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Boğaziçi University (also known as Bosphorus University, Turkish: Boğaziçi Üniversitesi, "Boğaziçi" literally meaning Bosphorus in Turkish) is a major research university located on the European side of the Bosphorus strait in Istanbul, Turkey. It has four faculties and two schools offering undergraduate degrees, and six institutes offering graduate degrees. The language of instruction is English.

Boğaziçi University
Boğaziçi Üniversitesi
Boğaziçi University logo.svg
Former names
Robert College (1863-1970)
PresidentMehmed Özkan[1]
Administrative staff
Campus6 Campuses: total 1.699 square kilometres (420 acres)[3]
ColorsLight blue and dark blue         
Utrecht Network
Washington University in St. Louis McDonnell International Scholars Academy[5] Boğaziçi University

Founded in 1863, as Robert College, it is the first American higher education institution founded outside the United States. Though under entirely Turkish administration today, the university still maintains strong ties to the American educational system.

Boğaziçi University consistently ranks highest in Turkey, having the greatest number of applicants via the YGS-LYS Turkish university entrance examinations. This allows Boğaziçi University to attract many of the highest scoring students;[6] as well as having the most preferred applied science, education, engineering, and social science programs in Turkey.[7][8] Boğaziçi University also provides a liberal educational atmosphere and a program of extracurricular activities and sports.



In 1863, Robert College was founded in Bebek by Christopher Robert, a wealthy American and a philanthropist, and Cyrus Hamlin, a missionary devoted to education. Six years after its foundation, with the permission (Ottoman Turkish: irade‎) of the Ottoman Sultan, the first campus (at present, it is the South Campus of Boğaziçi University) was built in Bebek at the ridge of Rumelia Fortress, very close to a Bektashi tekke, whose leaders maintained an excellent relationship with the Congregational and Presbyterian founders of Robert College, according to Dr Friedrich Schrader, a German lecturer at Robert College during the 1890s.[9] The first building of the school was named "Hamlin Hall" in memory of Cyrus Hamlin. Few years after the foundation of Robert College, in 1878, Christopher Robert died. According to the article, A Millionaire's Will, published in New York Times (November 27, 1878), Robert left a great portion of his wealth to the College.[10]

A College Catalog was compiled in 1878–1879, giving general information and an outline of the courses of study. Defining the aims of the College the catalog stated: "The object of the College is to give to its students, without distinction of race or religion, a thorough educational equal in all respects to that obtained at a first-class American college and based upon the same general principles."

Robert College 1880

After Hamlin, Robert College was administrated by George Washburn (1877–1903)[11] and Caleb Gates (1903–1932). Though founded at the time of the Ottoman Empire as an institution of higher learning serving the Christian minorities of the Empire as well as foreigners living in Istanbul, the school adopted a strictly secular educational model in accordance with the republican principles of Turkey in 1923. Robert College, in the past had junior high school, high school, and university sections under the names Robert Academy, Robert Yüksek and American College for Girls. Since 1971, the school has functioned only as a "high school"[12] (more comparable to the French lycée in academic rigor) on its Arnavutköy campus (formerly the campus of American College for Girls), yet it retains the title of College. The Bebek campus and academic staff were turned over to the Republic of Turkey for use as Boğaziçi University, the renamed continuation of Robert College's university section, as a public university.

Through the education of succeeding generations of students, Robert College has assisted the economic and social progress in the Near East. It has also brought direct benefits to several generations of Americans—faculty members, trustees, students, contributors, and other friends of the College. Their close association with the heroic and hospitable people of Turkey has led to a greater appreciation of Turkish life and culture and the strong foundations on which the Republic of Turkey, our close friend and partner in peace, has been built. I send my cordial congratulations to the officers and friends of Robert College on the century of service you are so deservedly celebrating.

