N. Ferran-Biera, A. Sangrà, M. Romero-Carbonell

Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) (SPAIN)
In the context of education, the incorporation of ICT – Information and Communication Technology – in Europe and Spain became one of the priorities for the 80s governments. Both, the Ministry of Education and Science (MEC) and the autonomous regions with educational responsibilities, like Catalonia, created their own projects with a common aim: incorporating hardware and software in the innovative context of the schools.

As part of the project for improving the quality of the schools in Catalonia in 2009, the Education Department offered the media required, help in the development of the organization strategic plans and a network to exchange information and experiences with other schools. Any improvement plan must integrate the three fields of action and form the basis of the school upgrading, as well as to develop training plans for the teachers.

At the moment, most of the Catalan schools have developed strategic plans and are including ICT in their classrooms, there is no data to compare and find out the true impact on the teaching - learning process. If the integration of ICT in teaching brings improvements in the learning process of the students, it also means changes in teaching methodology and educational organization.

Escola Pia de Catalunya has 20 educational institutions. All of them have a unique style, although they share common policies coordinated by the Secretariat de les Escoles Pies. Those schools started introducing the use of the Internet as a teaching resource in the classroom in 1998/99. Some years later, in 2009/10 the ICT plan was initiated in some schools. Awkwardly, the effect of the economic crisis made it impossible to establish it in all their school, so the process had to be lengthened or other viable alternatives had to be considered in order to development ICT plans in all the schools.
In this context, a research which is being carried out on the methodological and organizational changes that the implementation of ICT at schools is provoking. This paper will focus on the research focus and methodology of the study, based on the principles of social paradigm and using both qualitative and quantitative data gathering techniques.
The schools analyzed were a stratified sample of 4 schools specially chose. The choice was based on the following criteria: a leader in the use of digital tools, two schools who had the ICT plan since 2011 and one who was in the process of making it.
The qualitative techniques consist in the analysis of documents and interviews to the heads of studies of the different centers and to the directors of the Escoles Pies. The fact that data collection is not constrained by predetermined categories of analysis contributes in this depth and detail analysis. This allows us to create different categories depending on the interest of the investigation and the relative weight which appear.

On the other hand, quantitative techniques focus on the application of questionnaires among teachers of all schools that constitute the sample. Those questionnaires are based on a format previously prepared and validated regarding a set list of questions asked beforehand. Further research development is also identified.