23 July 2022
Cook your own survey: The basics of survey methodology and evaluation
Surveys and questionnaires are ubiquitous in many areas of both basic and applied research. While a
psychologist may be interested in how participants in her research score on different personality traits, a
marketing manager wants to know what defines a target group of his company’s product campaign, and a
group of teachers may need a clear and comprehensive way of assessing their students’ attitudes to the
new teaching method.
However, creating a reliable and valid survey is like cooking. Not following a recipe may result in a disaster.
The course is divided into two weeks. During the first week, we will discuss theoretical questions concerning
survey methodology – advantages and disadvantages of different item formats, selection of the right
sample, and wording of your questions, so they’re comprehensible both to you and your respondents.
Towards the end of the first week, the students will create and administer their own survey in groups. In the
second week, we will discuss how to analyse the data you have gathered. Can the questions in your survey
be reduced onto one underlying dimension, or summarized in one comprehensible index? How do the
answers relate to one another? And what can you draw from the text responses you’ve been given?
The course aims to educate students with a background of social sciences who are likely to use surveys as
one of tools of their research or work. It is highly interactive and the students are to try out the
demonstrated techniques with the guidance of the lecturers and in cooperation with fellow students.
• Questionnaire as a means for data collection, comparison with other methods, its advantages and
• Validity and reliability – definition and importance in the questionnaire context, measurement and
the so-called "psychometric paradox"
• Modes of administration, item and answer forms
• Purpose of a survey, cognitive interview and piloting
• Sampling and data collection strategies.
• Response rate, drop-out, answer variability, data inspection
• Reliability analysis, correlation analysis, frequency and central tendency indices
• The basics of confirmatory factor and principal component analysis
• Text answer analysis, word cloud building, basics of thematic qualitative analysis
• Group project presentation, feedback and reflection
Mgr. Hynek Cígler, Ph.D.
Background in social sciences, humanities, or economics at the BA or MA level who wish to learn more about surveys, questionnaires, respondents, evaluations, etc
This course falls under Masaryk University's 'Intensive Summer School'. Students will study their classes in the morning and in the afternoon be free to participate in social and cultural activities arranged in and around Brno.
EUR 400: The full cost of this programme is €1000. The cost breakdowns as follows:
- tuition fees
- Accommodation in Brno (10-23 July)
- Opening and Closing receptions
- Culture activities around Brno
- Day trip to Prague or Vienna
- 24/7 support
- Social programme
A €100 discount is available for students from partner universities
Students should budget an additional €200-500 depending on their spending habits for food (breakfast, lunch, dinner) and fun "optional" activities in Brno.
EUR 350: discount for partner university students