At the university of Szeged education and psychology have always followed peculiar and characteristic directions. Educational and psychological research trends were formed that from the first moment on offered alternatives to th e teachings of the professors at the University of Budapest. The differences between the positions of the two universities are particularly striking in the case of education: their contradicting opinion on J. F. Herbart's ideas on education is a decisive feature that marks well the difference between the two schools. From the end of the last century most professors from Budapest supported the theory of education called Herbartianism. Its most important characteristic feature was a narrowly intellectual un derstanding of education. Professors of education in Szeged kept visible distance to this theory and also criticized it. They laid their theories on different foundations. Differences in theoretical viewpoints often led to disagreements between the two sc hools, what is more, to discussions in contemporary journals of education.

The school of education and psychology in Szeged was not established without any antecedents. At the University of Kolozsvár, founded in 1872, there was an Institute of Education from the beginning. Psychology, however, did not have its ow n department, and as a result, professors of education had to deal with psychological issues in their lectures too.

The first professor of education in Kolozsvár was Lajos Felméri (1840-1894), who based his educational theory primarily in the works of English and French educationalists. Throughout his lifetime he moderately criticized the ideas of J. F. Herbart. In 1890 he published a book with the title "A Handbook of Educational Sciences", in which he disclosed his educational concept relying on the findings of contemporary Anglo-Saxon educational research. He also showed a vivid interest in psycholog ical factors affecting education and attributed huge importance to the results of contemporary experimental and child psychology. Consequently, we have good reason to call him a forerunner of child psychology-based inductive educational theory.

After the early death of Lajos Felméri, a Lutheran theologian, István Schneller (1847-1939) was appointed as leader of the Institute for Education at the University of Kolozsvár in December 1894. Schneller, unlike Felméri, did not follow A nglo-Saxon traditions, he rather relied on classic German philosophy and protestant theology when forming his own theory of education. He focused his interest on children's ethical development and on the process of how a "wild" nature-bound personality be comes a moral one. He identified three stages of this process: sensual I-dentity, historical I-dentity and pure I-dentity. His conception of moral development reflects the ideas of the German theologian, Schleiermacher, just as Pestalozzi's theory of deve lopment and Károly Böhm's influence, a neo-Kantian philosopher from Kolozsvár. As opposed to adherents of Herbart, who overemphasized the significance of cognitive education, Schneller concentrated on working out an educational theory which aims at the de velopment of the whole personality. He was not only an important theorist but he accomplished remarkable work as a founder of educational institutions: in 1917 he established an alternative school in Kolozsvár. The school with its inner structure and its special programs of study offered distinctive opportunities for promoting individual talents. Schneller's secondary school for practicing teacher trainees did not survive the tragic moment in May 1919 when Rumanian authorities took over the Hungarian Univ ersity of Kolozsvár by military force. Istv n Schneller as the rector of the university had a major influence on the decision that the university eventually was moved to Szeged in the autumn of 1921 after a short temporary stay in Budapest.

After moving to Szeged the old professor of education could only work one more year as the Head of the Institute for Education. The already 75-year-old Schneller asked for a sabbatical leave in the Academic Year of 1922/23 (György Bartók, the philosopher was appointed as a temporary head for this period) and in the end, he retired in December 1923. He still had an enormous influence on the development of educational theory in Szeged, because his former student from Kolozsvár, Sándor Imre ( 1877-1945) followed him as leader of the Institute.

Sándor Imre's name is closely related to the idea of educating for national identity, which was a central motif in his work throughout his lifetime. He succeeded in creating a harmonious combination of exclusively individualistic education al theories and of those concentrating excessively on community education; that is, he integrated individual- and social psychology. Sándor Imre's work can be characterized by the pursuit of synthesis. He published his comprehensive-systematic work on edu cation (The Discipline of Education) in 1928, while he was working in Szeged. He wrote his book primarily for university students and secondary level teacher trainees, and he described the circumstances, mechanisms and methods of schooling in detail. He w as not only concerned about creating an abstract scientific theory, but he also wished to form future teachers' ways of thinking and attitudes by offering a practice-oriented theory for them. In addition, he was enormously active in conveying science in a popular and understandable form: he had something to say for teachers in all types of schools.

It was in the period of S ndor Imre's administration that Béla Tettamanti, an enthusiastic advocate of the education for national identity, worked as a tenured professor at the university. In the journal "Magyar Pedagógia" (Hungarian Educational Science) he exercised harsh criticism on the educational philosophy of Lajos Prohászka, a professor of education from Budapest who based his theory on cultural philosophy. In contrast to Prohászka's "high culture focused" attitude that stresse d the importance of culturally valuable information in teaching, Tettamanti set the education for national identity as an example. This theory relied on social factors and community groups as bases for upbringing.

