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M. Varela1, J.P. Leal2

1Faculdade de Ciências (PORTUGAL)
2Unidade de Ciências Químicas e Radiofarmaceuticas (PORTUGAL)
Computers have become more and more used in our lives. Also in school, computers and their applications are said to have become more and more important. However, sometimes what we expect is quite different from what happens in real situations. And the latter is somehow unknown. We intend to develop educational materials using computers, but in order to know how familiar teachers are with computers and in which context they use computers in their teaching activity, we have launched a survey that will give us a solid starting point for our work.
The internet was used as a way of reaching a broad universe of teachers. The survey was placed in an internet page maintained by one of the authors ( and a letter was sent to the schools in order to alert them to the survey. On the survey a characterization of the respondent is made in order to know their age, the number of years spent teaching, their gender, and professional situation in school. Then, questions dealing with the use of computer at a personal level, in class preparation, in classes themselves and in the interaction with students were made. Finally a multiple-choice question was asked in order to have an idea of some of the possible reasons for the use/non use of computer in teaching.
The results (obtained for more than 600 teachers covering the entire country) give us a panorama of the situation in Portugal. The preliminary results of this survey are described in this communication.