Universities in Warsaw, Poland

Panoramic view of red brick buildings against a blue sky

Warsaw's Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and had to be fully rebuilt after it was destroyed in World War Two.

Warsaw is the capital of Poland and its largest city, with an urban population of about 1.8 million residents. Warsaw has, for centuries, been a major European hub for culture, politics and scientific progress. Modern-day Warsaw is an economic centre for multiple industries including information technology, financial services, and advanced research & innovation.

The Warsaw Stock Exchange is the largest in Central Europe, and many of the world’s leading companies have large-scale operations in the city. With nearly 50% of Warsaw residents speaking English, international travellers can comfortably explore the city and its attractions. Additionally, with a quarter of Warsaw covered by parks, the city offers plenty of recreational activities and outdoor spaces to enjoy, especially during the summer months.

Top Universities in Warsaw

University of Warsaw

Established in 1816, the University of Warsaw is home to about 37,500 enrolled students of which 3,800 are international students. The University of Warsaw offers degree programmes taught in English across more than 20 disciplines.

Primarily located on its original campus in downtown Warsaw, the university operates an additional campus for Natural Science programmes and research near the Banacha neighbourhood in Warsaw.

The University of Warsaw has an especially strong reputation for research & innovation in the Natural Sciences, and operates multiple world-class research institutes for international students such as the Interdisciplinary Centre for Behavioural Genetics and the Heavy Ion Laboratory.

As many as five Nobel Prize winners have graduated from the University of Warsaw, showing the institute’s commitment to advanced research. Additionally, the university maintains research-based technical partnerships with top-ranked institutes all over the world, allowing international students to conduct world-class research in various environments. This includes a research station in Egypt as well as the Las Campanas Observatory in the Atacama Desert, Chile.

Warsaw University of Technology

Established in 1826, the Warsaw University of Technology is the country’s leading engineering institute. The university is home to over 25,000 students of which approximately 1,800 are international. The university is mainly situated on two urban campuses in Warsaw, as well as a satellite campus in the nearby city of Plock.

The university offers courses taught in English for international students across nine faculties. Warsaw University of Technology operates research partnerships with over 120 of the world’s best universities in more than 50 countries including Japan, the USA and China. This allows international students to participate in a wide variety of exchange programs with foreign universities on a yearly basis.

Medical University of Warsaw

Founded over two hundred years ago in 1809, the Medical University of Warsaw is one of Europe’s largest and oldest medical institutes. The university is located in two areas of Warsaw – Lindleya and Banacha. The university is home to just over 10,000 enrolled students, of which about 900 are international medical students.

The Medical University of Warsaw maintains research-based partnerships with some of the top hospitals and medical institutes all over the world, especially in China, France and Germany. Additionally, the university’s partnerships with the Central Teaching Hospital and the Public Ophthalmic Teaching Hospital in Warsaw allow international students to gain valuable practical experience and vocational skills while pursuing their academic degrees, giving you a major advantage when it comes to post-graduation employment at a hospital or medical institute.

Unlike most medical institutes which are world-leaders in one specific aspect of medicine, the Medical University of Warsaw offers top-quality research and award-winning faculty in both clinical and theoretical medicine.

Warsaw University of Life Sciences

Founded in 1816, the Warsaw University of Life Sciences is Poland’s largest agricultural university and is home to over 16,500 students. Located on a large-scale urban campus with excellent recreational and academic facilities in Warsaw, the university is a member of many well-known agricultural university partnerships such as the Euroleague for Life Sciences (ELLS) network.

With over 900 international students forming a sizable community of foreign admits at the university, the Warsaw University of Life Sciences ranks excellently on most rankings for student-friendliness and a welcoming campus environment. Warsaw University of Life Sciences operates many world-class research centres across disciplines such as the Centre for Biomedical Research, the Centre for Regenerative Medicine and the Water Centre Laboratory.

