The Erasmus Programme is the EU programme to support education, training, youth and sport. It was established in 1987 and due to its success was extended for the period 2014-2020 under the name Erasmus+ and with the aim to provide opportunities for over 4 million Europeans to study, train, gain experience, and volunteer abroad.
The Programme was named after Desiderius Erasmus of Rotterdam – a Dutch philosopher who travelled, lived, studied and worked in several cities in Europe – the greatest learning centres in late 15th – early 16th c. At the same time ERASMUS is an acronym that means European Region Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students.
The Erasmus+ Programme enables university students to spend an integrated period of study at a higher education institution in another participating country. The period is strictly specified by the EC as lasting a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 10 calendar months within one academic year. The Erasmus+ Programme provides students with access to other European higher education systems without having to pay any fees for:
- Enrolment at the hosting institution
- Access to laboratories
- Library use
The Erasmus+ Programme guarantees full academic recognition of the period spent at the hosting institution. This is made possible through the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). ECTS credits are based on the workload which is needed to achieve expected learning outcomes during the students’ period of study.
Erasmus+ student mobility for studies is carried out in the framework of prior bilateral (inter-institutional) agreements between home and host institutions, both of which must be holders of an ERASMUS University Charter.