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Creating market research surveys


This lesson is designed to give students practice in writing effective market research questions with a focus on promoting a publication and advertising through the use of social media. The lesson also includes a review of how to understand statistical results and draw conclusions from data.


  • Students will apply their knowledge of effective survey construction techniques to write questions that will yield meaningful information about the social media habits of a particular segment of the media organization’s market audience.
  • Students will evaluate a sample set of statistical data and demonstrate the ability to draw meaningful conclusions based on the data.
  • Students will be able to defend their insights and evaluations of market research surveys and statistical data in small group and whole-class settings, using with specific evidence from the text and notes.

Common Core State Standards

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.1 Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.1 Initiate and participate effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grades 9-10 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.1c Propel conversations by posing and responding to questions that relate the current discussion to broader themes or larger ideas; actively incorporate others into the discussion; and clarify, verify, or challenge ideas and conclusions.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.1d Respond thoughtfully to diverse perspectives, summarize points of agreement and disagreement, and, when warranted, qualify or justify their own views and understanding and make new connections in light of the evidence and reasoning presented.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.9-10.6 Acquire and use accurately general academic and domain-specific words and phrases, sufficient for reading, writing, speaking, and listening at the college and career readiness level; demonstrate independence in gathering vocabulary knowledge when considering a word or phrase important to comprehension or expression.


Three 60-70 minute class periods OR two 60-70 minute class periods, eliminating day 3


Handout: Market research survey 1 analysis homework

Handout: Market survey 1 results

Handout: Market research survey project

Rubric: Survey analysis rubric

Rubric: Survey rubric

Slideshow: Using statistical data

Handout: Using statistical data slideshow notes

Rubric: Collaboration rubric

Projector or document camera

Lesson step-by-step

Day 1

1. Distribute directions and outline specifications — 5 minutes

Distribute the project instructions (see Handout: Market research survey project) and rubric. Review them with students, focusing on the scope of the survey and how the results will be used.

2. Large-group discussion — 5 minutes

Lead a discussion about the types of questions this market research survey project seeks to answer — How can our school population be divided into marketable segments? How does each segment of students use social media? What are the best social media outlets for us to use? How should we use those social media outlets?

3. Brainstorm — 5 minutes

Determine how the school should be segmented and how many groups are needed.

4. Grouping — 5 minutes

Divide students into groups or allow them to divide themselves and either assign the groups a segment of the school population or allow them to decide which segment they want to target.

5. Work time — remainder of class

Allow students the rest of the class period to begin developing their surveys. Teacher should walk around the room and help students.

Day 2

1. Survey development work time — first half of class

Allow students half the class period to continue developing their surveys.

2. Slideshow — 15 minutes

Pass out the handout called Using Statistical Data Slideshow Notes and show the slideshow.

Ask a student to take notes on how to use statistical data, including how to draw logical conclusions from a survey with a limited sample size.

3. Review — 5 minutes

If time, review how to calculate percents and decimals and allow a few problems for practice.

4. Analyzing sample data — 10 minutes

Distribute Market Research Survey 1 Analysis Homework and Sample Market Research Survey 1 Results and instruct students to look over the data and make several conclusions about steps a teacher could take, based on the results of the survey.

Day 3

1. Assessment — 30 minutes

Using the Market Research Survey 1 Analysis Homework review students’ conclusions in small groups and formatively assess if they understand how to draw logical, meaningful conclusions about statistical data.

2. Work time — remainder of class

Allow students the rest of the class period to finish developing their surveys.


Students will come into the classroom with varying background knowledge about statistical inference. Consider asking a mathematics teacher in your building for more resources to support student understanding, or using review videos through a YouTube channel or other educational website such as Khan Academy, if necessary.