Best Universities In The World In 2022
The top 1,000 universities from 80 different countries are revealed in this year’s QS World University Rankings. In this year’s top 1,000, there are 47 new entrants, and over 5,500 universities were examined and considered for admission.
While the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) maintains its record-breaking position as number one for the ninth year in a row, the big news this year is Asian colleges’ amazing gains. More than ever before, the continent now has 26 institutions in the global top 100. This year’s rankings come during a difficult time for the entire world, with COVID-19 affecting both colleges and students.
On the QS ranking top 10, there are 5 American universities, 4 of which are filling the top 4 spots. American universities have been reigning supreme on the QS ranking for years now, slowly pushing English universities lower. Every year, over a million international students enroll in US universities. Many wealthy families move their children to the US to gain access to the world’s best universities. Over the years, the US EB-5 Investor Visa and the US E-2 Treaty Visa have been particularly popular.
Another significantly represented nation is England. 4 universities out of the top 10 are located in England. London is ranked the best university city globally, and many of the world’s elite send their kids to England to have access to the best education. Over the years, the UK Tier 1 Investor Visa has been the preferred path to gain UK residency.
Best World Universities Rankings – Here are the top 10 best universities in the world in 2022, based on global reputation, published research, teaching, and international outlook.
1) Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, better known as MIT, has a thought-provoking motto: “Mind and Hand.” This cryptic slogan summarizes this illustrious institution’s purpose to expand knowledge in science, technology, and fields of academia that can contribute to improve the world.
MIT began as a tiny community of problem-solvers and science enthusiasts eager to apply their knowledge to the world when it was founded in 1861. MIT has grown into an educational giant, with over 11,000 undergraduate and graduate students and 1,000 faculty members.
MIT is presently a privately endowed, independent, coeducational university with five schools (architecture and planning; engineering; humanities, arts, and social sciences; management; science). MIT’s educational philosophy, however, is based on the notion of educational innovation.
MIT researchers are leading the way in artificial intelligence, climate adaptation, HIV/AIDS, cancer, and poverty alleviation, and MIT research has previously fueled scientific breakthroughs like the development of radar, the invention of magnetic core memory, and the concept of the expanding universe.
However, science and technology aren’t the only strings in MIT’s bow. Approximately 20% of MIT undergraduates participate in athletics, and MIT has one of the most diverse intercollegiate athletic programs in the world, with 33 varsity sports.
College life is also infused with a thriving artistic culture. On campus, there are 12 museums and galleries, with the MIT Museum attracting about 125,000 people annually. More than 60 music, drama, literary, and dance groups are available to students, and MIT faculty members include Pulitzer Prize winners and Guggenheim fellows.
MIT is located on 168 acres of land that stretches for more than a mile along the Charles River basin’s Cambridge side. The campus includes beautiful landmarks by architects such as Alvar Aalto, Frank Gehry, and Steven Hollin, as well as structures in a variety of architectural styles, including neoclassical, modernist, and brutalist.
The university merges with numerous Cambridge districts at its outskirts, notably Kendall Square, which is one of the world’s most inventive square miles. The tight relationship between industry and research has aided MIT alumni in launching more than 30,000 active companies, resulting in the creation of 4.6 million jobs and $1.9 trillion in annual revenue. It’s no surprise that a nation of MIT graduates would be the world’s tenth-largest economy.
2) Stanford University
Stanford University is located 35 miles south of San Francisco and 20 miles north of San Jose, in the heart of Northern California’s thriving Silicon Valley, which is home to Yahoo, Google, Hewlett-Packard, and a slew of other cutting-edge tech companies founded by Stanford alumni and professors. Stanford grads, dubbed the “billionaire factory,” are claimed to have one of the world’s top 10 economies if they created their own country.
Stanford University has one of the largest university campuses in the United States, with eight schools and 18 interdisciplinary research institutes: the Graduate School of Business, School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences, Graduate School of Education, School of Engineering, School of Humanities and Sciences, Law School, and School of Medicine.
Stanford University was founded in 1885 by California senator Leland Stanford and his wife, Jane, with the mission of “promoting the public good by having an influence in favor of humanity and civilization.” Because the couple’s only kid had died of typhoid, they decided to create a university on their farm as a tribute. The institution was founded on the principles of non-sectarianism, co-education, and affordability, and it taught both conventional liberal arts and the technology and engineering that shaped the new America at the time.
After more than a century, Stanford now has 19 Nobel laureates among its ranks and is consistently ranked among the world’s top three colleges. Stanford’s campus, dubbed “The Farm” because horses once roamed the grounds, is today a thriving community of more than 11,000 creative and successful people from all over the world. With nearly all undergraduates and 60% of graduate students living on campus, it’s no surprise that student life is vibrant and diverse, with over 625 student organizations.
