An Easy Way to Collect Feedback Quickly


It is useful for us to obtain feedback on our programs from our participants as the programs conclude.   It may be tempting to ask everyone to complete an extensive questionnaire, but this is most certainly not reasonable for an hour program and may not be practical for a day long program either.  Likewise, it may be useful to interview some of our participants, but it is not always practical to interview a substantial number of participants.  Thus, I have decided to ask my participants to summarize my programs in one word before they leave the session.  I find that a substantial number of people comply with my request and that the feedback is useful.  Perhaps, you will find this technique to be helpful, too.


The procedure I follow is relatively straightforward.  I distribute business card stock with the statement Please summarize this Education by Entertainment program in one word.  Thank you!!! Dr. Ron Shapiro printed on it at the beginning of the program (along with pens).  I ask participants to fill out the card and drop it in a fishbowl shaped plastic container as they exit.

A card to collect feedback for Education by Entertainment Programs

A card to collect feedback for Education by Entertainment Programs

Once the participants leave I alphabetize the cards (not essential, but it makes it easier for me to input the data).  Then I type the words into a .docx file (one word per line).  If someone provided two related words (e.g., very good) I connect them with a tilde.
I then paste the file into the Wordle (TM) tool.  Note that the Wordle tool needs to be opened in a browser that permits Java to run.  I run the Wordle tool following the instructions.  When I find a pattern that I like I save it as a PNG file, I add some graphics to the page (frequently my Education by Entertainment program symbol and some photos from the session).  I post the word clouds from many of my programs on the Word Clouds page of my website.

Featured Image

I made the featured image on this page by inputting the one word summaries from my 2017 programs into the Wordle Tool and then adding my Education by Entertainment symbol, my photo and the photos of two of my 2017 co-presenters (Maria Gaskell (left) and Amanda de Oliveira (right)) to the png file produced by the Wordle tool.  I am also using this image as the header on my FaceBook business page at this time.  As you can see the words most frequently used to describe my programs in 2017 were: Fun, Interesting, Awesome, Amazing, Entertaining, Cool, Informative and Engaging.  I might add that the descriptions for the first and second halves of the year analyzed separately were very similar.

Image From a Single Program

The word cloud from the program described in my Celebrate a Birthday at Your Events article is shown below.  Participants at that program primarily described the program as being Fun, Interesting, Entertaining and Eye Opening.

Word Cloud from 2016 NELMS conference

Word Cloud from 2016 NELMS conference


Dr. Ronald


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