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Perceptions of Teaching as a Profession (PTaP) Survey and Analysis Tool

Audience/Setting: Any STEM students

Time: 8 minutes to take the survey

Synopsis: Give this survey to assess the student perceptions about grade 7–12 math and science teaching as a profession.


The survey is available on SurveyMonkey, or use the survey found in the Appendix of this document to enter into your own survey software, or administer hard-copy. More detail about the development and validation can be found in Section 5.

Toolkit materials

Empirical Survey Categories

Through our development work and statistical analysis, we determined 11 empirical categories of students’ perceptions of teaching as a profession:

  1. Personal Enjoyment
  2. As a Career Choice
  3. Support by Others
  4. Department Values and Encourages Teaching
  5. Department Supports Me Teaching
  6. Employee Benefits and Security
  7. Teaching is Scientific
  8. Nurturer
  9. Back Up Plan
  10. All Students Can Learn
  11. I Would If…

There is an Excel spreadsheet available that can be used to score your data in these 11 categories, as well as quickly provide you the number of students who indicate that they are pursuing certification at your institution or through another route.

This data has a range of uses including identifying the number of students who would pursue teaching given correct information about the profession. The PTaP can also be used longitudinally or pre/post to monitor your efforts to get the facts out about the profession. If you are willing to share the data from your institution, contact Wendy Adams at

    Good to know

    • This resource was developed with data from STEM undergraduates and graduates at a range of U. S. universities.
    • This assessment can be administered online or in class. We administer it online and found students take just under 8 minutes on average to complete. The results can be analyzed with the PTaP Excel Analysis Tool to determine the appropriate course of action for addressing myths with students and your colleagues.