Wellness and Spa Service Design and Management

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 3.22 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 3.22 k / Year(s) Deadline: Apr 16, 2025
251–300 place StudyQA ranking:8367 Duration:2 years

Photos of university / #unitartu

The aim of this international Master’s programme is to provide students with the necessary theoretical knowledge, professional skills and practical tools required for working in wellness, spa or other related organizations at the management level.

It's an opportunity to acquire Master's degree in a field that combines management and design of spa products, medical and leisure treatments, well-being, fitness, and health-related services.

6 reasons to join the programme:

- UNIQUE: it`s the only similar Master`s programme in the whole Europe

- PRACTICAL: business internships, field-trips and company visits to every spa in Estonia

- TAILORED: small group allows direct interaction and discussions with lecturers

- GOOD PRICE: 1500EUR/semester

- INTERNATIONAL: foreign professors and lecturers are from USA/Switzerland, Scotland,
Hungary, Germany, Portugal, Finland and Estonia

- INNOVATIVE: studying process includes video-conferences and e-learning

The programme brings together the most passionate students willing to aquire focused tourism education in Pärnu town, a historical Baltic Sea resort. Besides academic learning you can also experience the life in a town that largely depends on wellness and spa industry.


Wellness can be defined as the balanced state of body, spirit and mind, including emotional, physical, intellectual, social, environmental, occupational and spiritual wellness

It's a modern need of a fast growing society - stressful lifestyle, wealthier and aging population, but risen awareness to live healthy and quality life build good bases for the growth of wellness industry.

Wellness of individuals is also viewed as a way of life, including such holistic aspects as self-responsibility, physical fitness, healthy nutrition, mental activity and environmental sensitivity and beauty care. The aim of the whole concept is to create a balance between the body, soul and mind.


Hospitality and quality management

Creative and innovative entrepreneurship

Sustainable development

Strategic, financial and operational management

Service design and development

Management and marketing for wellness and spas

Understanding of the basics of spa treatments

Wellness philosophy

Project management and research


- 170 years of health resort and hospitality traditions

- Internationally acclaimed health tourism destination with membership in the European Spas Association

- One-third of Estonian spa hotel capacity along with water parks, swimming pools, baths and beauty salons

- Pärnu College shares in the academic excellence and traditions of the University of Tartu, established in 1632

- Excellent international career prospects

- Resorts, spas, wellness and health companies

- Business and consulting companies

- Tourism organizations

- Leisure, recreation and rehabilitation centers

- Social services, municipalities

- Research, academic career and PhD studies

Programme details:

Title: Wellness and Spa Service Design and Management

Field of study: management and design of spa products, health-related services

Degree awarded: Master of Arts in Social Sciences (Wellness and Spa Service Design and Management)

Faculty/College: Pärnu College

Language of instruction: English

Length: 2 years

Location: Pärnu, Estonia

Tuition fee: 3000 EUR/year

Scholarships available: yes

Module 1: Society and Wellness

Wellness History and Philosophy

Principles of Sustainable Development

Creative Economy and Wellness

Module 2: Individuals and Wellness

Wellness and Spa Service Quality Management

Human Resource Management for Wellness and Hospitality

Customer Behaviour

Module 3: Tourism and Wellness

Wellness and Health Tourism

Spa Treatments and Nutrition

Leisure and Recreation

Module 4: Business and Wellness

Wellness and Spa Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Wellness and Spa Service Design and Marketing

Strategic and Financial Management

Module 5: Project Management and Placement


Project Management

Module 6: Basics of Research

Master's Seminar

Research Methods

Leisure Sociology

7. Module Electives

8. Module Master thesis

Master's Thesis


Students interested working in wellness and spa industry. Bachelor’s degree or equivalent (at least 3 years of studies at a higher educational institution) required to apply.

Students will develop a service-oriented mentality and acquire those professional skills needed for

working within wellness, spa and related organisations and businesses, in particular, to:

- plan and develop strategic, operational and human resource management and marketing of

wellness and spa organisations and businesses;

- design attractive, innovative and competitive wellness and spa services;

- manage wellness and spa service quality, and environmental and sustainability issues.

Students will also develop:

- critical thinking, analysis and problem solving skills, creativity, innovation, project management

and teamwork skills;

- skills in conducting scientific research and presenting research findings.


Mario Passos Ascencao, PhD. Principal Lecturer, Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences (Finland/Portugal).

Wellness and Spa Service Design and Marketing

Wellness and Spa Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Tom Baum, PhD. Professor of International Tourism and Hospitality Management, Department of Human Resource Management, University of Strathclyde (Scotland).

