Friday, February 15, 2008

Surveymonkey's technology enhanced support

We have been using Zoho Creator and Surveymonkey to collect data for formative assessment and other uses. This morning I wanted to know whether we could share the responsibility for creating assessments and surveys with other users. This is an important feature because we can build on one another's work and improve our efficiency of our efforts to improve learning and assessment. So I posed this question to the support contact form at Surveymonkey:

Export surveys to use in another account?

2/15/2008 10:55:59 AM
Your site explains clearly how to export data from surveys. It also explains how to use one survey to create a copy of it that can subsequently modified. It also explains how to use system-wide templates to start and then modify.

Is is possible to export a survey and then import into a second account? Can professional accounts mimic characteristics of your template functions so that surveys can be developed for similar user communities? For example, if our school district develops a survey that helps us improve instruction, can we share it with other districts who may want to build on our work? I. e. you have an open data capacity, do you also have an open content capacity?

Thanks for your assistance.
Immediately after submitting the form containing my request, the site responded with the following page:
One more step! You are not quite finished.

Based on your initial question, please review the following topics we have found for you. One may provide an immediate answer to your question.

If this does not fully answer your question: [Submit]

Apparently, the support system "scanned" my query and compared it with its database of questions they have already answered and published on their support site. They wanted to make sure that I had found an answer to my question if one already existed. I had already used their search function to look for "export" but all I could find were references to exporting data rather than the surveys themselves. So, I submitted the form and returned to working on related projects while the humans took over trying to interpret my request. Mychal, a support provider, responded several minutes later:
Mychal Hoffman (Support) 2/15/2008 11:02:19 AM
You can transfer surveys designs to another account.
Here is how:

You will want to select Copy (not Move to do this). If you copy the survey into another account, this will not copy the data or responses. ...
His response continues with more details on characteristics of the copying process. So, it turns out that they had answered my question already. But, they use the term "Transfer" to refer to reusing surveys and reserve the term "Export" for references to data. That distinction eluded the help systems' inference engine. I anticipate that the next generation will get it right.

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