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Half of the top 20 universities in the newly released QS World University Rankings 2022 are located in the United Kingdom and the European Union (EU). The United States continues to dominate the top 10, but the best universities in the United Kingdom and the European Union have gained ground in the past year. With the inclusion of two French universities in the top 10 for 2022, we can see that European universities are on the rise to compete with their UK counterparts.

Many UK colleges and universities rank among the best in the world for their STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) programs. Several have been at the top of their fields for some time, inspiring students from all over the world and appearing on the resumes of influential people like Indian independence icon Sarojini Naidu and Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Tutu.

Here’s a brief rundown of the top-ranked universities in the UK and Europe today, according to QS.

Top Best and Most Prestigious Universities in the UK

1.University of Oxford

A technician working at the Jenner Institute on Oxford University's COVID-19 candidate vaccine. Oxford has emerged the top university in the UK once again. Photo AFP
A technician working at the Jenner Institute on Oxford University's COVID-19 candidate vaccine. Oxford has emerged the top university in the UK once again. Photo AFP

This public university, which has more than 8,000 international students, has moved up a few spots this year as a result of accelerated research and innovation, which have long been the foundation of its success. In fact, this past year, Oxford researchers created the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, which is now used to immunize millions of people. What kind of research impact is that?

2.University of Cambridge

Nearly 7,600 international students attend Cambridge, which is in the eponymous English city. Its graduates have won more than 80 Nobel Prizes, making it Oxford's fiercest rival. Icons of science and the arts like Sascha Baron Cohen, Emma Thompson, Charles Darwin, and Stephen Hawking are among the well-known graduates.

3.Imperial College London

Over 10,000 foreign students attend science, engineering, medical, and business courses at Imperial. A full-motion flight simulator, a carbon capture pilot plant, and the biggest KPMG Data Observatory in the area are among the impressive facilities on its South Kensington Campus.

4.The University of Edinburgh

At Scotland's top university, which has 10 libraries and one of the biggest campus computing networks among UK universities, well over 13,000 international students are pursuing higher education. Three colleges—Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences; Medicine and Veterinary Medicine; and Science and Engineering—all conduct research. Edinburgh's student scene is rich in tradition, culture, and quaintness.

5.The University of Manchester

More than 15,000 students, or 25% of all students, have chosen Manchester for their study abroad program. Given that it is one of the most well-liked student cities in the UK, this is not surprising. Football player Vincent Kompany and actor Benedict Cumberbatch are two notable alumni.

6.King’s College London

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Photo Linkedln

King's has a long history of significant research and evidence-based instruction in the humanities, law, and sciences. King's is one of England's oldest universities. King's has four campuses along the Thames within a square mile and one in south London, making it the most central university in London. Over 29,000 students from over 150 nations are enrolled at these five campuses.

Top Best Most Prestigious Universities in European Countries

1.Université PSL (France)

The 11-school Paris Sciences et Lettres University (PSL) is a collegiate institution. This arts and science university has more than 5,500 international students. More than 70% of its students are enrolled in master's or PhD programs, and it is well known for its postgraduate education. Fun fact: Marie Curie founded the Institut Curie, a center for cancer research, in PSL in 1909.

2.Institut Polytechnique de Paris (France)

Photo Flickr
Photo Flickr

This polytechnic institute brings together five French engineering schools: École Polytechnique, ENSTA Paris, ENSAE Paris, Télécom Paris, and Télécom SudParis. It is one of the top eight innovation clusters in the world. Here, eminent researchers like physicist André-Marie Ampère and mathematician Sophie Germain studied.

3.ETH Zurich – Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (Switzerland)

This Swiss university is regarded as one of the best in Europe and is the alma mater of numerous award-winning innovators, including Albert Einstein. It is simple to understand how it acquired this reputation given that it generates over 200 spin-off businesses annually and over 80 new patent applications. ETH Zurich has more than 7,000 international students and has strict admissions requirements.

4.EPFL (Switzerland)

The natural sciences and engineering programs at École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) are well-known. Its international campus is situated in the wealthy city of Lausanne, which speaks French. According to QS data, there are almost 6,000 foreign students here.

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