Last updated: October 6, 2022

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This feature allows instructors (Zoom host) to gather students (participants) short or long answers via the Zoom Poll Short Answer question type. Short answers default to 200 characters but this can be increased. This type of synchronous activity gives students an equal opportunity to voice their answers anonymously with other students during class. After class, instructors can download the Zoom Poll Report to check who participated. This feature is not it integrated with the Canvas, points would have to be manually added to the grade book.

How to create short answer poll questions

Go to our DU Zoom Portal site and then click Meetings. Click Polls/Quizzes and select Advanced Polls and Quizzing.

Screenshot showing Zoom portal page. Section is in Meeting and the active tab is called Polls/Quizzes. User should click Create and select Advanced Polls and Quizzing.

Select Short Answers from the menu option.

Screenshot showing the short answer form.

Note: If you click the “” and select “Require answers to be anonymous”, then all report data in the .CSV file will be anonymous. By default, all Shared Results with the Zoom participants will be anonymous.

Launch poll

Once you are in your Zoom session, go to Poll and select the poll questions you want to open up to your students.

View polls results anonymously

Once everyone has submitted their answers, stop the poll and press the View All Results. This will open up a Zoom webpage that contains all the answers. By default, all answers are anonymous when sharing the results.

Screenshot showing Share Results button and the View Details link.

Click View Details to open up a webpage with all the responses. Students will have a new Zoom window showing all the results.

Screenshot showing anonymous answers.

View polls results reports with participant names

After class, go to our DU Zoom Portal page, login and go to Reports. Select Poll Report and define the search dates. Then press Generate.

Screenshot showing Zoom host view and the report page. User should click on Poll Report to filter.

Click the Download button to access all the answers in a .CSV file.

Screenshot showing that user should click the Download button.

Open up the .CSV file in any spreadsheet program. The report will include all the results including participant names. This can be helpful with class grading participation during your Zoom class.

Screenshot showing CSV file with user names and answers.

Summary: Active learning in the classroom

Gathering student feedback on topics, running “Exit Polls” where students respond to a question or ask a question that they have about the topics focused on that day, promoting metacognitive thinking (ask students to rate their understanding of topics), running Q&A sessions (will help students who don’t like to speak up to contribute to class), quick quizzes, and even giving some agency back to students by asking them what they would like to focus on/what activities would be most helpful for them. 

Additionally, polling like this not only supports students by giving them the opportunity to engage, but it also supports the instructor in connecting with student learning by allowing them to continuously survey students and assess learning in a more formative sense.