Setting up the Poll widget - BETA

In line with OpenLearning’s learner-centric philosophy, the new poll widget can be leveraged by course creators to crowdsource opinions, preferences and proposals. The end goal is to promote knowledge sharing, self-expression, and potential content curation as desired by the course audience.

  • At the end of a semester-based course, learners have the freedom of proposing topics that they want to study in the next semester. Each participant can suggest a number of topics, but since the course can’t cover everything, priority would be given to the top 5 in the order of votes.
  • In a course on Feminism or Women’s rights, participants in a session need to figure out what unites them as women and use the ideas gathered as the basis for a later essay.
  • In a course on Graphic design, participants in a session need to come up with a logo for a company. Several ideas are being discussed, but they proceed to use the one that gathers the most votes from the group.
  • In a course on workplace harassment (or other such sensitive topics), participants in a session have to discuss some of the more relevant types of abuse. Participants might be prompted to share any personal experiences and they may prefer to do so anonymously with the Poll widget.
  • Inspired by High Resolves: Learners use a group chat to discuss life choices they would make as a family (housing, food, etc.), based on given specific constraints (e.g. number of points available, which could translate into some sort of currency). They then deploy a poll for the family members to express their preferences for specific resources.
  1. Course creator/administrator(s) sets up a poll with the topic of discussion. 
  2. They can provide options to poll on and let learners provide inputs and/or their own options.
  3. Alternatively, they can leave it up to the learners to come up with ideas (as options) which other learners can vote upon.
  4. Multiple configuration options are available to the poll author to customise aspects such as:
    • Anonymising poll results;
    • The ability for voters to vote on multiple options;
    • The ability of voters to enter their own options.

On your preferred course page, click on the Edit button to go into Edit mode.


Go to the Widget toolbar and click on the drop-down arrow.


Select 'Beta' from the Widget category drop-down.


Drag the Poll widget icon onto your page as with any other widget.

Upon adding a poll widget to the page, the course creator will see the below empty state:

Go to the Poll Setup tab

Click on the '+Add new poll' button.

The course creator will have the option of setting up basic or advance poll types as outlined below:

  1. Poll question (mandatory): What is the topic of the poll?
  2. Description (optional): A brief description/explanation of the subject matter. Alternatively, in the case of more advanced configurations, this field can be used to inform poll-takers on the number of options they can vote on, the number of options they can add to the poll, and so on.

  3. Poll options (minimum of 2): for the learners to vote on. This is optional if the poll author provides learners with the ability to add their own options. The author may reorder the options as desired.

The course creator/administrator(s) also have the ability to enable and configure if they want to allow learners/participants to:

  • Add new options to the poll → If enabled, the course creator/administrator can also configure:
    • Limit the number of options each learner/participant can add;
    • Limit the Total number of options all learners may cumulatively add.
  • Select multiple options → If enabled, the course creator/administrators can limit the number of options an individual learner/participant can vote on.
  • View poll results before voting → Allow participants view the results of the poll without or before casting a vote.
  • Change their vote → Allow participants to change their vote after they have cast it.
  • Vote anonymously → Allow participants to cast their vote without revealing their identity.



The course creator is able to provide this poll configuration with a name with which to save for later re-purposing.

The Poll name field will be pre-filled with the poll question text; however, the user is free to edit/change it. This information is required in order to Save and Insert a poll and will show up in the "Manage existing polls" table (accessed via the Poll Setup tab, as described below).

The course creator has the ability to reuse/re-purpose polls they have created before. This is enabled via the “Manage existing polls” section in the Poll Setup section.

The table lists all the polls that the course creator/administrator(s) has previously configured and deployed.* 

*Note: The option to Reuse Polls is still a Work In Progress, eventually the existing polls table listing will evolve to show all configurations that were made in the current course, and not just the configurations made by the current user. 

→ Changes made to the poll configuration will be applicable to all deployments (The pages where the same Poll widget has been Inserted, will have the same exact configuration).

All user-generated content associated with an existing poll will be carried on - e.g. user-added options, voting results, and voter information.

Go to your preferred course page.

Follow the step(s) outlined in 'How do I add a Poll widget to a course page?'

Click on the Poll Setup tab, and find the existing Poll you wish to add from the “Manage existing polls” table.

Click the Insert button under Actions beside your selected Poll name.

This will allow the Course Creator/Administrators to make changes to the configuration to all previously deployed polls that use this configuration.

Go to any Poll widget on any course page.

Click on the Poll Setup tab

Under the "Manage existing polls" table, Click on a Poll name or
Click on the 3 dot icon and then click on Edit under Actions.

Make your desired changes to the poll configuration

Click on Save and Replace


This will create a new copy of the poll configuration and changes made to this configuration will not affect the original deployment.

Go to any Poll widget on any course page.

Click on the Poll Setup tab

Under the "Manage existing polls" table, Click on a Poll name or
Click on the 3 dot icon and then click on Edit under Actions.

Make your desired changes to the poll configuration,

Select "Create new poll" in the bottom section of the poll settings. Make sure to also give this new poll a new name, so that you can differentiate it from the other existing polls.

Click on  Save and Insert

  • Poll question;
  • Any poll options that are configured by the poll author;
  • Vote on at least one option.
    Note: A radio button appears beside each option if the learner can only vote on one.

  • If a learner/participant encounters a poll without any preset options; that means the course creator/administrator encourages them to add their own option(s).

→ determined by radio vs a checkbox.

Radio button:


→ Enabled by a “View Results” button.

→ Up to a set maximum limit preset by the poll author.

→ Learners can choose to later delete provided no other learner has voted for that option.

→ Enabled by an “Add option” button. This button is not available to the learner if the individual or cumulative option limit is reached.

→ Enabled by a “Check this box to vote anonymously” checkbox.

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