As the oldest agricultural higher education institution in China, CAU’s history can be dated back to October 1905, when the College of Agriculture was founded by the former Imperial University of Peking.
When the People’s Republic was established in 1949, Beijing Agricultural University (BAU) was founded by merging of three colleges of agriculture, namely College of Agriculture of Peking University, College of Agriculture of Tsinghua University and College of Agriculture of North China University. Beijing Agricultural Mechanization College (BAMC) was established in 1952 by joining together BAU’s Department of Agricultural Machinery, North China Agricultural Machinery College and the Ministry of Agriculture’s Tractor School. BAMC was renamed Beijing Agricultural Engineering University (BAEU) in 1985. Finally in 1995, China Agricultural University was formed by merging BAU and BAEU.
China Agricultural University (CAU) is one of the top ranked key national universities in China. It is one of the universities listed in 211 and 985 Projects and directly subordinated to the Ministry of Education of P.R.China. Project 211 is a project of National Key Universities and colleges initiated in 1995 by the Ministry of Education of China. There are more than 1,700 standard institutions of higher education, with about 6 percent of them being 211 Project institutions. Project 985 is a project first announced by Chinese President Jiang Zemin at the 100th anniversary of Peking University on 4 May 1998 to promote the development and reputation of the Chinese higher education system.By the end of the first phase of the project, 34 universities were sponsored. In the second phase of the project, five more universities were added to the project, bringing the total number to 39. It was announced in September 2007 that the project will not admit other universities.