If you have been using google forms for data collection, are already familiar with forms, or check out my basics google forms tutorial – it’s time to get a little more advanced. The point of using google forms is to help analyze and summarize the data so you know what to do next. Remember – the whole point of taking data is to use the data to help tell you what to do (aka make those data based decisions!). There are some important tips and trick to utilize while using google forms that helps makes this process even more efficient and effective!

Tips for Setting Up Your Forms

When setting up your forms, think about the type of data you are collecting and what survey form will best fit that type of data.

Discrete Trial

For discrete trial data, I like using the linear scale because I stay consistent with the total amount of opportunities. When submitting response, click how many correct are done each day. You can create a line graph later.

Prompting Level

For data that requires indicating a prompting level, indicate the prompting level using a multiple choice setup. This works well for things like life skills, play skills, independent work, communication actions, hygiene tasks,  etc.


For frequency data (whether behavior data or any other type of frequency), use short answer. Make sure to click ‘response validation’ and ensure that you have selected a number. That way if anyone types in anything other than a number the response it won’t allow submission.

Creating Line Graphs

Some of the automated summaries that Google Forms creates may not be helpful to you. For example, a pie chart or bar graph won’t illustrate growth over time and help you make those oh-so-important data based decisions we have been talking about. But no worries- you can easily create line graphs using google forms. After you submit responses, click ‘view responses in a spreadsheet.’ This creates a spreadsheet with all of the information and you can create a line graph within the spreadsheet. Now you’re thinking – if I am just going to make and use a spreadsheet, why don’t I just start there and skip this whole google forms thing? Well, google forms is SO simple to set up and EXTREMELY user friendly to submit data. Adding data on a spreadsheet is way less clear. Things can easily be missed or put in the wrong spot. Google forms makes it so easy and you can use the spreadsheet along with the form.

After you open the spreadsheet, you an quickly create the line graph. The line graph will show you growth over time and help you make data based decisions. Once you make the graph once, it stays there and continues to update as you add more data. I like to keep the spreadsheet in a separate tab and have a tab for each chart. It’s SO easy, guys. I promise! You can customize almost everything if you want.

Check out the video tutorial to see the whole process:

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