European Dimension of Legal Education. A comparative study of the Romanian Law curricula and EU Law syllabus

AuthorBrindusa Camelia Gorea
PositionAssociated Professor, PhD, 'Dimitrie Cantemir' University of Targu-Mures
European Integration - Realities and Perspectives
European Dimension of Legal Education.
A comparative study of the Romanian Law Curricula and EU Law Syllabus
Brindua Camelia Gorea
Abstract: Our purpose is to provide a detailed view on the European legal education system in Romania.
There are few papers on EU legal education policy in Romania. We try to fill this gap in some extend, as a
part of a larger research we conducted in the past 3 years. Our s ources of evidence were: the Romanian
legislation; a representative number of law curricula and EU law syllabus and a res earch survey of Romanian
students, EU law professors and legal practitioners. We found out that the “traditional” Law specialization is
more desir ed by the potential students than the European Law specialization. Nevertheless, Romanian law
schools have enough di scretion to introduce more EU law disciplines. By targeting the weak parts of the EU
legal education system, our s tudy may reveal its benefits to law professors, legal researchers, responsible
factors within the Romanian law departments and even to the Romanian legislator. This paper provides a
short explanation of the ascension and development of EU legal studies in Romania, an overview of the key
issues in the law curricula and the EU law syllabus and r ecommendations on the reforming the EU legal
education in Romania.
Keywords: EU legal studies; legal education policy; curricular choices
1. Introduction
On January 1
2007, Romania joined the European Union, along with Bulgaria. It was the latest
expansion of the EU, considered by the European Commission as part of the same wave (the fifth) i.e.
enlargement of the European Union in 2004.
The Romanian Constitution (§ 32 (6) – “Right to education”) warranties the autonomy of any
university. Nevertheless, EU legal education – like any other form of public education – is, to some
extent, under state’s control and command. The academic autonomy and discretion is not
unconditional; universities have to follow the national policy of public education. Likewise, the
academic teaching staff is following state decision and has to comply with state regulations. On the
other hand, the teachers are subordinated to the universities in a lower extent being just their
employees; regarding the way of teaching, they enjoy almost full discretion.
Although Romanian higher education institutions are independent, autonomous entities, the Romanian
state imposes the minimum standards to provide a certain quality of academic studies.
First of all, the general frame of the educational system is set by the Romanian Constitution and the
organic law on education, No 1 / 2011. Nevertheless, the kind of normative information needed for
this study is to be found not in such general laws, but in lower-ranking provisions like governmental
and ministerial acts, emphasizing and interpreting the normative acts (Tomuleiu et al. 2010).
Moreover, in view of the academic education, in 2005 was established The Romanian Agency for
Quality Assurance in Higher Education (RAQAHE), an autonomous public institution of national
Associated Professor, PhD, “ Dimitrie Cantemir” University of Targu-Mures, 3-5 Bodoni Sandor Street, Targu-Mures,
Romania, +(40) 744357878. Corresponding author:

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