One piece of software that I keep coming back to is LimeSurvey. A quick guess will reveal that this is survey software. It is open source, wonderfully powerful survey software. Full featured and ready for complex surveys software.
This is not for every use. It is overkill for many people and many situations. I use Google Forms as much as the next person. If you just need to create a survey with a couple of questions, Google Forms is hard to beat. It is easy to use and incorporates well with other Google Apps. You can even create quick quizzes (exit tickets, short quizzes, formative assessments, etc) in Google Forms. Google Forms will even shuffle the questions and answers now.
Of course surveys can also be done in Moodle as well. In fact, Moodle is more powerful with more options than Google Forms. Moodle will allow the teacher to actually have different questions presented to each student. Options (answers and distractors) can be shuffled within a question. Lots of power. Lots of options.
Sometimes, though, a survey with complex rules is needed. That is where LimeSurvey comes in. Granted, you need to have access to a web server (really, not that hard these days) to install it. However, once you do so, you can create surveys that sing.
For example, I was recently asked to create a survey where respondents will indicate whether they have had interactions with a variety of groups. For the groups that they have, there are follow up questions. So, let’s say we have ten groups. If you’ve dealt with two of those groups, but not the other eight, you would get follow up questions only about the two groups. If I’ve dealt with five of the groups, but not the other five, I would get follow up questions just about the five that I’ve dealt with. LimeSurvey makes this pretty dog gone easy to do.
In the example above, I created an Array with the names of the ten groups. The question was “have you interacted with….” and the answers were Yes/No/Uncertain. Then there were a series of follow up questions pertinent to each group. A conditional rule set to display the follow up question only if Yes was chosen for that department. Powerful. And easy to use.
LimeSurvey also allows for multiple languages. (You do have to write the questions in each language. This is actually very preferable to the “translated” questions which can have unintended consequences.) For schools, multiple language support can be extremely important.
LimeSurvey also allows you to create templates from questions. This feature is a real time saver. Once I’ve entered all of the schools, I don’t have to that again. These templates mean that common questions can be quickly and easily reused. Of course, you can also export and import full questions from one survey to the next.
Templates are also customizable for making the survey reflect your organization. Adding the logo and custom text that is specific to your organization provides a different experience than a common or popular survey site. It also lets your users know what type of survey that they are completing.
LimeSurvey also provides very powerful results. It will give you quick graphs in a variety of formats. You can export the data to popular formats.
Of course, the data is all yours. You control the information.
If you are looking to really “up your game” with surveys, and you have access to a web server, LimeSurvey is a great way to go.