Plan, conduct and analyze online surveys for administration, study, teaching and research

With the online survey system LimeSurvey, you can create and conduct online surveys. It is also possible to evaluate the results of the survey, as well as export the data into CSV or Excel formats. his software solution is locally hosted platform at Heidelberg University.

Target group

  • Students
  • University employees
  • Researchers
  • Instructors
  • Doctoral candidates



  • e.g. scientific surveys for terms papers and theses


  • e.g. departmental surveys


  • e.g. scientific surveys for research projects


  • e.g. course surveys (but not for teacher evaluations)

Doctoral candidates

  • e.g. scientific surveys for doctoral projects


Access and requirements

This software can be used for a variety of purposes in administration, study, teaching and research; however, it cannot be used for teaching evaluations nor for private or commercial uses.

Before you can create your survey, you must complete a the linked registration form (to use LimeSurvey as a survey administrator) and confirm that you acknowledge and agree to the terms of service.

The privacy statement (German) outlines how we will handle your personal information.

Frequently Asked Questions

Table filters


How do I create anonymous surveys?

If your survey should be conducted anonymously, i.e. you are not saving any personal information about the survey participants, then use the following settings: 

  1. Anonymized survey: 
       For open surveys: Yes 
       For closed surveys: No 
  2. Save IP address: No 
  3. Save referrer URL: No 

The following must also apply: 

  • For closed surveys, tokens, also called "participants", must be so-called “dummy” tokens, i.e. without a name or email address. In this case, the e-mails must be sent independently from LimeSurvey. 
  • (For open surveys there are no tokens.) 
  • The participants will not be allowed to save in the middle of the survey, as in order to do this and continue the survey at a later time, the IP address of the participant must be saved. 
  • Goggle Analytics and Google Maps are not activated. (Deactivated at the URZ by default.) 

More detailed instructions are linked in the "How-tos".

How do I export a survey?

You can save the responses to a survey as well as the survey itself outside of LimeSurvey. To do this, first open the survey you want to export from the survey list. 

  • To save the survey: Display/Export > Survey structure (*.lss) 
    You can import the saved survey again at a later time. 
  • To save the responses: Responses > Responses & statistics > Export 
    Several file formats are available when saving. 
Does LimeSurvey use cookies?

Yes, LimeSurvey uses two session cookies by default: PHPSESSID and YII_CSRF_TOKEN. These cookies are necessary for the operation of LimeSurvey and are deleted when the browser session is closed. Personal data is not collected in the process. Therefore, it is not necessary - according to current regulations - to use a cookie consent form:

Can I change my LimeSurvey password?

No, even though “Forgot password?” appears on the bottom right of the LimeSurvey login page, When you click on it and and enter your username and email address, no email will be sent from the system.

This is because we use the LDAP method for authentication, i.e. you use your Uni ID and the corresponding password, and LimeSurvey checks through the AD (Active Directory) if it is a valid username and the correct password.

You can only change your Uni ID password via the following page:

What is the maximum survey size? Or more specifically: What is the maximum number of questions a survey can have?

Here at the Computing Center, we use a MySQL InnoDB as the database to store the question fields and answers. This is inherently limited to 1000 columns and cannot be extended. This means a survey can have a maximum of 1000 fields, whereby it should be noted that a single matrix type question quickly consumes several columns (i.e. number of the subquestions multiplied by the number of answer options).

The good news: The number of survey participants, on the other hand, is virtually limitless and is only restricted by the amount of storage space available to us.

For more information about this, please see:

Can I attach a PDF or other document to the invitation email?Unfortunately not, LimeSurvey does not support file attachments for the invitation emails. However, you can place the desired documents in a heiBOX library and include the download links in the invitation text. This procedure also helps to save space on the mail server.