Study in Switzerland

Study in Switzerland

Famed for its delectable chocolates and crystal clear lakes amidst a snow-clad landscape, Switzerland is located in the heart of Europe and is internationally well-known for its academic institutions meticulously designed around a decentralized education system. What’s even more enticing is that it is a multicultural and multilingual country and houses many globally established business organisations and multinational companies! To study in Switzerland is to immerse oneself at the centre of innovation, harbouring many research centres and working towards bettering the world by dedicating itself to commercial as well as the technological sector. Now, let’s explore all the essentials that you need to keep in mind while planning your academic journey to Switzerland, from the admission essentials to visa process as well as overall costs.

Why Study In Switzerland? 

Being amongst the choicest options to study in Europe, there are many factors that you need to consider while planning your academic journey here. Below we have explained some of the major reasons that will definitely convince you to study in Switzerland for your chosen academic program.

Quality Education

You will travel so far to get quality education and prestige. Right? The Swiss government has thrived hard to inject innovative thinking in the education system of Switzerland. They provide autonomy to researchers and students so that they can expand at their level of thinking as they want. Further, many leading institutions in Switzerland have consistently maintained their place the World University Rankings by THE and QS especially ETH Zurich, University of Zurich, University of Geneva, amongst others.

Geography and People

Some people believe that the geography of Switzerland is variably diverse because there are 26 federal states with four national languages. But do you know that with such four languages and 26 federal states, you will meet diverse people when you study in Switzerland? You will see cultural variations in people when you observe the cuisine, communication, appearance of people, and so many other things. Apart from this, a blend of international students from various parts of the globe makes Switzerland an even more diverse nation.

Perfect Scenic View

When students come to study in Switzerland, they end up spending most of their time exploring every corner of the nation. And the irony is that the native people themselves tend to explore it again and again. So if you are ever interested in visiting somewhere while you study in Switzerland, you can explore the natural beauty with local groups of the nation. We recommend you to join local groups with your non-native friends to get a higher level of contentment.

Transportation System is Impeccable

The transportation system is a huge sigh of relief for students who study in Switzerland as it enables them to avoid delay. You can travel around most popular urban routes with the help of a tram, bus, and regional train services. However, boats are also available there. Almost half of the Swiss commuters tend to travel through the public transportation system. And most importantly, the whole transportation system of the nation is integrated, no matter whether it is a bus, lake ferry, mountain funicular, or train. Even though distinctive companies operate various transportation services, still all of them are designed in a way that signifies a strong connection. And for a delay inbound, the government has made strict rules.

Get Immersed in an International Network

When it comes to determining the total number of international students who come to study in Switzerland, statistics tell us that nearly 25% of students are international. You know what? The other 75% of native students are going to help you immerse in Swiss culture. In addition to this, you will get a chance to learn a new language.

Go Out & Play

Switzerland is bordered by five European countries: Liechtenstein, France, Italy, Germany, and Austria. It’s convenient to reach these countries because of the efficient and well-connected transportation system in Switzerland. It is one of the added perks if you decide to study in Switzerland. Moreover, you also won’t be able to resist the enthusiasm attached to the adventure sports available here. You can choose hiking, biking, skiing, glacier trekking, canyoning, rock climbing or any other exciting sport.


Switzerland is one of the safest places to live in the world. Global Finance Magazine’s Safety Index 2019 ranks Switzerland as the 2nd safest country in the world. The country aims to provide a secure environment for international students thus making it another prominent reason why you should definitely opt to study in Switzerland.

Cost of Studying in Switzerland

The tuition costs to study in Switzerland are quite affordable along with living expenses which you need to plan beforehand to fit your set budget. Let’s explore the varied kinds of costs that you must keep in mind while opting for a course in the country.

Tuition Costs

When it comes to estimating tuition fees, it largely depends upon whether you want to opt for a public or private institution. Public universities offer programs at relatively low costs and some of these popular institutions include ETH, EPFL, University of Bern, University of Basel, University of Lausanne, which mainly charge under CHF 1000 (73,450 INR) for programs. Moreover, your academic costs will also differ as per your chosen program and university. The average tuition fee for an undergraduate course can be estimated around CHF 18,500 (13,59,000 INR) while there can be some universities that can charge CHF 5,000 (3,67,000 INR) or can go even up to CHF 24,000 (17,62,000 INR). 

