The Multichannel Analysis of Surface Waves (MASW) method is an efficient tool to obtain the vertical shear (S)-wave velocity profile using the dispersive characteristic of Rayleigh waves. Most MASW researchers mainly apply Rayleigh-wave phase-velocity dispersion for S-wave velocity estimation with a few exceptions applying Rayleigh-wave group-velocity dispersion. Herein, we first compare sensitivities of fundamental surface-wave phase velocities with group velocities with three four-layer models including a low-velocity layer or a high-velocity layer. Then synthetic data are simulated by a finite difference method. Images of group-velocity dispersive energy of the synthetic data are generated using the Multiple Filter Analysis (MFA) method. Finally we invert a high-frequency surface-wave group-velocity dispersion curve of a real-world example. Results demonstrate that (1) the sensitivities of group velocities are higher than those of phase velocities and usable frequency ranges are wider than that of phase velocities, which is very helpful in improving inversion stability because for a stable inversion system, small changes in phase velocities do not result in a large fluctuation in inverted S-wave velocities; (2) group-velocity dispersive energy can be measured using single-trace data if Rayleigh-wave fundamental-mode energy is dominant, which suggests that the number of shots required in data acquisition can be dramatically reduced and the horizontal resolution can be greatly improved using analysis of group-velocity dispersion; and (3) the suspension logging results of the real-world example demonstrate that inversion of group velocities generated by the MFA method can successfully estimate near-surface S-wave velocities. ?? 2011 Elsevier B.V.