Qualtrics - Web Survey Tool

Qualtrics is an easy-to-use online survey tool which is available to support research, teaching, and administration. Qualtrics combines exceptional ease of use with an advanced set of features and is designed to permit the creation of survey instruments, distribution of surveys, data storage and analysis.

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Key Features

Some of the main features of Qualtrics are: question library with survey templates; custom survey design wizard; survey distribution options; results export to Excel, PDF, SPSS, Power Point; anonymous surveys. Qualtrics supports survey-based experiments and features a block and question randomizer tool for experimental trials.


California State University, Sacramento has a licensing agreement which allows faculty, staff, and students to use the Qualtrics web survey application for university-related business. Using Qualtrics for personal, commercial, or other non-academic use is prohibited. Use of Qualtrics is subject to acceptance of the Acceptable Use Statement.

Faculty, staff, and students who wish to distribute surveys for research purposes must have approval from the Institutional Review Board (IRB) for human research protection.

Appropriate use of Qualtrics

What data can I collect and store in Qualtrics?

Qualtrics is approved for collecting and storing Level 2 and 3 data. This includes most any file you create as a student or employee of the university. It is suitable for storing FERPA data.

Information on data Levels

What data cannot be collected or stored in Qualtrics?

Do not store any credit card or debit card data, or data that relates to credit card transactions, in Qualtrics. (This type of data is often referred to as PCI data.) HIPAA data must not be stored in Qualtrics without authorization from the Information Security Office and area Vice President.

Qualtrics Accessibility and Usability Tips

  • Use clear and appropriate fonts
    Fonts that are easy to read like Arial or Tahoma are best.  Use a font size of 12-14 points (not too large or too small).
  • Avoid italicizing and underlining to emphasize text
    Italicizing slows the reader down because the letters are tilted, and underlining usually signals a hyperlink to be clicked on.
  • Change the default navigation buttons
    The default buttons « and » should be changed to something like 'Back' and 'Next' otherwise they will be read as "left double angle bracket" and "right double angle bracket" by a screen reader.  This change can be made within your survey by clicking the 'Look & Feel' link.
  • Do not use inaccessible question types
    Question types like Slider, Rank Order, and Graphic Slider require the use of a mouse and may be inaccessible to some respondents.  For more information, visit Qualtrics Accessible and Non-Accessible Question Types.
  • Confirm that all images have descriptive alternate text
    Alternative text should convey the images' critical information to screen reader users who are unable to see the images.
  • Check your survey accessibility
    Visit Qualtrics' Survey Accessibility page for further accessibility information.


Our subscription includes Qualtrics support for Sac State users and access to the Qualtrics online survey tools. Email Qualtrics at support@qualtrics.com or call 1-800-340-9194 for user support. 

Online Tutorials are also available at Qualtrics University. Direct email support questions can be sent to Qualtrics Technical Support.