More info about OBVIE in http://obvieen.weebly.com/
The Centre for Research and Intervention in Education (CIIE) of the Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences of the University of Porto (FPCEUP) has developed research projects and interventions focused on emerging issues in school education, specifically those related to educational policies, curriculum, professional identities of teachers and their initial and ongoing training, as well as children, youth and teachers' experiences in schools and the impact of formal education in their lives,identities and relations with their wider social contexts.
In this framework, the dynamics of an "Observatory of Life in Schools" (OBVIE) allows creating a network of knowledge integrative of emergent contributions from research projects - whose object and / or field of study consider the School and its heterogeneity and complexity epistemological - developed in different areas of CIIE and within partnerships with institutions and associations and also projects from which is possible to build up new knowledge from a process of sharing diverse expertises, experiences and informations.
Using Education Research procedures, the Observatory has the following general objectives:
- Understand, analyze, disseminate and discuss the social reality of kindergartens, primary schools and secondary schools of the northern part of Portugal;
- Provide information that can support decision making in matters of education policy and in the design and development of educational projects in schools
- To be a supporting setting for the development of other national and international research projects.
- To implement a network of information collection based on the use of research methodologies and protocols, which purpose is to establish access to updated information about life in schools;
- To produce knowledge in two core areas that have implications in schools’ decisions: teaching - learning processes and school climate and organization;
- Produce knowledge in different domains with implications on the schools ways of life, concerning namely with education policies, curriculum development, school administration, teacher education, educational relationships and informal relationships that happen in schools;
- To meet the specific educational and relational processes experienced in different schools;
- To create devices for updated systematic dissemination of produced knowledge;
- To enable prospective discussions between members of educational practitioners and educational researchers communities about national and international results of the observatory's projects;
- To establish partnerships with other national and international observatories.
The concept of Observatory that guides us is not reduced to a mere analysis device. It intends to be a complex entity that sets up systematic procedures of knowledge production about life in schools in partnership with these same schools. At the same time it aims at promote sharing and debate with the practitioners who work on the studied settings namely through the establishment of a communication network based on various media. This is about setting up 'hybrid forums' between different actors and social entities enabling analysis and reflections based on knowledge of different origins and types, providing a kaleidoscopic approach to life in schools.
The Observatory focuses its activity in «observing» kindergartens, primary and secondary schools from the northern part of Portugal, although if necessary, the geographic scope of the observatory is extended to other parts of the country.
OBVIE has a dynamic team of researchers from CIIE depending on the ongoing projects. The OBVIE's activity depends on established protocols with various research entities, schools, the main partners of the Observatory, but also teachers' training centers, professional and scientific associations and other organizations with which a partnership might be appropriate.
The establishment of partnerships with schools was vital to obtain field data. It was equally important to find a representative in each partner school that assumed the tasks of facilitating data collection and of being a part of the research team in comparative analysis. This last aspect is important because it fosters the idea of learning with other points of view.
Although the development of OBVIE is regulated by systematic activities of reflection and analysis produced within its coordination and board, the research teams and regular seminars with partners, it is made a biannual evaluation of the Observatory's activity in order to systematize the results and reshape the established agenda.