Top Universities in Switzerland for International Students: Courses & Rankings | Admissify

Imagine a study abroad destination that is an amalgamation of breathtaking views, fantastic academic opportunities, and home to some of the best professional opportunities in the world. That is Switzerland for you- a premier destination for international students seeking unparalleled prospects. With its relentless dedication to research and student-centric approach, Swiss universities offer a transformative educational experience across bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs.

But what truly sets Switzerland apart is the growing wave of international students flocking to its shores. Government forecasts paint a compelling picture – by 2031, the student population is expected to swell to around 320,000, a remarkable 15% increase from 2021. This surge underscores Switzerland’s allure as a prime destination for global learners. In this blog post, we shall explore the top universities in Switzerland, fantastic scholarship opportunities, the admission process, and more. 

Key Highlights

As the numbers speak for themselves, the Swiss Embassy in India has been real busy, processing a staggering 129,446 visa applications from January to June 2023 alone. This unprecedented demand highlights the growing interest and aspirations of Indian students. Let’s unravel the major key factors that define education in Switzerland here: 

Particulars Details
Top Universities in Switzerland  University of Zurich, University of Basel, ETH Zurich, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne University of Bern
Average Tuition Fee INR 4L to INR 12L
Average Cost of Living (without rent) INR 1.5L
Average Rent in City  INR 1.6L
Average Transportation Cost  Monthly Pass INR 7300
Average Utilities Cost INR 21,000
Scholarships The Excellence Scholarship by ETH ZurichMaster’s Grants in SwitzerlandNestle MBA Scholarships for Women from Developing CountriesSwiss Government Excellence Scholarships 

Top Universities in Switzerland

The number of students who have registered at Swiss higher education institutions (UIT, UAS, or UTE) increased by 18% over the past ten years. This growth has resulted in a total enrollment of around 276,500 students for the academic year 2023/24.

Now let’s take a look at the top, best Swiss universities, depicting their average tuition fees for UG and PG courses: 

University QS World University Rankings 2024: Top Global Universities Times Higher Education (THE) World University Rankings 2023
ETH Zurich, Zurich #7 =11
EPFL, Lausanne #36 #41
University of Zurich, Zurich =91 =82
University of Basel, Basel =124 =101
University of Bern, Bern =126 #94
University of Geneva, Geneva #128 #201-250
University of Lausanne, Lausanne =220 #135
USI – Universita della Svizzera italiana, Lugano =328 #201-250
University of St. Gallen (HSG), St. Gallen =436
Universite de Fribourg, Fribourg =563 #501-600

Popular Programmes at Switzerland Universities

Swiss universities have an extensive array of programs, with several of their courses receiving high rankings on international ranking systems. A list of Switzerland’s best universities along with some of the well-liked courses they offer is provided below.

Here is the information rearranged and tabulated:

University Programs
ETH Zurich, Zurich Architecture & Built Environment, Electrical & Electronic Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil & Structural Engineering, Biological Sciences, Computer Science & Information Systems, Earth & Marine Sciences, Geology, Geophysics, Mathematics
EPFL, Lausanne Chemistry & Chemical Engineering, Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Microengineering, Life Sciences Engineering, Architecture, Robotics, Data Science, Cyber Security, Applied Physics, Digital Humanities, Financial Engineering
University of Zurich, Zurich Ethnology, Political Science, Popular Cultures, Sociology, Banking & Finance, Informatics with Natural Sciences, English Literature & Linguistics, Film Studies, Indology, Physics, Geography, Psychology, Theology
University of Basel, Basel Biology, Classical Studies, Chemistry, Computational Sciences, Ethnology, English, Geography, French Studies, Earth Sciences, Medical Studies, Cultural Anthropology, Animal Biology, Biomedical Engineering, Business & Technology, Data Science, Drug Sciences
University of Bern, Bern Dental Medicine, Economics, Biology, Art History, Earth Sciences, Climate Sciences, Geography, Interreligious Studies, Law, Middle Eastern Studies, Linguistics, Musicology, Physics, Social Sciences, Sport Science, Theology
University of Geneva, Geneva Computer Science, Mathematics, Chemistry, Physics, Biochemistry, Earth & Environmental Sciences, Prehistoric Archeology, Dental Medicine, Biomedical Sciences, Sociology, Geography & Environment, Political Sciences, Economics & Management, Neuroscience
University of Lausanne, Lausanne Biology, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Law, Forensic Sciences, Geosciences & Environment, Management, Economics, Political Science, Psychology, Human Movement & sports sciences, Study of Religions, Theology, Molecular Life Sciences, Tourism Studies, Digital Humanities
USI – Universita della Svizzera italiana, Lugano Architecture, Philosophy, Theology, Medicine, Communication, Computer Sciences, Economic Sciences, Political Economy, Finance, Tourism, IT
University of St. Gallen (HSG), St. Gallen Law & Economics, International Affairs, Business Administration, Computer Science, Accounting & Corporate Finance, Marketing Management, Quantitative Economics & Finance
Universite de Fribourg, Fribourg Theology, Law, Management, Economics, Business Communication, Philosophy, English Language & Literature, Greek Studies, French, Contemporary History, Politics & Society, Religious Studies, Psychology, Biochemistry, Mathematics, Earth Sciences, Human Medicine, Biomedical Sciences, Computer Science, Business Informatics, Education Sciences

