Admission Portal 3 Inquiry Forms


An example of what an inquiry form looks like with AP3.

The basic purpose of an inquiry form is to collect information about prospective families before they enter the full admission portal.  Here are some key features:

  • Check the parent's email as a first step to ensure their information is not already in your database (called "account lookup"). 
  • Choose to process submissions immediately, committing data to your database, creating user accounts, and directing the parents to your admissions portal.
  • Choose to put submitted data in a staging area for your review.
  • Create numerous inquiry forms to collect interest-specific information. 
  • Create custom questions.
  • Create versions of forms with pre-filled information.
  • Protect prospective families from identity fraud with required email verification for new portal account creation.

Example Inquiry Form Scenarios

Here are a few scenarios, from simple to more involved:

  • You have a single inquiry form linked on your public website. You use the default settings to collect basic information about the prospect and their family. When completed, the submission is immediately processed, the data are all written to the database, and the parent(s) are redirected to the full admission portal with new user accounts.
  • You use the form above, but you add your own questions to the inquiry form. When processed, the responses are not written to the database in the same way as field like "Last Name" are, but you can still find them by searching webform submissions.
  • You have a basic inquiry form that functions like the above linked on your main public admissions page. You also have an "athletics inquiry" form that you link on your athletics page. It collects less information than the main form, but has an additional section that collects athletic interests via checkboxes. When submitted, the data are held in staging for your review and follow-up. This type of inquiry form acts more like a "we'd like more information," rather than the fuller "we'd like to begin applying" inquiry form.
  • You have the above two inquiry forms (a primary one and an athletics interests one). You also have several niche interest inquiry forms that utilize presets in different areas of your website. On your "Latin Honor Society" page, for instance, you have an interest inquiry form with "Latin" automatically checked as a language preset. "Ancient Greek" is automatically checked on the inquiry form that is linked on the "Ancient Greek Honor Society" homepage. When these inquiry forms are submitted, the data are held in staging for your review and follow-up.

Create and Manage Inquiry Forms

Inquiry form records in AP3.

Find existing inquiry forms on the "Inquiries > Forms" tab of the Registration Season Type detail screen. Click Add Record... to add a new one fill out Form Type, Access Name, Description, and Submission Strategy. Click UPDATE at the top of the Detail Screen to add the new Inquiry. New Inquiries come pre-populated with default form sections and form elements that cover the basic inquiry data needed for the given type of inquiry. 

The following overviews the meaning of all fields listed on the Inquiry Forms grid view: 

  • Form Type: Once you add the form, you cannot change the type.
    • Request More Information: Collect information, both that writes to standard database fields and your own custom questions. Choose to create user accounts, a submission strategy, etc. 
    • Interests Inquiry: All the features of "Request More Information" type, but adds the ability to collect interests. 
  • Access Name: Choose a name to refer to the form. It will be visible in the form's URL.
  • Description: Name the form whatever you'd like. It will be visible at the top of the form.
  • Submission Strategy: Answers the question, "What happens to the data when a prospect clicks 'Submit'?"
    • Immediate: Data are committed immediately to the database. Choose this if you want the parent to move directly to the admissions portal and don't need to review the information.
    • Requires Review: Data are staged for your review. Choose this for inquiry forms that you are using to collect interest-based information and may not need to have immediately accessed in the database. 
  • Status: Use for your own internal workflows. 
    • Active: in use.
    • Draft: Draft forms are still visible to users
    • Archived: Archived forms are not visible to users
  • Public Form URL: Post this link wherever you want people to access the inquiry form

Inquiry-Specific Configuration

Add and edit webform elements the same way you would on other forms. Read more about how web forms work. Keep in mind the following when considering inquiry forms:

General Configuration

The inquiry form detail screen.
Any field title that is underlined will provide helpful information about that field if you hover your mouse over it.

There are several options to consider on the right:

  • Submission strategy: You will likely want "immediate" for your basic inquiry form (so that parents can automatically get user accounts and proceed to the admission portal) and may want "Needs Review" for interest-based inquiry forms.
  • Account Lookup? Set to "Yes" to show the user the account lookup screen before proceeding to the inquiry form. Configure email templates on the "Account Lookup" tab of the Registration Season Type record.
  • Public? Set to "Yes" in conjunction with using the public URL. 

I would like to route prospective families directly into the admission portal when they submit an inquiry form - is this possible? In an effort to protect your constituents from potential identity fraud, we are now enforcing email verification for all new admission portal 3 accounts. This means that in order to access the admission portal, new users must have access to the email address they provided via the inquiry and will be able to access the portal after setting up a password using the link in the welcome email. 


The Presets tab on an inquiry form record. Note the help text at the top of the screen.

Presets enable you to predefine response value selections on behalf of form submitters when the form is accessed via the preset’s URL. Presets also allow you to have different URLs pointing to the same inquiry form.

Why use presets without any values pre-filled fields? The value of having different URLs pointing to the same inquiry form without any pre-filled fields is that you can track, report on, and communicate with prospective families via the preset through which they made their inquiry. 

Example: Your admissions team is manning a booth at a local event and they want to track and do specific follow-ups with the folks that made an inquiry via a machine at that booth. Instead of having to create a whole new inquiry form to track that separately, you can just make a preset. Forthcoming reports will enable you to build and use reports showing anyone who came in through that preset.

Interest-related inquiry forms are a common use case for presets. For example, set "Baseball" as an athletic interest preset for an inquiry form you will link from your "Baseball Team" page on your public website. 

  • You can pre-fill as many fields as you'd like on a given preset.
  • You can have multiple presets for a given form. For example, you could have a separate preset for each sport. 
  • Each preset has a unique URL. Use the URL to link on your website. 
  • All preset values can be overridden by the user when filling out the form. 

To add a preset: 

  1. Navigate to the "Presets" tab of an inquiry form.
  2. Click Add Record... and specify:
    • Access Name: visible in the form URL
    • Description: visible at the top of the form
  3. Click Update. You are now ready to indicate what the presets will be. 

To edit a preset: 

  1. Click "Edit preset..." which pops open the form. 
  2. Set the desired presets: check fields, type information, etc. Any field can have information pre-filled.
  3. Click Save Changes at the bottom of the form.

To link the preset version of the form:

  • Use the "Preset Form URL" link and put it on your public website.