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5 Ways to Encourage Student Participation in Surveys

College students are undeniably some of the brightest minds out there. They’re known to have fresh, new and exciting ideas we may have never considered. This means collecting those ideas, along with their feedback, can provide a lot of value to post-secondary institutions. But the thing is, to get this feedback, you first need to find a way to encourage student participation.

One way to use student survey results? You might collect quantitative insights from students to measure the student experience or any other insights about life on campus. The idea being that this information can help to improve the university and college experience, and support and engage students more successfully down the line. 

This idea may seem like an easy one to execute at first glance. But it can actually be tough to get students to answer surveys and collect useful data from them. It’s common for students to have a lot of different information thrown their way so surveys ultimately fall by the wayside.

But Swift Polling is here to help! We’re here to discuss our 5 best tips for encouraging student participation and getting students to answer your surveys so you get the responses you’re looking for.

SMS Surveys

While email is certainly a well-known way to send out organized and efficient communications, you might consider other methods in order to get your responses. Emails can also bounce, go to junk mail, or go to accounts that no longer exist. 

SMS surveys are great for students as most of them have their phones within a hand’s reach at all times. Texting also has a wider reach than email and can boost immediate responses.

Reminders can also be sent by SMS to those who have not completed their survey. This makes the survey more likely to be answered should a student have forgotten.

Share Results to Encourage Student Participation

Sharing survey results with the students who are involved is a great way to encourage others to participate. You can even choose to share with certain students or the entire campus.

When you share results, you create a feedback loop where students start to feel their opinion is not only wanted, but also highly valued. This increases the rates of student participation in future surveys. It also sets an example for others who may be more hesitant to participate.

If you are able to demonstrate the survey is meant to help create change, this can also encourage students to want to become involved and get their voice heard.

(Just keep in mind you should never share information that is confidential!)

Provide Surveys in Common Student Locations

If you want your survey to get answered, another great way is to try and interact with students outside of the classroom. Especially when surveys inside the classroom are not an option.

You can collect information from students anywhere, whether that be a kiosk, library, or waiting room on campus. At times, human to human interaction can feel a lot more personal. At the same time, this makes it a lot more motivating to have surveys completed. 

If you’re finding students are still walking by and avoiding the interaction, you might provide an incentive to bring them over. This could include anything from a pancake breakfast to a free tennis lesson. This type of encouragement helps students to feel more comfortable and welcome.

Survey Accessibility During Class Time

The classroom is a great space to get students to participate in surveys. After all, it’s a time when they are already giving you their attention! If you provide them with time they have already devoted to learning, they’re less likely to feel like a survey is taking away from what they could be doing with their own spare time.

You might incorporate polls into lessons, or provide surveys for feedback. And we’ve got all the tools you need to do so easily and efficiently. 

Live polling with Swift Polling allows you to quickly and easily organize voting, polling and quizzing to gather feedback and opinions.

Students can use their computer, smartphone, or mobile device to vote and share their thoughts. Results are also real-time which serves for an incredible learning experience as students can see where their contributions fall next to their peers. 

Polls are created simply, and on the fly! Feedback can also be studied later on when class is over.

Design Surveys for Greater Appeal

If your design is outdated, then you might already be behind on attracting the interest of students – especially those that are younger. 

Clean and well-thought-out designs can increase survey engagement and help you collect responses. This might include branding your survey or poll with your school’s colors or even including a picture of the mascot. 

Adding your branding to Swift polls is easy. Click here to see how.

You might include features like a progress bar to track how much time is left on the survey as students. This sense of urgency can help boost student participation rates as it motivates them to take action.

The language used and the length of written information can also be overwhelming if not kept short. Keep introductions specific and set clear expectations to help students understand what they are getting involved in. 

Boost Student Participation and Step Up Your Survey Game

Looking to step up your student survey game? Swift Polling makes it easy to encourage student engagement and get the student feedback you’re looking for.

Click here to discuss your options and see what Swift Polling can do for you!

Did you learn a lot from this post on encouraging student participation? Don’t miss these articles either: 

How to Boost Classroom Engagement in Distance Learning

9 Fun Classroom Icebreakers to Use in Academic Institutions

How to Increase Student Engagement with Swift Polling



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