As a Business student, jumping to the new field of Quantitative Economics at the University of  Tartu was a big leap to take. But coming to Estonia, I knew I had made the right decision. From the helpful and approachable lecturers to meeting other students from around the world, my Master’s journey in Estonia has been incredible so far both in and outside the classroom. Especially the informal atmosphere was a pleasant surprise. For instance, our very first meeting with our programme manager took place at a pub. To top things off, drinks and snacks were provided by the university.
Our first meeting in the pub

The city of Tartu itself is a great place to live in. It is small and peaceful, but, at the same time, lots of events take place at any given time, so you’ll never get bored. From University Student Days that happen each semester where students can participate in events such as treasure hunts and pancake mornings to weekly board game nights to musical and theatrical events, Tartu never disappoints, providing the perfect mix of city life and small-town peace and quiet, which is perfect, especially when exams draw near and assignment deadlines start piling up.

Tartu’s proximity to several other cities in Estonia and Europe also means being able to travel relatively easily and at lesser an expense. The capital, Tallinn, is just a bus ride away and is worth a visit if you would like to explore its historical landmarks and town square. Riga and Helsinki are close as well, and it is easy to arrange cheap flights to several European cities such as Berlin, Prague or Paris.

In the capital, Tallinn

Though this is standard in most Master’s programmes, I find the smaller class sizes as compared to my bachelors’ studies very useful, as this allows greater and more personal interaction between students and lecturers. The students in the programme come from all corners of the world and different academic backgrounds, so class discussions can consist of an eclectic mix of viewpoints, which is always interesting. I’ve found the lecturers to be very friendly and always willing to help when asked.

While the programme is in Economics and there is a lot of emphasis on theoretical learning, the curriculum also helps students enhance their technical skills. It does so by teaching us to be proficient in using several leading software programmes such as R, Python, Stata and data analysis techniques. R’s ability to take huge amounts of data and analyse and transform it into attractive visualisations in just a few short lines is immensely fascinating and a very useful addition to an economist’s toolbox.

If you’re wondering about the ‘Quantitative’ part of the programme, this includes the opportunity to take courses in Statistics and Financial and Actuarial Mathematics besides Economics. The practical learning also includes doing an internship. Students can gain experience working in Estonia or elsewhere in Europe, applying the skills learned.

So, if you’re interested in data analysis and economics research, this programme should be an excellent fit. Exciting job prospects such as working for a bank, an insurance firm or a government organization are just some of the opportunities waiting for you upon graduation.

The application deadline for the programme is March 15, visit the website or Quantitative Economics’  Facebook page for more information!