For those planning to study in Switzerland by pursuing a master’s program, the full course tuition fee can come around CHF 3,000 (2,21,000 INR) to CHF 13,000 (9,55,000 INR). On the other hand, opting for private institutions can increase the tuition fees even more so it’s important to explore the academic costs before deciding to opt for a course. Coming to doctoral students, they are generally taken on a dual status as a student as well as a research assistant. Thus, you will be provided with a monthly salary, employee benefits like professional training programs but an initial registration fee will be charged once you are enrolled in the degree. Also, you can expect comparatively lower tuition fees to study in Switzerland for doctoral programs than undergraduate and postgraduate courses. 

Living Costs

Approximating the living expenses is largely dependable on the city you are choosing to study in Switzerland. On an average, it is important to keep 1,300-1700 EUR/month (1,02,000-1,32,000 INR) for varied living expenses which will cover accommodation, transportation, food, supplies and miscellaneous costs. For expensive cities like Geneva, Bern, Basel and Zurich, the budgeting costs can even go higher than this reaching over 2,200 EUR/month (1,71,300 INR). Coming to accommodation rates, the average estimation can be around 600-700 EUR (46,800-54,500 INR) on a monthly basis. If you are opting for university accommodation, costs can go between 450 to 800 EUR (35,000-62,300 INR) per month and if you are choosing rentals or apartment sharing, the average costs per month can be expected between 700 and 1,200 EUR (54,500-9,34,000 INR). Expenses on transportation can be minimised by using public transports as you can get a monthly pass for around 55 EUR (4,290 INR) which can be utilised to travel across different transports like trains, buses, tramways, etc.

Note: The above-mentioned costs are just estimation taken on an average basis.

How to Apply To Swiss Universities

When it comes to applying to universities, we often feel perplexed. So we made this easy peasy chart that you can follow and apply to study in Switzerland.

Step 1Select the right degree subject 
Step 2Select the most suitable university
Step 3Research the requirements of your desired universities
so that you can prepare to apply accordingly
Step 4Now collect:
– A signed printout of the application form
– Copy of your identity.
– Two passport size photographs.
-Bachelor’s diploma (If required)
-Language proficiency test certificate
-Your CV
-Application fee receipt.
Apart from this, they may take your essay test. 
For the doctoral program, you may need:
A letter from an instructor of the faculty who agrees to approve
dissertations and have a look at your research.- If you are in the
final year at secondary school and haven’t got your diploma,
then you may apply based on your grades, but remember!
You will have to send a copy of your final exam result once
you receive it.
Get your documents translated either in English or French
by a certified translator.
Step 5There are three official languages: German, French and Italian.
So you will need a language proficiency test like IELTS,
TOEFL, DSH, OSD, DELF, or DALF. However, if you don’t have
a certificate, the university may take your test to estimate
whether you can study in Switzerland or not.
Step 6Fill and submit the application form online on the website of
the university. Make sure you upload necessary documents
properly and pay the application fee and once your candidature
is processed, the selected candidate will be provided with the
acceptance letter.

Student Visa Procedure

What Kind of Visa Is Required?

To study in Switzerland, there are two types of student visas: C visa and D visa. Both visas have their time duration and purpose. Let’s see which one is suitable for you.

  1. C – Visa: If you want to stay in Switzerland for a short term period, C visa is for you. You can stay for up to 3 months with this visa. 
  2. D- Visa: D visa is for those students who want to stay in Switzerland for more than 3 months. Generally, students apply for such a visa when they want to do undergraduate or postgraduate courses. Remember! If you are going there with this visa, you will have to visit the cantonal migration office within the first 2 weeks to get your residence permit. 

Note: If you’re from the EU/EFTA country, you won’t need a student visa, but still, a residence permit is compulsory.

