Through my recent experience at the Google Teacher Academy for Administrators I learned about the form feature in Google Docs. Up until this point I had only used the word processor and presentation functions in Docs. I'd be lying if I didn't state that I was so fascinated by forms. Immediately I saw administrative value in terms of collecting data and organizing it in a spreadsheet. The best part is that you don't even have to create the spreadsheet! It is done for you as the form is created.
Last week I created my first forms to collect summary and evaluation information on staff professional development and webinars. After creating the form I inserted the live link into the daily email announcement that I send out to my staff each morning along with instructions that this had to be filled out within one week of attending any workshop, conference, meeting, or training. Talk about making my job so much easier and efficient! Prior to forms I would stalk my staff via email to collect this information so that I could include it in my monthly Principal's Report. Now it is done in a seamless fashion automatically. It was so exciting to view the professional development spreadsheet this morning and see detailed information already submitted by seven teachers using the form.
This data will now allow me to analyze more efficiently preferred professional development topics, effective/ineffective presenters, whether or not a teacher's PIP (professional improvement plan) is being met, and information to assist me in planning future in-house training sessions. In the near future I plan on creating forms for administrative walkthroughs, student discipline referrals, and the summary and evaluation of field trips. Please share with me any ideas you have on ways in which Google forms can be used.