Ataturk University is a state university

Location of Atatürk University

Atatürk University, one of the oldest and largest state universities of Turkey is located in Erzurum, the largest city in the North Eastern region.  The city, with an approximate population of 400 thousand, is placed at a high Plato of 1950 meters.  Erzurum, which consists of a history dating back to 4000 BC, is also a cradle of civilization.  The city owns an identity of being an open museum with its historical monuments and cultural history dating back to thousands of years, and has become a fundamental center for education and science.  It is possible to see many historical Madrasah’s in the city.

Erzurum is one of the most preferred tourism centers with its unique Palandöken Mountain, which is covered in white during the months of winter.  Palandöken, which offers many alternatives such as the widest and longest slopes, 4 and 5 star hotels, shopping and entertainment centers, also owns a capacity of hosting 32 thousand skiers per day.  Erzurum is recognized as a winter sports center throughout the world and has hosted the 25thWinter Universiade, it also owns modern facilities for many winter sports.

Transportation to Erzurum is possible with connections via domestic and international flights, land and train.  There are return flights from Erzurum to many large cities such as Istanbul, Ankara, İzmir, Bursa and Antalya.  It is possible to reach the City Center, University and Palandöken Ski Resort in a short time as 15 minutes from the airport.

Historical Background of Atatürk University

Atatürk University, which was established in 1957, has been serving the Eastern Anatolian region as an education and cultural center for 55 years.  The founder of the Turkish Republic, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, first spoke of the idea of the necessity of establishing a regional university in the Eastern Anatolian region at the Turkish Grand National Assembly inauguration in 1937. This wish became true in 1957 with Atatürk University commencing education with its first faculties, the Faculty of Agriculture and Faculty of Arts and Sciences. Following its establishment, an agreement of collaboration was signed with the University of Nebraska, similar to the mission of American Land-Grant Universities, meaning, its establishment continued with a mission to carry out services towards the region in addition to education and research activities.

University in Figures

Atatürk University, which is established on approximately 40 acres of land and commenced education with 135 students, has become a large campus university by raising its current number of students to 84,089.  According to the 2012/2013 academic records, Atatürk University has 180 thousand graduates, and a total of 84,089 thousand students consisting of 17,470 associate degrees, 57,510 undergraduate, 6,363 master and 2,736 doctorate students who are currently receiving education.  Among these students, 58,309 are on campus, 18,877 are in open education college and 6,903 are distance learning students. 980 of these are international students, which consist of 11 associate degrees, 307 undergraduate, 662 graduate students.  This is equivalent to a little more than 1% of the total number of students

Atatürk University, a higher education institution of more than half a century, consists of 20 faculties, 2 higher schools, 12 vocational high schools, 7 graduate institutes and 22 research centers, and 1 conservatuar totaling 64 academic units. 

There are 439 professors, 303 associate professors, 584 assistant professors, 111 instructors, 119 lecturer, 932 research and teaching assistants and 63 experts who work in these units, totaling 2470 academic staff.  The number of administrative staff who serves at these units is 3460.


Atatürk University aims to rank high nationally by trying to integrate its experience from its vast past with today’s necessities in higher education and has, in recent years, given particular importance to internationalizing.  With this objective, the Office of International Affairs, which was restructured in 2008, provides significant contribution to the internationalizing of the university by way of carrying out bilateral agreements mostly based on student and teaching staff exchange with 45 universities from all regions of the world, hosting approximately 80 international students per year through the winter and summer schools it carries out and by executing EU projects under the Bologna process, including Erasmus, allowing the exchange of students and teaching staff.  International exchange with the Erasmus program has been actualized with 347 outgoing students, 32 incoming students, 77 outgoing teaching staff and staff and 46 incoming teaching staff. 

Atatürk University, which is making fast paces towards internationalizing, tries to provide suitable atmospheres for international students and scholars and provides undergraduate and postgraduate courses with 100% and 30% English language of instruction, and invites international students to receive education and teaching staff to provide education.