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Design and Questionnaires

The TALIS design

TALIS is administered through surveys of nationally representative samples of teachers and principals or head administrators at the lower secondary level (grades 7, 8, and 9 in the United States).
In order to represent the country accurately and reliably, each country must sample at least 200 schools. At each selected school, the school principal and up to 22 teachers are asked to complete the survey. Participating schools and teachers must be randomly drawn in order to ensure the representativeness of the sample.

Teachers and principals can complete the questionnaires online or with paper-and-pencil. The teacher and principal questionnaires include questions about the following core components:

  • teachers' and principals' background characteristics, such as educational attainment;
  • teachers' and principals' work experience and professional development activities;
  • school staffing, funding, and student body characteristics;
  • school leadership and management;
  • teacher working hours, both at and away from school;
  • teacher appraisal and the feedback they receive about their work;
  • teacher induction and mentoring programs and participation;
  • teachers' subject matter (class) assignments;
  • teachers' instructional approaches and assessment practices;
  • teachers' and principals' job satisfaction; and
  • school climate.

The survey responses are entirely confidential and at no time are the names of individual teachers, principals or schools identified.

Versions of the 2013 TALIS questionnaires as administered in the United States

Teacher Questionnaire (1.4 MB)
Principal Questionnaire (795 KB)

Links to the TALIS 2008 Questionnaires

Teacher Questionnaire (144 KB)
Principal Questionnaire (125 KB)

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The survey consists of a few short questions and takes less than one minute to complete.
National Center for Education Statistics -
U.S. Department of Education