The Baia Mare higher education continues, at the level of contemporary requirements, an old and appreciated academic tradition existent here. Ever since 1388 in Baia Mare there was a school lead by rector Teodoric, well-known man of culture, who had previously taught in Brasov. Historic documents speak about “Schola Rivulina” which functioned in Baia Mare in 1547, and which became a college in 1673, mentioned one hundred years later, in 1773, by Johannes Huber, in his “General Geography”.
The creation in 1748 of the Mining General Inspectorate in Baia Mare leads to the re-organization of the whole mining system. In 1864 the first mining school was created, with a three yearlong course of study, aiming at preparing the staff necessary for the organization and management of mines. This was for a long time the only school in the field in Transilvania. In 1937, the Mining School changes into the School of mining and chemo-metallurgical technical conductors, and in 1945 it becomes the School of Sub-engineers, with a four yearlong course of study, which moved to Brad in 1949, gaining the status of Institute of engineers.
The keeping of certain ethno-linguistic traditions, quite unique in this northern part of the country, as well as the impetuous development of Baia Mare, require the creation, in 1961, of the three-year Pedagogic Institute, with three faculties: Philology, Mathematics, and Natural and Agricultural Sciences, the first step towards the development of the Baia Mare higher education. Some years later, in recognition of the achievements of the mining education in the area and of the industrial necessities, the Institute of Sub-engineers reappears (1969).
The rapid evolution of higher education in Baia Mare was naturally followed by the creation, on October 1st, 1974, of the Higher Education Institute, with two faculties: the Faculty of Pedagogic Education, day courses, with 3 majors: Philology – 4 years, Mathematics – 3 years, Natural and Agricultural Sciences – 3 years, and the Faculty of Technical Education, with 4 majors: Mines, Mining Technological Electromechanics, Nonferrous Metallurgy, Civil, industrial and agricultural constructions, preparing sub-engineers for three years, day courses, and for 4 years, evening courses. On October 1st, 1984, the Baia Mare Higher Education Institute goes under the Patronage of the Polytechnic Institute in Cluj Napoca bearing the name of Institute of Sub-engineers.
In June 1990, the Institute of Sub-engineers regains its autonomy, and returns to the old name of Baia Mare Higher Education Institute. In March 1991, through Governmental Decree, the Higher Education Institute becomes the Baia Mare University, and in 1996 it receives its present name of North University of Baia Mare. The North University of Baia Mare is a state institution for higher education and scientific research; it shares the ideas of the Magna Charta of European Universities (Bologna, 1988) and of the Lima Declaration on Academic Freedom and Autonomy of Higher Educational Institutions (Lima, 1988), being a member of the European Universities Association and of the International Association of Universities.