The importance of preparation for citizenship has been recognized for millennia, while education for democracy has been central to pedagogical thinking in Europe and in Hungary for more than a quarter of a century (Crick Report, European Year of Citizenship through Education, EU key competences, modified version of the NCC). Educating a citizenry that is capable of thinking independently, is equipped with critical skills and can deliberate about matters appears in these documents as a definitive goal. The concept of civic competence or citizenship competence indicates a combination of such knowledge, skills, abilities and values that make the individual capable of effectively participating in an everyday life that is based on democratic values as well as in civic society (Hoskins and Crick, 2008, cited by Kinyó, Az állampolgári kompetencia egyes összetevőinek és a közösségi tevékenységformák jellemzőinek vizsgálata 7. és 11. évfolyamos tanulók körében[PhD dissertation: Individual Components of the Competence of Citizenship and an Examination of the Characteristics of Forms of Community Activities Among Students in the 7th to 11th Grades], 2012). The various models of preparation in schools assume that civic knowledge has identifiable elements that can be taught (e.g. texts of legal documents, constitutional principles, the structure of the state); at the same time, civic "knowledge" comprises rather the adoption of attitudes and the practice of certain skills. This study, supported by research data based on survey questions, seeks to discover the degree of prevalence of education for democracy and citizenship in everyday practice, as well as the kinds of problems those affected see in this area and what recommendations they have to address these difficulties.
Our study seeks to outline the defining trends and phenomena of Hungarian public education and teacher training – with a focus on Hungarian history teaching – between 1990 and 2020. The authors were, on various levels and to various degrees, participants, and at times influential actors, in the processes presented in this study. From this, and as a consequence of their convictions, they advocate the aspect of continuity in the interest of maintaining Hungarian traditions, as well as the perspectives of renewal in the interest of implementing new Hungarian and foreign thinking, approaches and innovations.
This mosaic-like overview seeks to outline the main pillars of the context of Hungarian history teaching with the use of fundamental professional literature from the period on pedagogy and history didactics. The focus of the study is history teaching, and for a better understanding of its processes we highlight some important policy decisions and documents. We wish to show the education policy, pedagogical and educational-methodological environment in which the journal articles that provide the backbone of the volume were formulated.