University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine

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The University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine (UASVM) has its origins in Romania’s first agronomic school, the Agricultural Institute at Pantelimon, established in 1852 and situated on the outskirts of Bucharest. In the succeeding years, the progressive expansion of its portfolio led to the inclusion of veterinary education and forestry subjects, and by 1948 it had become the Agronomic Institute of Bucharest. By that time it consisted of four faculties. From 1952 the institution functioned as the Nicolae Bălcescu Agronomic Institute, Bucharest (NBAI), which eventually incorporated land reclamation amongst its faculties. In October 1992 NBAI became today’s University of Agronomic Sciences and Veterinary Medicine, and was recognised as such in 1995 under the order of the Ministry of Education and Science, no. 5590/1995. By 2000, with the addition of biotechnologies and management, economic engineering in agriculture, and rural development, UASVM had grown to today’s seven faculties. The main faculty activities and administrative centre of UASVM are located at the University’s Herăstrău Campus, while the main activities of the faculty of veterinary medicine are situated more centrally in Bucharest. Through the faculty of management, economic engineering in agriculture and rural development, the University also has two branches outside Bucharest, while the assets owned by UASVM enable its scientific research and didactic activities to benefit from locations in Buzău county and the Bucharest-Ilfov area.

UASVM functions in a higher education system that includes 112 public (state) and private higher education institutions, divided equally between each category. As a public university, according to Romanian higher education law UASVM is independent and autonomous. The university is therefore responsible for its own self-government, and for the implementation of its own strategies and development policies. However, this autonomy is exercised within the general provisions of national legislation, and with regard to any constraints or parameters imposed by the former Ministry of Education, Research, Youth and Sport (MECTS), or the new Ministry for Higher Education and Scientific Research, or by the Executive Agency for Higher Education and Research, Development and Innovation Funding (UEFISCDI), or by the national accreditation body, the Romanian Agency for Quality Assurance in Higher Education (ARACIS). In the view of the IEP team, in practice, this results in constraints on the autonomy of the university.

Under the provisions of the new National Education Law, adopted for implementation as from January 2011, higher education institutions (HEIs) have been classified into three groups: advanced research universities; teaching and research universities; and teaching universities. UASVM is one of twenty-nine HEIs in the first of these categories. In addition to the classification and diversification reforms, the university is subject to a new system for ranking study programmes and academic disciplines. In terms of the public financing of universities, the team understood that under the new legal dispensation state funding now reflects the 2011 institutional classification exercise and the programme ranking process, with funding streams consisting of core and additional funding, as prescribed by UEFISCDI criteria, and with extra funding possible for research-oriented universities.

Also at national level, the IEP team noted that Romania has been a signatory to the Bologna declaration since 1999. In 2004, legislation was passed in support of implementation of the Bologna Process, with national measures being adopted. Individual universities were required to take steps towards implementing the principles and objectives of the Bologna Process. Since 2005, higher education study programmes have been organised on the basis of three cycles (Bachelor; Master; and PhD/Doctorate) and aligned to the European Qualifications Framework. The ECTS system and Diploma Supplement have also been made mandatory for institutions.

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