Studying in Switzerland with foreign qualifications

The university-entry qualifications of different countries are not equivalent. The reason is that every country has a different education system and contrasting academic curricula.

To study at a university or university of applied sciences in Switzerland, candidates require a university-entry qualification recognised by the Swiss confederation or an equivalent foreign qualification. Special conditions apply to admission to medical degrees as places are restricted.

Young Swiss Abroad who would like to study in Switzerland should find out about the exact admission requirements at the earliest possible opportunity. This helps to avoid disappointment. The conditions vary greatly depending upon the country of origin. Sometimes additional examinations are required, for example, or even a university degree in the country of origin.

The Rectors’ Conference of the Swiss Universities draws up guidelines for each individual country and its university-entry qualifications. Detailed information can be found on the website of www.swissuniversities.ch. There is no central admissions system in Switzerland. Applications are therefore always made to the university as it decides autonomously on admissions.

Of the 17 Swiss schools abroad, those in Bangkok, Barcelona, Bogotá, Madrid, Milan, Rome and Santiago de Chile provide the opportunity to obtain a university-entry qualification recognised by the Swiss confederation. The Swiss schools in Curitiba, Lima, Mexico and Sao Paulo offer the International Baccalaureate (IB). However, admission to a Swiss university with an IB qualification is subject to conditions. A specific score has to be achieved and a higher level qualification is required for some disciplines. Exact details can also be found on the website of www.swissuniversities.ch.

Anyone wishing to study at a university of applied sciences in Switzerland should contact the institution concerned. The Swiss Federal Vocational Baccalaureate enables direct access to universities of applied sciences which focus more on application-oriented fields and professional qualifications than traditional universities. Applicants may also be admitted with a grammar school-type university-entry qualification or a foreign school-leaving qualification under certain conditions (e.g. internship).

Further information on the Swiss schools abroad and education in Switzerland is available at www.educationsuisse.ch or directly from educationsuisse members of staff.

 

Ruth von Gunten, HEAD OF THE EDUCATION IN SWITZERLAND DEPARTMENT

 

Admission information: www.swissuniversities.ch/de/services/zulassung-zur-universitaet/laender

Admission with IB qualification http://www.swissuniversities.ch/en/services/admission-to-universities/international-baccalaureate/

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