Sport is popular, with state-of-the-art recreational facilities and fitness programs available to students, faculty, and staff. Baseball, football, basketball, and squash are among the 36 varsity and 32 club sports available to Stanford’s students. Stanford Cardinal sports teams are referred to as “Stanford Cardinal.”
Stanford also has a long history of encouraging innovation and the arts, with a thriving campus arts area and two world-class museums hosting regular exhibitions. Healthy, sustainable meals are provided to the campus community through eight dining halls, a teaching kitchen, and organic gardens. The close-knit communal atmosphere of campus life has even resulted in the creation of “Stanford speak,” a unique language used only on campus.
3) Harvard University
Harvard University was founded in 1636 and is the oldest higher education school in the United States. It is widely considered as a top university in terms of impact, prestige, and academic pedigree not just in the United States but also around the world.
Harvard’s 209-acre campus, located three miles north of Boston in Cambridge, Massachusetts, houses ten degree-granting institutions, as well as the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, two theatres, and five museums. With 18 million volumes, 180,000 serial titles, an estimated 400 million manuscript pieces, and 10 million photos, it is also home to the world’s largest academic library system.
Harvard was formed to train clergy, as were most of the United States’ pre-Civil War universities, but the curriculum and student population gradually secularized, and admissions policies were liberalized in the twentieth century to attract a more varied pool of students.
The institution now has a total of 21,000 students, all of whom may be seen rushing by the iconic monument of John Harvard, the university’s first benefactor and founder, who stands benignly in the center of campus. The glistening foot of the bronze statue is the result of tourists and students rubbing it practically constantly in the belief that it will bring them good luck.
The university’s hefty endowment allows it to offer generous financial aid packages, which around 60% of students take advantage of. Only the academic elite can claim a place at Harvard, and the nominal cost of attendance is high – though the university’s hefty endowment allows it to offer generous financial aid packages, which around 60% of students take advantage of.
Freshmen live in one of the Harvard Yard dormitories in a fantastic location and eat in the ancient and picturesque Annenberg dining hall. With over 400 approved student groups, including extracurricular, co-curricular, and athletic options, Harvard students are active both on and off campus. Student life is a rich and satisfying experience, whether it’s playing on the field at Harvard Stadium, promoting entrepreneurial activity at the Harvard Innovation Lab, or writing and editing for the Harvard Crimson daily newspaper.
Eight US presidents, several foreign heads of state, 62 living billionaires, 359 Rhodes Scholars, and 242 Marshall Scholars are among Harvard’s alumni. Harvard grads have won numerous awards, including Pulitzer Prizes, Nobel Prizes, and Academy Awards. A total of 108 Olympic medals have been won by students and alumni. The university is consistently ranked first in the world, and its chart-topping performances demonstrate that success does not foster complacency.
4) California Institute of Technology (Caltech)
Caltech will continue to admit international students, but all newcomers will have to follow self-quarantine requirements that apply to all travelers at first. Until further notice, all admission-related campus activities have been halted.
Caltech, located in Pasadena, California, about 11 miles northeast of downtown Los Angeles, is a world-renowned science and engineering research and education organization. Caltech is home to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (owned by NASA), the Caltech Seismological Laboratory, and the International Observatory Network, all of which produce high-quality research. It is one of a select group of technology institutes in the United States that focuses on teaching technical arts and applied sciences, and its admissions process assures that only a small number of the most talented students are accepted.
Amos G. Throop founded the university in 1891 as a preparatory and vocational school with the purpose of “expanding human knowledge and benefiting society via research combined with education.” In the early twentieth century, it became a significant center of US scientific study and was crucial to the US military effort during World War II.
Today, it houses the Einstein Writings Project, which aims to preserve, translate, and publish selected papers from Albert Einstein’s estate. It has also built an energy innovation cluster with the goal of discovering novel methods of directly creating fuels from sunshine.
Old Town Pasadena and the Pasadena Playhouse District are both within walking distance of Caltech’s 124-acre campus, and students frequent both sites. Social activities, clubs, groups, and recreational amenities abound on campus. Caltech competes in 13 intercollegiate sports, with the beaver (nature’s engineer) serving as the college’s mascot.
Caltech also provides exceptional possibilities for music, drama, and visual arts study and performance, all of which contribute to the Institute’s purpose of “educating outstanding students to become creative citizens of society.” The Athenaeum, a magnificent edifice in the heart of campus that provides a touch of grandeur, is where members can go for formal and informal dining, meetings, rendezvous, and private events.
Caltech’s blend of a challenging academic curriculum and activities that foster personal development guarantees that students’ time there is both formative and beneficial as a stepping stone to a successful career. Caltech is unquestionably one of the best universities in the world, despite lacking the prestige of Ivy League universities or the likes of Oxford and Cambridge. This is reflected in all university rankings, which consistently highlight technology and engineering as the school’s key academic strengths.