The steps to apply for a visa to study in Switzerland are as follows:

  1. Collect Documents: Please make sure that you have these documents before applying for a student visa:
    • Acceptance letter from the institution where you have applied
    • A valid passport
    • Proof that shows you’re financially able to support yourself
    • Health insurance
    • Get your birth certificate (if you’re under 18)
    • Receipt of payment that you made as a fee for admission
    • Your CV
    • Result of the previous institution
    • A signed letter that illustrates that you will leave Switzerland once you finish the course
  2. Apply: You can schedule an appointment and submit all the documents mentioned above at the Embassy of Switzerland. After submitting the documents, you can track the progress of your visa application online by using the application reference number given on your receipt. 
  3. Wait: Now wait till they notify you about the result. 

Top Universities to Study in Switzerland

Many world-class universities of Switzerland have been consistently ranked in the QS and THE World Rankings and the country is also globally acclaimed as the most innovative in the Global Innovation Index 2019. Take a look at the following table elucidates some of the major universities to study in Switzerland as well as their prospective rankings as per QS and THE World University Rankings 2020.

UniversityQS World University
Rankings 2020
THE World University
Rankings 2020
ETH Zurich613
EPFL Swiss Federal Institute of
Technology Lausanne
University of Zurich7690
University of Geneva110113
University of Bern123144
University of Basel15194
University of Lausanne153198
University of St. Gallen398401
University of Fribourg581301
University of Neuchatel501

Now, let’s elaborate some of these leading academic institutions to study in Switzerland in further detail:

University of Zurich

Amongst the largest universities in the country, the University of Zurich is home to 26,000 students and was the first European academic institution to be founded by a democratic political system. As one of the top universities to study in Switzerland, UZH is spread across a total of seven faculties as well as centres of competence, associated institutes and UZH institutes and clinics. It offers a plethora of undergraduate, postgraduate and doctorate courses in over 100 specialisations and provides an array of continuing education courses as well.

ETH Zurich

As an integral part of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, ETH Zurich is another key mention in the list of prominent universities to study in Switzerland. Founded in 1885, it is amongst the leading research institutions working in the domain of Science and Technology and renowned for its cutting-edge research and innovation. It constitutes of a total of 16 departments providing a plethora of programs as well as carrying out scientific research in varied disciplines, eminently in Engineering, Architecture, Physics and Chemistry.

ETH Zurich

University of Geneva

Devoted to teaching, research and dialogue with society, the University of Geneva was established in 1559 by Jean Calvin and presently comprises 17,000 students from around 15 nationalities. As the second-largest university to study in Switzerland, it provides around 136 undergraduate and postgraduate as well as 87 doctoral degree courses as well as around 343 continuing education programmes spread across a varied range of domains, such as sciences, medicine, law, social sciences, humanities, amongst others. As the host and co-host to seven National Centres of Competence in Research, the university has carved its research excellence in Astrophysics, Life Sciences and Physics of Elementary Particles.

University of Bern

Constituting of 8 faculties and around 160 institutes, the University of Bern has gained special recognition in imparting quality education in leading-edge disciplines and is famed for its teaching excellence as well as an incredible campus environment linked to social, economic and political life of the city. It is an active part of many European and global research projects, especially in the domain of space research and offers a wide array of degree programs and short term courses in diverse fields, such as Art History, Biomedical Engineering, Biomedical Sciences, Economics, Earth Sciences, English, History, Philosophy, etc. to those wanting to study in Switzerland.

University of Basel

As the oldest university in the country, the University of Basel was established in 1460 and is globally reputed for teaching and research excellence. Availing a multitude of undergraduate, postgraduate, and doctorate degrees to those aspiring to study in Switzerland, presently it has around 13,000 students from more than 100 countries. Comprising 7 faculties, the prospective courses offered at the university cover an array of fields like Actuarial Science, Anthropology, Computational Sciences, Biomedical Engineering, Digital Humanities, Educational Sciences, European Global Studies, to name a few.

Thus, Switzerland is home to many internationally reputed institutions that are well-known for their academic and research excellence. If you are all geared to pursue higher studies in the heart of Europe but don’t know where to start, our Leverage Edu experts are here to guide you throughout the application process, sorting out visa procedures and accommodation-related issues thus ensuring that your dream to study in Switzerland becomes a sure-shot reality.

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