Turbo-charged forms

Google forms are great, but they don’t leave you a lot of room for customization. There are some other programs that can help collect a lot of data with highly customizable forms, but they usually cost money. Today, while working on another project, I needed to find a way to make a google form go to a customized page after submitting the form. A little searching turned up this site, which gives a great tutorial on how to customize google forms.

At first glance, this may seem a bit intimidating, but if you follow the steps, it’s not too bad. The one thing you’ll need to use is an html editor. I like to use nVu, but you could probably do this under the html setting on a blog. It’s mostly a matter of copying and pasting some bits of code. If you don’t know much about CSS (like me), you don’t need to worry – I didn’t change the look of the actual form. I was, however, able to direct users to a new webpage after completing the form.

This might be useful for teachers who want to steer students to a particular sight after they complete a survey. If you used a form to make a quiz, you could have it redirect to website with the answers or a site with more practice. I have a feeling that google will eventually add features to forms that make this much easier, but for now it’s a fairly straightforward solution.

If you’re looking for more, free survey alternatives, try these: Fo.reca.st (very good),  Questions Pro, Stellar Survey, and Polldaddy.  I’ve used all these for some type of survey or poll and all of them perform the same basic functions.  What’s nice about google forms is that it puts all the information into a simple spreadsheet and you can analyze all the data from there.  The other apps do offer more customization (without web hackery) and can be very useful.

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