Master the leading data collection and evaluation tools to gain powerful insight into big data.

The collection of data directly from individuals or other entities provides the foundation for modern public policy in the fields of official government statistics and social research. The Certificate in Survey Research is designed to cover a range of methodologies and applications to prepare students either to work directly in the area of data collection or to become informed users and evaluators of data collected by others.

Students who complete this certificate will be able to:

  • Understand the provenance of data
  • Appreciate the implications of survey design for the analysis of data
  • Understand the importance of blending data collected for research purposes through surveys and data obtained from transactional and administrative data to public policy research and applications

Application Process

The certificate is open to any University of Chicago graduate student. Harris students please contact your academic advisor to indicate intention to pursue this certificate. If you are a non-Harris student and intend to complete the requirements for the Survey Research certificate please submit the Harris Certificate Application for Non-Harris Students to indicate you are pursuing this certificate. 

Planning for the Certificate

For information on which quarter(s) each course will be offered see the Harris Courses page and filter by certificate. For courses offered by other divisions the typical quarter(s) offered has been indicated.

Certificate Requirements

The certificate requires completion of one required course, along with two additional courses. You must achieve at least a B- grade in each course, and there is no pass/fail option. The courses do not need to be taken in a particular order.

Required course

  • PPHA 41600: Survey Research Methodology

Elective courses

Students must complete two of the following courses to fulfill the requirement:

  • PPHA 31730: The Strategic Uses of Survey Research in Political Campaigns
  • PPHA 38520: GIS Applications in the Social Sciences
  • PPHA 41800: Survey Questionnaire Design
  • PPHA 44900: Social Experiments: Design and Generalization
  • STAT 33100: Sample Surveys

Consider a Policy Lab

Harris Policy Labs can be an excellent complement to certificates. Certificate programs allow students to specialize in particular areas of inquiry, while Policy Labs allow students to apply their knowledge to real world policy challenges for actual client organizations.

Descriptions of Policy Labs projects for the current academic year are available in the Current Student portal. Please consult with Policy Labs staff, or the certificate program director, to see which one is right for you.