The University of Bucharest is rich in history and has been actively contributing to the development and modernisation of Romanian education, science and culture since 1694. A brief chronological history is explained below:

1694: Constantin Brâncoveanu, ruler of Wallachia, founds the Academy of Saint Sava in Bucharest, at the advice of Constantin Cantacuzino, a brilliant scholar and humanist educated at Padua. Lectures were delivered in Greek.

1776: Alexandru Ipsilanti, ruler of Wallachia, reforms the curriculum of the Saint Sava Academy which starts teaching courses of French, Italian and Latin. New buildings for the Academy are erected between 1776 and 1779.

1855: Carol Davila creates the National School of Medicine and Pharmacy.

1859: Establishment of the Faculty of Law.

1863: Establishment of the Faculties of Sciences and Letters.

1864: Prince Alexandru Ioan Cuza creates the University of Bucharest by bringing together the Faculties of Law, Sciences and Letters as one single institution (decree no. 756 of 4/16 July 1864).

1869: The Faculty of Medicine is created through the transformation of the National School of Medicine and Pharmacy.

1916-1918: Closure of the University of Bucharest as a result of German occupation during the First World War.

1934-1936: Construction of the Law Faculty building.

1948: Passing of the Education Reform Law, which applies the Soviet model to higher education, leading to a thorough restructuring of the University of Bucharest. The Faculties of Theology, Human Medicine and Veterinary Medicine are detached from UB. The higher education institutes are dismantled and new institutes subordinated to the Academy of the Romanian People's Republic are created.

1990: The beginning of a renewal process for the University of Bucharest. New faculties departments and research centres are created, the teaching process is radically reorganized, and the number of students considerably increases. There is also a spectacular increase in the international contacts and co-operation projects of the University of Bucharest.

1994: Celebration of 300 years since the foundation of the Princely Academy and 130 years since the establishment of the modern structures of the University of Bucharest.

1996: Adoption of the University of Bucharest's Charter.

2010: The University of Bucharest now comprises 19 faculties, with over 30,000 full-time students of whom 1000 foreign students, and with 3,000 teaching positions.

Narrative History  

The University of Bucharest was founded by the Decree no. 765 of July 4th,1864 by Prince Alexandru Ioan Cuza and is a leading academic centre and a significant point of reference in society. The University was founded by uniting the Faculty of Law, the Faculty of Science and the Faculty of Letters. Later on, the Faculty of Chemistry (1948), the Faculty of Biology (1958), the Faculty of Physics (1962) and the Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science (1962) were created and joined the University of Bucharest.

The inter-war period was favorable for the development of the university - the seven faculties (which included the Faculty of Medicine and Pharmacy) had over 15.000 students in 1925. The teaching staff included some of the most prestigious Romanian intellectuals, who were genuine public figures. Unfortunately, beginning with the late 1930s the University was affected by political turmoil, war, and especially by the persecution against teachers and students, first by anti-Semitic laws between 1938-1944 and then, after 1947, by the policies of the communist regime. 

Between 1968-1989, under the impact of the communist regime, the higher education field was marked by politicization and a more technical approach. The evolution of higher education reflected the political system in Romania – the system was restructured following the Soviet model (this began in 1945) and then it developed towards the partial recovery of national pre-communist traditions. The political criteria permanently prevailed and influenced the structure, the staff, the selection of students and graduates, the changes concerning specialties and so on.

The social sciences especially, which were controlled and censored by the regime, were prevented from developing at an international level. Therefore, at the end of the regime in 1989, the University of Bucharest included only six faculties, with about 8.000 students.

Since the 1990s, the University of Bucharest has undergone a complex process of revival, setting up new faculties, reorganizing the higher education field, redefining priorities for the institutional development, both at a national and international level. In 2000, the University of Bucharest comprised 18 faculties and over 20.000 students. Currently, the University of Bucharest comprises 19 faculties and 2 autonomous departments and over 30.000 students of which approximately 35% are enrolled in the master's and doctoral programmes. The University of Bucharest is one of the most important research centers in the country, currently comprising over 50 institutes, departments, research centers, and 5 research platforms.

In 2000, the University of Bucharest was awarded the Diploma of Excellence by the Ministry of Education. In 2007, the survey conducted by the newspaper The Times Higher Education Supplement placed the University of Bucharest in its TOP 500, the UB being the only university in the country included in this classification. Furthermore, in April 2009, the External Institutional Evaluation Committee of the Romanian Agency for Quality Assurance in Higher Education (ARACIS) gave the University of Bucharest the qualification certificate indicating a high degree of trust in the institution regarding the management of the institution concerning the education programs and the academic standards (http://www.old.unibuc.ro/n/despre/Evaluari_nationale_si_internationale.php) - (Appendix no. 3).

In 2011, University of Bucharest was ranked by the Ministry of Education, Research, Youth and Sport as the first university for advanced research and education - Order of the Ministry of Education, Research, Youth and Sport no. 5262/2011 regarding the results of the classification of universities (http://chestionar.uefiscdi.ro).

The ranking process of the universities generated, in the next stage, the ranking of the study programs. The main study fields at the University of Bucharest were ranked in 2011  as follows:

  • Category A: Business Administration, Social Care, Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Law, Philology, Philosophy, Physics, Geography, Geology, Geological Engineering, Computer Acience, History, Mathematics, Sociology, Cultural Studies, Education Sciences, Communication Sciences, Environmental Sciences, Political Science, Theology;
  • Category B: Administrative Sciences, Psychology, Marketing.
In the University Charter, approved in July 2011, the University of Bucharest is declared an advanced research and education institution, whose mission of training, research and social development defines the institutional functionality within a national and European context.







Last updated at: October 18, 2013.