Surveys in Language Teaching & Research: A Personal & Professional Journey

Surveys are ubiquitous in all facets of life: we hear survey results in news reports, we find them at the end of almost every event, and they always seem to find their way into our inboxes. Surveys can also be useful tools in language teaching and research. For my BLC project, I developed and piloted a survey instrument to understand how different schools understand the role of digital technology and second/foreign language within education today. I discuss here: I) the role of surveys in my dissertation research project; II) an overview of surveys in general; III) major lessons learned in selecting this methodological tool as a part of language-related research; and IV) reflections on the use of surveys in applied linguistics. I conclude that while surveys can be powerful instruments in the applied linguist’s methodological battery, they need to be chosen carefully and constructed with great care as well as attention to detail.


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