5) University of Oxford
The University of Oxford is the oldest university in the English-speaking world, and it is so old that no one knows when it was founded — though it is thought that teaching began there as early as the 11th century.
It consists of 44 colleges and halls, as well as the UK’s largest library system, and is located in and around Oxford’s ancient city center, called “the dreaming city of spires” by 19th century poet Matthew Arnold.
Oxford has a total of 22,000 students, roughly half of whom are undergraduates and 40% of whom are international students. Oxford has the UK’s youngest population, with students accounting for a quarter of the city’s population.
The University of Oxford does not have a main campus, instead scattering its buildings and facilities throughout the mediaeval city center. Its colleges each have their own distinct personalities and traditions, some of which date back centuries. Students frequently apply directly to colleges, which are self-governing institutions. Humanities, Mathematical, Physical, and Life Sciences; Medical Sciences; and Social Sciences are the four academic divisions at Oxford University. The sciences are the university’s strong suit, and it is ranked first in the world for medicine.
Oxford is a vibrant, international city with a diverse range of things to see and do. The Bodleian Libraries, Ashmolean Museum, Sheldonian Theatre, cathedral, and colleges themselves are only a few of the historic and renowned structures.
Students can spend their time studying or participating in one of the various extracurricular activities offered. Oxford has a vibrant musical scene, with clubs and organizations spanning all genres from jazz to classical and folk music. Oxford is also well-known for sports, with its top rowers competing annually in the world-famous boat race on the River Thames with the University of Cambridge. Drama fans are catered for as well, with one of the country’s largest and most lively university drama scenes.
Over 250,000 people have graduated from Oxford, including more than 120 Olympic medalists, 26 Nobel Laureates, seven poet laureates, and more than 30 modern world leaders (including Bill Clinton, Aung San Suu Kyi, Indira Ghandi and 26 UK Prime Ministers).
It is often recognized as one of the top three universities in the world, and it has a friendly rivalry with Cambridge for the title of best university in the UK. Tim Berners-Lee, Stephen Hawking, and Richard Dawkins are among the notable Oxford intellectuals and scientists.
6) ETH Zurich - Swiss Federal Institute of Technology
ETH Zurich is one of the world’s premier science and technology universities, with a reputation for cutting-edge research and innovation. The Swiss Federal Polytechnic School was founded in 1855, and the university now has 21 Nobel laureates, two Fields Medalists, two Pritzker Prize winners, and one Turing Award winner among its alumni, including Albert Einstein himself.
The institution, which is known in English as the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich, includes 16 departments that provide academic education and perform scientific research in fields ranging from engineering and architecture to chemistry and physics.
At ETH Zurich, education blends solid theory with practical application, and the majority of degree programs are built on solid mathematical foundations. The major teaching language for undergraduates is German, whereas most master’s programs and doctorate courses are conducted in English.
ETH Zurich is located in Zurich, Switzerland’s largest city, and has two main campuses: one in downtown Zurich and the other on a contemporary site on the outskirts of town. Students at ETH have a heavy task, but they may still find time to participate in cultural and other leisure activities, as well as attend one of the numerous regular symposia and conferences held on campus, where some of the brightest minds in science speak.
Students at ETH enjoy exercising their bodies as well as their minds, and there are a variety of sports available on campus. The SOLA relay race is the largest annual event, with 14 stages covering a total distance of 140 kilometers. The annual spectacle has been known to attract over 900 teams all at once.
Students have also been able to show off their best skills at the Polyball, a traditional ball event that features live music from various orchestras and bands, since the 1880s. 10,000 dancers, music fans, and partygoers gather on ETH’s lavishly decorated main building every November for what is generally a memorable night.
7) University of Cambridge
The University of Cambridge is a collegiate public research institution that serves over 18,000 students from all over the world. It is located in the heart of the ancient city of Cambridge, 50 miles north of London.
The university is divided into 31 autonomous colleges and contains numerous listed buildings, with many of the older ones located along the famous river Cam. Rather than applying to the university as a whole, students apply to particular colleges. You can live in your college and be taught there frequently, with small group teaching sessions known as college supervisions.
Six academic schools – Arts and Humanities, Biological Sciences, Clinical Medicine, Humanities and Social Sciences, Physical Sciences, and Technology – are dispersed among the university’s colleges, housing over 150 faculties and other institutions.
The University of Cambridge, founded in 1209, has an 800-year history, making it the fourth-oldest university in the world and the second-oldest in the English-speaking world. Students represent nearly 20% of the population of Cambridge, and the majority of the older colleges are located near the city center. King’s College Chapel, the history faculty building designed by James Stirling, and the Cripps Building at St John’s College are among the notable buildings that give Cambridge its distinct character.
