Department of Educational Sciences and Social Work
The Department of Educational Sciences and Social Work was founded in the spring of 2019 and the first students enrolled from the academic year 2019-2020. It was created with the synergy of the former Department of Primary Education of the University of Patras and the former Department of Social Work of the Technological Educational Institute of Western Greece.
The two Departments that assisted in the creation of the new Department had a long experience each in its scientific and professional field. The Department of Primary education was founded in 1986. The Department of Social Work was established at the former Technological Educational Institute of Patras.
The new Department is a result of the effort to monitor and respond to social developments and cotemporary needs. It aims at updating, improving and evolving the education (of all levels) of both Primary education teachers and social workers. In the case of the latter, the integration of their education in university education (University of Patras) also creates important prospects for the development of a dynamic field of research to understand and serve important social needs in the context of a more systematic and developed Social Policy.
A. The Department of Primary Education
The Department of Primary Education Work commenced operations in October 1986, when the first 80 students enrolled in the Department.
The first 7 faculty members of the Department were:
- Konstantinos Porpodas, Associate Professor
- Maria Mirasgezi, Associate Professor
- Theodoros Mylonas, Assistant Professor
- Jozef Bouzakis, Assistant Professor
- George Ioannidis, Assistant Professor
- Spyros Pantelis, Lecturer
- Pantelis Georgogiannis, Lecturer
During the winter semester of the first year of Department operations (1986-87), because the elected members of the faculty had not yet received their appointments, and in order for the students not to miss a full semester of courses, the Department operated thanks to the voluntary service of faculty members from other University of Patras academic departments. Specifically, during that “critical” first semester of operations (which was marked by a “shutdown” of the Department for more than a month while the Department had neither offices, nor faculty, but an administrative clerk for secretarial duties only), the following courses were taught: 1) Developmental Psychology (Assoc. Professor C. Porpodas, Dept. of Mathematics), 2) Sociology of Education, (Assoc. Professor G. Kontogiannopoulou-Polydoridi, Department of Mathematics), 3) Fundamental Concepts of Mathematics (Lecturer, T. Patronis, Department of Mathematics), 4) Introduction to Philosophy, (Lecturer I. Dellis, Department of Physics), 5) Child Anatomy and Physiology with Elements of Hygiene (Lecturer L. Fari-Kostopoulou, Department of Medicine), 6) Foreign Language (offered by the Foreign Language Teaching Unit).
During these first months of Department operations, the duties of the Chair of the Department were executed by the Vice-Rector of Academic Affairs and Personnel (Prof. I. Misirllis). The Departments’ General Assembly consisted of the following faculty members of the University of Patras (based on the decision of the University Senate): I. Misirlis (Chair, Vice-Rector), Al. Lykourgiotis (Department of Chemistry), C. Porpodas (Department of Mathematics), I. Kosmopoulos (Department of Physics), A. Paschalis (Department of Preschool Education), A. Xiromeriti (Department of Preschool Education).
Following the swearing in of the seven elected faculty members of the Department, procedures were initiated for the self-governance and administration of the Department. Upon an invitation by the Rector V. Proimos, elections were held for Chair and Vice Chair of the Department in May 1987. In these elections, Associate Professor of Psychology C. Porpodas was elected as Chair, and Associate Professor Maria Mirasgezi was elected as Vice-Chair. Administrative Clerk Mr. D. Halkiopoulos was appointed as Secretary of the Department.
B. The Department of Social Work
The establishment and operation of the Department of Social Work begins with the KATEE of Patras in 1977, which was later transformed into Technological Educational Institute of Patras (1981). The Department, finally joined the Technological Educational Institute of Western Greece and in the context of technological education, opened a new chapter for the science of Social Work in our country.