Instructors and course designers often use quizzes or forms for assessment, retrieval practice, self-checks, or collecting information from students. Did you know that Qualtrics surveys can take your interaction game to an even higher level of sophistication?

Qualtrics surveys can easily be linked to or embedded in a page in your Learning Management System. They can also be added as an assignment through the LTI integration.

The LTI integration has recently become an available feature for Oregon State University Canvas users. The integration links the survey to the student’s LMS account and is useful for awarding points automatically for completing the survey. In addition, several types of questions can be scored; thus, a survey can be used as a quiz and the integration tool will send the points to the gradebook.

If your LMS doesn’t have a Qualtrics LTI integration, or you don’t want to go through all the steps of setting it up, you can still use Qualtrics activities, but you will have to add any points manually in your gradebook.

Ideas for Qualtrics activities

Here are a few ways to use a Qualtrics survey:

  1. Self-check activity / formative assessment / quiz: design a survey to increase active learning or assess content. Qualtrics can be your tool of choice because:
    • It’s more versatile than a quiz or Google form (e.g. more types of questions, complex branching possible based on answer).
    • It can be customized with different colors, fonts, and backgrounds.
    • The instructor can access student answers and use this information to provide individualized support or improve course materials.
  2. Class pulse: Send a survey during the term to ask students how they are doing.
  3. Suggestion box: Have a permanent page in your course where students can submit suggestions.
  4. Voting ballot / poll: Create a survey to allow students to vote on a topic, favorite presentation, meeting time, etc. or to answer a poll.
  5. Topic selection tool: Provide an easy way for students to claim their topic through a survey that eliminates an option once it’s chosen.
  6. Muddiest point survey: Gather students’ input on the week’s materials: which concepts were unclear? Which information was particularly compelling?
  7. Team member evaluation: In group work, it can be a good idea to have students evaluate their team members, to increase accountability and make sure that everyone is pulling their weight. You can create a survey asking students to rate their peers on specific criteria and provide comments on performance.

How to create a survey

Creating a survey in Qualtrics is very straightforward. Log into your account and create a new project. You can choose from a variety of question types, including multiple choice, ranking, slider, matrix, etc. Make sure to check which questions are accessible to screen-reading programs. If you’d like to track or manage the time a student spends on a page, you can use a timing question.

For Oregon State University users, the default look is the OSU theme. Through the Look and Feel menu section, you can choose a different theme or customize the layout, style, background, colors and text size to fit your needs and your course aesthetic.

How to link a survey

Linking to a survey is the easiest way to include it in your course. In your survey, go to Distributions and choose the Anonymous link. If you need the student’s identification information, make sure to add a question asking for their name or email.

How to embed a survey

Embedding a survey instead of linking it can make for a smoother learning experience by integrating the questions with other learning material on that page. To embed a survey on a page, use a simple iframe like this: <iframe src=”insert survey link here” width=”1000px” height=”500px”></iframe> and adjust the dimensions or style it as desired.

How to integrate a survey via LTI

Integrating via LTI is a bit more complex and will depend on your LMS and your organization’s settings. For Oregon State University users, instructions are provided in this article: Use Qualtrics in Canvas.

Note: embedding a survey (with or without LTI) may not work well in older versions of Firefox. You may want to add a link or check “Load this tool in a new tab”.

Conclusion

Qualtrics is a useful tool for adding more interactivity into your course. Setting up the surveys can be very simple or more involved depending on the task. Watch out for future posts in which we will give examples and details on how to design and create some of the more complex types of Qualtrics activities.

This post was written in collaboration by Deborah Mundorff and Dana Simionescu.

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