Google Forms for Self-Evaluation

TLDR; use checkboxes, scales, grids, and multiple-choice questions in order to get instant graphs from your Google Forms. This is great for visualizing your self-evals over time without too much effort.

Nothing could have ever prepared me for how much work was involved when attending Ada Developers Academy, and how much I was going to learn. After 5 months of in-class work, the ADA staff and Ada Alumni gave us a ton of ideas and suggestions for how to make our 5-month internships successful.

One idea in particular that I wish they had given us at the very beginning of class was that of doing a self-evaluation. (Honestly, I think they tried to suggest that we write a daily or weekly journal entry to accomplish the same thing, and even gave us time to write in said journal. However, I found this daunting because haven’t always been a great writer and I never think to go back and read what I’ve written in a journal.)

At internship time that we were introduced to the concept of creating a Google Form to track our day-to-day progress. This is so cool and such a great idea! This may have been so helpful in figuring out my code learning style as well. (Heck, it might still be. I should think about incorporating that into my self-eval.)

Did you know that depending on how you set your Google Form up you can immediately see graphs of your responses?!

Check out the docs on it!

> Bar graphs showing the frequency of responses to Checkbox, Scale, and Grid questions

> Circle graphs showing percentages of responses to Multiple Choice questions

I’ve found that if you use the ‘checkboxes’ option for your questions, you’ll get a graph representing how many times you chose this option. I find this helpful because down the line I can see who I’ve worked with or what kind of mood I was consistently in during my internship.

When I create the ‘checkbox’ question (seen below) I always include an ‘other’ option when prompted. Just in case I’m feeling some other mood or think of another option I haven’t listed out. Generally, Google Forms does well at picking up the ‘other’ option multiple times if you’ve typed it exactly as you did at least once before.

If I click over to responses, this is the niffy chart get. As you can see I felt ‘Good’ a little over half of the time I responded to this survey.

That’s the key though; responding. My suggestion to anyone who’s looking to do this for themselves is that you make the survey a length that you’ll actually stick to. I’ve realized that my survey is too long for me, so I’ve been slowly paring it down, or turning questions into checkbox answers or multiple choice questions or even ‘on a scale of 1 to 10’ questions.

One other thing I’ve done is set-up a daily reminder for myself. I normally use Slack’s `/remind` feature so that I can just click on the link when it reminds me at the end of the day or the end of the week to respond to my survey.

It’s not perfect, but I’ve been working on it.

Currently, my daily evaluation asks — (I don’t always have a response for each of these, but they’re good reminders.)

  • How do you feel? Right now, at this moment, at the end of the day. (checkboxes)
  • What did you work on? Description of work & number if applicable. (long-answer)
  • Who did you work with? (multiple choice in order to get the graph)
  • Who did you work with? Name, description of work, and like about working with this person & needs improvement. (long-answer to get more information)
  • One thing I learned today (long-answer)
  • One thing I’d like to follow up on (long-answer)
  • One thing I could do better tomorrow (long-answer)
  • One thing I’m proud of (long-answer)
  • Leadership Example — Event / Situation / Circumstance — What I did / How I handled it (long-answer)

My weekly evaluation asks —

  • Did you accomplish last week’s goals? (scale question)
  • Do you have anything to say about last week’s goals?(long-answer)
  • What went well this week? (long-answer)
  • What needs improvement? (long-answer)
  • What are your goals for next week? (long-answer)

Interested in what some others do for self-evaluation? Check out this Twitter thread:

Let me know if you have any questions about my process! Otherwise, I’d love to hear what you do and/or how self-evaluation has helped you!

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