Author:
Helle Arop

Courses Taught in English and Grading

The University of Tartu offers international students many English-taught courses in different disciplines.
International visiting students have to register for courses through the Study Information System (SIS) within the first two weeks of a semester. To register, one must use the username and password sent to all new international exchange/visiting students by the beginning of a semester. If you have not received your username and password, please contact your coordinator at the UT.

Courses taught in English and other languages  

Courses can be found in the Study Information System (SIS)

Please make sure to set at least minimum criteria in detailed search:

  • Can be taken by international visiting students: Yes
  • Language of instruction: English
  • Academic year: academic year you are applying to
  • Semester: choose correct semester

SIS is the system where future and current students can find info on each course (course description, assessment, teaching staff, timetable, etc.), can register for the courses, keep an eye on their progress, etc.

International short-term students (except for PhD and traineeship students) are required to complete courses at least to the extent of 15 ECTS per semester! 


Estonian learning opportunities for international students

There are numerous opportunities at the university to practice and improve Estonian.  Please find more information here. 


Study Information System

A more detailed description of the Study Information System, including the instructions for course registration.


Grading system

The UT uses both a differentiated and a non-differentiated grading system to assess the academic progress of students.

  • Differentiated assessment: the students’ achievement of learning outcomes is graded with a letter: A – excellent, B – very good, C – good, D –satisfactory, E – sufficient, F – insufficient. The letter expresses achieving the learning outcomes. In Estonia, according to the current legislation, the letters are not translated into a numerical grade (either % or any other number), but into learning outcomes.
  • Non-differentiated assessment: the students are considered to have passed the course if all the requirements set forth in the syllabus have been fulfilled. Students will be given either the pass or fail grade.

Please keep in mind that the courses' assessment method is fixed and cannot be changed based on a student’s needs or wishes. Make sure you know what your home university’s requirements are!

According to the Study Regulations of the University of Tartu, the dean’s office issues a transcript of records to the (international) visiting students at the end of the study period. In case the home institution of the international visiting student takes into account only differentiated assessment, then the result “pass” of non-differentiated assessment corresponds to the grade 'A'  [effective as of 4 September 2023].

Please see further information about credits and assessment.

The Transcript of Records is issued only at the student’s request and not sent automatically. It is the student's responsibility to contact the dean’s office at the end of the studies and inform them whether the document should be sent by email or by post.

The system of credits in use (ECTS) is a cumulative calculation of credit points based on the workload of a student. It is a student-centred credit system to measure the workload required to achieve the objectives and learning outcomes of a curriculum. One credit point corresponds to 26 hours of studies (lectures, seminars, practice, homework or independent work, assessment of learning outcomes) performed by a student. ECTS credits (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System) are allocated to course units and are awarded to students who successfully complete the course by satisfying the assessment requirements.


Lecture period

The lecture period is usually from the beginning of the semester until the third week of December/end of May. The exam period is usually from mid-December/May until the end of the semester

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