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Verity Campbell-Barr
Janet Georgeson
Anikó Nagy Varga

The Role of Higher Education in Forming Loving Early Childhood Educators in Hungary and England

Keywords: early childhood educators, professionalism, emotions, Higher Education

Those who work in early childhood education are central to securing the overall qualityof servicesand particularly children’s experiences. Discussions on qualifications for working in early childhood education often focus on comparisons of structural features, such as qualification level, with much emphasis on Degree Level training. However, existing research demonstrates that those who work in early childhood education often privilege attitudinal features in guiding their work, raising questions over what attitudes are required for early childhood education and how they are developed. This paper presents a mixed method study that considers the attitudes advocated by students undertaking their early childhood education training in England and Hungary and the role of Higher Education in developing them. Whilst identifying a range of attitudes we focus on emotional competence, exploring the differences identified between the views of students in the two countries. We explore how consideration of the cultural context of the two countries can begin to offer some explanations for the differences identified, particularly in regard to policy, history and language and the extent to which these topics should be covered in Higher Education.


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