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Tyrone Curtis
Programme Coordinator

Methods Summer Programme
London School of Economics
Houghton Street
London WC2A 2AE

Email: summer.methods@lse.ac.uk|
Tel: +44 (0)20 3199 5379

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Survey Methods


The social survey is a core methodology in the social sciences. Surveys allow researchers to track social values, behaviour, attitudes, and norms between groups and over time. Graduate students, early career academic researchers, researchers in the public and private sector, and managers/commissioners of research are increasingly dealing with surveys, whether as consumers, users or producers of research. This course focuses on data collection, questionnaire design, and data analysis in survey research.  

This course is ideal for advanced undergraduate students, graduate students, early career academic researchers, and researchers in the public and private sector.

Course Benefits
Participants will:

  • gain a comprehensive understanding of the full survey research process. Whether as a user, consumer or producer of research, participants will be able to assess the quality of existing surveys and be able to conduct their own high quality survey
  • gain an in-depth understanding of the different ways of conducting survey research, including face-to-face, internet, postal and telephone
  • learn about the fundamental links between concepts, measures and empirical data in the context of survey research, including specifying the key constructs, developing indicators of key constructs, and following principles of questionnaire design
  • gain experience in analysing survey data, covering regression models and factor analysis

Understanding of basic descriptive statistics and inference, e.g. Chi-Square, t-tests, simple linear regression. 

This course provides an introduction to the methodology of the design and analysis of social surveys. It is intended both for participants who plan to design and collect their own surveys, and for those who need to understand and use data from existing large-scale surveys. 

Lectures and practical seminars cover basic ideas of target populations, survey estimation and inference, sampling error and non-sampling error; sample design and sampling theory; methods of data collection; survey interviewing; cognitive processes in answering survey questions; design and evaluation of survey questions; analysis of survey data using regression modelling and latent variable modelling; and accessing, preparing and working with secondary data from existing social surveys. 

The course includes computer classes, using the statistical computer packages Stata and MPlus.

Software used
STATA & MPlus; no previous knowledge of either is required.

Main Texts
Groves, R. M., Fowler, F. J., Couper, M. P., Lepkowski, J. M., Singer, E. and Tourangeau, R. (2009). Survey Methodology. Hoboken, New Jersey: Wiley.
Heeringa, S. G., West, B. T. and Berglund, P. A. (2010). Applied Survey Data Analysis. CRC Press.

"I feel I now have the information and tools that I needed to gain from this course. Both lecturers were excellent and really helpful. Many thanks!"
2014 participant on Survey Methods

"All in all it has been a great experience!"
2014 participant on Survey Methods

"Very good course materials and teachers, that made it a really amazing experience."
2013 participant on Survey Methods


Course details

To be confirmed

Lectures, classes and practical exercises

2-hour examination (optional)

New Academic Building, LSE

Teaching faculty
To be confirmed

Tuition fees
Student rate: £1,435
Academic staff/charity rate: £1,930
Professional rate: £2,425


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