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Most Prestigious Universities in the World

It is difficult to choose the most prestigious universities in the world, because each person will have different evaluation. Invite you to explore and refer to the top 10 most prestigious universities in the world selected by Knowinsiders.com.

1. Harvard University - World's Pretigious Universities

Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S.

All other research universities are compared to Harvard University as the gold standard. No school has recently contested its status as the top academic institution in the world.

As the oldest school in the richest country in the world, it has benefited from this fact. The school's endowment increased from $4.6 billion to $25.8 billion under the direction of financial wizard Jack Meyer in 15 years. The school has about $35.7 billion in assets now, and its wealth is continually increasing. Yet Harvard is more than just a wealthy institution.

32 heads of state, 48 Pulitzer Prize winners, and 49 Nobel laureates have all graduated from this institution.

It has the largest academic library in the world, top business, law, and medical schools, and a global alumni network. Harvard is not only a leader in a wide range of subjects, but it is also perfectly located to collaborate with numerous other universities.

The most prominent example is MIT, which is located in Cambridge at the other end of Massachusetts Avenue. But, there are 60 colleges and universities in the greater Boston area, including Boston College, Boston University, Northeastern University, Tufts University, and Brandeis University. This provides instructors and students with countless options for team research.

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US is home to the best universities in the world. Stanford, Harvard, Chicago, Columbia are dream universities of students around the world.

2. University of Cambridge - World's Pretigious Universities

Cambridge, England, U.K.

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Photo: Bloomberg

Cambridge University, the seventh-oldest university in the world, is a venerable institution with a long history that dates back to 1209. To argue that Cambridge is the cornerstone upon which the history of Western science is erected is not an exaggeration. There are many notable scientists, mathematicians, and logicians who either studied or taught there (or both), including Isaac Newton, Augustus De Morgan, Charles Darwin, Charles Babbage, James Clerk Maxwell, J.J. Thomson, Ernest Rutherford, Bertrand Russell, Alfred North Whitehead, J. Robert Oppenheimer, Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, G.H. Hardy, Srinivasa Ramanujan, Alan Turing, Francis Crick, James D. Cambridge has been at the forefront of humanity's search for the truth for longer than most nations have existed, whether in fundamental physics, mathematical logic, number theory, astronomy, the theory of computation, or structural chemistry and biology.

But, it has made enormous advancements outside of the sciences as well. Erasmus of Rotterdam, William Tyndale, Francis Bacon, John Milton, Lord Byron, William Wordsworth, Ludwig Wittgenstein, John Maynard Keynes, C.S. Lewis, Sylvia Plath, and Ted Hughes were just a few of the many luminaries who studied or taught here. Cambridge doesn't dwell in the past, despite the numerous memories that pass by its magnificent Gothic architecture. Only Oxford in the UK and a select few American schools are able to compete with Cambridge's standing as one of the top research universities in the world. More than 18,000 of its students come from more than 135 nations, and its academic members have been awarded more than 80 Nobel Awards.

3. Columbia University - World's Pretigious Universities

New York City, New York, U.S.

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Photo: The New York Times

Columbia University has a rich history as one of the colonial institutions and the fifth-oldest school in the United States. Due to its rich history, the university has become an esteemed institution with a $10 billion endowment and a library holding close to 13 million books. This university, which once graduated the nation's first MD, currently turns out approximately 1,400 physicians each year from one of the most prestigious medical schools in the world. In the greater New York City area, Columbia is dispersed across five different campuses.

As the top school in New York City, its students benefit from a wide range of special possibilities that can only be provided by being close to places like Wall Street, Broadway, the United Nations, and other major hubs of commerce, culture, and politics. The great location of Columbia allows students to interact with numerous other prestigious universities, like New York University. Columbia is third in the world in that coveted area with 96 Nobel Prize winners (after Harvard and Cambridge University in the U.K.). 29 heads of state, including three US Presidents, have also come from there. The Pulitzer Prize is also administered by Columbia.

