General English

  • noun a way of finding out about something by asking people questions
  • verb to ask people questions to get information about something

General Science

  • noun the taking of measurements of the height of buildings or mountains and the length of roads, rivers and other features in order to make a detailed plan or map
  • noun a document, plan or map showing the results of an investigation or of the measurements taken
  • verb to carry out a survey of something


  • verb to determine the boundaries, area, or elevations of land by means of measuring angles and distances


  • noun a general report on a problem
  • noun a careful examination of something, such as a building, to see if it is in good enough condition
  • noun the process of examining and measuring something exactly
  • verb to make a survey of a building
  • verb to measure land in order to produce a plan or map


  • A topographic or boundary mapping of a job site.
  • Taking measurements of an existing building.
  • A building use-of-space analysis.
  • The process of identifying the owner's requirements.
  • The investigation and reporting of necessary project data.
  • The examination of the physical or chemical characteristics of the site.

Information & Library Science

  • noun a detailed investigation often involving people’s opinions

Real Estate

  • noun an inspection of a building to determine its condition and assess its value
  • noun a report that results from inspecting the condition and assessing the value of a building
  • noun an act of taking detailed measurements of an area of land
  • noun a report that shows the results of a survey undertaken to measure an area of land
  • verb to inspect a building in order to determine its structural soundness or assess its value
  • verb to make a detailed map of an area of land, including its boundaries, area and elevation, using geometry and trigonometry to measure angles and distances


  • noun a general report on something
  • noun the work of taking exact measurements of something
  • verb to examine something to see if it is in good condition

Origin & History of “survey”

To survey something is etymologically to ‘oversee’ it. The word comes via Anglo-Norman surveier from medieval Latin supervidēre, a compound verb formed from the prefix super- ‘over’ and vidēre ‘see’ (source of English view, vision, etc).