6.5 Cross-border learning mobility
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Section 91. (1) of the Act CXC of 2011 on National Public Education (2011. évi CXC. törvény a nemzeti köznevelésről) states that 'a Hungarian citizen may study abroad without permission and is able to complete his/her education in a foreign educational institution'.
The 'Mid-term Strategy of Grade Change in Higher Education'
In 2016, the Hungarian Government published a mid-term strategy named 'Grade Change in Higher Education' (Fokozatváltás a felsőoktatásban, középtávú szakpolitikai stratégia) which is a document about the problems of the Hungarian higher education system, and set development goals.
In this document, the internationalisation of higher education also appears: the government would like to invite more students from abroad to Hungary. Between 2010-2015, the proportion coming from abroad increased by 53% among full-time students.
There is also an increasing number of Hungarian students who travel and learn abroad due to international mobility programmes (like Tempus, CEEPUS, Socrates/Erasmus, LLP, Erasmus+). The government also emphasises opportunities for part-time training or mobility for ethnic students in their mother country.
The government’s main aim is to encourage participation in international mobility programmes. It is important (according to the strategy) to make it possible to get qualifications that fit better to the requirements of the labour market. Furthermore, higher education institutions must become competitive in the international higher education system.
One of the most significant mobility programs of Tempus Public Foundation (Tempus Közalapítvány) is Erasmus+, which aims to increase the quality of education in institutions involved in the program by supporting the professional development of students and teachers. (For more information about Tempus Public Foundation, please see sub-chapter 2.5 Cross-border mobility programmes.) Institutions participating in the program must draw up a 'European Development Plan', which defines the institutional mobility strategy. The target groups of the program are, among others:
- university students, college students,
- vocational students,
- professionals working in education.
The Campus Mundi scholarship (Campus Mundi ösztöndíjak) program is a mobility program whose primary goal is to ensure that Hungarian higher education is actively involved in international mobility processes. Within this framework, Hungarian higher education students can participate in foreign training courses. They can get a scholarship [short study trip (from at least 2 days to maximum 30 days) / individual and group / vocational training, part-time training]. The experience gained through foreign training contributes to the improvement of higher education graduates' employability, and to the training of internationally informed, self-conscious Hungarian intellectuals. The scholarship is funded by the European Union, the Hungarian Government and the European Social Fund. The support could be used for the costs of the scholarship.
Mobility language programme for students in secondary education
The Hungarian Government launched the Language Learning Scholarship Programme for Hungarian Students (Külföldi Nyelvtanulási Program) in 2020 in grades 9-11. in secondary schools: 140 000 students will have the opportunity to study abroad twice alone or in a team for two weeks in those countries which language could be learnt as the first foreign language according to the National Core Curriculum (Nemzeti Alaptanterv) (English, German, French, Chinese).
During these two weeks, the students attend intensive language courses through a language school or a school in the other country. The main aim of the project is to motivate students to study foreign languages and to overcome their barriers in using their knowledge in another country. The schools have to apply to this scholarship till the end of September 2019 and the Tempus Public Foundation is responsible for the coordination of the project. The budget of the project is in the frame of the 2019-2027 foreign language strategy, for which 30 000 million HUF (about EUR 100 million) is allocated in the 2022 budget.
In 2020/2021 the Ministry of Human Capacities announced the suspension of the Language Learning Scholarship Programme due to the pandemic situtation. The Programme is going to start in 2023.
There is no policy/programme/project/initiative for promoting mobility in the context of non-formal learning, youth work.
The Mobility Tool+ ('Beszámolás folyamata') created by the European Commission is a web-based tool that enables Erasmus+ participants to make reports and track projects. The Mobility Tool+ programme’s primary goal is to make the participation of the students in Erasmus+ programme completely transparent. One outcome is the final product(s) of the activity determined in the application (it can be a publication/any kind of written material). The other outcome is the financial accounting of students. Therefore, it is a half-quality assurance/half-administrative tool. If the student does not complete the requirements, the National Office of the Erasmus+ programme could demand the already paid scholarship.
In addition, the Tempus Public Foundation, which is responsible for Erasmus+ coordination, reports (éves jelentés) from the year 2007 onwards on the effectiveness of its programmes. Tempus Public Foundation reports on their previous year’s activity. It is a factual summary of their activities. The report examines if their activity reflects the education policy’s goals, provide numbers of students who participated in their scholarships, projects, programmes. There is also a section on the challenges and plans about their activities, so it is a 'self-evaluation' report instead of a strict quality report based on quality criteriums, but it provides transparency.
Revision of the 'Mid-term Strategy of Grade Change in Higher Education'
The State Audit Office of Hungary (Állami Számvevőszék) prepared a report (riport) in 2021 to present the changes in the higher education system since 2012. The report also lists and evaluates the provisions taken for competitiveness and the development of the quality of higher education based on the goals determined in the Strategy. According to the report, only 10% of the students in higher education took part in a mobility programme (the goal is 20% to 2023). The report states that the pandemic situation strongly affects physical mobility programmes because there are many more options to digitally receive international educational experiences.