List of universities in Switzerland

This list of public universities in Switzerland lists all 12 publicly funded Swiss universities (10 cantonal universities and 2 federal institutes of technology) and a number of public Swiss Universities of Applied Sciences and other education institutions, as higher education institutions. The Swiss law on publicly financed universities, the Swiss University Conference and its accreditation body the CRUS-OAQ is responsible for their recognition according to the Federal Higher Education Act, HEdA.[1]


Locations of the Universities of Switzerland
Institution Abbreviation Location Founded Language Type Enrollment
University of Basel UNIBAS Basel 1460 German / English Public (cantonal) 12,852
University of Bern UNIBE Bern 1834 German / English Public (cantonal) 17,882
University of Fribourg UNIFR Fribourg 1889 French / German Public (cantonal) 10,000
University of Geneva UNIGE Geneva 1559 French Public (cantonal) 16,530
University of Neuchâtel UNINE Neuchâtel 1838 French Public (cantonal) 4,173
University of Lausanne UNIL Lausanne 1537 French Public (cantonal) 13,500
University of Lucerne UNILU Lucerne 2000 German / English Public (cantonal) 3,037
University of Lugano USI Lugano 1995 Italian / English Public (cantonal) 2,862
University of St. Gallen HSG St. Gallen 1898 German / English Public (cantonal) 8,553
University of Zurich UZH Zurich 1833 German / English Public (cantonal) 26,356
Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne EPFL Lausanne 1853 French / English Public (federal) 10,686
Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich ETH / ETHZ Zurich 1855 German / English Public (federal) 20,607

Universities of Applied SciencesEdit

There are seven public and two private Universities of Applied Sciences (or German: Fachhochschule (FH), French: Haute école specialisée (HES), and Italian: scuola universitaria professionale (SUP)) in Switzerland.


Higher education institutions of art and musicEdit

  • Conservatorio della Svizzera italiana, Lugano
  • Conservatoire de Musique de Genève, Geneva
  • Dipartimento Ambiente, Costruzioni e Design, Canobbio
  • École cantonale d'art de Lausanne (ECAL), Lausanne (part of the HES-SO)
  • Ecole cantonale d'art du Valais, Sierre
  • Haute école d'arts appliqués Arc, La Chaux-de-Fonds (part of the HES-SO)
  • Haute école d'arts et de design, Geneva (part of the HES-SO)
  • Haute école de musique de Lausanne - HEMU (part of the HES-SO)
  • Hochschule der Künste Berne, Bern (part of the BFH)
  • Hochschule für Gestaltung und Kunst, Basel (part of the FHNW)
  • Hochschule für Musik (Basel) und Schola Cantorum Basiliensis (part of the FHNW)
  • Hochschule Luzern – Design & Kunst, Musik (part of the HSLU)
  • Scuola Teatro Dimitri, Verscio (part of the SUPSI)
  • Zürcher Hochschule der Künste (part of the ZFH)
  • Kalaidos Musikhochschule (part of the Kalaidos University of Applied Sciences)

Higher Education InstitutionsEdit

Universities of teacher educationEdit

According to diploma recognition by the EDK / CDIP:

  • The following cantonal schools are recognized: Graubünden, Bern Jura and Neuchâtel, Fribourg, Nordwestschweiz (Teilschule der FHNW), Rorschach, St. Gallen, Schaffhausen, Thurgau, Vaud, Wallis, Zentralschweiz, Zürich (Teilschule der ZFH)
  • Alta Scuola Pedagogica Ticino (SUPSI)
  • Interkantonale Hochschule für Heilpädagogik Zürich
  • Schweize Hochschule für Logopädie Rorschach SHLR
  • Eidgenössisches Hochschulinstitut gemäss Berufsbildungsgesetz (BBG), Art. 48
  • Eidgenössisches Hochschulinstitut für Berufsbildung, EHB

Federal instituteEdit

According to the Berufsbildungsgesetz (BBG), Art. 48 / Loi fédérale sur la formation (LFPr), l'art. 48

  • Swiss Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training, SFIVET

International rankings for the public universitiesEdit


According to the THE–QS World University Rankings:

Institution 2015 2016 2017 2018
ETH Zurich (Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich) 12 9 8 10
École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne 17 14 14 12
University of Geneva (Université de Genève) 85 85 95 98
University of Zurich (Universität Zürich) 57 89 80 73
University of Basel (Universität Basel) 116 139 141 149
University of Lausanne (Université de Lausanne) 105 143 138 146
University of Bern (Universität Bern) 145 166 181 167
University of St. Gallen (Universität St. Gallen) 421-430 329 288 372

NR = no ranking or ranking outside top 200.


In relation to its population size, Switzerland is the country with the highest number of universities among the 100 best of the Academic Ranking of World Universities (2014-2015).[4]

Switzerland Top Universities in 2015Edit

A list of Switzerland top universities in 2020 as per three major ranking platforms ARWU (Academic Ranking of World Universities), QS (Quacquarelli Symonds) and THE (Times Higher Education).[5]

University Location ARWU (Academic Ranking of World Universities) World Ranking 2019 QS (Quacquarelli Symonds) World Rankings 2020 THE (Times Higher Education) World Ranking 2020
ETH Zurich - Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich 19 6 13
EPFL (Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne) Lausanne 78 18 38
University of Zurich Zurich 61 76 90
University of Geneva Geneva 58 110 144
University of Basel Basel 87 151 94
University of Lausanne Lausanne 151-200 153 198
University of Bern Bern 101-150 123 113
University of Fribourg Fribourg 401-500 - 301–350
Università della Svizzera Italiana Lugano 501-600 - 301–350
University of St. Gallen(HSG) St.Gallen - 398 401–500
University of Neuchâtel Neuchâtel 901-1000 - 501–600

See alsoEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. ^ "Members" (in German, French, Italian, and English). Berne, Switzerland: swissuniversities. 2016. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
  2. ^
  3. ^ "QS World University Rankings". 11 January 2018. Retrieved 11 January 2018.
  4. ^ Rankings: top of the class, The Economist, 28 March 2015 (page visited on 7 April 2015).
  5. ^ Top University in Switzerland 2015

External linksEdit