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Budapest Semesters in Mathematics Education (St. Olaf)
Budapest, Hungary (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms:
Program Terms: Fall,
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Homepage: Click to visit
Restrictions: Gustavus applicants only
Budget Sheets Fall,
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Dates / Deadlines:
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Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring 2021 09/15/2020 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.
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Fact Sheet:
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Program Partner:
St. Olaf College
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Program Term(s):
Semester only
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Minimum Class Standing:
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Minimum GPA:
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Previous Language Study Req?:
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Language of Instruction:
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Language courses offered:
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Meet Language Reqt in One Semester?:
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Housing Options:
Apartment (Shared), Homestay
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Areas of Study:
Education, Humanities, Mathematics Program Design: Group based, Study Center, Theme based
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Additional Program Options:
Internship (with credit transfer), Practicum/Apprenticeship
Program Description:
Program Description:

Budapest Semesters in Mathematics Education (BSME)

Bridge over the Danube

Budapest Semesters in Mathematics Education (BSME) is a semester-long program in Budapest, Hungary, designed for undergraduates and recent graduates interested in the learning and teaching of secondary mathematics. BSME was conceived by the founders of Budapest Semesters in Mathematics (BSM), and the two programs share a common goal—to experience the mathematical and general culture of Hungary. BSME is specifically intended for students who are not only passionate about mathematics, but also the teaching of mathematics.

Home to eminent mathematicians such as Paul Erdos, John von Neumann, and George Pólya, Hungary has a long tradition of excellence in mathematics education. In the Hungarian approach to learning and teaching, a strong and explicit emphasis is placed on problem solving, mathematical creativity, and communication. Students learn concepts by working on problems with complexity and structure that promote perseverance and deep reflection. These mathematically meaningful problems emphasize procedural fluency, conceptual understanding, logical thinking, and connections between various topics. Teachers carefully sequence such problems to provide focus and coherence to their lessons. For every lesson, an overarching goal is for students to learn what it means to engage in mathematics and to feel the excitement of mathematical discovery.

The BSME instructors will follow their own mathematical upbringing in Hungary and will bring a creative spirit to the program. They will challenge our participants to take part in creating, rather than just learning, the material. All courses will be taught in English, and BSME instructors have had experience teaching both at the secondary level and college level. Class sizes will be small. BSME classes will be held at the College International Budapest, near the city center, together with other study abroad programs (including BSM).

In BSME, participants will immerse themselves in mathematical exploration to experience first-hand learning in the Hungarian approach; then they will investigate how to bring this pedagogy into their own future classrooms. They will observe Hungarian mathematics classrooms and will have the opportunity to plan and teach their own lessons to Hungarian students (in English). The BSME courses are taught by Hungarian teacher scholars (in English) who bring a creative spirit and challenge each participant to deeply engage with the material. Above all, participants will enjoy a shared experience with other passionate future teachers, forming a rich support network and professional community that will extend beyond their time in Budapest.

We welcome undergraduates and recent graduates who are interested in teaching middle school or high school mathematics. Participants must be in their second year of college or above by the time they enter BSME. Participants may include, but are not limited to, students who are:
  • currently pursuing secondary mathematics teaching license at their home institutions,
  • planning to pursue other paths to mathematics licensure such as a master’s program or alternative certification programs, or
  • simply curious about learning and teaching of mathematics, particularly the student-centered approach.
We expect BSME students who are mathematically strong. Regardless, the mathematical content of our courses will have a “low threshold, high ceiling” nature, i.e., accessible without a lot of prerequisite knowledge, but offering possibilities for very rich exploration. This is important, since we want our future teachers to understand that all students can have an authentic experience of mathematics.

While in Budapest, you will be renting apartments from private Hungarian landlords or staying with Hungarian host families. All BSME residences are within easy reach of the BSME campus using the convenient and inexpensive public transportation. Program staff in Budapest will coordinate housing assignments, and they will help students with any housing situations. Specific questions on housing should be directed to the BSME Budapest Office.

More information at the BSME website >>>

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