The ERASMUS programme was launched by the European Community in 1987. The programme aims to promote student mobility. Exchange takes place within the scope of agreements concluded between individual higher education institutions, including on any required academic achievements whose mutual recognition is guaranteed. Besides national grants, which can differ from one country to the next, the EU subsidises travel costs, subsistence in the host country as well as pre-exchange language courses. National agencies are responsible for handling the grants; in Germany, the DAAD takes on this role, for example.
To a lesser extent, ERASMUS funds university teacher mobility. Since 2007/2008 in addition ERASMUS also promotes foreign placements.