Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

The Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (often referred to in English as Aristotelian University), named after the philosopher Aristotle, is the largest university of Greece. Its campus covers 23 hectares close to the centre of the city of Thessaloniki. Some educational and administrative facilities are located off campus for practical and operational reasons.

More than 95,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students study at the Aristotle University, 86,000 in undergraduate programmes and 9,000 in postgraduate programmes. Furthermore, the Teaching and Research Staff number 2,330 people (694 professors, 625 associate professors, 500 assistant professors, and 511 lecturers), the Scientific Teaching Staff number 103 and the Special Laboratory Teaching Staff 306 people. This is further supported by the 412 members of the Special Technical Laboratory Staff for teaching services end the 973 members of administrative staff.

Alexandros (Alekos) Papanastasiou ( Αλέξανδρος Παπαναστασίου) (1876-1936) Prime Minister of Greece and founder of the University of Thessaloniki. His sculpture is near the Library of the University.

The statue of Alexandros Papanastasiou inside the University Campus (Source)

The university includes 41 Departments (τμήματα) which are organized in nine Faculties (σχολές):

Faculty of Geotechnical Sciences:

  • Department of Agriculture
  • Department of Forestry and the Natural environment
  • Department of Veterinary Medicine

Faculty of Health Sciences:

  • Department of Medicine
  • Department of Dentistry
  • Department of Pharmacy

Faculty of Theology:

  • Theology
  • Pastoral and Social Theology

Aristarchos of Samos, Aristotle University

Faculty of Sciences:

  • Biology
  • Geology
  • Mathematics
  • Informatics
  • Physics
  • Chemistry

Faculty of Fine Arts:

  • Visual and Applied Arts
  • Drama
  • Music Studies

Faculty of Law, Economic and Political Sciences:

  • Law
  • Economics
  • Political Science

Faculty of Education:

  • Primary education
  • Pre-School education

The Polytechnic Faculty:

  • Rural and Surveying Engineering
  • Architecture
  • Electrical and Computer Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering
  • General Department of the Polytechnic Faculty

Faculty of Philosophy:

  • English Language and Literature
  • French Language and Literature
  • German Language and Literature
  • History and Archaeology
  • Italian Language and Literature
  • Philology
  • Philosophy and Pedagogy
  • Psychology

Independent Departments:

  • Journalism and Mass Media Studies
  • Physical Education and Athletics in Thessaloniki
  • Physical Education and Athletics in Serres

An AUT academic building (Source)

The Faculty of Philosophy building (Source)


The establishment of the University of Thessaloniki as the second Greek university was legislated under Law 3341/14-6-25 during the premiership of Alexandros Papanastassiou, during the period of the first Greek Democracy. At first, according to Eleftherios Venizelos' plans, right after the end of the First World War, Smyrni was intended to be the seat of the second Greek university, while the third was to be established in Thessaloniki. However, these plans fell through because of the developments in Asia Minor (1922).

The chronological development of the University, which was renamed the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in 1954, can be divided into three stages , each covering a period of approximately twenty-five years.

During the first stage of its operation (1926-1950), the development focuses on those Schools which have been generally accepted as constituting one Institute, namely the Faculty of Philosophy, the Faculty of Physics and Mathematics, the Faculty of Law and Economics, the School of Theology and the Medical School. Only the Departments of Pharmacy (1955), Dentistry (part of Medical School since 1959, and an independent School since 1971) as well as the Institutes of Foreign Languages within the Faculty of Philosophy were established and became operational after this time (1950). The first stage of the development of the Aristotle University ended with the foundation of the Veterinary Medicine Faculty in 1950, which was the only faculty of Veterinary Medicine in our country for many years. Today, it is part of the Faculty of Geotechnical Sciences.

During the second stage (1951-1975) the focal point of development is the Polytechnic School, which in fact is an independent institute also called the Polytechnic or Technical University. So, for the first fifty years of its operation the Aristotle University consisted of two institutes, the University and the Polytechnic, which operate independently both in our country and abroad.

During the third stage of its development, the Aristotle University has acquired Departments and Faculties which were founded and operated, at first, as independent Institutes of higher Education, not only here but also abroad. These were the Faculty of Art, Music Academies, the Theatrical School, the Gymnastic Academy, etc. The third stage of development of the Aristotle University is characterized not only by the fact that some former faculties have become departments but also by the foundation of some new faculties, such as the Faculty of Geotechnical Sciences and the Faculty of Health Sciences, as well as of some independent departments which do not yet belong to any faculty.

The Aristotle University today consists of 41 Departments as well as many other units, such as laboratories, study rooms, libraries, clinics, etc, which make it the largest university in the country in terms of the staff, the number of students and the facilities offered. At the same time, due to the research work and the activities undertaken by the teaching and scientific staff, the University has gained international recognition.

See also

University of Macedonia

List of universities in Greece


Aristotle University of Thessaloniki official page, in Greek, English, French, German and Russian

Coimbra Group

(of European research universities)

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