Getting Started With ODK

This document walks you through the recommended workflow to get started with ODK.

You will:

Install Collect

The easiest way to install the Collect app is to get it from the Google Play store.

Install Central

The easiest way to set up your own Central server is to install it on DigitalOcean, a cloud provider.

If you want to try Central out, you can request access to the sandbox.


The Central sandbox server is for evaluation purposes only. All forms and data on this server are public and may be deleted without notice.

Create a form with XLSForm and upload it to Central

  1. Create a document in your favorite spreadsheet tool (Excel, Google Sheets, etc)
  2. Design your form using XLSForm or try a sample XLSForm.
  3. Upload the form to Central.

Load a form into Collect from Central

  1. Find or create an App User in Central
  2. Open Collect on your Android device
  3. Tap Configure via QR code from the menu at the top right (⋮ ‣ Configure via QR code)
  4. Scan the QR code from Central
  5. Go back to the app home screen and select Get Blank Form, then select your form.

Fill out a form and upload it to Central

  1. Select Fill Blank Form to complete a survey.
  2. Select Send Finalized Form to upload your completed survey to Central.

Now log back into Central and see your completed survey results.