10 Strategies for Engaging Learners with Qualtrics
What is Qualtrics?
Qualtrics is a web-based software that allows for a creative, collaborative, and highly customized user response collection. This software can be used in both face-to-face courses and, of course, in fully online classes. All Minnesota State University, Mankato students, faculty, and staff have access to Qualtrics with their Star ID and password.
Strategy #1: Audience Polling
The basics: Use a series of Qualtrics surveys or question blocks as you lecture to engage your students and check for understanding. Qualtrics surveys can be taken on a mobile device and you can look at the results in real-time. You can set up anonymous surveys to create quick knowledge checks. Use a link shortener, such as link.mnsu.edu to make your survey link quick and easy to access.
Variations on the approach: Ask students to take the survey before coming to class. Use the data to reinforce your content points or to have them complete in-class activities.
Strategy #2: Take Attendance
The basics: Using the Authenticator tool combined with a question block, you can easily give your students a quick question that will record their attendance in the class.
Variations on the approach: Use the same approach to hold students accountable for readings, videos, or other homework assignments. Create a quick 1-5 question survey to make sure students completed the assignments. Use the authenticator tool to record student names, IDs, or other identifying information.
Strategy #3: Quiz Your Students
The basics: Use Qualtrics surveys in place of multiple-choice quizzes on paper or in D2L. Share the surveys with your TAs or co-instructors. Use the Authenticator Tool to invigilate as much as possible.
Variations on the approach: Create a custom response system to student answers using question logic in Qualtrics. As students select certain answers, direct them to remediation, feedback, or additional questions on the same topic. Asking questions about the same topic in multiple ways may help students demonstrate their true knowledge about the subject.
Strategy #4: Encourage Research-Based Practice
The basics: Students can build their own Qualtrics surveys and conduct their own informal research in or out of class. Have them use the results to explore the content, complete projects, or form hypotheses. Give students opportunities to conduct data analysis with the results.
Variations on the approach: Combine survey research with another teaching method such as service-learning, project-based learning, or project-based learning. Have students demonstrate their understanding of your content outside the classroom by designing or conducting a needed project.
Strategy #5: Conduct Student Evaluations
The basics: Use Qualtrics to conduct your mid-term or final student evaluations. Survey results are anonymous and can easily be collated and analyzed across large lectures or multiple course sections.
Variations on the Strategy: Have your students complete group evaluations after any group project or assignment by completing a specially designed Qualtrics survey. Surveys can be anonymous, or participants can be identified in order to verify which group members are being evaluated. Results can be downloaded and correlated for overall performance across projects.
Strategy #6: Develop Critical Questioning Skills
The basics: Ask students to develop a series of questions on any topic they choose or on a topic relevant to the course. As they develop the questions, work with them on what it means to ask meaningful, open-ended questions. Have students deconstruct their questions to determine what they are really asking and if they will receive the information they are actually looking for. Have them deploy their surveys and discuss the results to see if they indeed got the expected results from their questions.
Variations on the approach: Reverse this procedure and ask students Socratic questions to further deeper meaning. Use the Text answer feature to encourage students to reflect on what they have learned.
Strategy #7: Create a Choose Your Own Adventure Story
The basics: Using branching logic and the survey flow tool, create a choose-your-own-adventure story that walks students through the content. In an effective demonstration of personalized learning, students can see the consequences of their decisions as they make choices based on your instructional input. Display logic allows you to provide them feedback and route them back to question blocks to “rethink” their previous choices if they have been led astray.
Variations on the approach: Ask students to create their own adventure story as a demonstration or presentation. Students must use logic, critical thinking skills, and deep knowledge of the content to effectively create their own scenarios.
Strategy #8: Require Reflective Practice
The basics: Use a standing Qualtrics survey to require students to submit a journal entry about a given topic or class. This can be used for service-learning or practicum reflections, or any other type of log that needs to be kept throughout the course. Responses can be downloaded into a spreadsheet for easy organization.
Variations on the approach: Use Qualtrics surveys to implement active learning techniques such as the Muddiest Point, One-Minute Essay, Ticket-out-the-door, One-question, or other Classroom Assessment Techniques.
Strategy #9: Outline an Argument Logically
The basics: Have your students use the survey tool to outline a logical line of thinking on a topic. If they must pose a thesis question or hypothesis, ask them to design a survey that asks all the questions they must answer with their paper or project. Having them use question or display logic along with the survey flow tool will help them see whether or not their questions lead logically to one another.
Variations on the approach: Use Qualtrics as a brainstorming tool for projects or papers. Surveys can be either created by the instructor or student and shared. Great for group projects and online courses to encourage collaborative decision-making.
Strategy #10: Schedule, Organize and RSVP
The basics: Use a Qualtrics survey to gather time and participation info in order to schedule events such as field trips, practicums or other outside class options. It can also be used to RSVP for those events. Additional Qualtrics surveys can be used to help schedule presentations, oral exams, office hours, or other time slots.
Variations on the approach: Use the tool for feedback and suggestions on any of those same events.
For training on using Qualtrics, please see the Center for Scholarship and Research (CESR) training schedule: http://grad.mnsu.edu/research/cesr/schedule.html
For Qualtrics technical support, please engage the support team at Qualtrics by using the information to contact support on our website.