Schools at the Internet: How Primary and Secondary Schools Are Developing Their Web Presence in the Network Society?

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Education and the Network Society (ENS) is a research group at the Open University of Catalonia, interested in the study of the educational phenomenon in contemporary society. During the last 7 years we have conducted various researches on the process of the incorporation of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in the Spanish educational system. This research has been conducted as part of the Catalonia Internet Project (PIC, Mominó, Sigalés & Meneses, 2008).: School on the Network Society, a larger exploratory study of the specific traits in the introduction of the internet into schools and high schools in Catalonia (Spain). To achieve our research goals, an observational analysis were carried over during 2007 a representative sample of 350 Primary and Secondary schools in Catalonia (Spain). After a preliminary research to determine the schools’ website, two independent coders were instructed to observe and describe their web presence development according to an ad-hoc code sheet based on observed evidences. In this sense, this empirical research is by no means a technical analysis about the websites’ morphology (i.e. technologies deployed for website construction), rather a structured and systematic approach based on observed evidences about the actual functionality provided. Conceived as a potentially powerful opportunity for education in the Network Society, schools’ web presence was analyzed attending to some key areas related to: the information provided about their educational project, history and offered services; the educational activities carried in their classrooms; and the relationship with their own local communities. Also, the channels offered to communicate and collaborate with students, parents, teachers and local actors were inspected in order to assess their actual capacity to extend their educational goals outside the school gates over the internet.

Keywords: Schools, Network Society, Internet, Web Presence Development, Observational Research, Pedagogical Activity, Community Building
Stream: Equity, Social Justice and Social Change; Community, Culture, Globalisation
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: A paper has not yet been submitted.

Dr. Josep Ma. Mominó

Director, Department of Psychology and Education, Open University of Catalonia
Barcelona, Spain

Josep Maria Mominó is Director of the Department of Psychology and Education at the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya, professor in the Information and Knowledge Society PhD programme, and leads the Education and Network Society research group at the Internet Interdisciplinary Institute (IN3). Currently, he co-directs the Spain Internet Project (PIE, in its Spanish initials), focused on the analysis of the transformation of primary and secondary education with the introduction of the internet. He earned his BA degree in Education, an MA degree in Educational Research, and a PhD degree in Education from the Ramon Llull University. Professor Mominó's main interest is in ICT studies in the areas of comparative education, educational policies and educational inequality.

Prof. Julio Meneses

Professor, Department of Psychology and Education, Open University of Catalonia
Barcelona, Spain

Julio Meneses is assistant professor in Statistics & Research Methods at the Psychology and Educational Sciences Department of the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya and researcher at the Internet Interdisciplinary Institute. He earned his BA degree in Social Psychology (Universidad de Oviedo), an MA degree in Information and Knowledge Society, and he is currently finishing his PhD dissertation in the social implications of the introduction of ICT in education from a community perspective. Professor Meneses' main areas of interest involve research methods and multivariate analysis in social sciences, digital inequalities, community building, social construction of technology, and social capital development in the Network Society.

Joaquim Martín

Spanish Student, Department of Psychology and Education, Open University of Catalonia
Barcelona, Spain

Phd. Student in Department of Psychology and Education

Ref: L09P1202