ASL: Free Online Survey Tools, April 8, 2015

DANIEL CORNWALL: So with the recording started, you are in Free Surveying Tools I'm Daniel Cornwall, the Internet and Technology Consultant with the Alaska State Library

And I'll be your guide for this session And I'd like to start with the intro and ground rules And the intro is just to say that this session is being recorded I'd would like you to ask questions at any point in our presentation If I'm about to get to them soon, I will say so, otherwise, we'll probably go ahead and answer them right at the point of need

If, like Katie, you need to step away for a bit, certainly feel free to do that And then finally, the main thing that I'd really hope that you do is that after the webinar ends, I'd like you to go back to your desk, well actually you're probably at your desk, and practice one thing that you've learned today And that will help make things sink in a lot easier And since both of the major things we'll be talking about today are free, there's no expense, and they should be relatively connectivity light, and I would really enjoy your feedback about whether that turns out to be true But do these sound like reasonable ground rules to you? OK, thank you

So the other thing that I'd like before we get fully started, is if you could just type in the type of organization that you're calling in from today And I've got a list there Great to have a museum Wow, looks like you've got a really good card coverage, Katie And it looks like Paula and Katie are typing things in

And I'm just going to make sure that my room door is really well closed because I keep hearing people going by I'll be right back Thank you for that Well, certainly, being a free floating librarian is perfectly fine to be in this workshop So now what I hope that you will know after today– we will very briefly cover what I've called non-traditional uses for survey tools

Because both of the tools that we're doing to look at a bit in depth don't have to be surveys, they can be basically any time that you need an online form One of these survey tools might be helpful We're going to look at Survey Monkey and Google Forms, in particular, because they seem to have a good combination of a decent set of free features And combined with not being overwhelming on bandwidth, although both have features that can make them bandwidth intensive as you want them to be So why would you want to do online surveys to begin with, I mean, I'm assuming you want to or you wouldn't be here

But aside from user surveys, I wanted to suggest a number of different ideas for forms Basically, if it can be filled out on paper, it can be filled out online And other than your highest confidential type forms, maybe you don't want to do those online, but for almost anything else, you might want to consider doing an online tool You could probably whip up a nice little reference form that the type of question that you get, or internet attendance if you're not taking names But it's got a lot of flexibility

And then one example of a tool that Diane might actually be familiar with, and perhaps has some feedback about, is the Alaska State Museums, a couple of years ago, transitioned their online application process for their grants into Survey Monkey So basically, with the survey tools that we're talking about today, not only do you get aggregate results, but they also save the individual responses And because they save the individual responses, they're good for things like applications So that's just the word that you don't have to be limited just to surveys Now at the page that you entered on the webinar today, there was a link to a class handout

If you download that link, and if you haven't yet, I hope you will right after the end of the webinar But it's got some links to articles that review a number of different free survey tools Now I've got Survey Monkey in Google Forms in really large font because those are the two that I've– aside from being relatively light on bandwidth and having a good feature set for free But basically, we only had time to go into depth with a couple of these tools But the handout that I have lists out articles that reviewed several other tools

So if at the end of this, you get to the end, and say that neither Survey Monkey or Google Forms is exactly what you're looking for, then I'd encourage you to look through the review articles and see if there's something else that fits you better If you've got the bandwidth for it, or more importantly if your users have the bandwidth for it, you might consider this type of form It's got some very esthetically pleasing looking surveys and forms, but it seems like unnecessary graphics in bandwidth starred places So let's go ahead and jump into a Survey Monkey And Survey Monkey is probably one of the largest providers of online surveys

They have a paid service, which they call Pro, but they do have a free service And if you expect low levels of responses, specifically under 100 responses per survey, this is a really easy service to just get right up and running I mean, within a few minutes after logging in, I think that you'd be able to put together a survey And its address is wwwsurveymonkey

com But that address is also going to be in the handout that if you don't already have, you're going to download it right at the end of the webinar So I find it extremely easy to use There aren't many organizations that block it with their web filters You have options of logging in, you can set up a standalone account, or if you're already a Google or Facebook user, you can use that account to log in

If your institution has a Google account, I'd use that one Otherwise, I'd set up a separate account The Facebook option probably isn't as helpful to institutions Now Survey Monkey, and Google Forms for that matter, are pretty mobile friendly And what I mean by that, is that if you have your users access the survey on a smartphone or tablet, you can see the questions pretty easily, and you can touch the answers

It's not a big deal unless you're having a lot of essay questions Now those are the pluses The minuses are that in Survey Monkey, in the free version, you can have no more than 10 questions per survey Now this could be a hidden benefit because research has shown that the shorter the survey, the more likely it is people are to answer it Something that might be more of a problem is that you can only get 100 responses per survey

