Kit Harris, ASCD Research

ED Pulse Poll Results: What’s the Best Part About Being a Teacher?

In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week earlier this month and ASCD's ongoing efforts to celebrate, support, and recognize teachers, a recent ASCD SmartBrief ED Pulse poll asked educators about the best part of being a teacher.

The National Teachers Hall of Fame asked this question of several of its 2014 inductees and they responded with the quotes in the question below, among other comments. Nearly half of the 483 educators who took this poll agreed that the best part of being teacher is breaking through: "The best part is the sparkle in the eye when he/she grasps what I am trying to express" (42 percent). Following this, the educators felt the highlight of teaching is making connections: "When I see them make connections between different things we are teaching them" (24 percent).

The next two quotes that appealed to the teachers related to results: "The best gift for me is when I see success in the classroom" (18 percent) and appreciation: "Words of appreciation from students will always bless a teacher" (15 percent).

This survey question was included in ASCD SmartBrief, a free daily e-mail news service that provides summaries and links to major education stories and issues, which has more than 215,000 subscribers. Using ED Pulse, the weekly online poll, data was collected from 483 readers, starting on May 8, 2014. Online surveys do not provide a random sample, as participants are self-selected, meaning that a margin of sampling error cannot be calculated or quoted. In addition, the population and sample are limited to those with access to computers and an online network. However, online surveys have been shown to produce results that have proven to be reliable predictors of outcomes, including election results. If you have a question on education that you would like to see addressed in a future ED Pulse poll, feel free to submit it in the comment section below, along with any other comments.

Kit Harris is the marketing research lead at ASCD. The quantitative and qualitative research work done is in support of strategic initiatives in marketing, membership, product/program/service development, and conferences/meetings. Harris started her career in Chicago at a marketing research firm, then moved to D.C. to serve as the research director at advertising agency Earle Palmer Brown & Associates. Prior to coming to ASCD, she ran her own research firm.

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