Warsaw Universities World Ranking 2022

Below are the top-ranked Warsaw universities for international students, with their ranks in two of the world’s most well-respected international university rankings, the QS 2022 University World rankings and the Times Higher Education 2022 Rankings.

For more information about rankings systems and methodologies see our University rankings explained guide.

UniversityQS World Ranking 2022Times Higher Education Ranking 2022QS Rank in PolandTHE Rank in Poland
University of Warsaw308601-80012
Warsaw University of Technology501-5101,201+320
Medical University of Warsaw1,001-1,2006
Warsaw University of Life Sciences1,001-1,2001,201+1919

List of other top-ranked Colleges & Universities in Warsaw

In addition to the four top-ranked Warsaw universities for international students, the Polish city is also home to many top-ranked institutes specialising in various disciplines including Law, Engineering and Economics. A few of Warsaw’s top-ranked institutes for international students are:

  • Warsaw School of Photography and Graphic Design
  • Kozminski University
  • Warsaw School of Economics
  • Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński University
  • Academy of Fine Arts
  • Vistula University
  • Wszechnica Polska University
  • Lazarski University
  • Fryderyk Chopin University of Music
  • Collegium Civitas
  • Józef Piłsudski University of Physical Education
  • Aleksander Zelwerowicz National Academy of Dramatic Art
  • Independent University of Business and Public Administration
  • European University of Law and Administration 
  • Collegium Intermarium

It is recommended that international students check for courses and degree programmes taught in English at each of the above institutes, as some universities may be teaching a majority of courses in the local Polish language.

Tuition and Living Costs in Warsaw

Polish universities offer extremely affordable tuition costs for international students – between 2,000 and 6,000 US Dollars per year for most degree programmes. A few degree programmes such as MBA courses cost slightly more at 8,000-12,000 US Dollars per annum. Courses taught in the Polish language are free, so if you speak the language you are able to take advantage of this. Most PhD courses are also offered for free or with full scholarships to international students.

Current Polish student visa rules allow international students to work upto 40 hours a week through internships or full-time employment alongside your academic degree, and unlimited hours during academic breaks. This can help you offset tuition expenses while studying in Poland. Additionally, many Polish universities offer scholarships for international students, and you should identify such scholarships while applying to top-ranked Warsaw universities.

As for living expenses, the University of Warsaw estimates that you will require 400-500 US Dollars per month. This budget includes 200-220 US Dollars for shared accommodation, 80-120 US Dollars for food expenses, 20-30 US Dollars for transport charges and another 60-80 US Dollars for utilities and miscellaneous expenses.

Life in Warsaw for International Students

With nearly 250,000 students residing across the city, Warsaw is a youthful town full of vibrant entertainment venues and exciting attractions for international students. History buffs will enjoy a sightseeing trip to view the monuments in Warsaw’s old town region, while sports lovers can enjoy a day out at one of the city’s many sporting venues.

International students will be able to travel to Warsaw’s Chopin International Airport from their home countries via major European hubs such as Berlin and Amsterdam. Meanwhile, you can use weekends and academic breaks to make short trips to tourist-favourite European cities such as Barcelona and Rome by air. Warsaw’s numerous outdoor spaces offer yet another way to take your mind off of academics at your top-ranked Warsaw university. Below are a few of the Polish city’s major attractions for international students:

  • The Royal Castle in Warsaw
  • Palace of Culture & Science
  • Warsaw Uprising Museum
  • Lazienki Park
  • The National Museum in Warsaw
  • Copernicus Science Centre
  • Palace on the Isle
  • National Gallery of Art
  • Museum of Modern Art
  • City Zoological Garden
  • Museum of Warsaw
  • Saxon Garden
  • Kampinos National Park
  • Ujazdow Castle
  • Chopin Monument

Warsaw offers plenty of historical and cultural attractions alongside an active lifestyle in a city full of outdoor recreational areas and a youthful energy. And the best part is that unlike in most other European capital cities, you can enjoy the best of Warsaw at a very affordable price. It is no wonder that more and more international students are looking at Warsaw and Poland as their next study destination.

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