And there are a lot of towns in Alaska where this isn't going to be a problem But for the larger markets, this could be an issue And then finally, limited customization, and what I mean by that, most specifically, is that in the free version, you're going to be stuck with having the Survey Monkey logo on each and every survey that you have Any questions about the pros and cons of Survey Monkey before I get into how you'd actually write a survey? OK, seeing none, we'll move on For Survey Monkey and for Google Forms, we're going to go through creating a survey, collecting answers from a survey, and getting results from a survey

So here we're in our creation phase Once you log in with however you decide to set up your account, you're going to get a screen like this This is my personal one through Facebook I found it very useful to use for the AkLA Juneau chapter, which I was chair of for several years, and for some continuing education classes I was taking They were both situations where I wasn't expecting more than 100 responses, and so it worked very well for me

So you have the big, green Create Survey button And once you press that, you get to the Create Survey page And you have options of creating a new survey, copy an existing survey, if you intend to survey your user base every year, maybe you copy last year's survey and update the questions a little bit If you're really hardcore, you can use an expert survey template Or you can choose a category, there's different categories of surveys that offer different questions

And I usually just simply create a new survey And once you do that, you get a very easy way out that starts off with a banner And you can change the color of this You can't change anything else about it in the free version You can actually add text to the page, like a description of what the survey is supposed to be about

And then this is a field where you'd add a question And let's go ahead and do that Once you start popping up a question, its default is a multiple choice But you can also do rankings You can do a comment essay

You can do ratings You can pull, what are called, demographic questions And I'd just encourage you, if you go into Survey Monkey, to click on the different types of questions in this dropdown box and see what options they give you Now I've pre-filled out of a survey so we don't have to thrash around with it So I have the question text and I chose, how often did you come to the library in the last 12 months? And then you list some answer choices

And then that's pretty much it You click on the Save and Close button down here, and you're able to add another question, or you could just go with the one survey question And it's really just, push buttons, type questions and provide responses Once you're done with a Survey Monkey survey, you have to set up what's called a Collector And I should have said the first place that you started out in a survey is this Design Survey tab

And now that we're actually collecting responses, we're in the Collect Responses tab And the main one that I would suggest– There's three ways that you can do it And in addition to the web link that I'm going talk about more length, there's also inter-survey results manually And that'll be important if you are surveying a use of visitors, patrons that don't have their own internet access But for now, we'll assume that people can get to the web, either on their own or in your library, and can do it through a web link collector

You can post it to your Facebook page If you're so inclined, you can actually embed the survey in your web page, so that people wouldn't have to go away to Survey Monkey to take your survey They would be looking at a page that appeared to be mostly like your web site, only it would have a survey embedded into it So let's go with the Web Link Collector I think that's the most popular one, and certainly the one that we use most often at the state library

And you have some options The important one is Responses by Computer I would strongly recommend, especially if you're going to run this survey on computers in your library, that you choose, Allow Multiple Responses from One Computer The only time that you might want to is the Only Allow One Response Per Computer, is if you're using it as a voting tool But it gives you a website and a web link

And now what I'd actually like to do, just so you can get some sense of what it might be for your visitors to take the survey, is that I'm going to open up what's called a web tour window and drop this survey into it I added a few more questions, and it didn't copy the way that I was expecting it to Now hopefully, in just a moment or so, you should see a web page with our survey And this worked great in testing yesterday Is anyone currently seeing a survey? If you could just type in to chat whether you're seeing or not

It just popped in for me And how about now? One of the best practices in distance education is to not spend the entire time just talking at people but providing some routes of interactivity And that was the hope with this one I'll tell you what, if you feel comfortable doing so, I'm going to paste the link into the chat box And if you could click on that and take the survey

And then you might have to look for a little purple button at the bottom of your monitor to make sure that you get back into Blackboard And if you could let me know if you can't make it into the survey, or when you finish the survey come back and let me know that you finished it And I'm just going to mike off here for a moment So maybe this wasn't such a great idea Is there anyone out there who actually did get to the survey? OK, good

Thank you, Katie So I'll just give another minute I'll turn off the web tour and then we'll go into results And when I do a similar thing for Google, I'll go ahead and send the link to chat So now what I'm going to do, is I'm going to shift to application sharing, and I will show you my web browser where I've got Survey Monkey open

