Tallinn University

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Tallinn University
Tallinna Ülikool
Logo of Tallinn University
Motto Thinking unlimited!
Type Public
Established 1919, 2005
President Tiit Land
Academic staff
392 (2016)
Administrative staff
423 (2016)
Students 7,668 (2016)
Undergraduates 4,766 (2016)
Postgraduates 2,902 (2016)
349 (2016)
Location Tallinn, Harju County, Estonia
59°26′19″N 24°46′17″E / 59.43861°N 24.77139°E / 59.43861; 24.77139Coordinates: 59°26′19″N 24°46′17″E / 59.43861°N 24.77139°E / 59.43861; 24.77139
Mascot Eksmati
Affiliations EUA, UNICA
Website www.tlu.ee

Tallinn University (TU; Estonian: Tallinna Ülikool, TLÜ) is one of the three largest institutions of higher education in Estonia. It is located in the centre of Tallinn, the capital city of Estonia.


Tallinn University's predecessor, Tallinn Teachers' Seminar, was founded in 1919. Tallinn University in its present form was established on 18 March 2005 as the result of a merger of several universities and research institutions in Tallinn: Academic Library of Estonia (1946), Baltic Film and Media School (1992/97), Estonian Institute of Humanities (1988), Institute of History (1946) and Tallinn Pedagogical University (1919/52/92). In 2015, Tallinn University underwent a structural reform, whereby its 20+ structural units (the legacy of the numerous mergers leading to its establishment) were reorganized into six schools in order to optimize funding and eliminate overlap between units in research and teaching.


8000 students are presently enrolled at Tallinn University. This makes Tallinn University the third largest provider of higher education in Estonia. Among degree students, 7.3% are international. There are 815 full-time employees at the University, of which 392 are academic staff. 9.7% of the faculty are international.[1]

Education and research at Tallinn University focus on five core interdisciplinary fields: educational innovation, digital and media culture, cultural competences, healthy and sustainable lifestyle and society and open governance. Each of the fields is represented by a school of the University: School of Educational Sciences, Baltic Film, Media, Arts and Communication School; School of Humanities, School of Natural Sciences and Health, and School of Governance, Law and Society. The School of Digital Technologies is the sixth school, contributing to all of the fields.

Tallinn University's Baltic Film, Media, Arts and Communication School is the only institution in Northern Europe teaching film, television, and audiovisual production in English, and one of the largest film schools in the region.[2] Its student body represents over 40 countries worldwide.[3]

Tallinn University actively participates in international research projects. It is one of only three universities in the Baltics whose research intensity has been classified as "very high" by Quacquarelli Symonds.[4]

Tallinn University ranks 87th in the QS EECA (Eastern Europe and Central Asia) university rankings.[5] In QS World University Rankings by Subject, Tallinn University placed in the 201-250 bracket in Sociology.[6]


Mare building
Terra building on Narva Maantee

Tallinn University's main campus buildings have Latin names.

Terra (Latin: earth) is the main and oldest building on Tallinn University's campus. It was built for the Tallinn English College in 1938. The building is under heritage protection (architects Alar Kotli and Erika Nõva).[7]

Nova (Latin: new) houses the Baltic Film and Media School. Features include individual and group work rooms, lecture halls, a film studio, a television studio, sound studios, a cinema, a computer class and editing rooms. The building was completed in 2012, and was designed by architects Karli Luik, Maarja Kask and Ralf Lõoke.[7]

Mare (Latin: sea) was designed to optimise the amount of light penetrating into the building. The building was completed in 2006; the architects were Mattias Agabus, Eero Endjärv, Raul Järg, Priit Pent and Illimar Truverk.[7]

Astra (Latin: star) is the newest building in the university. This building is features laboratories. The building was designed by Ignar Fjuk and completed in 2012.

Silva (Latin: forest) was completed in 1982 and is a typical example of Soviet architecture. Designed by the architect Ester Liiberg.

Ursa (Latin: bear) was built in 1964 and presently houses the Arts Department.


One of the main aims of the university is large-scale internationalisation.[citation needed] With its academic degree programmes and a number of shorter programmes and courses offered in the English language, it is about to become the most international university in the Baltic area.[citation needed] Tallinn University currently maintains over 50 inter-university agreements with universities in Europe, U.S., Japan, China, Russia, and several other countries as well over 600 Erasmus exchange agreements with universities from all over the European Union. The university also organises Summer and Winter Schools, which host about 300 participants from 50 countries every year.[8][9]



  • Baltic Film, Media, Arts and Communication School
  • School of Digital Technologies
  • School of Educational Sciences
  • School of Governance, Law and Society
  • School of Humanities
  • School of Natural Sciences and Health


  • Haapsalu College
  • Rakvere College

Academic Unit Centres[edit]

  • BFM Production Centre
  • Centre for Educational Technology
  • Centre for Innovation in Education
  • Centre for Landscape and Culture
  • Centre of Excellence in Health Promotion and Rehabilitation
  • Estonian Institute for Population Studies
  • Institute for International Social Studies
  • Institute of Ecology
  • Institute of History, Archaeology and Art History

Centres of Excellence[edit]

  • TU Centre of Excellence in Behavioural and Neural Sciences
  • TU Centre of Excellence in Educational Innovation
  • TU Centre of Excellence in Intercultural Studies
  • TU Centre of Excellence in Interdisciplinary Lifecourse Studies
  • TU Centre of Excellence in Media Innovation and Digital Culture

Notable staff[edit]


  1. ^ "Tallinn University in numbers". Tallinn University. Retrieved 20 April 2017. 
  2. ^ "Baltic Film and Media School". Cineuropa. Retrieved 20 April 2017. 
  3. ^ "About BFM". Tallinn University. Retrieved 20 April 2017. 
  4. ^ "Tallinn University". Top Universities. Retrieved 20 April 2017. 
  5. ^ "QS EECA University Rankings 2016". Top Universities. Retrieved 4 April 2017. 
  6. ^ "QS World University Rankings by Subject: Sociology". Top Universities. Retrieved 4 April 2017. 
  7. ^ a b c "Campus". Retrieved 17 March 2015. 
  8. ^ http://summerschool.tlu.ee Tallinn Summer School
  9. ^ http://winterschool.tlu.ee Tallinn Winter School

External links[edit]