MA Project GDE750 20/21

MA Project Week 7: Research & Learnings

Objectives for this Week

  1. Questionnaire research and development
  2. Research into Isabelle Rigoni’s contacts and how they can help me
  3. Design development of questionnaire and strategy for getting them to my target audience
  4. Write to Cécile Prévost with final questionnaire – ask her if she can present it to my target audience  

Isabelle Rogoni’s Contacts

CASNAV organisation –

Description – Academic centre for the education of newly arrived allophone students and children from itinerant families and travellers. In accordance with article L.111-1 of the education code and international commitments of France which guarantee all children between the ages of six and sixteen access to education as soon as they are present in the national territory, whatever their nationality, their personal situation or their way of life. The objectives of the organisation are as follows: 

  • Help the fight against discrimination
  • The harmonization of reception procedures
  • The acquisition of a common base of knowledge, skills and culture
  • Learning French as a second language for allophone audiences
  • The guarantee of educational continuity for traveling audiences

CASNAV contributes to training and informing all those concerned by:

  • The reception and schooling of newly arrived allophone students (EANA) in France and without sufficient mastery of the French language or learning
  • The education of students from itinerant families and travellers (EFIV)

Making sure that the schools implement a policy of  “  academic strategy in favor of the inclusion of pupils from itinerant families and allophone pupils . “; and that they work in collaboration with all the partners concerned by this audience;

How will this organisation align with my project?

I too am working to include the following objectives into my project: 

  • Help the fight against discrimination: I am doing this by trying to make sure that when the newcomers arrive in a new school they are met by people who are understanding, kind and welcoming. They are looking to actively include them into their community, learn from them and understand their culture as well as gently introducing them to their own. 
  • The harmonization of reception procedures: I am doing this to the extent where I will be easing the process of the reception of migrant and refugee children into the French education system.
  • The acquisition of a common base of knowledge, skills and culture: This is the basic principle of what my platform is all about so this aligns perfectly with my vision. 
  • Learning French as a second language for allophone audiences: The program will hold regular language exchange workshops to allow for the newcomers to learn the French language in a safe, supervised and non-judgemental environment. 
  • The guarantee of educational continuity for traveling audiences: This point does not apply to my project as my target audience are those migrants and refugees who have settled in Bordeaux and who are looking to completely integrate themselves into the French community. I am looking to help them to use education and extracurricular activities within their new community to allow them to feel supported and enjoy education so that they have the option to continue to higher education and then find a job that they enjoy here in France. 

In Summary

This organisation aligns in many ways with my project. They are working to educate schools in the recaption and support of allophones. Their target audience is much broader than mine as they are looking to help and support other students such as traveller children. My main focus is helping migrants, refugees and asylum-seekers. Families who are essentially looking to settle here in Bordeaux. 

How can this organisation help me?

They have direct access to my target audience, and I have a contact from this organisation which one of my mentors Isabelle Rigoni gave me. This will mean that as I move forward to develop my questionnaire, I can ask for her feedback and also as her to potentially put me in contact with my target audience to take the questionnaires. 

UPE2A Educational unit (group) –

Description: UPE2A is an organisation that on reception of the newcomer allophone, the child is asked to do an assessment in their own language. The assessment is done in reading, mathematics and written comprehension. UPE2A then prepares the child to integrate into mainstream school by educating them up to the same standard of their age group. The duration of the time they will spend with UPE2A depends on what level of education they arrive with. The objective is to integrate them into mainstream school as quickly as possible so that they can attend lessons and ordinary classes with children their own age.

How this is relevant to my project

This organisation is relevant to my project as they work on helping and preparing allophones who are trying to enter the French education system why providing them with catch up lessons so that they can enter the mainstream school with their age group. They also provide help with the French language. This organisation is the stage the newcomers will go through before they start using my platform and they integrate into mainstream schools. 

How can this organisation help me?

Isabelle Rigoni has given me the name of someone who runs this organisation. UPE2A will help my project because they will be able to explain to me the general stage that the children are at when they enter mainstream school, psychologically and academically. This will allow me to establish their ability to use technology and what they will need in order to interact with my platform. 

Perhaps if I partnered with this organisation, they would be able to introduce my platform to the newcomers before they are asked to use it in the mainstream schools. They could have already created a profile on the platform and navigated their way around how it works and how they can use it as a support tool before their first day. 

Useful resources:

Questionnaire development   

I am going to develop a series of questionnaires to try and send directly to may target audience. This is so that I can find out exactly what functionalities would be useful for the newcomers.

