Microsoft Education has undertaken a new study with researchers at Digital Promise to investigate how teachers around the world are using Microsoft Forms to drive learning. Providing feedback to students on their learning progress is one of the most powerful pedagogical approaches and education research has repeatedly shown that formative feedback has a tremendous impact on learning outcomes.
In this study, we found that teachers use Microsoft Forms not only for formative assessment, but for many other pedagogical activities. Teachers value the ease of use and clear reporting of Microsoft Forms.
“I actually say to teachers, ‘I think Forms is the most underrated piece of software in the suite because of the time that it saves you in terms of data-driven outcomes and the data collection that goes on with schools now.’”
– Instructional Technology Coach
We are delighted to share this new report, which highlights the variety of creative ways teachers are using Forms.
Teachers are using Microsoft Forms in pedagogically substantive ways to improve student outcomes:
- Formative Assessment
- Differentiating Instruction
- Peer Collaboration (students creating their own Forms in groups)
- Social and Emotional Learning (see this teacher’s video on how she leverages Forms for SEL)
- Increasing Student Engagement
Teachers also used Microsoft Forms for professional learning and to increase their efficiency with administrative and routine teaching tasks, such as:
- Communicating with Parents
- Professional Development through Reflective Practice
- Increasing Teaching Efficiency by incorporating lunch choices, applications, and locker assignments into Forms
We also explored some of the best practices school and education-system leaders are using to grow adoption and use of Microsoft Forms. Some implementation strategies to get teachers to use Forms:
- The most essential strategy is simply making teachers aware that Microsoft Forms is available and how it can be used. Follow the Quick Start guide to try out Microsoft Forms.
- Training on how to use Forms is the second step and most coaches believed this training should be undertaken on its own (not as part of training on other apps). Check out Microsoft’s own training course, Microsoft Forms: Creating Authentic Assessments.
Coaches used the following strategies:
- Using a Form with teachers directly to show its simplicity of use and to get them familiar with the tool
- Understanding their teacher audiences and designing training for those audiences (e.g. ‘savvy explorer’ or ‘cautious adopter’)
- Describing the time-saving element of Microsoft Forms use, especially enabling teachers to give students instant feedback; and how Microsoft Forms enables data-driven approaches to pedagogy with the immediate capture of data to Microsoft Excel.
Forms is an ideal tool for helping teachers incorporate more data-driven approaches to understanding what is working in their teaching practices, because it makes the collection (and much of the analysis) of student-learning data automatic. Results from a mood survey, a math quiz, or an exit ticket Form, are instantly available to both students and teachers. Such data helps teachers to build stronger learning relationships with their students, because they know where each student is at in their learning progress.
“There was that magical moment when getting the data happened. Oh my gosh, we’re getting this data in Forms in real time and that was unheard of before. Now within a matter of minutes I know where my students stand on the concepts that we’re going to cover that day.”
– 3rd Grade Teacher
Getting Started with Microsoft Forms
Microsoft Forms is an online quiz and survey application included with Microsoft Office 365. Forms was designed using direct feedback from educators looking for a simple way to formatively assess student learning and monitor learning progress on an ongoing basis.
Forms is part of the Office 365 suite of tools. If your school already has Office 365, you can log in at www.office.com and begin using Forms as one of the many apps included in the suite. Teachers and students can also Download Office 365 for free using a valid school email address. The resources below will help you get started on your journey to using Microsoft Forms.