4. University of Oxford - World's Pretigious Universities

Oxford, England, U.K.

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Photo: Britanica

The history of Oxford University begins in the thirteenth century. It was established by Catholic clergy who, like the other great medieval colleges, promoted a philosophy known as the "philosophy of the Schools," sometimes known as "Scholasticism," which fused Christian teachings with the ideas of Plato, Aristotle, and other ancient and medieval intellectuals. But Oxford changed with the times, enduring the numerous transformations brought about by the Renaissance, the Reformation, the Scientific Revolution, and the Enlightenment to become one of the most outstanding academic hubs of the modern era. Oxford's name is still closely associated with education and study today, just as it was 800 years ago. Its great reputation has merit, as shown (among other things) by the fact that the school manages the largest and, in many people's opinions, most distinguished, academic press in the world, with offices in more than 50 nations.

Around the world, one in five individuals who are learning English use resources from Oxford University Press. This international appeal explains why over 40% of the student body is from countries other than the United Kingdom. 3,200 undergraduate positions received almost 17,200 applications in 2014. Nonetheless, despite thousands of students who are prepared to pay tuition and centuries' worth of amassed wealth, research grants and contracts continue to be the school's main sources of income. 80 Fellows of the Royal Society and 100 Fellows of the British Academy are members of the academic community at Oxford.

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5. Yale University - World's Pretigious Universities

New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.

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Photo: Business Insider

Everything a top research university should have is present at Yale University. One of the original eight Ivy League institutions with a $20 billion endowment, it enrolls nearly one in every six international students. Moreover, Yale has had a significant impact on American politics. Yale is the starting point for many notable US political careers (the notorious Skull and Bones Society alone has produced three Presidents), and Yale Law School has long been the top US law school. Its research centers cover a wide range of subjects, including the works of Benjamin Franklin, bioethics, the study of magnetic resonance imaging, and Russian archives.

Yale is a leader in the humanities, sciences, and professions, in contrast to many other top universities that have formed areas of expertise, such as Caltech, MIT, and Princeton, which are known for their research in the humanities and social sciences and their emphasis on science. As a result, the institution now has the potential to conduct multidisciplinary research and has an adaptable alumni network that reaches every continent.

6. Stanford University - World's Pretigious Universities

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Photo: US News.com

Stanford, California, U.S.

With an endowment of $18.7 billion, Stanford has access to a wide range of top-notch research resources. The school's 1189-acre Jasper Ridge Ecological Preserve allows researchers to conduct first-hand studies of ecosystems. Its 150-foot radio telescope, known as the Dish, allows for ionosphere research. Stanford also has the SLAC Accelerator Laboratory, which actively advances the research of the US Department of Energy, and a 315-acre nature reserve that is working to save the endangered California tiger salamander. Moreover, Stanford is a member of the esteemed Hoover Institution, one of the top institutions for social, political, and economic thought.

Yet creating a fantastic research institution requires more than simply excellent laboratories and resources. Also, Stanford employs some of the brightest minds on the planet. There are currently 22 Nobel laureates on the faculty, 51 American Philosophical Society members, three recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, 158 members of the National Academy of Sciences, five Pulitzer Prize winners, and 27 MacArthur Fellows.

7. University of Paris (Sorbonne) - World's Pretigious Universities

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Photo: Times Higher Education

One of the most esteemed schools in France, if not the entire globe, for educating the arts, languages, and humanities was the Paris-Sorbonne University - Paris IV.

The Paris IV University has a lengthy and contentious history that went all the way back to the Middle Ages. The (much earlier) University of Paris founded the original Collège de Sorbonne in 1257. The university developed into a hotbed of Catholic conservatism throughout the 1500s, and the Sorbonne was later suppressed during the French Revolution before Napoleon reopened it in the early 1800s. The Sorbonne was the scene of some of the most tumultuous events in the May 1968 student riots that swept through France more recently. The Paris-Sorbonne University - Paris IV and two other universities established at the same time now occupy the original Sorbonne building, which was partitioned into thirteen independent institutions in 1970.

