In Hungary, Geography final examinations can be taken in ten foreign languages within bilingual and nationality (ethnic minority) secondary education. This linguistic diversity is one of the less-studied, often neglected values of the Hungarian public education system. Around 20,000 students in more than 120 schools take part in dual language education, in which Geography is offered in Croatian, English, French, German, Italian, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Slovakian or Spanish.


Since the introduction of the two-tier Matura examination system in the mid-2000s, Geography has been one of the most common choices in foreign language, showing the subject’s prestige and popularity among students. Preparing students for final exams is quite challenging as it requires teachers to align subject teaching goals of the Geography curriculum with language skills development, while the contexts and pedagogical practices of foreign language Geography teaching greatly vary among the school programmes. The distribution of exams by location and language reveals not only some key demographic trends and patterns of Hungary but the nationwide success of dual language education as well.


As final exam requirements are about to change soon, it is worth reflecting on the achievements and challenges of 17 years of foreign language Geography teaching within the two-tier examination system. This paper and presentation will explore the factors influencing the practice of teaching Geography in foreign languages in Hungarian secondary schools through the geographical analysis of intermediate and advanced level exam data provided by the Educational Authority of Hungary, supported by thematic maps and the presenter’s pedagogical experience.

8th Internatonal Scientific Conference Geobalcanica 2022: Proceedings.

Konferencia helye, ideje: Skopje, Macedónia: Geobalcanica Society (2022) pp. 377-383., 7 p.


Kapusi János