Cognito Forms - Information and Resources
The ‘Cognito Forms’ web-based form building tool is CVTC’s general replacement for Google forms or other web-based data collection form tools. It is accessible to users outside of CVTC and is HIPPA, FERPA, GDPR compliant and is approved for PII (personal Identifiable Information) by CVTC. Data can be sent from the forms to SharePoint Online/One Drive.
CVTC currently has four officially recommended form tools for data collection. SharePoint/Power Apps forms, Adobe Sign, and Cognito Forms. Microsoft Forms (lite) is part of our Microsoft licensing and is designed to be used for quizzing and surveys. CVTC uses Qualtrix for more robust surveying. Power Apps will offer very robust business forms for CVTC internal use. To help choose the proper platform for new forms or to replace old electronic forms or paper forms, please see our CVTC Form Guidelines document for more information about which tool will work best for your needs.
Why is CVTC transitioning to Cognito forms?
The ‘Cognito Forms’ web-based form building tool is CVTC’s secure replacement for the Google Forms and other form tools at CVTC. Unfortunately, CVTC does not have the Google administrative licensing level to be able to manage Google forms and the data collected from them, in the event we are legally required to track down and remove all data for an individual. InfoPath, which is used on the Commons sites for our current SharePoint, will be discontinued in a couple years. Unlike InfoPath, this new tool offers public access to forms, in addition to internal and SharePoint uses.
Similar to Google forms, Cognito forms are web based, which means they can be linked to, or embedded within, websites, social media communications, or emails. Cognito forms are FERPA, HIPPA and GDPR compliant. The data is encrypted for extra security.
Form Creation Using Cognito Forms
Creation of Cognito Forms is very similar to the process of creation within other web-based form tools, such as Google forms, but has many special features that most web form building tools don’t have, all while being very affordable for the college. Data can be viewed within the secure confines of the Cognito web server, or it can be easily exported to Excel by someone who has access to view the data. Additionally, Microsoft's Power Automate can send the Cognito Forms form data to SharePoint Online lists. Notification emails and confirmation emails are very configurable and can be triggered from form settings and form data within Cognito Forms, or within SharePoint Online.
With minimal training, basic forms can be created and published quickly by staff. A full list of features can be viewed here: https://www.cognitoforms.com/features.
To learn more about Cognito Forms and how to create them, Cognito has a large library of resources for training and support. Cognito support help is online only, but very responsive, in IT’s experience so far. Some users at the college are also becoming proficient using Cognito Forms.
You MUST contact IT using a service desk ticket to be invited as a Cognito Forms designer, editor or data reviewer. It is also required to enable 2 Factor Authentication which you can do after your account has been created.
Contact IT For More Information
IT is in the process of helping departments to create new forms, as well as the ongoing project of replacing all existing Commons forms.
Charles Leffingwell in IT is currently managing and creating many Cognito forms. If you need information or help regarding Cognito forms or CVTC’s adoption of this software as an officially supported platform, please contact Charles, Tom Lange, or submit a service desk ticket.
Thank you! We hope to hear from you.
Related Articles and Links:
CVTC Software Guidelines
Cognito Forms Login
Cognito Forms 2 Factor Authentication
Cognito Forms - Features
Online Cognito Resources and Training
Charles Leffingwell - for Cognito Forms help.
Tom Lange - for CVTC technology standardization questions.