The popularization of the sciences in Hungarian had deep traditions. The first periodical monthly magazine, the Natural Science Journal (Természettudományi Közlöny) started 129 years ago and its legal successor the World of Nature (Természet Világa), is nowadays the oldest existing hungarian printed media and also the world's third oldest magazine of its kind.

During the fifties maybe the only positive influence of the communist regime was, that it emphasized the scientific education and knowledge. This was present in the increasing number of different popular science publications, the growing of the scientific and technical columns in the daily and weekly press and the appearance of a science journalist generation.

Since the influence of the market reforms the role of science education sterted to decrease. At the same time the generation of science journalist formed during the former time, retired and there was not enough young journalists to replace them, so less professionals remained in this field.

After the change of the political system many universities, privat schools and courses sterted to training journalism but their programs do not contain science journalism. Under such conditions the selforganisation of science writers is extremely important for the survival of our profession. The first independent professional association in the Central-Eastern European region, the Club of Hungarian Science Journalists, which was formed in 1990 (under the name of Chamber of Hungarian Science Journalists) two years ago started a special course for training science and environmental journalism.

In the one semester-course students and young graduates of natural sciences, agricultural, medical and technical faculties can take part. The teachers of the course are practising science journalists and scientists. Until now two groups with 20-20 students finished the course. Among them two-three people from every group work regularly in the press and in the science programs of the electronic media.

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Training science journalists in Hungary

István Palugyai  

The popularization of the sciences in Hungarian had deep traditions. The first periodical monthly magazine, the Natural Science Journal (Természettudományi Közlöny) started 129 years ago and its legal successor the World of Nature (Természet Világa), is nowadays the oldest existing hungarian printed media and also the world's third oldest magazine of its kind.

During the fifties maybe the only positive influence of the communist regime was, that it emphasized the scientific education and knowledge. This was present in the increasing number of different popular science publications, the growing of the scientific and technical columns in the daily and weekly press and the appearance of a science journalist generation.

Since the influence of the market reforms the role of science education sterted to decrease. At the same time the generation of science journalist formed during the former time, retired and there was not enough young journalists to replace them, so less professionals remained in this field.

After the change of the political system many universities, privat schools and courses sterted to training journalism but their programs do not contain science journalism. Under such conditions the selforganisation of science writers is extremely important for the survival of our profession. The first independent professional association in the Central-Eastern European region, the Club of Hungarian Science Journalists, which was formed in 1990 (under the name of Chamber of Hungarian Science Journalists) two years ago started a special course for training science and environmental journalism.

In the one semester-course students and young graduates of natural sciences, agricultural, medical and technical faculties can take part. The teachers of the course are practising science journalists and scientists. Until now two groups with 20-20 students finished the course. Among them two-three people from every group work regularly in the press and in the science programs of the electronic media.

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