Minnesota Student Survey

General Information
The Minnesota Student Survey (MSS) is a triennial survey of young people regarding a variety of risk and protective factors. The survey asks young people questions about their activities, opinions, behaviors and experiences. It includes questions on a variety of issues, such as substance abuse, school climate, violence and safety concerns, healthy eating, out-of-school activities, connections to school, community and family and many other questions. The survey is administered in schools, alternative learning centers and juvenile correctional facilities. The purpose of the survey is to:

  • Provide data for program planning and evaluation.
  • Meet state and federal student survey requirements.
  • Address relevant issues confronting students.
  • Mark trends over time.
  • Involve schools/other educational settings statewide and provide data for local use.

2016 Minnesota Student Survey
The next MSS administration window is between January and June 2016. Once again, Minnesota students in grades 5, 8, 9 and 11 will be invited to participate. A majority of the survey will be conducted online, but there will be a limited number of paper copies available for students in grades 9 and 11. District superintendents have received initial information regarding registration and next steps in their weekly Superintendent Mail.

All schools and districts that participate in the survey are required to follow federal laws regarding parental notification as required by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the Protection of Pupil Rights Amendment (PPRA). PPRA requires participating schools to notify parents of the survey administration, provide parents the opportunity to review the survey instrument, and allow parents to opt their child out of participating. Sample parent notification letters are available in multiple languages for school districts to adapt.

Minnesota Student Survey Parent Notification Letter (English)
Minnesota Student Survey Parent Notification Letter (Spanish)
Minnesota Student Survey Parent Notification Letter (Hmong)
Minnesota Student Survey Parent Notification Letter (Somali)

The survey is made possible through a partnership between the Minnesota Departments of Education, Health, Human Services and Public Safety. These agencies provide funding and staff time to develop, administer and analyze the survey. 

2013 Minnesota Student Survey
The 2013 MSS was administered statewide in the first half of 2013 to public school students in grades 5, 8, 9 and 11. All public school districts in Minnesota were invited to participate. Of the 334 public operating districts, 280 agreed to participate (84 percent of public operating school districts).

Public school student participation was voluntary and surveys were anonymous. Across the state, approximately 66 percent of fifth graders, 71 percent of eighth graders, 69 percent of ninth graders and 62 percent of eleventh graders participated in the 2013 MSS. Overall participation across the four grades was approximately 67 percent of total enrollment.

The 2013 MSS results are now available in a web-based interactive report. This interactive report allows you to view state, county and district-level data in easy-to-read tables and graphs. It also provides the option of viewing data by various demographic groups.

Access the new interactive 2013 MSS web report.

View the 2007, 2010 and 2013 data tables. 

The following seven webinars highlight results from the 2013 Minnesota Student Survey:
Module 1: Introduction and Background
Module 2: Education
Module 3: Health
Module 4: Adverse Childhood Experiences
Module 5: Problematic Behaviors
Module 6: Substance Use
Module 7: Emotional and Mental Health