Form-based assignments (e.g. worksheets or guided reflections)

(3)
Originally submitted March 30th

 

"We would love to see Canvas implement form-based assessments. For example, we want students to complete a reflection on a field experience. We need to gather basic info like the location (chosen from a menu), date, and supervisor, and then students need to answer three open-ended questions and a matrix of Likert-like scale questions.

I've tried building this in the quiz tool, and am not satisfied with the results.
1) Doing this as a quiz is very messy and takes a dozen screens. Ideally, all this could fit on one or two screens.
2) This needs to be graded as a whole using a rubric. Doing it as a quiz attempts to assign points for each item on the screen - and most of the items don't have one right answer ("Name of rotation location" "Date of experience").
3) Ideally, we'd like to be able to mine the resulting data - for example, "How many students attended a rotation at X location?"

In addition to these reflections, we would use this tool for "worksheet-style" homework, self-assessments, case analyses, etc. - anything where the student gets one grade for answering a number of specific questions.

Thanks,
Emily Springfield
University of Michigan School of Dentistry"

20 Comments
kmeeusen
Coach Emeritus

Emily:

Have you considered embedding a Google Form into a Canvas assignment, or even into a quiz item? Then student responses are captured by Google into a spreadsheet, that you could embed unpublished (hidden from students) somewhere within your classroom.

sley
Community Novice

Ditto on Emily's comments.  I am using Canvas heavily to outline lab assignments for our aviation courses.  The lab assignments have research and procedure questions that have to be answered along with oral and practical exercises that have to be documented, commented and initialed by the instructor.  The oral and practical exercises add to the complexity of Emily's.  At present, the lab sheets have to be printed off by either myself or the students.  They are handwritten, scanned, then uploaded into the drop box.  This whole process defeats the purpose of using an online assignment tool.  The feedback from students has been a strong desire to create homework and lab assignments that can be completed using a form tool located within the Canvas facility.  I could then evaluate the assignment using a modified rubric that allows both free form and scored criteria.

Appreciate your consideration for developing this important, and flexible capability.

mjennings
Advocate

I would love a form based assessment option! While I like the idea of using the Google Forms route, our institution will not permit us to use the Google Apps due to legal & contracting issues that are currently ongoing. I would suspect that this would be a similar issue for other institutions as well.

dstowens
Community Novice

This isn't really an answer to but may be a  work-around for the original post. I have set up all my daily lab assignments (Anatomy and Physiology) as online submissions and, so far, almost everything is through my students' cell phones. They submit photos of their microscope views, they submit photos of their sketches, they submit labelled photos of models or specimens all through their phones.We're doing experiments by computer simulation that finish by saving their lab notes into files that they then submit either directly from the computer or through the Canvas app on their phones. Couldn't a form be designed that the students would fill on-screen rather than on paper? Saved, the file could be submitted through the current mechanisms.

jsparks
Instructure Alumni
Instructure Alumni

This is a very interesting idea and one worth exploring. I used to teach in a program with a clinical component; I understand the need here and its other applications across academic programs.  A Canvas Quiz, a Google Form, or a Survey tool (of some sort...) would help resolve this issue. Have you all looked into tools available through the Edu Apps portal? If you find something here that would work, please share in this thread.  I would LOVE to know what may be used. 

Another solution would be to build a new gradable content item like a customizable form.  I can see this as a need. I am curious what features you would like to see included if we took-on a project such as this in the future.  Please continue to share your thoughts.

As always, please let me know how I can continue to help.

Jason

emily
Community Champion

Jason-

I've not found anything in the apps that really suits this need. Google forms come close, but the UI for both faculty (on setup) and delivery (for students) leaves a lot to be desired - a one-page form explodes to about five screens.

Some fields I can see using often would be:

  • Date (e.g., of the clinical experience)
  • Location (drop-down list)
  • Other drop-downs, such as type of experience
  • Short text fields
  • Essay box text fields
  • Radio buttons/checkboxes

Pretty basic "form" features.  All items would be treated as one assignment and be graded by one rubric.

Emily

jsparks
Instructure Alumni
Instructure Alumni

Thank you, Emily , for sharing!  I can see a variety of variable fields as a need for this new content type. This particular content type takes some careful thought on how to best implement... from fields and variables to a form design tool/process. It's possible we could look at a partner for this type of solution; however, there are certainly more plusses to a solution that is more native.  We need to investigate this further.  I am not certain we can implement this in the next six months.  We may archive this idea for now; however, we will look at this further.

Kind regards,

Jason

kengelma
Community Novice

Hi Jason,

I just came across this discussion and I'm having the same issues as Emily. I was wondering if folks are still working on this idea.

Thanks,

Kathleen

jsparks
Instructure Alumni
Instructure Alumni

Hello  @kengelma 

Thank you for the question.  We have this idea as a part of our assignments idea backlog. We are not actively developing this idea for now, but may consider this for future development.

