There are different use cases for calculation forms ranging from product orders, event registration, donations, online reservations, etc. Within an organization, HR department for example, you can use form calculations to compute expense reimbursement requests, and score reviews, quizzes and surveys.

Getting your online form to calculate values automatically can be complex if you have to do it from scratch, but with the Formplus builder, you can create calculation forms for your website, school quiz, etc.

For this tutorial, most of the things we’ll be doing will be taking place in the form builder section. If you are using payments in your form, you must have set up the payment gateway using the public and private keys.

Add the appropriate fields to your form

To create a calculation form, you must have one of the following field types in your form:

  1. Input fields e.g Short text, Number, Date - Time and Payment fields. 
  2. Choice and rating fields e.g. Ratings - Star, Scale, and Heart field options.

Choice fields - Single select, Image choice, Checkboxes and Radio Fields.

You must have a field to display the calculation results in - Short text, Number or Payments fields. These fields can be set to Required (must be filled by respondent, Hidden (for private use and can’t be seen by respondents) or Read-only (can’t be edited by the respondent).

With the Formplus form builder, you can also use a fillable table field (Repeating Data section) to calculate values within your online form. This is useful when collecting repeating data such as a list of items on your form, or details of students in a class at school. You can learn more about the table field in this article.

Assign values to form fields

After adding the required fields to the calculation form, you may need to assign values to the options if they are choice or rating fields.

For example, when creating a Product order form, add the fields that correspond to the product and then assign values to the fields. In Formplus, you can use Image choice fields to display the product within the order form. 

Other fields that can be used to compute values in your order form include; Single select, checkbox, and radio options.

When creating an employee review form with calculations, you will need to assign values to ratings within the form builder. Depending on your expected result, you can assign values to each rating and then use it to compute the results.

Set up Calculations with the Form Calculator

There are 2 ways to bring up the calculation modal i.e the form calculator in Formplus.

  1. From individual fields: Head over to the field options of a supported calculation field. The form calculator is displayed by selecting the ‘Calculation’ section.
  2. From Advanced Inputs: The form calculator can also be displayed by clicking ‘Add Calculations’ from the Advanced Inputs section of the form builder.

When the form calculator comes up, you will notice different sections. Here’s what you need to know to set up your form calculations:

  1. The Left Hand side tab shows all the fields in the form that can be used in calculations.
  2. There’s an input box to display the fields you have selected
  3. Numbers from 1-0, mathematical symbols, delete and clear icons.
  4. Results display tab - If you don’t have one of the supported fields for result display - Short text, Number or Payments, nothing will appear here.
  5. Result display options: Here you can set the decimal place for your result as well as the required unit (for date-time calculations).

This image below shows what the form calculator looks like.

To set up form calculations, simply select the necessary field from the list of supported fields and separate them with the appropriate operators. Take a look at this article for a refresher course on how the order of operations work. 

If you were to create an event registration form with the option to purchase optional items, here’s what the calculation modal for our test form looks like:

Submit a Test Response

This is the final step, that is after customizing the form and editing the form settings. Before sharing the calculating form, test it to be sure your total calculation works as it should.

Click the form preview button, and walk through the form like you are a respondent. Does the formula work as it should? Should I use a description field to explain better?

You would decide all of these when you test your form. Here's how a snippet of our form calculation looks like to a respondent:

Need a more practical guide to how form calculations can be used in Formplus? Watch this 2-minute tutorial on calculating form fields and then sign in to Formplus to create your calculation form.

  • Formplus blog
  • on 3 min read

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