Survey Platform - Collecting Responses | Qualtrics

Collecting Responses

Introduction

By default, any project you create has a status of New. This prevents respondents from taking your survey while you’re still building it.

Once your survey is ready, you’ll head over to the Distributions module to start collecting responses. This page outlines how to start, pause, and resume response collection for your survey (during which the status of your project will change), as well as the effects of any of those actions. Also discussed are options for editing an active survey and setting an expiration date.

Starting Response Collection

  1. Navigate to the Distributions module and select your preferred distribution channel.
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  2. Choose your specific method of distribution.
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  3. Follow the steps to use that method (e.g., composing an email or posting the Anonymous Link to your website).
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Once you’ve distributed your survey, participants will be able to start taking the survey and you will begin collecting responses.

Editing an Active Survey

Even though Qualtrics allows you to edit a survey once you’ve distributed it, we recommend not making edits once you have begun collecting responses as that could potentially invalidate your collected data. If you need to edit an active survey (i.e., one that is collecting responses), take a look at our Testing and Editing an Active Survey page to learn which changes can be made without invalidating data.

Once survey responses have been collected, your survey will be “locked” as a reminder that it is active and that editing could invalidate responses.

To unlock your survey

  1. Navigate to the Survey module and click the blue Unlock text.
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  2. Choose Unlock in the pop-up window.image10
  3. Click the blue Lock text once finished editing.
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Pausing Response Collection

Pausing response collection turns your survey “off” so that it no longer accepts new responses. No one will be able to start your survey while it is paused. The Anonymous Link will be disabled, and any other survey links you’ve distributed will also be disabled (so anyone who hasn’t started their survey yet will be unable to do so).

For responses in progress (i.e., participants who have started their surveys but not yet finished), you can choose to close their survey sessions or let those participants finish.

To pause collection from My Projects

  1. Navigate to My Projects and click the dropdown arrow to the right of your project.image08
  2. Select Pause Response Collection.image09
  3. Choose whether to close all active survey sessions option or to allow all active survey sessions to be finished.image01
  4. Click Pause Response Collection to confirm.image13

To pause collection from Distributions

  1. Navigate to the Distributions module and click Pause Response Collectionimage12
  2. Choose whether to close all active survey sessions or to allow all active survey sessions to be finished.image14
  3. Click Pause Response Collection to confirm.image05

Resuming Response Collection

When you’re ready to start gathering new data, you can resume response collection. This will re-enable the Anonymous Link and allow you to distribute new links through the Qualtrics mailer or any other distribution method.

Qtip: The Anonymous Link will always remain the same, regardless of how many times your survey is paused and resumed. Other link types will need to be re-created and distributed again.

To resume collection from My Projects

  1. Navigate to My Projects and click the dropdown arrow to the right of your project.image08
  2. Select Activate.
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To resume collection from Distributions

  1. Navigate to the Distributions module. image14
  2. Click Resume Response Collection.image05

Setting a Survey Expiration Date

In addition to manually closing the survey, you can set a Survey Expiration date. When the expiration date passes, the survey won’t officially “pause”. People currently taking the survey will be allowed to finish it, but new participants won’t be able to start the survey.

To set an expiration date

  1. Navigate to the Survey module and click Survey Options. image06
  2. Select Survey Expiration and enter a date and time.image06