Top 10 Cities in the World to be a Student

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What makes your student life memorable apart from the learning you take home from the classrooms? It is the time spent outside—in the campus and around the city! Students consider not just the university or college when choosing a place to study. The city is a big factor, too.

How do you identify the best student cities in the world? Take the word of higher education rating experts, QS Ranking. Their 2018 rankings for the best student cities in the world was announced in partnership with Elsevier. The rankings are based on scores on six key indicators listed below.

  • University Rankings
  • Student Mix
  • Desirability
  • Employer Activity
  • Affordability
  • Student View

Here are the cities that made the top ten ranks in a snapshot!

Want more details on the top ten best student cities if you are an Indian student planning to study abroad? Scroll on to find out everything you would want to know.

1 London ranking snapshot

Despite Brexit and expected low appeal for international students, London tops the QS Rankings list. While rent and living costs are high, the city is still a preferred academic destination. Its pros include the number of world-class universities, professional and social opportunities, and a mix of the historical and the contemporary.

London in Numbers

CountryUnited Kingdom
Population13,880,000
Languages SpokenEnglish
Average International Fees*USD 21,400
Highest Ranked Institution**University College London (Ranked 7th in the World)
Desirability Rank18th
Employer Activity Rank2nd
Affordability Rank113th
Student Experience Rank13th
Websitelondon.gov.uk

2 Tokyo Ranking Snapshot

Asia's leading city in the QS rankings, Tokyo, the capital city of Japan, which ranks second has 13 internationally ranked universities, a proportionately low student population, and is a leading financial giant. While busy and populous, it is also great for students who prefer cultural immersion to a 'student bubble' lifestyle.

Tokyo in Numbers

CountryJapan
Population37,800,000
Languages SpokenJapanese
Average International Fees*USD 6,600
Highest Ranked Institution**University of Tokyo (Ranked joint 28th in the World)
Desirability Rank2nd
Employer Activity Rank1st
Affordability Rank55th
Student Experience Rank17th
Websitewww.metro.tokyo.jp/english/

Melbourne Ranking Snapshot

Home to a diverse student community, Melbourne is home to seven of the top-ranked universities in the world. With top-notch educational institutions, its popularity is also fuelled by its constant ranking in the world's most liveable cities. While the city does not score brownie points when it comes to affordability, its high standards of living and incredible vista makes it a top city.

Melbourne in Numbers

CountryAustralia
Population4,530,000
Languages SpokenEnglish
Average International Fees*USD 23,300
Highest Ranked Institution**University of Melbourne (Ranked joint 41st in the World)
Desirability Rank8th
Employer Activity Rank10th
Affordability Rank102nd
Student Experience Rank3rd
Websitewww.melbourne.vic.gov.au/

4 Montreal Ranking Snapshot

Since last year, the city has slipped three places in this year's edition of best student cities in the world. Its multicultural, multilingual identity makes it popular among students. It's also home to several of Canada's top universities including McGill University and Universite de Montreal.

Montreal in Numbers

CountryCanada
Population4,127,000
Languages SpokenFrench, English
Average International Fees*USD 13,200
Highest Ranked Institution**McGill University (Ranked 32nd in the World)
Desirability Rank10th
Employer Activity Rank20th
Affordability Rank69th
Student Experience Rank1st
Websiteville.montreal.qc.ca

 5 Paris Ranking Snapshot

The one reason Paris constantly features among the top student cities in the world is the number of internationally ranked universities in the city (18 top universities in the QS World Rankings). While the cost of living is high, the low tuition fees keeps the city's desirability high.

Paris in Numbers

CountryFrance
Population12,405,000
Languages SpokenFrench, English (Minimal)
Average International Fees*USD 3,400
Highest Ranked Institution**ENS Paris (Ranked 43rd in the World)
Desirability Rank20th
Employer Activity Rank7th
Affordability Rank92nd
Student Experience Rank27th
Websitewww.paris.fr/

Munich Ranking Snapshot

Germany is increasingly gaining popularity as a study abroad destination and this is underlined by the fact that it has not one but two countries in the top 10 best student cities in the world. Munich ranks particularly high because it is an affordable city with minimal tuition fees, and a distinctive culture, making it an appealing destination to study in.

