Costa Rica Institute of Technology

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Tecnológico de Costa Rica
Firma TEC.png
Motto Formación Sólida, Óptimos Resultados
Established 1971[1]
Type Public, undergraduate, graduate.
Rector Julio Calvo Alvarado Ph.D.
Students 9.081 (2012) [2]
Location Cartago[3], Costa Rica
Campus Campus José Figueres Ferrer Urban, 90 ha
Other Locations San Carlos,[3] San José,[4] Alajuela,[5] Limon[5]

The Costa Rica Institute of Technology, (Instituto Tecnológico de Costa Rica), also known as "ITCR" or "TEC", is a public university specialized in engineering and science in Cartago, Costa Rica.[1]

The university is one of the most prestigious higher education institutions in Costa Rica and also in Central America. Its mission is: "Contributing to the integral development of the country, by means of the formation of human resources, research and extension; keeping the scientific-technical leadership, the academic excellence and the strict attachment to the ethical, environmental and humanists norms, from a state university perspective of quality and competitiveness at national and international level".

The ITCR is a national autonomous institution of higher education, dedicated to the teaching, research and extension in technology and associated sciences aimed at the development of Costa Rica. It was created by Law No. 4777 on June 10, 1971. Its main campus is in Cartago, 24 km east of the capital San José.

The ITCR offers both undergraduate and graduate studies in a wide range of fields, including engineering (construction, industrial production, electronics, industrial maintenance, biotechnology), computer science and business management.[6]



Rafael Ángel González Chaves a public school teacher from San Ramón was one of the first proponents of creating an institute of technology in the country.[7] During the later part of the 1960s he roamed the halls of the legislative assembly looking for supporters to introduce a bill that would create the institute. His efforts finally paid off when in June 10, 1961 president José Figueres Ferrer signed a law that mandated the creation of the Instituto Tecnológico de Costa Rica (Costa Rica Institute of Technology).[1][7] The signing ceremony was held in the province of Cartago which was chosen as the location for the school’s main campus.[1]

At the time president Figueres indicated the need to emulate the successful models from other technology schools such as TEC de Monterrey, from whom he indicated he would request assistance in order to kickstart the project.[1]

Early Years[edit]

Vidal Quirós, first rector of ITCR

Vidal Quirós Berrocal, a civil engineer was its first rector.[8] The institute began functioning from a small house in downtown Cartago,[8] and its first educational programs started in March 1973.[9] A few years later thanks to a loan from the Inter-American Development Bank, the institute moved to its current main campus in Cartago.[8]

Modern History[edit]

In 2009 the institute began offering new bachelor degrees in Computer Engineering and Information Technology Administration.[10] In 2011 TEC invested over $1 million in equipment, infrastructure and personnel related to nanotechnology.[11]


The Institute's main campus is located near downtown Cartago.[3] There are regional branches located in Santa Clara, San Carlos,[3] downtown San José,[4] near downtown Alajuela [5] and Limon.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Tecnológico no debe ser una simple fábrica de títulos". La Nacion (in Spanish) (Costa Rica). 1971-06-11. 
  2. ^ Villegas, Jairo; Gutiérrez, Fernando (2012-01-22). "UTN se acerca al ITCR en cantidad de alumnos". La Nacion (in Spanish) (Costa Rica). 
  3. ^ a b c d Villegas, Jairo (2011-01-20). "Quedan 213 cupos para estudiar en ITCR". La Nacion (in Spanish) (Costa Rica). 
  4. ^ a b Gutiérrez, Fernando (2009-02-03). "El ITCR inicia lecciones primero". La Nacion (in Spanish) (Costa Rica). 
  5. ^ a b c d "Tecnologico de Costa Rica: Sedes" (in Spanish). 2014-03-21.  |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)
  6. ^ Academic options
  7. ^ a b Gutiérrez, Fernando (1997-06-23). "Homenaje al gestor olvidado". La Nacion (in Spanish) (Costa Rica). 
  8. ^ a b c Fallas, Cristina (2012-06-24). "TEC garantía de calidad educativa". Al Dia (in Spanish) (Costa Rica). 
  9. ^ Gutiérrez, Fernando (2001-05-28). "El Tecnológico está de fiesta". La Nacion (in Spanish) (Costa Rica). 
  10. ^ Elizondo, Francisco (2008-11-28). "ITCR lanza nuevas carreras para cubrir demanda tecnológica". La Nacion (in Spanish) (Costa Rica). 
  11. ^ Fonseca, Pablo (2011-01-29). "ITCR quiere ser referente en nanotecnología". La Nacion (in Spanish) (Costa Rica).