Form and subform

I have a form with two sections that we will use to document attendees at a meeting. The “upper” section" is for administrative data, such as date, topic, name of teacher, name of supervisor, location, etc. This data remains constant throughout the day.

The “lower section” records attendee information - name, age, gender, ID#, phone #, etc.

We have about 120 locations and 30+ teachers (which will be listed in single select lists) and about 20 attendees per session, so it would be very cumbersome, and error-prone, to create this as a single form, repeating the data for the top portion with each record.

I looked for ‘subforms’ and ‘bring forward most recent data’ as two different solutions without success. This must be a fairly common need, and I would appreciate any suggestions.

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Hi @jblackman,

Welcome to the community! KoBoToolbox at the moment does not have the feature you wish as expressed in the post. However you could tryout the following approaches which could solve your concern:

  • Approach 1: Divide two sections with group question where the first group would be your administrative information. At the end of this section ask a question that should capture the total number of respondents (say teachers) you should be filling out for the next group. Then use the repeat group with the support of repeat_count for the second group controlling by the last question that you asked. This should let you repeat the lower sections of your questions e.g. name, age, gender etc. till the desired number you wish. But please note that if the information you are collecting does not come form a single location e.g. school where you should be travelling to another school from the same location, you could mark as SAVE and then continue your data collection from the next school by clicking at Edit Saved Form.

  • Approach 2: In this approach, you could design 2 survey forms (one with the administrative information and the other with the participants details) with Identifier number at the top of both the forms. You could then deploy both the survey forms and start collecting data. When you start collecting data you should mark as identifier #1 for the administrative information form and save it. Then mark as identifier #1 for the participants details and start collecting data from that particular location. Later when the survey is completed, you could merge both the information based on the identifier #. You should be extremely cautious while using this approach as proving wrong identification number would result in mismatching of the data while merging the information later.


Thanks. Will try both approaches and will give feedback. Greatly appreciate the prompt reply.


Hello you two!

I’m joining the discussion as i’m exactly doing this.
I did approach one (i liked the tips for save and edit saved form :wink: )
Howver my issue is the following: time charging!
it takes me 1 min to load just 10 lines of repeated question about attendee information… so imagine when we have 50 or more… tecnicians go having a coffee while charging…

Is there any tips for faster large repeat group loading?




I am just learning this application. However, in the group settings, I selected “Repeat this group if necessary” instead of using repeat_count. I have 8 questions and they loaded almost immediately both connected and disconnected to WiFi using a Samsung tablet and KoBoCollect. This also fits our needs better, as we have no way of knowing in advance how many attendees each session will have. Hope this helps.


Heyheyhey!!! I LOVE IT!!! I assume that treating the data after works exactly the same than in a repeat group without repeat_count.

Thanks a lot :smiley:

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