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We are in the same boat! – The Hungarian network of faculty developers has laid its cornerstone at Corvinus

2024-06-25 15:32:00

On 24 May, the community of Hungarian faculty developers, which has been operating as a formal network since this year, held its first formal meeting at the Gellért Campus in a ground-breaking non-conference, opening a new era in the education profession. The event also saw the launch of the new working group on faculty development of the Hungarian Rectors' Conference (HRC), whose Vice-President is Kata Dósa, head of the Centre for Educational Quality Enhancement and Methodology.
Budapesti Corvinus Egyetem

A network of centres for quality higher education around the world: 

In the 1970s, the USA was the first country to call for a network of centres for faculty development in order to share and jointly develop the best teaching methodologies and promote the creation of educational innovations. 

In the decades since then, such networks with similar functions have been established in many countries, including Australia, countries in the Middle and Far East (e.g. Palestine, Taiwan and Japan), in various parts of Europe (e.g. UK, Croatia, Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, etc.), Canada, New Zealand and even in some regions of Africa (e.g. South Africa and Egypt).  

2020 as the start of Hungarian networking: 

The establishment of the Hungarian Faculty Development Community was initiated by the Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church in 2020, and was quickly joined by the Budapest Business University and the Corvinus University of Budapest. The aim of the three founders was nothing less than to establish a cross-institutional cooperation that would provide a platform for discussing common problems, disseminating and exchanging educational best practices, and channeling the Hungarian faculty development community into the international circulation. 

A milestone in the faculty development in Hungary: 

The informal network, which has been growing in recent years, reached an important turning point in 2024. From this year onwards, it will continue to operate as a formal organisation, a working group of the HRC’s Higher Education Pedagogy and Educational Technology Forum, which will guarantee the long-term operation of the community and could further strengthen the existing cooperation. For this reason, the first face-to-face meeting of the working group took place at this year’s inaugural meeting of the Faculty Developers Forum at Corvinus, where 28 institutional representatives were present to define the organisational foundations and operational conditions. 

At the same time, formalisation opens the door to new opportunities: in addition to greater visibility abroad, the Hungarian higher education sector can now join international organisations such as ICED – International Consortium for Educational Development, which currently links 27 national faculty developer networks. For this reason, it is of particular importance to our institution that Corvinus could be not only a participant but also a forerunner in establishing the Hungarian network, which includes almost all actors of the Hungarian higher education sector – what’s more, the official start of the HRC working group could also take place within the walls of our new campus. Negotiations to join the global network are already underway. 

We have overturned everything we thought about higher education conferences: 

The event was attended not only by colleagues delegated to the HRC working group, but also by other staff from the learning and teaching centres of each institution. This was a great opportunity for networking within the community. The connection of colleagues was facilitated by innovative elements in the programme that had not been used before, such as the ‘We are in the same boat’ small group problem-focused discussions and the ‘Workshop-in-a-box’ workshop demonstration sessions. In addition, the conference also addressed key themes such as ways to increase organisational visibility and prevent burnout. Besides, participants had the chance to explore the innovative spaces of our new educational venue with the help of a guided campus tour. 

Who are the faculty developers? 

Specialists who are well versed in education as a profession and science; with their knowledge and experience, they can see through its various segments, and they intervene in the necessary points of university teaching with sufficient competence and in a partnership manner. Their work is based on scientific research, which is also used in the development of educational innovations. 

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GEN.:2024.07.15. - 03:12:28