Cost of Attendance, Pre-Arrival Cost, and Living Cost in Switzerland

Living Expense: 

Students, get ready to explore the cosmopolitan hubs of Geneva, Bern, and Zurich, where top-tier institutions wait for you to realise your educational goals. Students must prepare to invest an average of CHF 18,500 (approximately $20,000) annually for bachelor’s and postgraduate diploma pursuits. For MBA aspirants, the stakes are higher, with tuition fees soaring to CHF 25,000 and beyond (around $27,000 or more).

Yet, within this financial maze lies an advanced academic model that bases itself on academic integrity, research, and pragmatic learning. Switzerland’s prestigious, high-ranking universities provide an excellent ROI, with the country fostering fantastic professional opportunities.  

With strategic planning and unwavering determination, you can beat the cost of living in Switzerland. Let’s explore the cost of living in Switzerland with the help of the following data:

List Amount per month
Accommodation CHF 450 to CHF 1,750
Health insurance CHF 350
Household items CHF 40
Phone/internet/TV CHF 120
Electricity/gas CHF 40
Public Transport CHF 150
Food CHF 400
Clothes, shoes, and leisure activities CHF 200
Miscellaneous (medical treatments, gifts, and more) CHF 180

Scholarship Programs at Top Universities in Switzerland

International students can apply for scholarships from a number of Switzerland’s best colleges. These are listed in the following order: 

Name of the Scholarship Duration Eligibility Award Size
EPFL Excellence and Fellowships The award is for 4 semesters Anyone applying for a Master’s degree is eligible.  CHF 10,000 /semester, Also, one room at the student residency at the campus
Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights Scholarships 10 Months Students applying for Law (Bachelor’s and Master’s), with good merit scores, excellent extracurricular activities, and the need for finance Covers tuition fees and living expenses
Nestle Scholarship for Women One time Women from developing countries, applying for Masters of Business Administration (MBA). Nestle employees are not eligible.  CHF 25000
Master of Excellence scholarships offered by the University of Geneva One year is extended further based on the performance Prepare for the English Proficiency Test.  CHF 10,000 to CHF 15,000/year
Internship at CERN Switzerland’s program One time Eligible for those who haven’t appeared for IELTS or TOEFL tests.  Prepare for the English Proficiency Test. 

Student Visa Process

Students from non-EU/ETA countries must have visas and residence permits. You can apply for a visa at the consulate, and after arriving in Switzerland, you need to get a residence permit. Students may come for short stays or long stays, based on their degree. Therefore, there are two kinds of visas:

  1. Visas for short stays – it will need 10 to 15 days for arrival and this type of visa is given for 90 days.
  2. Long-stay visas, such as those for pursuing a full-time degree, usually require around 8 to 10 weeks.

Program Specific Work Permit

Students may remain and work for up to six months after earning their degree, putting in fifteen hours a week. However, after the student secures long-term employment, they are granted a work permit.   


From the prestigious ETH Zurich to the renowned University of Geneva, these esteemed institutions beckon with a diverse array of programs, ranging from technology and engineering to the depths of humanities and social sciences.

Your journey, however, need not be a solitary one. Admissify, your trusted EdTech companion, stands ready to guide you through every step of your study abroad goals. Our comprehensive services encompass profile building, ensuring your unique strengths shine, and securing coveted internship opportunities that push your professional ambitions in the long run. 

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