What, Where and how to apply for study in Switzerland 2024

What to study in Switzerland?

Switzerland is famous for the neutral, yet special position it holds in the EU. Seeing as they produce the best bankers and the best lawyers, it comes as no surprise that the best and most sought-after degrees in Switzerland are in fields such as:

  • Finance degrees in Switzerland
  • MBA degrees in Switzerland
  • International Law degrees in Switzerland
  • Mathematics degrees in Switzerland
  • International Business degrees in Switzerland

Where to study in Switzerland?

Switzerland doesn’t have a de jure capital, meaning that no city is recognised as the capital. However, the de facto city recognised as the governmental seat is Bern.

And, because Switzerland won’t make things easier for us, the largest city in the country is Zurich.

There’s not just only one good location. You can take your pick from the list below:

  • Study in Zürich
  • Study in Bern
  • Study in Lausanne
  • Study in Genève
  • Study in Montreux
  • Study in Neuchâtel


How to apply

Switzerland, unlike other countries, doesn’t have a special website or application centre that can manage your documents and apply on your behalf.

As it stands, you simply have to check the website of the programme you chose and:

  • Complete the online application
  • Pay the application fee
  • Upload all the necessary documents before the deadline expires

Because each degree and university has its own requirements, you have to pay attention and check the list of documents carefully.

Usually, the documents required are:

  • A printed and signed copy of your application form
  • Two passport photos
  • A copy of your ID
  • Official academic transcripts, from each university you attended
  • High school diploma or your Bachelor’s degree
  • Language proficiency certificates for German, French, or English
  • CV
  • Evidence you paid the application fee
  • Personal essay or motivation letter

You can also make sure you’re accepted to a university if you:

  • Show how you performed as a student, and be sure to know what your Grade Point Average (GPA) was during your studies.
  • Can increase your chances of going to Switzerland by being sure to apply to more than one university! 

Helpful ways to make sure you qualify for a Swiss university

Take Preparation Courses

These kinds of courses enable degree-seeking students to get an extra educational boost just before they start their Master’s degree or other post-graduate degree programmes.

Try a pre-M.B.A., pre-Law, or pre-Medicine programme, as well as any other foundation or preparation courses that will allow you to study in the degree programme of your choice.

Improve your English through an English-language prep course

If you’re attending a degree programme in Switzerland, you will need to prove that your language skills are good enough to participate in the classes and understand the lectures. These courses will also prepare you for any of the English-language tests that universities require.

English-language tests

Switzerland has three official languages: German, French, and Italian.

The language in which your degree will be taught depends on where you wish to apply to. In addition, most universities also offer a wide range of programmes taught in English.

The certificates of proficiency you will need to provide, depending on the language you wish to study, are:

  • For German: DSH, TestDaF, OSD, telc, and others
  • For French: DELF or DALF
  • For English: IELTS, TOEFL, PTE Academic

If you don’t hold a language certificate, you can take a language test at the university and they can decide if your level is sufficient for you to complete your studies.

This option is not available in all universities, so always check with the institution!