Poll Everywhere

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Poll Everywhere is a web-based polling tool that accepts responses via text message, web browser, or mobile app–no clickers required! This tool is available to all instructors at the University of Pennsylvania under a University-wide license.

Learn more about polls, surveys, and other activity types.

How Does It Work?

Instructors, TAs, or staff create a poll in their Poll Everywhere account (navigate to Access Poll Everywhere to request an account). Once an activity is published, students can respond to activities through text messages or a response link. Activity results appear in customizable formats (graph, bar chart, word cloud, etc.). Reports can be run to manage and review participation, responses, and grading.

How Can I Use it?

Poll Everywhere can be used in a variety of ways to increase student engagement, assess student learning, and facilitate course management:

  • In-person, online, and hybrid learning.
  • Synchronous and asynchronous activities.
  • Assessment (diagnostic, formative, summative, low-stakes).
  • Course management (attendance, grading, reporting).

Access Poll Everywhere

Poll Everywhere accounts are available to all Penn faculty and staff. Students should refer to the Poll Everywhere for Students guide.

To access Poll Everywhere, go to the Poll Everywhere login and enter a Penn email address. You’ll have the option to Login via University of Pennsylvania, which will allow you to log in via PennKey. 

If you are a new user, it will create a presenter account for you. If you don’t have Presenter privileges, contact canvas@pobox.upenn.edu

For existing users, you should be connected to your existing account. If it looks like a new account has been created, this can be addressed by contacting  canvas@pobox.upenn.edu

If you previously created an account using the free version of Poll Everywhere, please provide your Local Service Provider with the email address used to create your free account. The same email address is needed to create a University-licensed account so that the polls created through your free account will be added to your licensed account.

The University license to Poll Everywhere offers these additional features:

  • Unlimited poll responses.
  • Live moderation of incoming responses.
  • Create and export reports.
  • Restrict responses to registered participants (see Sync Activities in Canvas for more details).

Considerations for Successful Use of Poll Everywhere

While Poll Everywhere has many great features, there are a few considerations that instructors should be aware of prior to using the tool:

  • Activities are created in an unpublished state. You will need to manually activate (i.e., publish) an activity in order to collect responses.
  • Using Poll Everywhere in slideshow presentations:
    • If you are using Poll Everywhere in PowerPoint and sharing your content via Zoom, you will need to share your entire desktop and not just the PowerPoint application. Activities will not display to Zoom participants if only the PowerPoint application is shared.
    • If you have your PowerPoint slides on a USB drive, start PowerPoint on the classroom computer, then open your .ppt file. This is also a good practice to follow when working with classroom Macs and PowerPoint or Keynote.
    • If you are using Poll Everywhere in Powerpoint for MacOS, presenter mode will not work unless you use force monitor selection. For assistance, please contact Classroom Technology Services.


Create an Activity

A Poll Everywhere activity is a single question or prompt you pose to your audience. Activities include multiple-choice questions, open-ended questions, ranking questions, surveys, polls, word clouds, and more.

Learn how to create an activity in Poll Everywhere.

Share Activities with Participants

You can present an activity directly from the Poll Everywhere website or share an activity URL with participants.

You can also use Poll Everywhere in a presentation or in an online meeting. Poll Everywhere will work with Powerpoint, Google Slides, Keynote, Microsoft Teams, Slack, and Zoom. The slide that you use in your presentation or online meeting will have a URL that viewers can go to in order to complete the activity via their phones, tablets, or laptops. 

If you are using Poll Everywhere in PowerPoint and sharing your content via Zoom, you will need to share your entire desktop and not just the PowerPoint application. Polls will not display to Zoom participants if only the PowerPoint application is shared.

If you are presenting a PowerPoint in a classroom that has a Poll Everywhere slide and you have your presentation on a USB drive, be sure to open Powerpoint on the classroom’s computer first and then open your Powerpoint Presentation from the USB drive.

Share Activities with Other Presenters or Instructors

To share activities or results with other presenters, you can use Poll Everywhere Teams. For assistance creating Teams, contact canvas@pobox.upenn.edu or Poll Everywhere Support.

Share Activities in Canvas

There are a variety of options available to share activities in Canvas: 

Using Poll Everywhere for Participation, Grading, or Attendance

If Poll Everywhere is being used in a course for participation, grading, or attendance, students should:

  1. Log into Poll Everywhere.
  2. Enter their email in the format PennKey@upenn.edu (removing any school affiliation).
  3. Click “Next”.
  4. Select “Login via University of Pennsylvania” and log in using their PennKey.

This will log them in if they have an existing account or will create an account if they don’t have one. They will then need to log in with the same email address every time you use a poll with them. This is how their responses are tracked to their names.

It is possible for you to create accounts for them ahead of time using a CSV file.

For more information, see Poll Everywhere for Students.

Restrict Polling Activities to Registered Participants

When creating activities, you can restrict participation to registered participants so that students are required to sign in and you can see who responded and how they responded.

Sync Activities with Canvas

Due to ongoing issues we have disabled the Poll Everywhere Canvas integration. If you need to sync Poll Everywhere results to Canvas, please contact canvas@pobox.upenn.edu for further assistance. 

Additional Resources

Getting Help

Please contact your Local Support Provider (LSP) or submit a request to canvas@pobox.upenn.edu for assistance with Poll Everywhere.

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2023