Human Resource Management for Wellness and Hospitality

Laszlo Puczko, PhD. Budapest University of Economic Sciences and Public Administration, Faculty of Business Administration (Hungary).

Project Management

Leisure Sociology

Jouni Ahonen, MSc. Restaurant and Tourism Management Director, Haaga-Helia, University of Applied Sciences (Finland).

Wellness and Spa Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Heli Tooman, PhD. Associate Professor of Tourism and Hotel Management, Head of the Department of Tourism Studies, University of Tartu Pärnu College

Wellness and Spa Service Quality Management

Wellness History and Philosophy

Wellness and Spa Service Design and Marketing

Melanie Smith, PhD. Senior Lecturer and Researcher in Tourism Management, Corvinus University (Hungary).

Wellness and Health Tourism

Heli Müristaja, MSc. Lecturer of Tourism Management, University of Tartu Pärnu College.

Principles of Sustainable Development

International Tourism

Leisure Sociology

Research Methods

Master's studies seminar

Inna Bentsalo, MA. University of Tartu Pärnu College.

Sleep Therapy

Liis Juust, MA. Assistant Teacher of Tourism Management, University of Tartu Pärnu College.

Leisure and recreation.

Marju Mäger. Culture Management Lecturer, University of Tartu Viljandi Culture Academy

Creative Economy and Wellness

Margus Kõomägi, MA. Lecturer of Business Finance, University of Tartu Pärnu College.

Strategic and Financial Management

Gerda Mihhailova, MA. Lecturer of Management, University of Tartu Pärnu College.

Strategic and Financial Management

Monika Übner, PhD. Lecturer of Water Management, University of Tartu Pärnu College.

Spa Treatments and Nutrition

General admission requirement:

- Bachelor’s degree or equivalent (at least 3 years of studies at a higher educational institution).

In order to apply you need to do the following:

1. Fill in the online application form. Remember to print it out at the end and sign it, because you also need to send it to us. You also need to upload copies of your other documents so we can start checking them. When you register to fill in the application form, you will receive an applicant code, which gives you access to your account to track your application status.

2. Mail the printed and signed application with all the required documents by the deadline (April 16) to: International Student Service, University of Tartu, Ülikooli 18, Tartu 50090, Estonia

What kind of documents do you need to apply?

- online application;

- motivation letter – guidelines and evaluation criteria are included in the online application form;

- official copy of the Bachelor’s diploma or its equivalent and Diploma Supplement (transcript/mark sheet) in the original language*;

- official translation of the Bachelor’s diploma and Diploma Supplement (transcript/mark sheet) into English, translation certified;

- proof of the English language proficiency(TOEFL iBT 75, IELTS 5.5, Cambridge English FCE grade B, CAE, CPE, PTE Academic 59 points, exceptions listed on web);

- copy of the passport page stating the applicant’s personal particulars.

*Please note that all copies of educational documents (diploma and diploma supplement/academic transcript) must be officially certified: bear an original seal and a signature of an authorized official of the issuing school/university. Copies of education documents can also be certified with an Apostille. Some country specific requirements also specify the way documents must be certified. 

Tuition fee is 3000 EUR/year and it covers tuition, essential study materials, supervision and advice for thesis preparation. 


The University of Tartu (register code 74001073) is public university and operates pursuant to the Universities Act (passed with the law from January 12, 1995 (State Gazette I 1995, 12, 119) that entered into force February 18, 1995), University of Tartu Act (passed with law from February 16, 1995 (State Gazette I 1995, 23, 333) that entered into force March 21, 1995), Statues of the University of Tartu and other legislative acts.

According to the subsection 22 (7) of the Universities Act, the basis for conducting studies at universities lies in study programmes that are confirmed by the councils of the respective universities and correspond to the Standard of Higher Education in Estonia. The study programmes are entered into the Estonian Education Information System, which was founded on the basis of subsection 366 (4) of Republic of Estonia Education Act. State recognition of diplomas is based until 31.12.2011 on a positive accreditation decision of a study programme. Starting from 2009, educational institutions may provide higher education programmes, award academic degrees and issue diplomas, if, as a result of the assessment of the respective study programme group, the Government of the Replublic has granted them such a right (in Estonian higher education system this right replaces education license). In years 2009-2011 both regulations are valid for issuing state recognised diplomas. All higher education programmes in the University of Tartu belong to the assessed study programme groups and our dilomas are nationally recognised. Before 2017 universities have no obligation for institutional accreditation.

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