And my computer is feeling a little bit sluggish And now I think that you ought to be seeing my Survey Monkey screen Is that correct? So now at the top of the list of my surveys, is my How Do You Use the Library? And got the title– under Responses, I've got five responses, and then the Actions And the little thing with the pencil is Designing Your Survey, the people gathered together are Collecting Surveys, and as you might imagine, the Analyzing Results is the graphical bar So I'm going to go ahead and click on that For each of the multiple choice questions, you're presented with bar graphs and then a table

And let me move things around a bit So it looks like we're a mix of heavy users and occasional users And I note in passing, that the library brand is most strongly established with books Although this just came out, I see some third space stuff happening and attending a program And then that's followed by a table as well

And then this is the recommendation, would you recommend the library or not? I'm going to go ahead and click on Comments And so you can see the open ended responses that patrons had Now, each of these questions, you'll notice, has an export bar Part of this is Survey Monkey's marketing because if we actually go ahead and click on Export, and then Question Summary Data, it will tell us that we need to upgrade So I'll go ahead and say, No Thanks

So if you want to get your results out of the free version of Survey Monkey, unfortunately, the main thing that you'd probably want to do is you could copy and paste the tables into Excel, maybe Or what I've sometimes found myself doing for the AkLA Juneau chapter, was simply printing things out and then scanning them into PDF Most browsers now will let you print to a PDF document as well This and the limit of responses are probably the two biggest problems that I have with Survey Monkey Yes, Katie, now that I see the dialog box, you can certainly use the Snipping Tool to capture a picture

And that would be a great way of capturing the graphs, especially So that's a smart way to do things So I'm going go ahead and stop my sharing of Survey Monkey, for now, and go back to my presentation Now let's say that you want to make the results of this survey public And that is something very easy to do, and you can even do it in the free version, which is exciting

So basically at that analyzing screen that we were just at, you would want to click up at the top on Share All, and then it gives you shared data, and it gives you four options And it's kind of nice that it shades the two paid options in pink, but I went ahead and stuck big red X's on them And the two ways that you can share data is you can make it completely public, which means that Survey Monkey will allow your survey to be indexed by search engines and potentially findable that way Or Anyone with the Link– Let's say that you just wanted to put a link to the survey results on your web page, you'd do Anyone with the Link and then embed that into your web page It's a very simple way to do it and then once you do, I did this public, it gives you a chance to change the title of the page, like if you had the survey titled something different internally, you can give it a different name, a little description

And then this part's important You have a choice of including the open ended responses, which I strongly encourage if you have any questions with comments at all It also allows you, if you want, to share the individual responses, which I never would personally even if I'm now asking for their names I mean I'd share individual responses with staff who needed to have them, but my philosophy is anyone else should just get the summary So once you do that, you're given another URL

And you get a page that only gives you the results, it doesn't give any links back to any account specific information So that could be a good way to gather some information you want to have public and then share that out So that's what I have on Survey Monkey Do people have questions about anything before we move on to Google Forms? With Survey Monkey, I have found it to be operating pretty much the same across all browsers I actually haven't had a chance to test a Google Form Survey in anything but Chrome, which you would hope it would work in Chrome since they're both Google products

My expectation is that it would be pretty much the same unless we're talking about really old Internet Explorer browsers But sensible question, Katie And a follow-up, OK And I'll try and make this a bit faster since I see we're at 20 twenty minutes to 2:00 So if you've never signed into Google Forms before, you'll get a splash screen like this

If you actually already have a Google account, you'll be taken right into Creating a New Survey So in some ways, this is a really great tool It's a completely free product, they don't even have a paid version, at least not yet No limits on questions or responses You can do a lot of customizing of the look of the Surveyor Form, if it's really important to match your library or city's library museums or city's branding

It's also mobile friendly, like Survey Monkey was, you can definitely answer a survey on a phone And something we're going to see a demonstration of, this has skip logic because we all know of surveys where not every question pertains to everyone In Survey Monkey, you have to ask everyone everything in the free version But in Google Forms, you can use questions to direct people to different places, and I will show you an example of that The two cons, and there's actually a third that's not on this form

There are some organizations that block everything associated with Google Drive, including Google Forms, on the grounds that it is networked storage And so organizations that deal in a lot of highly personal information will sometimes block access to Google Forms The State of Alaska is actually one of those organizations I have access to Google Forms because I did an online storage waiver, and then a waiver specifically for Google Forms, on the grounds so that tons and tons of libraries and museums were using Google Forms for their surveys, and we needed to be able to actually access them I'm hoping it's not a lot of organizations that block forms in this way but some do

