Survey Methods

Karen Rice and Ivan Ozbolt

Planning is an essential part of language revitalization. Surveys, sometimes required by funding sources, are a tool for planning. Far beyond recording language status, surveys help us understand language use and attitudes that can propel or hinder revitalization efforts. In this workshop, we will discuss questions such as, what can we learn from a survey? How can surveys be used in revitalization? What different kinds of surveys are there? What kinds of questions should we ask? Who and how should it be given? What do we do with the results? The leaders will use Handbook 3: Conducting a Language Survey (from Awakening Our Languages: ILI Handbook Series) as a starting point for classroom discussions. Participants will be asked to work in groups to develop survey questions and give short surveys to each other to practice reading and presenting results. The goal is for participants to leave with a creative toolset for using surveys in their own communities or language programs.