Instant questionnaires

Published on 5th May, 2011 in Teaching Tips by Frances Watkins

How healthy are you? How adventurous are you? How romantic are you? How computer-literate are you? How relaxed are you?

These are all possible headings that can be used to create questionnaires in class at different levels, providing healthy opportunities for oral fluency. Be prepared to allow plenty of time for this activity!

Put your students into groups of three or four and ensure that they are sitting slightly apart from others. Assign each group a heading, such as the ones given at the start here. You can obviously adapt these to suit your students. Model the task with the whole class, taking one of the headings and eliciting a possible question or two. Ensure at this point that the elicited question(s) do neatly correspond with the overall questionnaire heading. Either decide as a whole class on the nature of questions to be constructed – eg multi-choice, open-ended, yes / no, or allow students to decide in their teams. Ask all the team members to write down the chosen questions.

Let students work in their groups to devise 6–10 questions. Keep your distance but be ready to assist when needed. Allow plenty of time for this stage as this process stage – rather than the actual question and answer stage – is often where most student interaction occurs. When students are ready you can either allow them to redraft the questioinnaire for the following lesson, or they can mingle straight away. Regroup students so that they are sitting with at least two other people with different questionnaires. Let them ask and answer (rather than read and write), taking notes on their respondents’ answers. If they are enjoying it, let them interview more people.

As a final round-up stage, students can give feedback on their general findings, as well as giving their assessment of how their own questionnaire and others’ worked.

1 Comment

  • Very good idea this one. Would work best of course with medium to large classes, in excess of 9 students I’d say. Thank you!

    barbara on 9 September, 2012