Russia has benefited from 300 years of history in engineering education and the same period of industrial progress. The beginning of engineering education in Russia was laid by the foundation of the School of Mathematical and Navigational Sciences in Moscow in accordance with Tsar Peter the Great's Decree dated 27 January 1701 (new calendar).
The Decree put special emphasis on the fact that the school needed not only sea-sailing and engineering, but also artillery and civil use.
The total number of students at the School was defined as 500, but at times went up to 700 persons. The School taught mathematics, geodesy, sea sailing, cartography, astronomy and a number of other engineering and technical subjects.
It was soon placed in the building of Sucharyovskaya Tower, which incorporated special laboratories equipped for practical studies and an observatory. The navigators practiced on sea ships and made geodesic maps. By the time of establishment, the School was the first and the biggest educational institution in Europe of its type.