Jason

emily
Community Champion

Deactivated user​ - What about a tight integration with Google Forms? I've not yet been able to find a way to even show a Google Form record as the "thing that is graded" in Canvas, let alone pass a value from a form to Canvas.  But if a Google Form could be an "External Tool," and the student could point to a particular record in the spreadsheet as their submission, that would be really, really useful.

emily
Community Champion

Deactivated user​ - Is there any way we could talk "live" about how I might approach this issue? I'm not able to message you through this interface. -Emily

Renee_Carney
Community Team
Community Team
  Idea is currently in Product Radar Learn more about this stage...

dgildehaus
Community Novice

Add me to the list wishing for this option. I can embed a google form but will not be able to use Speedgrader to grade submissions. The quiz option is to cumbersome for what I want to do with the form.

Using Google Drive and especially Forms as an external tool would be HUGE!

andrew5
Community Novice

Let me voice my strong support for this development initiative but from another corner of the academy. I use worksheets to help teach students how to write historical narratives. This means that they need to complete the form sequentially, for instance collecting evidence, then offering hypothetical interpretations, drafting sections of prose, and so on. Using .doc or .pdf formats defeats the purpose of integrating these assignments into the rest of the Canvas course, as others have already pointed out. But quizzes randomize questions, which undermines the purpose of leading students step by step through the process of analytic writing. Ideally there should also be a function for viewing/saving/printing all of the data on a single page so that the students can see how the information works together, options for peer review or links to discussion boards so students can learn from one another asynchronously, and integration with learning criteria so grades for specific parts of the worksheet could be tied to the learning goals for the course and faculty could identify easily which tasks are creating stumbling blocks. I am writing this post to ensure that the developers realize that could improve teaching not only for the sciences but also for the humanities and social sciences, no doubt also for the arts. Please advise me as to when/if this new function would become available. 

i-hsuan_hsu
Community Novice

My work place is implementing Canvas right now, and this function seemed like something I'm trying to do. For the course I'm developing, the learner would need to fill out a form similar to this: This is the HMX website, this type of function is what I'm looking for. Form_

And checkin off what applies to them from a list like this:

checks

Is there an elegant way to accomplish this in Canvas?

emily
Community Champion

The quiz tool is the closest thing Canvas has.

andrew_sheppard
Community Participant

I support this feature as well. Many online students often struggle to save files from Canvas, add their responses; and upload their work. The matter is complicated by pop-up blockers, and browser plug-ins that prevent or change the behavior of downloaded files. Moreover, the word "quizzes" has a specific meaning within many course contexts. The term can also be anxiety-inducing for students which can impact their work.

cholling
Community Champion

I recently found this discussion -- very worthwhile. In our school of nursing, this type of functionality would be an awesome enhancement. One use case:  A student has to learn then practice a variable number of skills until they're mastered. The number and complexity of these skills progress throughout the student's academic career as they become more advanced. Students self-evaluate. Faculty verify that the skills have been mastered. In some cases, a faculty may review a "checkoff" list for a student and see that the student has not been able to practice that skill under supervision very many times during clinical settings and will work with other healthcare professionals to ensure that the student is given opportunities. All of this is simply a matter of documentation that a form could assist with. The school/admin/initial faculty could build a comprehensive list of skills to be mastered. When that form is made available to students, they can check off when they are able to practice that skill and to specify under what circumstances (in a practice lab with manikins, under supervision with a patient, alone with a patient....). Students may also need to add clarifying or reminder comments (This worked, but I was confused why ....). A faculty can then review the student's form and add comments, develop additional learning situations, assist the student, whatever. The form can "follow" the student through the nursing courses where the student can view progress and growth in knowledge and skills, and subsequent faculty can determine that perhaps the student needs additional help with a skill.

In addition to recording information, this form needs to be signed off by the faculty and/or preceptor at least twice a term, mid-term and final. A requirement for us is that once the form has an entry made, that entry cannot be changed, so that the form retains it's accuracy in progress.

Now, each student handles a paper form, carrying it around and marking it up and getting it signed when needed. Gets rather dog-eared after a short time.

I know -- this is asking a lot of a CMS. But if we can't dream, we can't achieve.

Cindy.

Renee_Carney
Community Team
Community Team

The Radar idea stage has been removed from the Feature Idea Process.  You can read more about why in the blog post Adaptation: Feature Idea Process Changes.

 

This change will only impact the stage sort of this idea and will not change how it is voted on or how it is considered during prioritization activities.  This change will streamline the list of ideas 'open for voting', making it easier for you to see the true top voted ideas in one sort, here.

KristinL
Community Team
Community Team
Status changed to: Archived

Thank you for sharing this idea with the Instructure Community!

The Product Team reviewed all feature proposals recently, and unfortunately, this thread was identified as one that they would not be able to include in their current or future plans. While we appreciate your proposal, we also want to be transparent about the likelihood of something like this making it to production.

Thank you for collaborating, and we hope that you submit another idea in the future!