About the American Educator Panels

Obtaining reliable and accurate responses on key issues from school leaders and teachers is essential to improving K-12 education policy and, ultimately, America's schools.

The American Educator Panels (AEP)—made up of the American Teacher Panel (ATP), the American School Leader Panel (ASLP), and the American School District Panel (ASDP)—are unique resources for obtaining these responses and measuring the evolving knowledge, attitudes, practices, and work conditions of educators nationwide.

How Do the Panels Work?

The panel is designed to survey the same educators at regular intervals over their careers, so researchers can track changes in attitudes, behaviors, and work conditions over time. School leaders and teachers also receive regular reports on the survey results, allowing them to understand the changing responses of their peers nationwide.

Panel members are invited to complete three or four web-based surveys every year and receive a small monetary incentive after completing each survey. Online surveys enable their responses to be obtained quickly and easily. Data files are made available rapidly so responses can be tabulated, analyzed, and reported right away.

Our partners will assist RAND in sharing results with practitioners and policymakers.

What Questions are Researchers Asking?

The success of new education policies—such as the Common Core Standards, student assessments, and measures of teacher and school leader effectiveness—depends on the knowledge and efforts of principals and teachers.

To implement such policies effectively and ensure that they have a positive impact on schools, the panels address important questions such as:

  • Are teachers and school leaders prepared to implement the policies through new curriculum, instruction, assessments, etc.?
  • What kinds of professional development and other support do they receive? Is it aligned with new policies and standards?
  • How much time do they need to understand and implement a new policy? What kinds of obstacles do they encounter? How do they overcome them?
  • Do novice and experienced educators respond differently to new demands and pressures?
  • How do school and district working conditions affect the implementation of new policies?


The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. For decades, RAND Education and Labor researchers have provided accurate data and objective analysis to improve education policy in America and around the world.

Nearly all of RAND's research—including current and forthcoming releases by the ATP and ASLP—is free to access on rand.org.

Looking for the RAND American Life Panel? Visit the ALP site to learn how to survey a broader audience.