Switzerland is a hub for excellent education, science, technology and innovation. It has outstanding universities with all-encompassing programs, many world-class public research institutions, and a thriving private sector which encourages research and development and conducts its own cutting-edge research.

Switzerland has 12 universities, 8 universities of applied sciences, and 17 universities of teacher education. Moreover, Switzerland is home to several outstanding special institutes in the areas of international affairs, public administration, finance, and hotel management. Undergraduate study in Switzerland is usually offered in the national language of the respective area (German, French, Italian), while many graduate programs are offered in English.

For more information about each of the recognized universities, please consult the website of swissuniversities.

Student Mobility and Scholarships

Switzerland is home to 12 universities, 9 universities of applied sciences, and 19 universities of teacher education. Seven out of the 12 universities are ranked amongst the top 200 universities in the Times Higher Education rankings 2021. Special institutes in the areas of international affairs, public administration, finance, and hotel management are based in Switzerland as well. Undergraduate study in Switzerland is usually offered in the national language of the respective area (French, German, and Italian), while many graduate programs are offered in English.

Almost all of the higher education institutions benefit from various agreements, such as joint degrees or exchange programs, with Canadian partner institutions. At the university level, the Swiss institutions have an outstanding record of international cooperation. In turn, more than 50% of all PhD students and post-docs in Switzerland come from another country. 

Tuition fees in Switzerland are very low due to a strong government support for higher education. If you want to study at one of the seven Swiss universities ranked amidst the top 200 of the world, you would pay an average of CAD 1100 per semester. As tuition fees in Switzerland are generally low, even for international students, there are not many scholarships available for undergraduate students. However, some Swiss universities offer their own scholarships for international students.  

For more information and questions regarding admission to undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate studies in Switzerland or scholarships, please contact the institution of your choice  or your academic advisor in Canada. 

Study in Switzerland

How to launch your studies in Switzerland

Once the study program at a Swiss university is identified and the school application requirements fulfilled, Canadian students need to apply for a Swiss National Visa at the Swiss Consulate in:

  • Montreal, if you live in ON, QC, NS, NB, MB, PE, NL, NU.
  • Vancouver, if you live in BC, AB, SK, YT, NT.

Which documents should I submit with a national visa application?

For questions regarding your study permit, please contact the respective Swiss Consulates directly.

Please plan enough time to apply for the visa and make sure you have all the required documents with you. 

Work-intergrated learning and internships

Under the terms of the Swiss-Canadian Youth Mobility Program, (YMP) Canadian citizen (age 18-35), who have a secondary education and completed a 2-year training, OR study at a post-secondary institution, OR have completed their post-secondary studies, can obtain a residency and work permit in Switzerland to improve their language and professional skills. The program allows young students, during the course of their studies, to complete an occupational training as part of their curriculum.

For more information regarding the Youth Mobility Program, please consult the YMP section or the website for the young professionals and trainees.

Recognition of foreign qualifications in Switzerland

In today's working world, a premium is placed on the mobility of workers and businesses. For many professional activities, official recognition of foreign qualifications is important and even necessary. Depending on the professional activity, a different authority will be responsible for conferring such recognition. The procedures for the recognition of foreign qualifications vary according to citizenship and the amount of time in which the person will remain in Switzerland.

For more information regarding recognition, please consult the website for Recognition of Foreign Qualification.

Swissnex Network

Swissnex is the Swiss global network connecting stakeholders in education, research, and innovation. The mission is to support the outreach and active engagement of our partners in the international exchange of knowledge, ideas and talent. The six swissnex locations and their outposts are established in the world's most innovative hubs. Together, with more than 19 Science and Technology Offices (STO) and Counsellors (STC) based at Swiss Embassies, they contribute to strengthen Switzerland's profile as a world-leading innovation hotspot.

For more information regarding Swissnex, please consult

To contact the Ottawa-based Science and Technology Counselor Dr. Urs Obrist, please reach out to