If you use SurveyMonkey to collect survey responses (with a SurveyMonkey annual plan), you can import the completed responses directly into your NVivo project. The imported data becomes a dataset file that you can sort, filter or auto code.

You can exclude particular questions from being imported—for example, if they are not relevant to your analysis or if they contain confidential information.

You can also change the question names (column headings). For example, if your survey question is 'How would you describe your involvement in your community?', you could rename it 'Community involvement'.

Import survey responses from SurveyMonkey

  1. On the Import tab, in the Survey group, click SurveyMonkey.
  2. Enter your SurveyMonkey Username and Password in the SurveyMonkey Authenticator dialog box, and then click Authorize.

    NOTE   You need to be connected to the internet, and you need IE version 11 or above.

  3. Follow the instructions in the Import from SurveyMonkey Wizard.
    Wizard stepDescription


    Understand the outcomes of the survey import.

    NVivo will import your survey as a dataset, and create cases, nodes and attributes in your project.

    Select a survey

    Review the list of surveys and select the survey that you want to import responses from.

    Select collectors

    1. Your survey may have been set up in SurveyMonkey with multiple collectors for collecting responses. Select the collectors that you want to import responses from. You need to select at least one collector.
    2. You can optionally select the Import a random sample of check box—for example, if your survey has a large number of responses. You can also change the number of sample responses that will be imported.

    Manage your survey respondents


    1. Specify a location to store the cases resulting from the survey import.
    2. Select a question from your survey to uniquely identify your survey respondents, for example a name or ID.
    3. Specify a classification for the cases that will be created for your survey respondents.

    Identify open-ended and closed-ended questions

    A preview of the first response in your survey is presented in a grid.

    On this screen you choose which questions elicited open-ended responses that you want to code (codable fields) and which questions formed closed-ended responses that describe your respondents (classifying fields). The wizard attempts to automatically determine closed and open-ended question types.

    1. Press the arrow buttons to preview responses from the first 25 respondents in the survey.
    2. Select the Closed Ended, Open Ended or Don't Import option to specify the questions you want to import and identify their question type.

    An open-ended question is generally a free response that you want to analyze for themes or ideas that arise. Close-ended questions are useful to describe respondents and ask questions of your open-ended questions.

    NOTE  You can change the question name—for example, to make it shorter or more meaningful. Click on the question and edit it. Press ENTER or TAB to save your changes.

    Auto code themes and sentiment

    (NVivo 12 Plus only)

    NVivo Plus users can choose to automatically detect and code themes and sentiment in their open-ended survey responses.

  4. Click Close when the Wizard is finished. A dataset file is created.

    If you coded for themes and sentiment, NVivo presents the results visually in a results matrix and hierarchy chart.


  • If you receive a message indicating that the login webpage cannot be displayed, check your Internet connection. If the problem persists, check whether you are accessing the Internet via a proxy server. If you connect to the Internet using a proxy server that requires authentication, you may not be able to log in to SurveyMonkey via NVivo.
  • You only need to authorize SurveyMonkey once during the current NVivo session. If you close NVivo, you will need to enter the username and password again next time you import from SurveyMonkey.
  • Some SurveyMonkey plans allow you to set up questions with a random assignment feature. If you import responses to these questions, the variations on the question are not imported, so the responses may be difficult to interpret.
  • SurveyMonkey may restrict the number of responses you can import based on your plan type.
  • It can take some time to import and process surveys. This depends on the number of questions, the number of responses, and the amount of text in the responses. The larger your survey, the longer it will take to import.

Importing multiple times from the same survey

Merge into an existing dataset

  1. Select the survey you want to re-import and tick the Merge into previously imported dataset check box at the bottom of step 2 of the Wizard.
  2. Select which dataset to import the new responses into.

When you merge responses into an existing survey, the Wizard settings that you chose when you first imported the survey cannot be changed. If you chose not to import questions when you originally imported the survey, when you merge, those questions cannot be imported.

Responses that have changed in SurveyMonkey after you originally imported them are not updated in the dataset that you merge into.

Create a new dataset

  • Select the survey you want to re-import. Follow the instructions in the Wizard.

If a dataset with the same name already exists, the new dataset is renamed—for example, Customer Feedback Survey would be named Customer Feedback Survey (2).

Understand how responses are imported as datasets

Your survey results are imported into NVivo as a dataset. The Wizard will create cases, nodes and attributes in your project.

Your survey respondents will be stored as cases. Cases are named based on their unique identifier. The responses for each respondent are coded entirely to their case node.

Close-ended questions (like multiple choice or Likert scale questions) are created as case attributes. These describe a case and are useful to ask questions of your data in queries and charts.

Open-ended questions (like free text questions) are created and coded to nodes. All responses to a question are grouped together in a single node, so that you can explore themes and patterns.

For ideas on analyzing survey results in NVivo, refer to Approaches to analyzing survey results.

Why can't I see the date my survey was created or modified?

SurveyMonkey made changes in October 2016 which affect the ability for NVivo to display accurate information about the dates your surveys were created or modified. The list of surveys displayed in the Wizard no longer shows the correct date information—for example, the Created field displays '01-01-01'.