Munich in Numbers

CountryGermany
Population2,600,000
Languages SpokenGerman, English (minimal)
Average International Fees*USD 100
Highest Ranked Institution**Technische Universität München (Ranked 64th in the World)
Desirability Rank10th
Employer Activity Rank23rd
Affordability Rank36th
Student Experience Rank2nd
Websitewww.muenchen.de

Berlin Ranking Snapshot

Home to one of the world's coolest urban hubs, Berlin is a major centre of design, fashion, music, and art. An impressive financial market and a great artistic cultural city, it is popular among students for not only these highlights but also the low or no tuition fees at public universities and the use of English as a medium of teaching at most universities.

Berlin in Numbers

CountryGermany
Population6,005,000
Languages SpokenGerman
Average International Fees*USD 200
Highest Ranked Institution**Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin  (Ranked 120th in the World)
Desirability Rank12th
Employer Activity Rank23rd
Affordability Rank29th
Student Experience Rank8th
Websiteberlin.de

Zurich Ranking Snapshot

Home to the highest ranked university in continental Europe, Zurich is highly desirable amongst students because of its affluence. A rich city translates into a clean, safe, and well maintained city ranking it high on liveability index. This also means high living costs which are somehow balanced by the comparably low tuition fees.

Zurich in Numbers

CountrySwitzerland
Population1,900,000
Languages SpokenGerman, French, Italian, Romansh, English
Average International Fees*USD 1900
Highest Ranked Institution**ETH Zurich (Ranked 10th in the World)
Desirability Rank5th
Employer Activity Rank6th
Affordability Rank80th
Student Experience Rank32nd
Websitewww.stadt-zuerich.ch

Sydney Ranking Snapshot

An inclusive student community with diverse population from across the world, constant rankings in the city desirability indices, high quality of life are some of the factors that make Sydney an extremely popular city for students. While the city does not do very well on affordability, the academic quality and the lifestyle make it a popular study abroad destination.

Sydney in Numbers

CountryAustralia
Population4,921,000
Languages SpokenEnglish
Average International Fees*USD 26,400
Highest Ranked Institution**The University of New South Wales (Ranked 45th in the World)
Desirability Rank4th
Employer Activity Rank13th
Affordability Rank114th
Student Experience Rank14th
Websitehttp://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/

10 Seoul Ranking Snapshot

Home to the highest ranked university in continental Europe, Zurich is highly desirable amongst students because of its affluence. A rich city translates into a clean, safe, and well maintained city ranking it high on liveability index. This also means high living costs which are somehow balanced by the comparably low tuition fees.

Seoul in Numbers

CountrySouth Korea
Population25,000,000
Languages SpokenKorean
Average International Fees*USD 6500
Highest Ranked Institution**Seoul National University (SNU) (Ranked joint 36th in the World)
Desirability Rank38th
Employer Activity Rank4th
Affordability Rank76th
Student Experience Rank23rd
Websiteenglish.visitseoul.net
* The international fees has all been mentioned in US dollars for normalization. The fee will differ when mentioned in the currency of the city in question
** The rankings of universities mentioned here are as per the QS World University Rankings.

Note: This article has been written according to the rankings released by QS Rankings in partnership with Elsevier. The attribute-based ranking is in accordance with the QS-released rankings. The detailed rankings can be checked here.

 

About Tulika Nair

Tulika Nair is a content strategist and creator with almost a decade's experience in television, print, and digital media in multiple domains including education and lifestyle. She still types her messages in complete sentences and considers incorrect use of punctuation a transgression of the highest order. If she isn't writing or doodling, you will find her with a book, music playing in the background on full volume.
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