Issues in compiling this questionnaire

There are many potential issues that I need to asses before developing a questionnaire. I need to take the following into account: 

Demographics – Age Range/User Type 

My target audience is from 11 – 16 years old. There is a great amount of development and growing up that does on between these two ages. Children stop becoming children and turn into adolescents. For this reason, I need to make sure that I divide my questionnaire up into the following group according to age range and persona type:

  • Newcomer students aged 11 – 12 years old 
  • Newcomer students aged 13 – 14 years old 
  • Newcomer students aged 15 – 16 years old
  • French students aged 11 – 12 years old 
  • French students aged 13 – 14 years old 
  • French students aged 15 – 16 years old
  • Teachers and program leaders (administrative side of the platform) 


I am relying on the contacts that I have through Isabelle Rigoni to have access to my target audience. This may not be possible so I will have to word my email to them very carefully. I also realise that directly corresponding with children and especially children in a vulnerable situation could be potentially difficult due to their privacy rights. It is important that I read up on this and ask my contacts what their organisation rules are around this sensitive subject. 

Skill level with Computers

I am fairly confident that the program leaders will be very familiar with computers and how to use them, and most French children will have had experience with technology by the time they reach 11 years old. However, I do not know that the migrant and refugee children will have had access to technology, and if they have, it is likely to be a telephone as these are more widely used that computers. For this reason, I have decided to design my questionnaires in a pdf form so that the children can fill them out on paper and not on a computer. This way I will be able to have access to more of my target audiences opinions to get a well rounded user driven outcome.

Questionnaire composition

As many of my target audience might not only have low French language skills. My next section of research will be looking into how to compile a questionnaire for the various groups that I have set up above. 


What do I want to find out and why?

I want to find out what my target audience actually needs. These needs will then come out as functionalities within the platform. I want to get the users to drive the design. I want this project to be able user-driven design

Number of questions

In order to make sure the children understand and fill out the whole questionnaire, I have decided to do a small questionnaire of 4 questions so the task does not seem overwhelming.

Their access and ability to use technology

Although they will be using the platform in the school library on the school computers so that access to computers will not be a problem when accessing the platform, I still have to think about the fact that some children might not have any experience with computers or access to technology. Especially the younger children within my target audience. I would like to find out some more detail into their exact level. This will be one of the questions that I will ask in the questionnaire.

How the questions will change according to the age group

I would like the questions of the questionnaire to remain fairly similar throughout the age groups for the newcomers, but I would also like to develop a questionnaire for the French children and these will be in a different format as these children are more likely to be more familiar with reading the French language and filling out questionnaires of all different types. Especially the friend children who are in the older age group.

Writing Questionnaires for children

This fascinating study is a great resource to look through whilst designing my questionnaires, it highlights all the different issues associated with designing questionnaires for refugees and migrants and how these can be resolved. It also tells you about the correct language to use when dealing with sensitive issues such as this.

“conveying terms such as ‘deporting’, ‘fleeing’ or ‘displaced’correctly in the translation is crucial with a view to ensuring the validity ofthe responses (Figures 3 and 4). The word ‘displaced’ implies that respond-ents have had to move against his or her will—that they have been expelledor forced to flee their home or homeland, typically because of war, persecu-tion or natural disaster. Conveying this dimension in the translation willensure that the distinction is preserved with the concept of moving forother reasons such as work or marriage.”

If I am using translation for the questionnaires or the platform, I have to make sure that when the French words are translated into the newcomers mother tongue, it is not interpreted into words that could be potentially offensive or upsetting.

Another great resource for this subject is the paper titled:

Language learning in the context of migration and integration – Challenges and options for adult learners

BY Verena PLUTZAR and Monika RITTER, Vienna

This paper is an interstice perspective on adult language learning in the context of migration. It talks about literacy and language. I think what I have learnt from reading through

“Communicating well is especially fundamental at the beginning of the process of integration. Migrants experience a phase of disorientation and helplessness. Being unable to communicate intensifies this feeling and, if it is not handled well, the migrant may withdraw and his or her chance of getting to grips with the new language early on may be lost. For these reasons, in the Language and Qualifications Portfolio for Migrants and Refugees the questions are in 9 languages: Arabic, Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian, English, French, Turkish, Farsi, Kurdish, Russian and finally German. Experience shows that migrants want to work with the questions in the target language because they know that they have to learn it, but they need the translation in their first language because they don’t always understand everything, and understanding is a crucial part of the learning process. “ Verena PLUTZAR and Monika RITTER, Vienna


My decision to incorporate pictures or pictograms within my questionnaire and using as little writing as possible is due to the fact that I want to make sure my questionnaire is understood and clear, If I use pictures to ask someone about their competency with computers and they can tick either a little person frustrated with a computer or a little person enjoying using a computer then it will be much easier to collect the information I need. The questionnaire will also be a more appealing activity for the children to participate in if they do not have to worry about trying to battle with words. I will have to use some words but I would like them to be kept to a minimum.

Final Questions for Questionnaires 

Newcomers questions:

  1. How confident are you using a computer?
  2. Which things would help you when you start school?
  3. What level is your French?
  4. How do you feel about starting a new school?

French Students questions:

  1. How confident are you using a computer?
  2. How would you welcome a new person into your school?
  3. What is your school currently doing to help integrate newcomers?
  4. If your school had a new helpful website, what would be good to have on that website?