And then to me, it seems like you want to go through more effort at going through their tutorials and things because I did not find Google Forms as intuitive as Survey Monkey But if you want to have more than 100 people respond to your survey, or you need to have more than 10 questions, you're going to want to use Google Forms The third con, as it were, is that all of the surveys are tied to one specific Google account So if you're going to go through the Google Forms route, I would highly, highly recommend having a general Google library account for your institution because otherwise, when the volunteer who does all of the surveys leaves, you'll lose access to those surveys So once you have that nice, general institution account, you'll sign in, and you'll be dropped directly into the Untitled Survey

And the first box you'll see is related to the survey form as a whole And the one option I'd strongly suggest that you enable is the Show Progress at the bottom of form pages, just because, generally speaking, when people have a sense of progress, they're more likely to complete a survey Then you have the page level, and then you have the question level And, again, like other survey tools, the default for Google Forms is multiple choice But there are these other question types, which I'll let you look at really quickly

Once you have questions written, you can move them around Sometimes it's not always obvious how to make things move and stay I had some quality time watching different questions slide around on to pages that I didn't mean to slide around to them But if you put in enough effort into it, you can get pretty precise, and you can change colors and backgrounds if you want And here is where I set up, what I call, the skip logic

I wanted kind of a parallelism between Survey Monkey and Google Forms, so we did the How Do You Use Your Library question again Now notice what's a little bit different here, I've enabled, Go to Page Based on Answer, meaning that I can take an answer and send it to a different destination from others And so what I chose to do is that if someone answered that they have not come to the library within the last 12 months, I'm sending them to a special page because while they may have good feedback about the library in general, if I'm analyzing what people are finding interesting about what we're doing now, people like this aren't going to be that useful to the survey And also I needed to develop some skip logic So let me go ahead and drop in the Google survey link

And this one, I'd actually like you to go through twice pretty quickly And I'd like you to start out as somebody who hasn't been to the library in a year, sad thought as it is for us all And then finish that, and then go through the survey again And while you're doing that with the link in chat, I will advance the slides and mike offer a little bit And just let me know when you've submitted the survey

Thank you, Katie Thanks, Paula Thanks, Diane Sounds like you might be finishing up But did you notice how the skip logic worked? It skipped you over a whole bunch of questions that, well in a real survey, it would skip you over a bunch of questions that you didn't necessarily need to answer Another place that it might be helpful is if you were surveying people based on whether they were youth and above 13 because of Federal law

If you were surveying teens and adults, maybe you want to have one set of questions for teens and another set for adults It just allows you to make different choices Maybe if you had people who were very fond of your large print collection, if they answered that they enjoyed the large print collection, then they'd be taken to some follow up questions that not everyone else would go to So going to the responses, and in the interest of time, I won't do a live version In the view of your form, you have one tab that's marked Responses

And then you'd click on Responses And then you would get charts and tables just like in Survey Monkey If you click on Publish Analytics, that will actually create a public page for this material And that's one of the two ways that you can share results from Google Forms If you want to share it out to the world, just the summary, you can click on Publish Analytics

There's a spot at the bottom of the form that says, Let People Who Submit Surveys See Other Results The other way, if you go internally, is more than one person can work on a survey So I guess you wouldn't necessarily lose access to all of your surveys if the main person with the account walked away But if you added other people as collaborators, but I still recommend an institution level account for this Once you go to File, Add Collaborators, you get a place where you can invite more people, just type in their emails, and they'll get an invitation

They will be editors of a survey, so they would be able to both view results that you're not necessarily publishing to the public, and they can also change questions So they ought to be trusted people And here's what I mentioned about publishing publicly, at the bottom of your survey, Publish and Show a Public Link to Form Results Now one thing that kind of freaked me out when I first saw this feature is that when I was signed into Google as the editor of this survey, I not only saw the page of summary responses, which I wanted the world to see, but I could also access the individual responses from the, supposedly, public page And that was rather disturbing as somebody committed to privacy

But it turns out, it was only showing me that because I was logged into Google as the editor I logged out of Google, went back to the page, and all it would show me was the summary So this is a perfectly safe way of sharing the results of your survey with the world at large, if you'd like to do that Questions about Google Forms? I only have a couple more slides left, or not nearly as many, and they'll go quicker And I should also say that in the handout I keep chirping about, there's not only links to the two different services, but I also linked to the tutorial files as well

And I'd strongly suggest looking at both of them It looks like there might be something coming in from Paula Is there a time limit for people to take the surveys? No and yes, the default is no In Survey Monkey, you should be able to set an end date for the survey I think that's available in the free version

In Google Forms, you can't set in advance the time limit, but what you can do is you can turn on and off Collecting Surveys And let me go back one or two slides If you go under Responses, there will be a little toggle for Accepting Responses And if you take off the check mark, people will get something like, thank you for your interest in the survey, but we're not taking responses anymore So you can put a date on your calendar, whether that's paper or electronic, and then go into Google and click on Stop Accepting Responses

