Switzerland is not only the bank of the world but also a global player in the academic field.
Swiss universities have produced 113 Nobel Laureates, and most of these Nobel Prize winners are scientists. The world’s leading particle physics laboratory CERN is also located within its borders. Finding cheap universities in Switzerland for international students will be an excellent choice, because Swiss degrees in STEM are prestigious.
Here are a few cheap universities in Switzerland that can give you a great degree without emptying your pockets.
Highest Quality University: ETH Zurich – Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich
ETH Zurich is ranked as the best university in Switzerland and 10th in the Times World Rankings 2018. ETH Zurich has given us Albert Einstein and 32 other Nobel Laureates in Physics, Chemistry, and Medicine. Founded in 1985, this Swiss university has 16 departments mainly dealing with the STEM field.
In regards to finances, you can say that ETH Zurich is cheaper than a lot of colleges, with tuition fees per semester only being 580 CHF, which is roughly $600 USD. Other compulsory fees can be around 130 to 150 CHF, which is approximately $160 USD.
Average tuition fees for an academic year can be between 1,400 to 1,600 CHF, which is roughly $1,700 USD. You can find the tuition fee table in the ETH Zurich Tuition Fees page.
As you can see, education in the prestigious university is actually cheaper than 99% of the colleges in the US and Canada. However, please do take note that living expenses can be quite high in Switzerland since they import quite a lot of commodities. Also, do take note that the academic rigor in ETH Zurich is extremely high, so expect a lot of coursework and projects!
Cheapest University: University of Geneva
Founded in 1559, the University of Geneva is known for its long history of producing highly qualified professionals. With more than 16,000 students and 6,000 staff, this university is a recognized global hub for researchers. The main focus of this institution lies in the social sciences, like law, political science, psychology, economics, and humanities.
Although this public university was originally started as a seminary for theologians, in the 17th century, it has been part of the global Enlightenment movement. Since then, the university prides itself on giving secular education at quite a low cost.
For 2018, tuition fees are at 500 CHF per semester. This amount roughly translates to $510 USD. In a single academic year, tuition fees are expected to be around 1000 CHF. In a school year, you can expect to pay approximately $1,100 USD. That is quite a deal since most community colleges in the US costs almost three times as much. You can see their tuition fees in the Universite de Geneve tuition page.
Geneva is a prominent global city where diplomats, politicians, and businesspeople often hold meetings.
With such a high-income population, the prices are expensive. There is no shortage of demand for part-time work though, so you can survive as a working student as long as you are determined.
Higher End: University of Bern
Located in the Swiss capital of Bern, this institution has consistently been part of the top 200 universities in the world. Having produced Nobel Laureates in Medicine and Chemistry, the University of Bern is an affordable public university specializing in medicine and pharmacy.
Also, the institution also has a good business and economics faculty. They are also known for their research in sustainable development.
Their tuition fees are a bit higher compared to other Swiss universities but is still affordable. The regular tuition fee is at 750 CHF per semester. However, there is an additional 200 CHF if they are not residents of Switzerland or Liechtenstein.
To save up, students are advised to get their residences in Switzerland at least six months before applying to the University of Bern. To sum it up, tuition fees for the university can be around $1,600 to $2,000 for one academic year. However, $2,000 is still cheap when compared to universities around the world.
You can check their tuition fees at the University of Bern semester registration page.
Summary of Cheap Universities in Switzerland
To sum it all up, The University of Bern is perfect for those who are looking for business or medicine degrees. ETH Zurich is cheaper but has a more competitive admission and education process with workloads that are almost twice compared to other schools.
ETH Zurich is recommended for those who want to pursue a STEM program. The University of Geneva is the cheapest and easiest to enter and is perfect for those who want a political or legal career.
How to Apply to Universities in Switzerland for International Students
The best places to look when applying to universities in Switzerland is to take a look at the university website. Universities have a specific page for admissions, and many have a specific page for international students. If you are considering to apply, definitely look up information about admissions to see the admission requirements, deadlines, required forms, and procedures.
If you are interested, visit the Switzerland Scholarships Page!