Information by Design
Lifestyle Survey Toolkit

What to Include in a Lifestyle Survey

At present, there is no agreed national set of questions to use in local health and lifestyle surveys. Many different ‘variants’ of questions on the main lifestyle survey topics are used. The following are the key themes included in lifestyle surveys. Each of the links takes you to sample questions used in national or local surveys.

Key Themes

Lifestyle Surveys commonly include the following 5 key themes: There are a range of other themes included in lifestyle surveys, including well-being, social capital, prevalence of disease etc. For more information and sample questions, click here. It is also possible to use questions from other surveys, such as national studies. For further information on using questions from other surveys, click here.


As with all surveys it is necessary to include demographic questions enabling you to create a profile of respondents, which can include a number of different aspects. The minimum to include is age, gender and ethnic group of the respondents. For an example of common demographic questions used, click here

Socio-Demographic Categories

  • Area of Residence
  • Family Structure
  • Marital Status

Measures of Economic Status

  • Current Income
  • Car Ownership
  • Council Tax Band
  • Housing Tenure
  • Income and Benefits

Measures of Social Position

  • Education
  • Employment
  • Social Class

NWPHO Core Questions and Methods

In an attempt to provide some standardisation of questions used in Lifestyle Surveys in the North-West, NWPHO have developed a set of core questions.