Moreover, Paris IV has six libraries and 12 campuses spread out throughout the city. There are 2.5 million books in the Sorbonne Library, which was previously the University of Paris library. The university provided non-French speaking international students with specialized tutoring.

The Human Sciences, Classical, Modern, and Arts schools were carried over to Paris IV from the original University of Paris. The prominent CELSA School of Communication and ESPE School of Education were both located at the university. Since its founding in 1970, it has consistently ranked highly for teaching in these subjects in the world rankings.

President of Cameroon Paul Biya and author Carlos Alvarado-Larroucaua are notable alumni.

Paris-Sorbonne University 4 was previously listed in the THE 2018 Global University Rankings as a different institution. From the 2019 World University Rankings, Pierre and Marie Curie and Paris-Sorbonne University 4 have merged to form Sorbonne University, which is rated, according to timeshighereducation.

8. University of Chicago - World's Pretigious Universities

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Photo: Britanica

Private university University of Chicago was established in 1890. The campus is 217 acres in size, with a total undergraduate enrolment of 6,734, and is located in an urban area. It makes use of an academic calendar based on quarters. The University of Chicago is ranked as the sixth-best national university in the 2021 edition of Best Colleges. Its $59,298 in tuition & fees.

The University of Chicago, located in Hyde Park, provides a vibrant campus environment in the heart of the city. The institution offers postgraduate programs in addition to its college, including those at the highly regarded Booth School of Commerce, Law School, Pritzker School of Medicine, and Harris School of Public Policy Studies. The University Athletic Association is home to 18 NCAA Division III teams for the Chicago Maroons, who also have successful basketball and wrestling programs.

9. University of Michigan - World's Pretigious Universities

Ann Arbor, Michigan, U.S.

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Photo: Pinterest

The University of Michigan, which has 50,000 students and 5,500 faculty members split across three campuses, is a very big research university with the extensive alumni networks that such numbers permit. Students can pick from 17 different schools and colleges, almost 600 majors, more than 600 student groups, and an incredible 350 concerts and recitals each year. In 2010, Forbes Magazine ranked Ann Arbor, a charming college town, as the top college town. There are Pulitzer, Guggenheim, MacArthur, and Emmy winners on the university faculty.

In addition to one Fields Medalist, the school's alumni have produced 14 Nobel Prize winners. Michigan also operates one of the largest healthcare facilities in the world, provides first-rate computer access to its students, and makes use of a library with more than 13 million books. It is hardly surprising that the school enrolls students from all 50 states and more than 100 other nations. Two thirds of the student body graduated in the top 10, and nearly half did so in the top 5% of their class. More students than any other school in America attend medical school in Michigan.

10. Princeton University - World's Pretigious Universities

Princeton, New Jersey, U.S.

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Photo: NBC News

One of the nation's oldest and most illustrious universities is Princeton. The Battle of Princeton in 1777 left a cannonball scar on its renowned Nassau Hall, and John Witherspoon, its former president, was the only university president to sign the Declaration of Independence. With a history of almost three centuries, the institution has had plenty of time to build an outstanding $18.2 billion endowment.

Nonetheless, Princeton allocates its vast resources over a somewhat smaller number of students and programs than its larger rivals, Yale, Harvard, and Stanford. The University of Princeton does not have a school of theology, medicine, business, or law. It has purposefully transformed into a huge, research-driven think tank rather than focusing on professional program development.

Princeton requires its academics to teach undergraduates as well as graduate students, whereas most other universities focus the efforts of its finest staff on graduate students. Princeton, unlike many other top universities, nevertheless uses a rigorous grading system to keep its students on their toes. Anybody coming here, not only the valedictorian, needs to put their full attention on their studies.


You have just discovered the 10 most prestigious universities in the world based on achievements and many other criteria. However, because each person always has different views, different assessments.

Invite you to choose the most prestigious college and let us know in the comment section

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