Survey Researcher

Survey researchers design or conduct surveys and analyze survey data. Many groups use surveys to collect factual data, such as employment and salary information, or to ask questions that help them understand people's opinions, attitudes, beliefs, or desires.


Sample of Reported Job Titles

Research Fellow, Field Interviewer, Research Associate, Research Interviewer, Market Survey Representative, Research Assistant, Survey Director, Telephone Interviewer, Research Methodologist, Study Director, Pollster



Survey researchers design and conduct surveys for scientific, public opinion, and marketing research purposes. Surveys for scientific research cover various fields, including government, health, social sciences, and education. A survey researcher may, for example, try to accurately capture information such as prevalence of drug use or disease.

Survey researchers typically do the following:

  • Conduct background research on survey topics
  • Plan and design surveys and develop appropriate survey methods
  • Test their surveys to make sure that people will understand the questions
  • Conduct surveys and collect data
  • Account for and solve problems caused by non-respondents or other sampling issues
  • Analyze data using statistical software and techniques
  • Summarize survey data using tables, graphs, and fact sheets
  • Evaluate surveys, methods, and performance to improve future surveys


Educational Requirements

Survey researchers can have a bachelor's degree in a variety of fields, including statistics, mathematics, business, psychology, and political science. Students should take courses in research methods, survey methodology, and statistics. Many also may benefit from taking business courses, such as marketing and consumer behavior, and social science courses, such as psychology, sociology, and economics.

Most technical or advanced research positions require a master's degree or Ph.D. Some survey researchers take degree programs in survey research, survey methodology, or marketing research. Others complete a Master of Business Administration (MBA) or concentrate in social sciences or statistics.


Median Salary 2012



Want to know more?

Bureau of Labor Statistics-Survey Researcher

O*NET-Survey Researcher


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