Tallinn University Museum was created by professor emeritus of the history of pedagogy, Lembit Andresen. The first permanent exhibition of the museum was opened on his initiative on 18 October 1994 for the university’s 75th anniversary. This date is also considered to be the time of establishment of the museum. The museum has moved many times and was even closed in the years 2005-2014 because of construction works and shortage of space. The permanent exhibition in its current form was opened on 22 October 2014 for the 20th anniversary.

Items of the museum


Grandfather clock

The oldest exhibit of the museum – two-metre high grandfather clock with weights – has displayed time from the period of Tallinn Teachers’ Seminar, the predecessor of Tallinn University.

The current higher education institution, Tallinn University, has educated and trained young people under different titles and under the conditions of different social structures. The clock has been ticking in its regular rhythm both in good and in complicated times. The old grandfather clock has had a symbolic meaning for many generations of students and lecturers in their memories.

The refurbished stately grandfather clock has now deserved an honourable place in the reopened museum and reminds the new students that time is an ambiguous and sole resource that the humans have. The passing and consumption of time is measured by the clock.

The statute of Tallinn University scarf

The souvenir of greatest respect from Tallinn University is a silk scarf. The silk scarf is granted to the university’s doctors, professors and honorary doctors, handed over by the Rector.
Colours of the scarves

Scarves are made of natural silk and have small tassels at the edges. The scarves have two sides, one of which is always red. The other side of doctors’ scarves is off-white, professors’ scarves grey and honorary doctors’ scarves black.

Granting of scarves
Doctors’ scarves are granted once a year at the festive doctoral degree commencement ceremony.
Professors’ scarves are granted at the daytime ceremony of the university’s anniversary.
Honorary doctors’ scarves are granted at the festive doctoral degree commencement ceremony. 

Wearing of scarves
Scarves are worn at festive occasions related to the university (such as the doctoral degree commencement ceremony, university’s jubilees, the Rector’s inauguration, the ceremony of the anniversary of the Estonian Republic, funeral of a university member).
Scarves are worn at other festive occasions outside the university (such as at the Independence Day presidential reception).
The scarf is worn with its red side on shoulders and the side of a different colour up.

Portrait bust of Eduard Vilde

In 1955, the name of Eduard Vilde (1865-1933), a recognised literary classic of Estonia, was attributed to Tallinn Pedagogical Institute. A unique bronze sculpture of Eduard Vilde has been made by Estonian sculptor Ülo Õun (1940-1988) in 1983.

Badge of merit of Tallinn University

A badge of merit of Tallinn University is awarded to university employees with a distinguished employment history at the university and individuals from outside the university who have made outstanding contributions to the university. 

A badge of merit is a silver badge in the abstract form of a crystal, symbolising the long-term nature of cultural processes. The badge of merit is decorated with excerpts from Hartmann Schedel’s Liber Chronicarum and Juri Lotman’s Culture and Explosion.

The author of the badge is the jewellery artist Adolfas Šaulys.

The silver badge of Tallinn University

The author of the design and realization of the silver badge is the company Roman Tavast.

The gold badge of Tallinn University

In 2019, Tallinn University celebrated a very special anniversary – a hundred years ago, the continuing tradition of teacher education began. It provided a basis for educational innovation and promoting intelligent lifestyle. Gold badges manufactured in the jubilee year were awarded to hundred outstanding alumni on Tallinn University Day, 18 March. The gold badge is a gold plated silver badge. Manufactured by the company Roman Tavast.

The postage stamp of Tallinn University

On 22 February, Omniva and Tallinn University presented a postage stamp dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the continuing tradition of teacher education in Tallinn.

“Although we were entitled Tallinn University on 18 March, 14 years ago, we carry the hundred-years old tradition of teacher education that forms the basis for our current position as the promoter of intelligent lifestyle and educational innovation,” said Tiit Land, the Rector of Tallinn University. “These ideals are conveyed also by the stamp, skilfully designed by Indrek Ilves, the artist of Omniva.”

Chain of office of the Rector of Tallinn University

The Rector’s chain of office was made for the inauguration day, 15 May 2006, of Professor Rein Raud. The chain of office bears the elements of the slogan of TLU “Young University in an Old City”.

Authors: Master’s students of jewellery and blacksmithing in the Estonian Academy of Arts, Merle Kasonen, Rait Siska. Title of the work «Spine». They used anodised aluminium and silver as the material. The price of the chain of office was 100,000 Estonian kroons and it weighs 1.4 kilograms.