November 14, 2019

Tripetto: Conversational Forms and Surveys “Of Which Students Are the Heroes”

This text was initially published by Profweb under a CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 International licence, before Eductive was launched.

In 2019, Profweb reported on several projects involving learning activities “of which students are the heroes,” for example, in nursing and in physics [in French]. Did you know this principle can also be implemented on a smaller scale, by creating conversational surveys that adapt based on your students’ answers? This makes them a great tool for personalized revision activities and for formative assessment.

What Is a Conversational Survey and How do I Create One?

You set up a conversational survey much like a traditional survey (e.g. a Google Form). After determining the questions you want to ask, you add them, as well as the answer options, to create a quiz for your students. While a standard survey shows a long list of questions (presented on one page or several pages), a conversational survey replicates the kind of interface students are using every day with tools like Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp. Questions are displayed one by one, and based on artificial intelligence (AI) analysis, the interface can react differently depending on the response given.

Building a conversational survey experience is somewhat different from the traditional form experience. Rather than text boxes titled “your name” or simple questions like “What are your observations?” you need to design a script that makes the survey flow like a conversation.

For example, your “form” should introduce itself, and interact with the student as a human would. This could look as follows:

Form: Hello! Today, I’m going to help you review important concepts covered throughout the semester. Are you ready to get started?

Student: Yes, absolutely! No, not quite yet.

Form: Perfect! But first, what should I call you? Just your first name is fine.

Building a conversational survey also requires you to plan and anticipate the possible student answers, and decide how each different answer will influence the next question presented. For instance, if students give an incorrect answer to a multiple-choice question, they can be redirected to a reinforcement question, while students who give a correct answer would move on directly to the next question. You can also create structures (called branches) that take the student in completely different directions based on their answer to a question. This is useful, for instance, if you want to create a problem-solving scenario.

Design and plan a conversational survey script in the Tripetto editor

Using Tripetto to Create Conversational Surveys

Tripetto is a free, open-source conversational survey creator and editor. It works as a standalone online platform, but you can also download a free WordPress plugin. This allows you to create surveys and integrate them within your own website without leaving the WordPress environment.

Tripetto offers many different question / answer types:

  • Checkboxes or Radio Buttons (several possible answers)
  • Dropdown menu
  • Email Address
  • File Upload
  • Matrix
  • Multiple-Choice (one possible answer)
  • Number
  • Password (hidden on screen)
  • Rating
  • Text – Single Line, Multiple Lines or Paragraph
  • URL
  • Yes/No

Each of these question types enables you to create different follow-up questions for each of the answer options. The visual nature of the editor makes it easy to add and reorganize questions in your survey, similar to a concept map.

The visual editor makes it easy to add and rearrange content.

The preview pane on the right of the screen allows you to immediately see the impact of those changes on your actual form.

The preview pane on the right shows the impact of changes to your survey as you make them.

Tips to Get You Started

In spite of Tripetto’s intuitive, visual nature, you might need to explore it for a few moments if you are not familiar with conversational surveys. The Tripetto website offers some excellent video tutorials, conveniently arranged by skill level, from “The Basics” to “Advanced Logic.”

If you wish to collect an answer and use it elsewhere in the form, use the Alias function. This allows you to assign a label to the answer received (e.g., “firstname”). In subsequent questions, you can then use the @ symbol to call up this label (e.g., @firstname). In the student’s form, this label will be automatically replaced with the answer they provided (i.e. their actual name). This can be useful to:

  • Personalize the survey with the student’s name, addressing them as you would when asking a question in person.
  • Remind students of a previous answer when asking a follow-up question; e.g., “you answered [yes/no], but unfortunately, that is the incorrect answer. Can you explain why you chose that answer?

Use the Alias function to create a label that allows you to insert an answer to a question into another question.

To change the layout and style of your form, first open the preview pane if it is not already displayed. To do so, click any of the 3 screen type icons (PC, tablet or phone) at the top right of the screen. Then, click the spray can icon that appears to the right of the “Preview” heading. This allows you to:

  • Change the font, text colour and background colour. You can simply type the name of a colour, but for a more nuanced result, type the hex code of a specific colour tone. The Google colour picker tool allows you to quickly find a hex code.
  • Display or hide certain elements, such as the question number and navigation bar.
  • Add a background image.
  • Change optional elements, such as the colour and behaviour of the form buttons and navigation bar.

Sharing a Survey and Collecting Responses

With the standalone version, you can host your survey free of charge on the Tripetto servers and send a link to your students. You can also choose to host the survey on your own website or learning management system using an embed code. The WordPress plugin automatically adds the survey to your blog or web page. In the top menu, click the Share button to set up your preference.

The Automate button allows you to receive notifications via email or Slack whenever a student completes the survey. By clicking the Results button, you can access the received answers and download a compilation.

Distribute and manage your survey using the Share, Automate and Results buttons at the top right of the editor screen.


With Tripetto, you can of course make linear surveys, but the true force of the platform lies in its possibility to create branched structures, so students are presented with different questions depending on the answer they give. In this way, you can create surveys “of which students are the heroes,” for instance to develop their problem-solving or decision-making skills. It is also useful for revision activities because students who get a wrong answer can be redirected to 1 or more reinforcement questions before continuing the rest of the survey. Your pedagogical goals and imagination are the only limits!

About the author

Andy Van Drom

Andy Van Drom has been teaching English as a second language and linguistics since 2005, first at Université Laval and then, since 2012, at Cégep Limoilou. After completing doctoral studies in Linguistics (Université Laval), he obtained a second master’s degree, in Higher Education Pedagogy (Performa, Université de Sherbrooke). With the aim of supporting inclusive teaching practices and fostering student success, his focus is on the role of language mindset in learner motivation. Andy has published 4 ESL textbooks with Pearson ERPI as well as several open educational resources in digital format. His keen interest in pedagogy led him to work with Profweb (now Eductive) in 2017 and with the AQPC in 2021, 2 mandates that are still ongoing. His desire to innovate in pedagogy has earned him an AQPC Honourable Mention, a Forces Avenir Award and the EF Excellence Award in Language Teaching.

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