The Arts have been studied in Tarragona since the 16th century when Cardinal Gaspar Cervantes de Gaeta founded a university that provided courses in grammar, arts and theology. After the War of Succession, the School of Literature, which depended on the new University of Cervera, continued to teach courses until the middle of the 19th century. Subsequently, from the end of the 19th century to the 30s, the Ecclesiastical University of Tarragona taught higher education qualifications in Philosophy, Theology and Canon Law.
This long tradition was taken up again in 1971-72, when the University of Barcelona started to teach in our city. The process culminated in 1983 when the Spanish government decreed that the nucleus of what we know as the Rovira i Virgili University, the faculties of Arts and Chemical Sciences, should be created. This was carried into effect by the Catalan government in December 1992.
The Faculty of Arts is a dynamic centre and, in the academic year 2013/2014, will be taught 9 grades, 13 oficial masters’ degrees and 1 master’s degree Erasmus Mundus.
The dynamism of the Faculty of Arts, our desire and vocation to be an active part of the society that surrounds us, means that the faculty itself, the departments and the students organize a wide variety of activities (congresses, seminars, symposiums, extra-mural activities), thus ensuring that cultural life is promoted and spread throughout the southern regions of Catalonia. Likewise, we are constantly in contact with the local institutions and organizations. The Faculty is also open to the world, as can be seen from the Erasmus agreements, the agreements with American universities and the agreements with universities of the Popular Republic of China.
The Faculty of Arts is fully committed to the process of teaching renewal that society requires, in 2007 the Premi del Consell Social a la Qualitat Docent and the Distinció Jaume Vicens Vives given by the Catalan Government, for the participation with the pilot test in the process of adaptation to the European Higher Education Area.
The concern of the Faculty for the innovation and the improvement of the quality of teaching have meant that groups and teachers have been honoured with awards that represent an incentive to the efforts and successes:
- 2013 URV Social Council Prize to the project "The use of WhatsApp to increase motivation in reading of English texts", of the team led by the teacher Mar Gutiérrez-Colon.
- 2011 Jaume Vicens Vives Prize awarded by the Generalitat of Catalonia to the training program for Chinese students at the URV, coordinated by the teachers Sara Pujol, Maria Herrera and Esther Forgas.
- 2011 URV Social Council Prize to the Training program for Chinese students at the URV, coordinated by the teachers Sara Pujol, Maria Herrera and Esther Forgas.
- 2007 Jaume Vicens Vives Prize awarded by the Generalitat of Catalonia to the project "Pilot schemes of the grade of History and Geography of the Faculty of Arts".
- 2007 URV Social Council Prize to the teaching quality to the project "Pilot schemes grade History and Geography of the Faculty of Arts".
- 2011 URV Social Council Prize to the teaching quality to the project "Design and methodological experimentation of the learning activities and services applied to journalism students at the URV".
- 2011 URV Social Council Prize to the teaching quality to the study "Design and methodological experimentation and service of the learning activities of journalism students at the URV", by Antoni Pérez-Portabella.
Finally, the Faculty of Arts is now, as it was and always will be, fully committed to its surrounding area and we reiterate our commitment to preparing university students to the best of our ability, to revitalizing the culture of the area, and to shaping a fairer, more plural and more tolerant society.