I just forgo the entire survey option and create a test. It is not really a test, and it takes a bit of time, depending on the depth of the information that I am trying to obtain, but at least it is simple to report on. I just name it differently and have it automatically score itself 100% when submitted. All questions = 1 point and you are not required to answer all questions. Interaction reports will give you the answers to essay questions. Just warn them of the length constraints and/or make additional questions for answers that need to go over. This can get messy so if there is a big concern I ask them to elaborate through email and put the link on the page.
Creative solutions are fun but make sure that they are well documented in your notes of the course.