PhD study in Switzerland – 2024
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PhD study in Switzerland – 2024

With the highest number of patents in all European countries, there is no doubt that PhD study in Switzerland is highly sought after. Known for research and innovation, Switzerland welcomes PhD students from all around the world. If you decide to study a PhD in Switzerland, you’ll be a part of massive network of over 61,000 international students and get the opportunity to be a part of some world-renowned research projects.

Why study a PhD in Switzerland?

  • Emphasis on research – The first of many reasons to study in Switzerland is the highly competitive research sector. If you’re a PhD candidate at any of the three different types of universities , you will have the opportunity to contribute to some of the best research programmes in the world. Switzerland also has the highest number of Nobel Prize winners per capita, but, no pressure!
  • Tradition of excellence – Whether it be cheese, chocolate or education, the Swiss are known for a long-standing tradition of excellence. It is no shock that is it home to some of the best universities in the world like the ETH Zurich and the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, both of which are in the top 50 of the Times Higher Education global university rankings. With both traditional and structured PhDs, Switzerland produces graduates who are skilled, creative and innovative.
  • Multilingual education – There are four national languages in Switzerland: German, French, Italian and Romansh. Even though more and more courses are being offered in English, universities often offer courses in any of the national languages to help you with life outside the classroom!
  • Career opportunities – Your association with Switzerland does not have to end with your studies. You can choose from post-study work opportunities at one of the hundreds of multinational companies (like Nestle and Swatch) that have their offices in Switzerland.

If you Switzerland could be your PhD study destination, we have more information on applications, fees, funding and visas below.

We cover...

  • Applications: Everything you need to know about applying for for a Phd in Switzerland. We cover the entry requirements for a Swiss PhD, language requirements for entry at various universities and the deadlines you'll need to meet.
  • Fees and funding: The cost of PhD study in Switzerland is relatively low due to generous government support, but can still vary considerably depending on your university. In this guide we cover the average cost of a Swiss PhD, as well as some potential funding options such as federal loans from the government.
  • PhD programmes: We explain what a PhD in Switzerland actually looks like. Find out how long your PhD will take, what to expect from your supervisor and how you'll be assessed.
  • Visas: Non-EU/ EEA students will require a visa to study in Switzerland. We explain how to apply and the requirements you'll need to meet, as well as how to secure health insurance for the duration of your programme.
  • Swiss universities: Learn the different types of universities in Switzerland and see how they fare on the world stage with our international rankings tables.
  • Student life: What's it really like to study in Switzerland as a PhD student? Our guide introduces Swiss culture, leisure and cuisine, as well the practacilities of accommodation, banking and travel.


Student Visas for PhD in Switzerland

If you're planning to do a PhD in Switzerland, we have all the information on the kind of visa you need and what you require to apply for it.

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Applying for a PhD in Switzerland

This guide tells you everything you need to make an application for a PhD programme in Switzerland.

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PhD in Switzerland – Fees and Funding Guide 2023

If you're interesting in studying a PhD in Switzerland, we have a details on how much it is going to cost you and where you can find the right funding for it.

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What a PhD in Switzerland Actually Looks Like

Our guide tells you everything about how a PhD in Switzerland is structured, including assessments and supervision

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Study a PhD in Switzerland

Search our course listings for a PhD in Switzerland.


Last Updated: 01 December 2023