Online Forms are a great way to collect information electronically so that you can later search and report on it, or use it to drive checklist items, contract fees, or customized text. Online Forms can be parent/student-facing so that families can fill them out in the Parent Portal, or they can be internal-only so that your team can input information such as interview notes onto a student's contact record.

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Online Forms: General Information

Online Forms in SchoolAdmin are primarily made up of fields - essentially the data or information that you're collecting from your families on forms (e.g. 'Current School' or 'Gender') or internally on a student record (e.g. 'President's Scholarship Amount) about contacts in the system. Read on below for some key information to know about fields on online forms.

Field Mapping

  • Fields can be mapped to different entities in the system, such as CHILD or PARENT1-4. This mapping determines which contact the data entered into that field will write to in the system. Most fields will be mapped to CHILD, which refers to the student.

    • Example 1: I want to collect the Date of Birth for the Student who is applying, so I should map the birth_date field to the CHILD entity on my form.

    • Example 2: I want to collect the Alumni Status for the Primary Parent, so I should map the is_alumni field to the PARENT1 entity on my form.

  • ALL fields on an online form should be mapped to an entity. If a field is left unmapped, the data entered into that field will not write through to the contact, and you will not be able to search on, display, or use that data in the system.

    • The only exceptions to this rule are Signature Fields and Additional Signature Fields, which should always be UNMAPPED so that they do not pre-populate on subsequent forms.

  • Home addresses should always be mapped to HOUSEHOLD1 or HOUSEHOLD2 so that households are created in the system. Additional address fields - such as school address or grandparents address - can be mapped to the student.


Field Displays

  • The fields in your SchoolAdmin site will be named with a friendly Display Name (e.g. 'Current School'), as well as a Canonical Name made up of all lowercase letters and underscores (e.g. 'edu_current_school_ss').

  • When someone is filling out an Online Form, they will not see the field display name or canonical name. Instead, they will see the Prompt that was entered for that field when setting up the form. Prompts are the questions that you ask on your forms and the wording of these questions are customized by you - see Editing Online Forms for more.

  • Example:

Example of a Field being set up on an Online Form.

In this example, we are using the field with the canonical name edu_campus_ss. However, the person filling out the form will only see what we've entered in the Prompt box - in this case, "Which campus are you applying to?"

Parent-facing view of a field on an Online Form.


Comment Fields

  • In addition to data fields, your online forms can also contain Comment Fields, where you can input any text or content you want to display on the form (e.g. terms and conditions, links to other pages or documents, images).

  • HTML/CSS, Liquid, and Merge Fields/Tokens are supported in Comment Fields, so you can use them for customization or pulling in dynamic information from student (or related contact) records.

  • Comment Fields can also be useful for longer field prompts, based on your display preference. Place the prompt in a CommentField above the question, then use a short generic prompt (e.g. 'Response') for the field itself. See example below.

Full prompt entered in Prompt box:

Image of Online Form field with a long prompt.

Full prompt entered in Comment Field:

Image of Online Form field with long prompt entered in Comment Field.

Related Articles

Creating & Editing Online Forms:

Online Form Settings:

Parent Experience with Online Forms:

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