Professor of Adult Education and Non-Formal Learning (Tenure Track Associate Professor)

Estonia (EE)
17 Nov 2020
End of advertisement period
17 Dec 2020
Academic Discipline
Social Sciences, Education
Contract Type
Full Time

Professor of Adult Education and Non-Formal Learning (Tenure Track Associate Professor)
Tallinn University has announced a public competition for the position of Professor of Adult Education and Non-Formal Learning. The elected candidate commences work on the first career level of the position (associate professor) with the aim of supporting their development into a leader of the relevant study and research field in Tallinn University, and moves to the second career level of the position (professor) by way of evaluation.

Position: Associate Professor of Adult Education and Non-Formal Learning (career level I of Tenure Track Professorship)
Academic unit: School of Educational Sciences
Study area: Lifelong and Non-Formal Learning
The position will be filled from 01.09.2021.

Description of the field of academic work: The focus of academic work of the Professor of Adult Education and Non-Formal Learning is on non-formal learning processes of adults (including vocational education) and young people. The position should integrate theoretical and practical aspects of adult and adolescent learning in non-formal contexts (e.g. experiential learning, independent and collaborative learning etc.), and taking place in different environments (community organizations, museums, youth centres, adult education institutions, workplaces, online etc.). The future perspectives and roles of adult education and non-formal learning in changing educational approaches and in the society in general (such as flexible learning, transferability/validation of knowledge and skills between formal and non-formal learning, work-place learning, widening participation, transitions between education and employment etc.) will also form an important part of the teaching and research areas of this tenure position.

School Context: One of the four study areas at the School of Educational Sciences is ‘Non-formal Education and Lifelong Learning’. This tenure position will advance programmes of adult education (andragogy), youth work and vocational education under the study area. There is ongoing research in non-formal learning practice and learning in higher education.

Strategic importance of the position

Relevance of the field to the development priorities of TU, Estonia and Europe: Council Resolution (2011) on a renewed European agenda for adult learning up to 2020 stresses the importance of lifelong learning in ensuring economic stability and solving socio-strategic problems. EU Youth Strategy 2019-2027 emphasises the need for continuing work on validation and recognition of skills and competences acquired by way of non-formal and informal learning. The Bruges Communiqué on European cooperation in vocational education in 2011-2020, adopted in 2010, promotes the importance of sustainability in vocational education. The Riga Conclusions of 2015 on European cooperation in vocational education and training outline the importance of work-based learning and the need to stimulate vocational education and training, and the importance of validating non-formal and informal learning. Vision document “Smart and Active Estonia 2035” (Tark ja tegus Eesti 2035) outlines the strategic developments to continue the activities initiated in Estonian Lifelong Learning Strategy 2020, Estonian Research and Development and Innovation Strategy 2014-2020 "Knowledge-based Estonia”, and Youth Field Development Plan for 2014-2020. The vision document stresses the importance of flexible education, collaborative learning in different environments, integration of vocational training into other levels of education and ways of learning, active involvement of learners, being based on knowledge and involving top universities. The field is also related to the TU focus field of educational innovation, which, among other things, centres on the integration of educational sciences, teacher education, non-formal and informal learning /.../ in order to support lifelong learning of a person in a versatile and holistic manner. 

Strategic importance of the position within the school and how it relates to the other planned tenure and non-tenure positions: The professorship ensures the advancement of the study area ‘Non-formal Education and Lifelong Learning’. Programmes of adult education, youth work and vocational education will be supported by this tenure position.

Requirements for the candidate (incl. professional experience)
Candidates for the tenure system position shall meet at least the requirements of career level I of tenure system professor (associate professor), which are stipulated in Annex 2 and respectively in Annex 9 and 10 to the Employment Relations Rules, incl.:

  • The candidate must have a doctoral degree or equivalent qualification;
  • If the candidate has worked as a professor for at least five years immediately prior to applying for the position of a professor at the University (except when applying for the position of a professor in the field of arts), at least one doctoral thesis must have been defended under their (co)supervision during the last five years. 

The most important requirements inherent in the specific nature of the field on the given position:

  • strong research and publication track record in the field of adult and youth education and lifelong learning; 
  • experience in coordinating research projects, organising international conferences and workshops;
  • active membership in international professional and/or research organisations, expert groups, journal editorial boards, programme committees of international conferences;
  • substantial pedagogical experience in teaching and supervising in the field of adult education;
  • experience in developing and running curricula;
  • practice-based experience.

Leadership aspect of the role: to be an inspiring team leader, public intercessor and network builder.

Job responsibilities
In accordance with Annexes 1, 2 and 10 to the Employment Relations Rules.
The duties are approximately divided as follows: research (55%), teaching (20%) and social and institutional activity (25%).

  1. The professor of the tenure system is the academic leader/initiator for the topics in the field of adult education and non-formal learning, whose role is to support international research and development in all the above-mentioned fields by involving academic staff, students and important partners from outside the university.
  2. Internationally gained profound experience in at least two fields referred to in Clause 1.


  • Teaching and planning Master level courses on study programmes of Adult Education and Youth Work, Vocational Education and doctoral level courses in educational sciences, in other study programmes teaching the topics related to adult education and non-formal education;
  • Supervision of research papers of Master and doctoral level students in the fields of adult education and non-formal education, including learning in youth work and studying at the university;
  • Promotion of study development activities of the study programmes of Adult Education, Youth Work and Vocational Education.

Research and development or other creative activity:

  • Academic leader/initiator for the topics in the field of adult education and non-formal education, including learning in youth work and studying at the university, leading research topics or science projects, supervising lecturers and researchers involved in these activities, applying for financial means.

Social and institutional activity:

  • Participating as an expert in the development of transversal regulations, policies and recommendations on national and EU level.
  • Preparation of comparative analysis and reports and introducing them within society and ministries.

The aim of the first level of tenure track, that of the associate professor, is planning research in the field, formation of a research group and application for research projects in addition to the above-mentioned tasks.

Language skills:

  • English on the level necessary for conducting teaching and research work;
  • An employee who does not speak Estonian is expected to start acquiring proficiency in Estonian upon starting work and achieve language proficiency level B1 within three years and a level comparable to level B2 within five years in order to be able to perform tasks related to institutional development and administrative work in Estonian.

Working load: 1,0 (40 hours a week).

Remuneration: In accordance with TLU Remuneration Regulation and by negotiations with the director of the School where the position shall be. In addition to remuneration, a limited allowance is foreseen to the tenure professor, which can be used to cover the costs of research and development expenditure, members of the research team etc related to the position.

Location: Professor is expected to live in Tallinn and work at the premises of Tallinn University.

Required application documents shall be submitted by 20th January 2021 (incl) to Personnel Office of Tallinn University.

Additional information: Please address your administrative questions to, and questions on the content to the Administrative Head of the School of Educational Sciences Marit Meeksa, 
Time-schedule of the competition and the selection procedure  

Apply for Professor of Adult Education and Non-Formal Learning (Tenure Track Associate Professor)

Already uploaded your CV? Sign in to apply instantly


Upload from your computer

Or import from cloud storage

Your CV must be a .doc, .pdf, .docx, .rtf, and no bigger than 1MB

4000 characters left

By applying for a job listed on THEunijobs you agree to our terms and conditions and privacy policy.