Talent management

Talent management

Talent management
The university and the notion of talent management are in essence inseparable. After all, what else would be the point of university-related work if not the establishment of connections between talented young people and instructors equipped with knowledge and experience? A well-functioning higher education sector is capable of developing a system in which young people in search of knowledge can find the right institution, major and instructors most compatible with their interests with relative ease.

A well-functioning higher education institution can recognise talent in its students. It is capable of offering an encouraging, intellectually inspiring environment where the atmosphere of mutual interest and healthy competition allow the talents of students to unfold in the most productive way possible. Such an institution can bring the best out of its students and adequately evaluate and reward real academic performance.

Traditional avenues for talent management at the Faculty:

  • Colleges for advanced studies,
  • Scientific Students’ Associations
  • Tutoring,
  • Honoratior status

The first college dedicated to talent management was the József Eötvös College founded by Baron Loránd Eötvös in 1895. At the time of its founding, the college had numerous links to the Faculty of Humanities of the Royal University of Hungary, and is closely linked with the Faculty to this day. Altogether two-thirds of the members of the university’s prestigious college for advanced studies, József Eötvös College, are humanities majors. Our talented students have the chance to conduct academic work at the college’s research centres that extends beyond their university studies and allows them to delve deeper into the material in a way that suits their talents and interests. Members of the College must meet strict academic requirements: they are required to complete courses complementing their university programmes and fulfil the academic requirements laid out by the research centre in question. In addition to being required to complete their research projects, the College requires that students enrolling there hold a certificate of language proficiency and have a minimum average of “Good” in their university studies. The opportunity of students enrolled at the College to acquire widen-ranging knowledge is supported by more than just the constant interactions between humanities and science majors. Students also have the option of attending various events such as Eötvös Wednesdays, the Eötvös Conference, Drama Circles, Eötvös Days and the Festival of Colleges for advanced studies.

The traditional venues of individual academic work are the Scientific Students’ Associations (TDK) present in every institute of the Faculty as well as within numerous academic fields. The primary aim of these associations is to provide an organised framework for students’ individual and group research activities. Work conducted with the Scientific Students’ Associations is actually a simulation of the public life of a given academic field by having students defend the research papers they prepare in strict academic forums. These associations give talented students the chance to conduct far more in-depth research activities than in their regular university studies and write and debate research papers with the supervision of teachers specialising in the given field, presenting their results to academic boards. They also give ambitious students the chance to get to know more about the methodology of high-level academic research and acquire the practical skills that are vital for research in the humanities. Students who put together the best papers get to take part in the biennial National Conference of Scientific Students' Associations. The best papers presented at the conference are critiqued by two renowned academics of the given field to which the students must respond in the form of a public presentation. The academic quality of the papers prepared for a Scientific Students’ Association is at the level of, or exceeds that expected from a thesis. The prestige of participating in the National Conference of Scientific Students' Associations is reflected by the fact that the best papers are automatically accepted as a thesis. A good performance within the association can also be an advantage when applying for a PhD programme. For the latest updates, visit the ELTE BTK TDK Facebook page.

The university’s Academic Regulations for Students names tutoring and honoratior training as separate forms of individual talent management.

Tutoring is a unique method of education designed to enhance the talents of students with outstanding qualities, deepen their knowledge in the academic field of their choosing and help with the development of their academic research skills. It involves the fulfilment of uniquely-tailored academic requirements on the basis of a uniquely-tailored work or research plan and with the support and guidance of a tutor, an instructor who is in personal contact with, aids, motivates and monitors the progress of the student (see Section 26 of the Academic Regulations for Students). The responsibilities of a tutor are similar to those of a topic supervisor in a doctoral programme. Tutoring involves the fulfilment of the requirements of their major laid out in the curriculum or the completion of study units outside their major – while being exempt from prerequisites – by completing a unique course made available to them specifically whose contents or number of contact hours significantly exceed those of the course required for the completion of the given study units. The tutoring programme also gives undergraduate students the opportunity to complete the study units of a Master’s programme. What sets tutoring apart from a uniquely-tailored study arrangement is that entry into the former is far more difficult. The study plan compiled by applicants together with a tutor of their choosing is assessed by a committee put together with this specific purpose, which then approves the tutoring programme for a maximum duration of two semesters. Students taking part in a tutoring programme – like their supervising instructor – must compile a detailed report on their progress in the study plan each semester.

The honoratior status is the highest form of individual talent management. The essence of the programme is that students must apply for a minor or specialisation track worth 50 credits in addition to the compulsory study material worth 180 credits. The honoratior programme is free of charge. Like the tutoring programme, it, too, is subject to application, with admission granted to students showing the most outstanding levels of talent.


The demonstrator status is a well-known form of talent management. This status, too, is subject to application and can be held usually for a period of one semester. The calls for applications announced by the individual departments allow for students with outstanding qualities to be employed by the department with the aim of integrating them into the everyday life of a department or institute. Demonstrators can carry out office-related or “assistant lecturer”-type tasks, contribute to lectures by preparing or managing the materials or tools needed, help organise events, help the freshmen starting the given major, or, with the help of their mentor instructor, may take up responsibilities in connection with the research projects of the given department. The demonstrator status is a good opportunity to develop and foster classic master-apprentice relationships, and can therefore often be considered the “anti-chamber” of a doctoral programme.

Each semester, the Academic Committee of the Student Union of the Faculty of Humanities invites applications from those who pursue active academic work in addition to their curriculum-mandated studies. This is the Academic Scholarship Application (TÖP). It is aimed at supporting students interested in academic work, which entails financial support as well as providing graduate students with opportunities to publish papers. Applicants are required to submit a paper with a length of 40,000-80,000 characters. This may be a paper previously prepared for another research project or a new article prepared specifically for the TÖP application. Students have the option of working alone, but many choose to prepare their paper with the assistance of an advisor instructor. One key criterion of the application is that the paper submitted cannot be a thesis already announced by a student, this includes topics partially related to an already announced thesis. Students can, however, submit other works they have used in their curriculum-mandated studies – such as an updated/expanded seminar paper – provided that it meets the formal requirements laid out in the call for applications.

The various university applications also play a key role in the selection and support of talented students. The various mobility applications assist students in gaining international experience. These primarily include Erasmus, CEEPUS and inter-university cooperation programmes.