Cambridge is well-known for being an exciting place to study. On the academic side, the university has over 100 libraries with a total collection of over 15 million books. There are also nine world-renowned arts, scientific, and cultural museums, including Kettle’s Yard and the Fitzwilliam Museum, as well as a botanical garden, all of which are open to the public all year.
You can get involved in anything from the university’s renowned student drama societies, which spawned the likes of Monty Python, to music, politics, and hundreds of other clubs and societies through extracurricular activities. Cambridge also has a thriving sports scene, with state-of-the-art facilities and over 80 sports to choose from, with teams for novices and experts alike.
The University of Cambridge is frequently ranked among the top universities in the world for teaching, research, and international outlook, thanks to its reputation for academic excellence and traditional scholarly values. Eminent mathematicians, physicists, politicians, attorneys, philosophers, writers, actors, and rulers of state have all attended the university. Ninety-eight Nobel Laureates and 15 British Prime Ministers, including scientists Francis Crick and Frederick Sanger, have ties to Cambridge as students, faculty, or alumni.
8) Imperial College London
Imperial College is located in South Kensington, London, in an area known as ‘Albertopolis,’ which was envisioned by Prince Albert and Sir Henry Cole in the nineteenth century as a place where science and the arts could coexist. As a result, Imperial is surrounded by world-class cultural institutions such as the Science, Natural History, and Victoria and Albert museums; the Royal Colleges of Art and Music; the English National Ballet; and the Royal Albert Hall, where all of their students graduate.
There is also plenty of green space on campus, with two Royal Parks (Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens) only a 10-minute walk away. Traveling to and from the area is also a breeze, thanks to three Tube lines and numerous bus routes.
Students join a community of world-class researchers, which is one of the most distinguishing features of an Imperial education. Imperial is best known for the cutting-edge and globally influential nature of its research. Their research is so effective because of their focus on practical application of their research – particularly in addressing global challenges – and the high level of interdisciplinary collaboration. More information about their research impact can be found here.
The number of award winners, Nobel Laureates, and prestigious Fellowships (Royal Society, Royal Academy of Engineering, Academy of Medical Sciences) among their staff reflects their outstanding contributions in their fields.
Imperial is one of the most international universities in the world, with non-UK citizens accounting for 59 percent of the student body in 2018-19 and more than 140 countries represented on campus. Meanwhile, the College’s faculty and staff come from a variety of cultural backgrounds, nationalities, and experiences, just like their students.
9) University of Chicago
Established in 1856, the University of Chicago is a private research university headquartered in the urban center of Chicago, the third most populous city in the United States. Outside of the Ivy League, Chicago is one of America’s best colleges, and has top-ten ranks in numerous national and international rankings.
Aside from the arts and sciences, Chicago’s professional schools, such as the Pritzker School of Medicine, the Booth School of Business, and the Harris School of Public Policy Studies, have a stellar reputation. University of Chicago alumni are responsible for the creation of several academic areas, such as sociology, economics, law, and literary criticism.
The college’s crest features a phoenix rising from the ashes, a reference to the fire, foreclosure, and demolition of the Old University of Chicago campus, with the new University of Chicago emerging triumphantly in its stead in 1890. The old university was established thanks to a land endowment from controversial senator Stephen Douglas, the author of the Kansas-Nebraska Act and a supporter of slavery. The new University of Chicago, on the other hand, was co-educational and supported by wealthy Chicagoans and oil magnate John D. Rockefeller.
Approximately 16,000 students attend the University of Chicago today, with a male to female ratio of 56:44. A quarter of all students are international, demonstrating the university’s progressive credentials.
Students run more than 400 clubs and societies, which consist of a typical mix of sports teams, arts, cultural and religious groups, academic and political groupings, and societies that promote eclectic common interests. Among the more renowned examples are the University of Chicago bowl team, which has won 118 tournaments and 15 national championships, while the university’s competitive Model United Nations team was the highest ranked team in North America in 2013–14 and 2014–2015.
If you have an interest in media and film, then you’re well catered for: the institution is home to the longest continuously running student film society Doc Films and publishes various newspapers and publications. Budding thespians can join renowned improvisational theatre ensemble Off-Off Campus or learn how to broadcast at the university-owned radio station WHPK.
Notable faculty members past and present include 29 Nobel laureates and former US president Barack Obama. Novelists Philip Roth and Saul Bellow, political movers and shakers like pollster Nate Silver and Obama strategist David Axelrod, pioneering balloonist Jeannette Piccard, and fictional archaeologist Indiana Jones are among the illustrious alumni.
UCL is a diverse community with the freedom to challenge, to question, and to think differently. Our community strives for academic greatness, breaks down barriers, and makes a positive difference in the world.
In the “QS Globe University Rankings 2021,” UCL is ranked 10th in the world. There have been 30 Nobel laureates among its former employees and pupils, one for each decade since the Prize was established.