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National report: Data collected in Portugal

By Margarida César


The National Report includes statististical treatment (for questionnaires) and content analysis (open questions of the questionnaires, interviews and focus groups).FAMA – Family Math for Adult Learners – is an international project involving countries like Spain, France, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Portugal and Italy. In the countries collecting data from mainstream schools, students were mainly 13/14 years old. Thus, in Portugal students were attending the 8th grade which is part of the compulsory education since a long time ago (AR, 1986). We assumed an interpretative approach (Denzin, 2002) and an intrinsic case study design (Stake, 1995), composed by multiple cases, one for each country involved in the FAMA project. In Portugal we selected one school in the surroundings of Lisbon where we collected the majority of the data. But as no school had as many mathematics teachers as we needed for the study (at least 25 per country), we also used other similar schools in the same region to collect the teachers’ questionnaires. In the Portuguese case study the participants were 28 teachers, 108 students attending the 8th grade, which corresponds to the all the classes of that grade in the chosen school, and 52 family members of those students. The majority of the family members were parents and there were many more mothers than fathers, as usual, in Portuguese schools. All the participants answered first to a questionnaire. There were three different questionnaires, each one of them for a group: teachers, students and families. Then, we selected some privileged informers to be interviewed: 5 teachers, 22 students and their 22 families. Then, we had a focus group for teachers (N=5) and three focus groups for students (N=3, N=6 and N=8, respectively, in a total of 17 students) and another three for families (N=3, N=5 and N=5, respectively, in a total of 13 family members, two of them being the mother and the father of the same student). We must underline the huge effort represented by these families collaboration in this study, as the majority of the interviews and all the focus groups took place in the school and they had to conjugate their schedules with ours. We were able to interview all family members whose children were also interviewed (N=22). From those we could only get 17 students and 13 family members for the focus groups, although none of them explicitly told us s/he did not want to participate. Those who did not participate were sick or had last minute troubles that did not allow them to be there at the scheduled time and place.UE, contrato n.º 504135-LLP-1-2009-1-ES-GRUNDTIVG-GMP e UIDEF - Unidade de Investigação e Desenvolvimento em Educação e Formação, Área de História e Psicologia da Educação

Topics: Educação matemática, Professores, Alunos, Famílias, Expectativas, Representações sociais
Publisher: FAMA – Family Math for Adult Learners project
Year: 2011
OAI identifier:

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