OSU Drupal 6


The Poll module, a core optional Drupal feature, is a great way to encourage people to be a bit more involved with your site.  It also provides a way to get a very basic level of feedback from your audience.

A poll will allow a content contributor to pose a single question and then provide a list of at least two different possible responses.  More than two responses can be added, if desired.

Polls can be set to turn themselves off automatically, based on a pre-set poll closure date, they can be manually closed, or they can be left to run indefinitely, if desired.

By default, any audience member can vote in a poll, whether they have an ONID or not.  After a visitor has added his or her vote to the poll, the most current poll result will display in an easy to read bar graph. Votes can be cancelled and a new choice can be made by a voter, but only one vote at a time can be recorded per user.

Site administrators are capable of viewing the list of poll participants.  Only one vote at a time can be logged in from any one source. The user names of authenticated users who are registered with the site and will appear.  For anonymous users, the IP address of the voter will appear. 

poll administration screen with list of participants

The Poll module also provides a handy block called Most Recent Poll, which displays the most recent poll published on the site and a link to older polls users may also be interested in.

Most Recent Poll Block
most recent poll block with "do you plan on using Drupal in the future" question and "Yes", "No", and "Not Sure Yet" as choices

Most Recent Poll Block Results
most recent poll block with results displaying and link to older polls

Read on to learn more details about the Poll module.

Poll Content Type

OSU Drupal 6


The Poll content type possesses all the same default features as all other content types, with the exception of the Body field. It's appearance is quite a bit different.  You'll discover that it's very easy to use, though.

As with all content types, to open a Poll submisison form, go to Admin menu > Content management > Create content > Poll.

poll content type with multi-field widget

After the submission form opens, you'll note that the field that is usually labeled Title is now labeled Question. This field is required.

What is most noticeable is the Choices multi-field widget at the top of the screen.  This is where you enter the answer options that you will allow your audience.

At a minimum, two answers, such as Yes and No, must be entered.  If you want to supply more answers, though, just click the Add another choice button and an additional field will be supplied.

multi-field widget with yes, no, and not sure yet answers entered, along with add another choice button

Your poll can be opened and closed directly from the submission form using the Poll status field.

poll status with closed and active options and help text "when a poll is closed, visitors can no longer vote for it."

Or you can set a Poll duration so your poll will automatically close after a preset period.  If you choose Unlimited, this means that the poll will just continue to run until you turn it off via the Poll status field.

poll duration set to 1 week with help text "after this period, the poll will be closed automatically"

After you click the Save button, your completed poll will appear.  From here, you can vote by clicking the Vote button.

completed poll with answer set radio buttons and vote button

The most current poll standings will be displayed once you cast your vote.  From here, if you wish to cancel your vote, just click the Cancel your vote button.  You can supply another answer if you wish, but you can only have one vote recorded in the system at any given time.

poll standings displays bar graph and results of given answers

Now that you know how to create Poll content, let's take a look at how polls are administered.

Poll Administration

OSU Drupal 6


By default, the Administrator role is the only role in OSU Drupal 6 that is allowed to administer poll results.

When a poll is published, site administrators will see an addtional Votes tab on the node.

votes tab highlighted

Upon clicking the Votes tab, you will be redirected into the Votes list. Users who are registered with the site will display using their username.  Anonymous users will be listed via their IP address.

votes admin screen with list of users - anonymous users are listed by ip address

By default, CWS has set the poll permissions so that all users, including anonymous ones, can participate in a poll.  If a site administrator wishes to change this, it can be done via the Permissions panel at Admin menu > User management > Permissions, in the Poll group.

poll module permissions group includes all permissions for poll and checkboxes for all roles defined on site

Most Recent Poll Block

OSU Drupal 6


The Poll module includes it's own Most recent poll block.  This block does not have any enhanced configurations but does have some unique display features that are built in.  If you need detailed information on basic block configuration, please review the Blocks section of this book.

Most Recent Poll Block
most recent poll block with "do you plan on using Drupal in the future" question and "Yes", "No", and "Not Sure Yet" as choices

Cast Vote in Block
vote cast in most recent poll block

Get Results in Block
standings shown in most recent poll block

The Most Recent Poll block is a handy tool that allows your audience to participate in the most recently issued poll on your site right through a block.

Once the user casts a vote, the results are displayed within the block.

Only the most recently published poll will show in this block, but when the results display, there's also an Older polls link provided at the bottom of the block that your users can follow which will lead them to all of the available polls on your site.