London Metropolitan University Research Institutes

The concept of the European dimension in Hungarian adolescents

Author(s) Ákos Münnich and Csilla Csukonyi  
Publisher CiCe Publications  
Year 2001  
Editor A. Ross, Learning for Democratic Europe  
Language English  
Age group -  
Emphasising the concept of European identity to adolescents is of great importance, because these young people are members of societies in transition who need to understand the basic values of democracy on which Europe is built. Many European countries are developing or rethinking their curricula in relation to issues of European citizenship, identity and the challenges of living in diverse societies. In Hungary, a qualitative change is expected through democratic transitions as the country becomes a member of the European Union. The Hungarian Ministry of Education is therefore is supporting our research project The Development of Democratic Values and the European Dimension in Adolescence. Our first step was a pilot study that assumed that, in addition to the educational system, societal transitions play an important role in value-formation through their influence on children's social orientation and motivational constructs. We took it as understood that institutional socialisation and social integration affect value formation: it therefore seemed important to highlight Hungarian institutional socialisation processes which promote or block the development of European identity. This paper presents the results of this research on democratic and civic values, the components of the European dimension, and their relations to adolescents' motivational constructs and their tendencies towards individualism and collectivism as social orientation.

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