Professional Development Survey Questions for Teachers

Instructor: Clio Stearns

Clio has taught education courses at the college level and has a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction.

As an administrator, you may be interested in learning more about your teachers' professional development experiences and needs. This lesson offers you some survey questions that will help you learn as much as possible from your faculty.

Why Survey Teachers?

Getting a solid professional development system off the ground can be a great way to increase professionalism and morale at your school. Before you make any changes, though, you will want to find out what professional development your teachers have already done. You will also want to learn about what has worked for them and what has not, and where they feel their biggest professional development needs lie.

One of the best ways to get this information is by surveying your faculty. Surveys are wonderful tools because they allow you to collect exactly the information you need in a reasonably fair and objective way. Giving teachers a survey sends a clear message that you care about their opinions and experiences. Analyzing a survey can give you substantial data to work with when planning and making budgeting decisions, and you might even be surprised by some of the things you learn about your teachers.

A few key things to keep in mind when implementing a survey among teachers are:

  • Keep the survey reasonably short. No one wants to spend hours answering survey questions, and you will get a much better response rate with a shorter and more manageable survey.
  • Give a clear deadline. People are generally more likely to complete surveys if they know when it needs to be done.
  • Be specific about the purpose of your survey. Give your teachers some ideas about how you will be using the information you provide.
  • Build in time for survey completion. For instance, allocate fifteen minutes at the beginning of a staff meeting for teachers to complete the survey.

The questions in this lesson offer you some ideas of what you might ask teachers about professional development. This is not a comprehensive list of questions, but it offers a starting point for you to build on.

Survey Questions

  • What professional development experiences have you had in the last five years?

This question will show you what most of the teachers in your school have already done.

  • What do you feel you have gotten out of your recent professional development experiences? How have they influenced your teaching practice?

These questions will give you a sense of the effectiveness of previous professional development at your school and will help you understand what aspects of teaching practice have been substantially influenced.

  • What areas of your teaching practice do you feel would benefit most from more professional development, and why?

This question shows you teachers' own opinions about their professional development needs and desires.

  • What time of year do you find professional development most beneficial to your practice?

This question will help you schedule professional development opportunities in ways that really make sense in the context of your school.

  • Would you rather do professional development with other colleagues from our school, or would you rather everyone attend different professional development and then come back and report to each other?

This question will help you further with scheduling professional development in meaningful ways that boost morale.

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