The Establishment of a System of Agricultural Engineering Education in the USSR in the 1920s and 1930s

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On the basis of archival materials and scientific literature, the article examines the history of agro-engineering education in the USSR during the global socio-economic and political transformations of the 1920s - 1930s. The article shows the importance of radical restructuring of the entire system of vocational education in accordance with the first Five-Year Plans. Presented are the major normative documents regulating the organization and further development of agricultural engineering universities. It is noted that the establishment of educational institutions took into account the specifics of soil and climatic zones, so that agricultural engineering universities would produce specialists familiar with the characteristics of the soil, climate, landscape of the respective zone, and able to work with equipment designed for the particular region. Between 1930 and 1941, nine agro-engineering universities were created, each designed with an eye for the regional specifics. The article highlights the key features of the formation of agro-engineering education, which consists in the use of local resources (primarily human and material) and of the technical base of industrial enterprises and advanced Sovkhoz state farms. The authors come to the conclusion that the creation of specialized higher educational institutions to train engineers for agricultural production became an urgent need as the collectivization of agriculture and the industrialization of production was unfolding; it established a powerful foundation for the further development of agricultural engineering education, of science, and of agricultural machine production in our country.

About the authors

Yakov P. Lobachevsky

Federal Scientific Agroengineering Center VIM

Author for correspondence.

Doktor tekhnicheskikh nauk [Dr. habil. tech. sci.], Full Member of Russian Academy of Sciences, First Deputy Director

5, 1st Institutskiy proyezd, Moscow, 109428, Russia

Yuliya S. Tsench

Federal Scientific Agroengineering Center VIM


Kandidat pedagogicheskikh nauk [PhD. in Ped.], Head of Department of Education, Editorial and Publishing Activities

5, 1st Institutskiy proyezd, Moscow, 109428, Russia


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Copyright (c) 2020 Lobachevsky Y.P., Tsench Y.S.

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