For the first time in the history of Hungarian higher education an Institute for Educational Psychology was founded at the university of Szeged in 1929. Hildebrand Várkonyi (1888-1972), a Benedictine monk was appointed as its first profess or. (After Sándor Imre left for Budapest in 1934 this new institute was united with the former Institute of Education).

Hildebrand Várkonyi, who graduated in Paris and could be characterized by French orientation, was an excellent lecturer: even students from other faculties attended his readings. He presented the newest trends in psychology of his time (th e ideas of Piaget, Janet, Freud, Jung and Adler) with fantastic enthusiasm. His research interests were focused on psychological questions of education. He supported the movement of "New Education", and the directions of "Reform pedagogy", which placed th e particularities of childhood and children in the centre of attention. He directed the work of the university's elementary school, the Garden School in Újszeged between 1936 and 1940 too, where there were possibilities for trying and testing new ideas an d methods.

In 1940 after Hungary annexed North-Transylvania the "Ferenc József" University was transferred back to Kolozsvár. Most of the professors left Szeged, among others, Hildebrand Várkonyi moved to Kolozsvár too. In 1940 a legally new universi ty named after Miklós Horthy was established in Szeged. At the new university János Mester (1879-1954), a former professor at the Department of Philosophy, became Head of the Institute of Education and remained in office until the Academic Year of 1948-49 . He was primarily concerned with modernizing the content and methods of teacher training. He was also interested in teaching gifted children and in the methodology called learning by doing. His attempt to integrate curriculum contents from the "Arbeitssc hule" (where real manual labour made up an essetial part of the curriculum) into the formal stages of traditional Herbartian educational practice deserves attention. Furthermore, he was an ardent advocate of Italian educational philosophy, he wrote a book on the Italian education system.

The part of the University that remained in Szeged had to be reorganised and there was a need for new professors. In 1941 the Institute for Psychology was established (now as an independent unit), and Cecil Bognár (1883-1967) a Benedictine priest and professor was elected as its first leader. If educational research at the University of Kolozsvár-Szeged can be characterized by intentions to develop alternatives to traditional Herbartian philosophy, then psychological research at the univer sity is marked by an interest in child psychology and development. This could already be detected in Hildebrand Várkonyi's educational-psychological work, and the same is true for Cecil Bognár's research. In his writings he dealt with, among others, the c haracteristic features of school-age children, the types of children and with issues of educational psychology.

In the Academic Year of 1950-51 the Institute for Psychology was merged into the Institute of Education, whose leader at that time had been Béla Tettamanti, the former tenured professor of the university, for already a year.

After the second world war, at the time of the coalition government Béla Tettamanti made an attempt in saving the values of Hungarian educational theories. At the end of the 1940s he was among the first researchers to deal with "socialist education" following a soviet pattern. His most important piece of work after 1945 is his monograph on the history of education, which he could not finish any more.

Béla Tettamanti was followed by György Ágoston in 1959 as Head of the Institute for Education and Psychology. His educational theory emerged from the philosophy of Maxism-Leninism. Later he ran a developmental project, in which he examined the possibilities of establishing a comprehensive secondary school. He has also writings on the history of education and on the history of the university.

The fifties did not favour the development of the former prosperous and manifold directions in education. The branches based on empiricism could start to flourish again only in decades and research in educational theory was also strongly influenced by voluntaristic tendencies of the contemporary communist ideology. However, this was true for all the institutes of higher education in Hungary and not only for Szeged.

The Department of Psychology became independent again in 1970 and its Head was Lajos Duró for twenty years. He was succeeded by Erzsébet Kemény Gyimes and then by Ferenc Erős. Since 1994 Zsuzsanna Vajda has worked as the leader of the Depa rtment.

In the 1970s experiments and research work on the Department of Education were started under the direction of Professor József Nagy in the fields of education that were not controlled by communist ideology any more, and as a result, up-to- date norms and requirements of educational research could be applied. This helped a lot in preserving the quality of research work at the Department of Education and in keeping alive progressive traditions. The theory of programmed teaching, the creation of tests measuring skills and levels of knowledge, the new model of schooling, experiments in restructuring secondary schools and surveys and research on the development of cognitive abilities served as antecedents of the trends determining the present wo rk of our department.

Pukánszky Béla