the new Forms. I’d also really like to know if there are additional features that you find particularly useful. Drop me a note or post your thoughts directly here.