Survey123 sample activity (especially for schools)

02-07-2016 10:20 AM
Esri Regular Contributor

Survey123 ( is a powerful technology for field data collection. As of this post it is still in Beta, but it is sufficiently stable and robust to deserve attention by educators. ((Updates in the last week solved some key issues.)) Watch even just the first 7 minutes of the intro video (on YouTube)​, and you'll get a sense. The power of the app comes from designing a well-tuned survey using a spreadsheet -- something every educator should be able to do. Even more powerful: kids can build these, with PCs, Macs, Chomebooks, and tablets.

The first challenge in any project is figuring out the mission; the second challenge is figuring out how to meet the mission. I've crafted a simple survey that meets both challenges quickly, for any school with an ArcGIS Online Organization. (K12 schools in the US should see The survey attached to this entry lets educators ask students some "non-invasive" questions, in English or Spanish. After seeing the Survey123 video linked above, it helps to do a survey, and then study how the survey was built, before thinking about building one's own. This survey uses some tricks that would be important in schools but are barely mentioned in the video or help file -- setting up a second language, making the feature service build itself in the default language, crafting responses that need e.g. exactly 3 alphanumeric characters or 5 numbers, and so on. Recommendation:

  1. Watch the movie
  2. Scan the general help document (accessible from the Survey123 web page)
  3. Download the sample survey attached
  4. On your Windows/MacOS/Linux machine, download the Survey123 Connect app and install it
  5. Use Survey123 Connect to log into your Org on your computer and publish the sample survey into your Org
  6. On your iOS/Android tablet or smartphone, download and install the Survey123 mobile app
  7. Use Survey123 mobile device app to log into your Org and download the survey form
  8. Use Survey 123 mobile device to take the survey and submit your data; repeat as desired
  9. Use website or your Org to look at the "students" data layer
  10. Repeat steps 6-9 with students
  11. Ponder what data you would like students to engage in gathering
  12. Study the sample survey and help docs to figure out how to make your survey look and feel as desired.

I look forward to comments!

2 Replies
New Contributor III

Thanks for the template to preview some of the additional code that will help to modify the Survey!

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Occasional Contributor

This is going to be a great tool for educators! Thanks for sharing this with the community!

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