— John F. Kennedy, President of the United States, Message for the Centennial Celebrations of Robert College, 1963[13]


The Faculty of Arts and Sciences

Boğaziçi University operates on six campuses in Istanbul. Four of these campuses (South Campus, North Campus, Hisar Campus, and Uçaksavar Campus) are close to each other and located on a hill in the affluent district of Bebek on the European side of Istanbul, overlooking the Bosphorus (hence the name). The Kennedy Lodge, named after John F. Kennedy, is located at the South Campus and operates as a welcoming facility for visiting professors and staff. The Kandilli Campus is right across from the shore, located on the Asian side of Istanbul (in Çengelköy) and hosts the Kandilli Observatory and Earthquake Research Institute (KOERI). The newest campus is in Kilyos on the Black Sea coast and hosts a private beach. South Campus is the most popular campus among students and the visitors alike. [14]

International rankingsEdit

University rankings
THE World[16] 401–500 (2018)
USNWR World[17] 190 (2018)
QS World[15] 571-580 (2019)

Boğaziçi University was the only Turkish university among first 100 universities worldwide according to the Times Higher Education World University Rankings of 2013-2014.[18]

Sport festsEdit

Every spring, in the end of May, international sport fests are held at the South Campus and other venues of Bogazici University. Usually, around 300 to 800 students come from all over the world to participate in various tournaments and have fun together.

Departments offering bachelor's degreesEdit

Faculty of Arts and Sciences

Boğaziçi University

Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences

Faculty of Education

Faculty of Engineering

School of Applied Disciplines

The School of Foreign Languages

  • Advanced English
  • English Preparatory Division
  • Modern Languages Unit

Institutes offering graduate programsEdit

Graduate Studies in Sciences and Engineering

Atatürk Institute for Modern Turkish History

Institute of Biomedical Engineering

Institute of Environmental Sciences

Kandilli Observatory and Earthquake Research Institute

Graduate Studies in Social Sciences

Vocational School of Hotel Management

  • Tourism Administration Program (Secondary education)

Other Units

Independent centersEdit

Student clubsEdit

Notable alumniEdit

Notable facultyEdit


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Governance Boğaziçi University
  2. ^ Statistics Boğaziçi University
  3. ^ a b c d e Sayılarla Boğaziçi Universitesi 2010 Boğaziçi University
  4. ^ "The University". Boğaziçi University. Retrieved 17 April 2017. The language of instruction at BU is English
  5. ^ Missing or empty |title= (help)
  6. ^ İlk 1000 Universielere göre dağılım Archived 31 March 2010 at the Wayback Machine Boğaziçi University
  7. ^ Belgeler OSYM
  8. ^ Huisman, Jeroen; Pausits, Attila (23 April 2019). Higher Education Management and Development. Compendium for Managers. Waxmann Verlag. ISBN 9783830972860 – via Google Books.
  9. ^ Friedrich Schrader in: Robert College, Nord und Süd, November 1919, S. 165–169 (Article in German language)
  10. ^ "Christopher Robert's Will" (PDF). The New York Times. 27 November 1878. Retrieved 22 January 2008.
  11. ^ "George Washburn" (fee, via Fairfax County Public Library). Dictionary of American Biography. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons. 1936. GALE|BT2310001134. Retrieved 26 February 2012. Gale Biography In Context. (subscription required)
  12. ^ "About Robert College". Archived from the original on 22 February 2012. Retrieved 7 February 2012.
  13. ^ "Story of Robert College" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 June 2007. Retrieved 24 March 2007.
  14. ^ Main campus Archived 21 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine Boğaziçi University
  15. ^ "QS World University Rankings 2019". Top Universities. 29 May 2018.
  16. ^ "World University Rankings". Times Higher Education (THE). 18 August 2017.
  17. ^ "U.S. News Education: Best Global Universities 2018".
  18. ^ World Rankins 2013 Times Higher Education
  19. ^ "Boğaziçi Üniversitesi Bilişim Kulübü - Compec".
  20. ^ "BUMATEK".
  21. ^ "Boğaziçi Üniversitesi Spor Kurulu". Boğaziçi Üniversitesi Spor Kurulu.
  22. ^ "Guinness World Records – First solo circumnavigation of the globe using human power". Guinness World Records. Archived from the original on 19 March 2016. Retrieved 16 January 2016.
  23. ^ "Guinness World Records – First Person to Row Three Oceans". Guinness World Records. Archived from the original on 19 March 2016. Retrieved 8 December 2013.
  24. ^ "Murat Ulker". Forbes. Retrieved 24 January 2015.

External linksEdit