Editable Forms With Qualtrics

The idea of creating an editable form is achievable in Qualtrics with the concepts I shared at Showcase 2016. But, it is difficult to get it to work on your own without seeing an example. I would love to set up a tutorial/working group session that was a little more hands on for people who really understood this stuff, but could use some help.

A few people have been asking since the session: how to create an “editable form” where a respondent can complete it once, and then go back, review their answers, and update their responses if needed.. This is a basic application to the framework I can try to explain more clearly:

  1. You need to first set-up a contact list with all of your respondents (you need their first name, last name, and email).
  2. You need to create an authenticator in the “survey flow” of the form you are creating that points to this contact list.

  3. Set-up a contact trigger in the form (tools>triggers>contact triggers), point it to your contact list, and “add additional fields, for each of the questions in your form. You will need to give each question a field name, which will be the header on the columns of your contact list once the data is moved. Each question in your form will need it’s own field. This configuration will move the survey results into a contact list.

  4. Finally, in the form, the contact list fields need to be pre-populated into the questions you are asking via piped text. Select a question, click the gear icon, select add default choices, click the drop down arrow, select embedded data field, and type in the name of the field you created in step 3 respective to the question you have selected.

  5. That’s it. Now when a respondent authenticates into that form, they will see the results they submitted previously, allowing them to revise and resubmit if needed. When resubmitting, the new results will be sent back into the contact list via your trigger, and overwrite any previously entered data.

Now, the contact list contains your “live,” most current information, and the survey results contains your history of all the changes made by a respondent. When you want to see the “live” data, you export the contact list – not the survey data. If you are curious to see the history of changes, you can look at the survey results, which will have a separate record (row) for each time a change was made by a respondent.

There are other ways to accomplish this in Qualtrics. For example, if you wanted to create a user editable form without a contact list or an authenticator, you could setup an email trigger with a link that allows the user to edit their original submission in the results section of the project. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Setup an email trigger (this option appears just above contact list triggers in the tools menu – see above).
    1. Add a link to this message that looks something like this: https://uwmadison.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_SurveyID?Q_R=${e://Field/ResponseID}&Q_R_DEL=1.
    2. The link can be added directly to the message or in an html link.
      1. In either case, the ${e://Field/ResponseID} embed code represents the respondent’s results.
  2. You will need to replace “SurveyID” from the link above with your actual survey ID
    1. This can be found in the distribution tab of your project.
    2. All survey IDs start with “SV_”
  3. The parameter at the very end of the link (Q_R_DEL=1) will cause the original results to be deleted. This will overwrite the respondents original answers with this more recent submission.
    1. To keep both results, remove this final parameter.

This set of instructions will keep the responses in the Data & Analysis tab of the project. The downside here is that if the respondent loses or never received the email, they will not be able to edit their form without help. You can always find these links in the Data & Analysis section by clicking on the down arrow under actions and selecting “Retake Response.”

This post was modified from messages originally posted on https://uw-data.slack.com – click the link to join this community on Slack (which at some point may be merged with the Data Wonks Team)