In KoBoToolbox Collect, I can't use the map for collecting coordinates of a single point

I created a survey with a Point type question. The idea is for the person filling the survey to open a map and enter a point on the map.

When I try on my computer it works fine. When I try on my phone, the form gets my CURRENT coordinates from my phone’s GPS, which is NOT what I need. When I use a Line type question, the map opens, but it does not let me record only one point.

  1. How do I get around it? This is crucial, because in essence I am asking people to provide me with a location where they had a medical problem abroad, so they have to find it on the map!

  2. As a corollary, can I use ODK-Collect to collect the data and send it to a KoBoToolbox server?

  3. Another corollary - is what I want to do (ask volunteers to install KoBoToolbox on their phone, d/l a form and respond to it) compatible with KoBoToolbox? From reading the manual it looks like the idea is for one fieldworker fill multiple copies of a form, not individuals who participate in a study.

Thanks for your help,


ad 02. Definitely yes. This evdn has advantages.

I am not sure I follow. Could you elaborate a little more? Thanks, Newbie Z.

@zvig, have you tried placement_map? That should solve your issue.


I did not try, and am not sure how to try this solution

  1. I built my form online on - when I add a question, this is not an option, and when I look at XLSForms documentation I can’t find a reference to placement_map either.

  2. Let’s say that I want to try adding this placement_map, where do I enter it in XLSForm?

This is my geopoint entry in the XLS form I exported. There are two languages and the variable name is singloc;

geopoint singloc באיזה מקום בהודו לקית בשלשול? סמן את המקום על המפה In what location in India did you suffer from diarrhea? Please mark the location on the map false

Hello @zvig,
You use the apperance column.
See the example of Kal_Lam

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Got it, I think the problem is solved - I have to check all the platforms, but it seems to work on KoBoToolbox-collect and on my phone’s browser.

Perhaps this should go into the documentation… This page List of Question Types — KoBoToolbox documentation has a table of page types, maybe as a footnote to the geopoint type that if you want to find locations other than your current position, use placement-map (placement_map did not work). There may also be other places where gps points are discussed.

Thanks again,


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Hello @zvig,
A more complete overview for question types, appearance etc. can be found here:

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