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Admission to a Bachelor's Programme
For access to Swiss universities a valid Swiss maturity certificate or an equivalent foreign upper secondary school-leaving certificate qualifying for university entrance is required. Each of the universities makes its own decisions as to what certificates and qualifications it recognizes. Detailed information on general and country-specific access and admission requirements can be found at the CRUS/Swiss ENIC Web site.

There are special regulations for study programmes in medicine and human movement and sports science (see section 3).

Admission to a Master's Programme
The prerequisite for access to a Master's programme is a successfully completed Bachelor's level programme. Graduates of Bachelor's programmes have access to certain Master's programmes, as listed in the data base available at Each of the universities makes its own decisions as to whether a foreign Bachelor's degree gives the holder access to Master's programmes without entrance examinations, or access under certain conditions, or access with further requirements, or does not give access to Master's programmes.

Language Requirements
The universities require good knowledge of the language of instruction (see section 2 and the overview here).

At the Master's level especially, the universities are offering an increasing number of study programmes in English.

For students that do not hold fully recognized certificates qualifying for university entrance, the admission requirements also include a university entrance examination (see here section 7).

Required Steps If You Want to Study in Switzerland

If you fulfil the requirements listed in section 5 above, proceed as follows:

Apply for Admission
Contact the university of your choice prior to the admission deadline. Most of the universities also accept online applications. The main documents that you will have to send to the university are your upper secondary school-leaving certificate (the original or a notarized copy) and an up-to-date passport photograph.

Entry/Visa and Residence Permit
Within 14 days of entering Switzerland, EU/EFTA citizens must register with the local authority (Einwohnerkontrolle, Residents' Registration Office) at the place of residence and apply for a residence permit.
You will need to present the following documents:

- Personal application for residence permit
- Valid passport or identity card
- Proof of registration at the university
- Evidence of sufficient funds (bank certificate or certified document)
- Proof of address at place of residence
- 2 passport photographs

Other foreign national students must contact the Swiss embassy or consulate in their own country and apply for a visa. If the responsible immigration or police authorities approve the application, the requirements for entry into Switzerland and for residence for the purpose of study are met.

Foreign nationals who are not EU/EFTA citizens and who do not require a visa should consult the Swiss embassy or consulate in their country for the current entry and residence requirements and formalities.

University Entrance Examination

Central Entrance Examination
Students that do not hold fully recognized foreign certificates qualifying for university entrance must pass a central university entrance examination.

University of St. Gallen
As the only Swiss university to do so, the University of St. Gallen requires foreign national students to take its own admission test. The reason is that the university restricts the total percentage of foreign national students to 25%. Foreign nationals who hold a recognized Swiss maturity certificate are exempt from this examination requirement.

Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology
The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (Eidgenösissische Technische Hochschule Zürich ETHZ) and Lausanne (Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne EPFL) offer the opportunity to take entrance examinations to applicants, both foreign nationals and Swiss, who do not hold a fully recognized upper secondary school-leaving certificate qualifying for university entrance.

Various scholarships are offered through bilateral agreements between governments and/or universities. Candidates should, in the first instance, find out from their own country's authorities whether they are entitled to a state scholarship, or should approach the Swiss Embassy or Consulate in their home country. The universities themselves can supply information about scholarships that they may give.

Region Western Europe
Currency Swiss Franc
Surface Area 41277
Sq. Km.
Population 7568000
Population Density 18303 / square kilometre
Capital City Bern
GDP (million current US$) 491923
GDP per capita (current US$) 65003.4
CPI: Consumer Price Index 108
Temperature °C (min/max) 4.9/12.7
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