But good question because often we do want time limited surveys and don't want people adding stuff afterwards Any other questions about Google Forms before we move on to our last couple bits Hearing none So why choose one of these over another? And these are mostly the reasons that I already mentioned on Survey Monkey And the short answer is if you have short surveys with fewer than 100 responses expected, and you want something that you can set up the same afternoon, you ought to use Survey Monkey

If you're expecting more than 100 responses, or you need to be able to download your results into a spreadsheet, or if you're already a heavy consumer of Google Apps anyway, I'd strongly encourage you to go straight to Google Forms Now let's say that you live in a community where the library, or other organization, is the only source of community internet They're not going to be taking your online surveys at home, but there's a couple of ways that you could go One is that you could alter your public internet computers so that the home page is your survey form So they'd have the option of taking the survey then

You could use paper surveys I know the workshop said eliminate paper entirely, but if people didn't otherwise have access, but you didn't want to have to type everything into– do all the charts yourself in Excel, you could do a paper survey and then input them into one of these survey tools And then you would get all the nice pie, bar charts, and tables automatically compiled for you without having to hand tally anything Now if you weren't aware of it before, the one thing I should say before either of these is, if you use deep freeze in your public computers, you're going to want to thaw them out first before doing these two options because otherwise it won't stay past the time that you power things down In Internet Explorer, you want to go into that little gear icon in the right hand corner and choose Internet Options

And then one of these first options will be the home page And Diane asks, are either of these available to be used in other languages And I want to say Google Forms is, if I could actually have you send me an email, and my contact information is on the last slide, I'll find that out for sure With Survey Monkey, the paid version will let you survey folks in other languages So going back to Internet Explorer, actually the easiest way would be to go to your survey page, then go to the gear icon on the right hand corner, choose Internet Options which brings up this box, and then click on Use Current, and that will reset your home page to your survey page

If you're in Firefox, what you want to do, is Firefox in the upper right hand corner has what we call a hamburger menu, which has three horizontal lines, it's a very abstract hamburger You choose Options from that, and then you click on the General tab And then it says when Firefox starts, show my home page, and then underneath it, again you can click Use Current Page if you've already navigated to your survey page So that's how you would set up your web browsers to be survey collection tools Now the handout that I talked about, did all of you download it already? I'm trying to put this into chat as well

Don't go to it just yet But I wanted to make sure people had access to it because in addition to having the links to the survey tools, the links to the tutorials for the survey tools, links to review articles that mention other survey tools, it also has a couple of articles about choosing good survey questions, which I knew I would not have time for in this particular session So any questions on anything that we've covered today? And my last bit here is my contact information slide I'm still taking questions But Diane, if you'd email me at daniel

cornwall@alaskagov, I'll certainly find out about the language options It looks like we might have something coming in from Paula So I hope that you've gotten a flavor for the free tools that are out there and how there's some relative power with this And what sort of problems were you thinking of, Paula? The question was, have you had problems with the Excel results? Well, I've worked with Survey Monkey more than I've worked with Google Forms, and I haven't really had problems with the results downloaded from Survey Monkey, although that's only available in the paid version

I've played around with the Google Forms spreadsheet, somewhat, and it seems OK, but I didn't have very many responses But if you run into a similar problem in the future, I would love to see the issues with it And it looks like we might have a comment or question from Katie Thank you for your kind words That's all the material that I had prepared

Sorry that we went a couple of minutes over If you have any questions that don't occur to you now, feel free to email or call me And hopefully within a day or so we'll have this webinar up so you can have your coworkers view it if you found it useful, also a link to the handout and probably the sample surveys as well Thank you, Diane Does anybody have any other comments? And let me just drop in the handout link one more time so that you can go ahead and actually download it if you haven't already

[INAUDIBLE],, that is a really good question, which is my way of saying that in the course of researching the different tools, I did not hear audio survey mentioned once What I would probably think of doing would be a combination of a screen reader so that they would be able to hear the questions, and then a speech to text tool which would help with the comments I don't know if you could say check 18 to 34, but that is an excellent enough question that I'm writing it down in my notebook Audio surveys for hearing impaired, because that is definitely an accessibility question So one of the reasons I like giving these webinars and many workshops is that I get to learn new things, or at least learn to ask new questions

So anything else before we sign off today? Thank you, Paula, we certainly will And waiting for something from Diane And again, I'm just really tickled that we have a museum person with us today I sometimes attend the museum web chats that Scott Carrlee does on behalf of the division, and they're fun to listen to or read sometimes I'm going to go ahead and stop the recording now

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