European Survey of Schools: ICT in Education (ESSIE)
The objective of the European Survey of Schools: ICT in Education is to benchmark progress in 31 countries (EU27, Iceland, Norway, Croatia and Turkey) in ICT in education by surveying students, head teachers and teachers on the availability and use, including opinions and attitudes, of ICT in schools, thus contributing to the development of updated, relevant and efficient indicators as well as to the establishment of a long-term and continuous monitoring system on ICT access, use and impact.
The survey of schools is one of a series within the European Union's cross-sector benchmarking activities comparing national progress to i2010 and EU2020 goals. It is the first Europe-wide survey of schools' ICT for six years, following Europe 2002 and EU2005 surveys.
The Survey is funded by the European Commission Information Society and Media Directorate General. It is a partnership between European Schoolnet and the Service d’Approches Quantitatives des faits éducatifs in the Department of Education of the University of Liège.
The focus of the study is on developing indicators and gathering and analysing data on students’ use, competence, and attitudes to ICT. Teacher and school level factors will be investigated as regards their impact on students. The main areas of investigation are:
- Students' digital competence and attitudes towards ICT
- Students' ICT use in /out of classroom
- Teachers' professional ICT use in/out of classroom
- Teachers’ attitudes towards pedagogical ICT use
- School infrastructure, connectivity and ICT access
- School leadership in ICT and ICT for pedagogy Under the guidance of a Steering Committee, work comprises five stages.
Under the guidance of a Steering Committee, work comprises five stages.
1 Survey Development
The survey comprises three questionnaires derived from an analytical framework and based on the results of a literature review. Two questionnaires focus on head teachers and class teachers at primary, lower secondary, upper secondary academic and upper secondary vocational education levels. They enable comparison with the surveys used by the eEurope 2002 and 2005 initiatives, for example Benchmarking Access and Use of ICT in European Schools), but are enriched and updated, addressing ICT use in and out of school. The third questionnaire is for two groups of students: one at ISCED 2 (grade 8 – 13.5 years old on average) and the other at ISCED 3 (grade 11 – 16.5 years old on average). The same questionnaire will be administered to both groups of students and addresses ICT use both in and out of school. Questionnaires will only contain closed questions, on facts (access and use, for example) and on opinions (statements, for example) and will be piloted in the UK and France, then revised and translated into the 23 official languages of the 31 countries.
National coordinators nominated by education ministries support the sampling process. Using official school databases in each of the 31 countries, they prepare lists according to guidelines in a sampling manual, enabling 300 schools to be randomly selected at each of four levels: primary, lower secondary, upper secondary academic and upper secondary vocational level, in total around 1200 schools in each country. In each school, the head teacher is to complete the head teacher questionnaire and one class is randomly selected: at grades 4 (on average 9.5 year old pupils), 8 and 11. Three teachers (one in primary school) teaching that class are then randomly selected; they are to complete the teacher questionnaire. Only students in the grade 8 and 11 classes are to complete the student questionnaire. At school level, the randomised sampling of the class and the teachers will be done by a school coordinator identified by the head teacher and supported by the national coordinator, guidance materials in their language and a video training session.
3 Data Collection
The survey is completed online by heads, teachers and students, using a platform designed and managed by a data processing centre. In a few countries, questionnaires may nevertheless be administered on paper because of lack of equipment available (mostly in primary schools). National coordinators monitor the collection process, following-up response rate, sending reminders if there is no answer to automatic reminders, etc. The data collection period begins six weeks after the start of the school year and ends in November. There are incentives for questionnaire completion.
4 Data analysis
In addition to cleaning and codification processes, standard statistical tools are applied to each query. The statistical analysis will provide comparisons and trends analysis with past data collections, analysis of new data, country by country analysis (31 country reports) and an article. The analysis will be enriched with a qualitative analysis to identify facts to be investigated and hypotheses to be statistically tested by the data, and provide opportunities for understanding and clarification. The qualitative analysis will use existing contextual data (e.g. household equipment from EUROSTAT) and information at country level (contained in the annual European Schoolnet Insight country reports, for example) to enrich the analysis.
Draft findings are presented and discussed at a stakeholder workshop early in 2012 and the survey final report delivered in spring 2012.