With its rich cultural heritage, historical sites, and beautiful cities, Europe is a dream destination for many travelers. Europe is also known for its being a provider of outstanding education. The first university was established in Europe almost a thousand years ago, so this area of the world has plenty of experience in creating and disseminating knowledge for the world.
For students and academics, Europe is also a top destination, for it is home to a large number of excellent universities. The best part is that many of them are for free, even for international students. If you are tempted to start your studies there, here are free universities in Europe for international students.
Free Universities in Europe
1. Free University of Berlin
Fees for continuing education programs are required
As its name suggests, the Free University of Berlin is free of tuition fees, and it is the first to start this list of free universities in Europe for international students. A fun fact is that the name actually originated from Berlin being “free” rather than the tuition fee being free. Other than its continuing education programs, the Free University of Berlin charges registration fees, and it requires contributions to the student support service, student union, and student tickets. The tuition fees for the actual education, however, are completely free.
Ranked as #5 by QS rankings of universities in Germany, the Free University of Berlin is known for its academic excellence. Its outstanding performance is approved by the German government, as it receives funds from the German government’s Excellent Strategy that only 13 universities of this country are qualified for.
Located in the German capital city of Berlin, the opportunities are endless for graduates. With a degree and skills gained from this public research university, its graduates are sure to stand out from the crowd.
2. Ludwigs-Maximilians University (LMU)
Semester fees are required
With a small semester fee of less than $130 that covers the student services and public transportation, students here can study in world-class degree programs free of tuition fees. This university is great for students who are thinking to study classics and ancient history, as this is LMU’s strongest field. It is ranked #5 in the world by QS subject rankings.
LMU has been delivering great education ever since its establishment in 1472. Over 500 years, this university has transformed from its humble beginning as a small university founded by a wealthy duke to an internationally recognized university that values diversity, internationalization, and of course, academic excellence.
Constantly ranked as the number one university in Germany, LMU certainly does not disappoint when it comes to the quality of its education and research. The cost of living in Munich might be high compared to other German cities, but with tuition being free, students can study without the added pressure from financing.
3. University of Iceland (UI)
Registration fees are required
Travel to the land of ice and fire to experience its Scandinavian culture, see its awe-inspiring natural wonders, and enjoy its free higher education that comes with a guarantee of quality. No need to worry about the language barrier because other than Icelandic programs, UI offers English programs to attract international students. University of Iceland is a great free university in Europe for international students.
With a small annual fee of ISK 75,000 (about USD 550), students can enjoy its quality education without further financial demands. For those interested in Vikings and everything Norse, UI is a great option. Not many universities offer programs in Vikings studies, and UI is one of them. After all, where better to study Vikings other than one of their origins?
Even though its scale might not be as large as universities in major megacities of Europe, UI has over 400 programs for students to choose from. Its academics are world-class, and its education outstanding. A degree from UI is a diploma that comes with a guarantee that whoever holds it has the power to use their knowledge to change the world for the better.
4. University of Oslo (UiO)
Next on our list of free tuition universities in Europe is the University of Oslo. For students with a passionate interest in anthropology, this university is a great choice. Its anthropology ranks #29 in QS Subject Rankings worldwide, so the quality of the education, without a doubt, very high. Being the oldest university in Norway, UiO is experienced in cultivating talent and educating bright minds.
UiO is a leading European university that is dedicated to helping develop a sustainable future with knowledge. Even though it is the oldest university in Norway, UiO keeps updating and improving its programs and courses. UiO offers many programs at different levels, and they are taught completely in English to attract international students and increase the competitiveness of its Norwegian students in this globalized world.
With a high standard of living, Norway is a great place for studying. Even though the cost of living in Nordic countries is higher than average, its free tuition policy certainly helps students to focus on their studies without having to worry about money.
5. University of Vienna
Student Union’s fees required
Tuition fees required for non-EU/EEA students and students who exceed the standard duration of programs for over 2 semesters
Study in the capital of Austria at the University of Vienna. Programs are free for EU/EEA students, while the tuition fees for non-EU/EEA students are under 750 EUR. To distribute knowledge and resources more evenly, students from designated developing countries do not have to pay, either.
With many of its arts and humanities subjects ranked in the top 50 worldwide, the University of Vienna is another free university in Europe and is ideal for those who would like to study in this field. Having a wide range of degree programs as well as continuing education programs, the University of Vienna is dedicated to making a positive difference in the world through creating and sharing knowledge.
With the campus in the heart of the capital, students can experience its vibrant city life as well as immerse themselves in its cultural heritage and royal architecture. Ever since 1365, making a difference has been the University of Vienna’s goal, and through its excellent education and outstanding research, it is surely achieving that.
6. Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU)
Next up on this list is the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). Norway is a great option for international students, as public universities in this country charge no tuition fees, regardless of where you come from. As its name suggests, NTNU is a university that has technology and science as a focus, which makes it a great choice for STEM students.
NTNU has a strong faculty team to teach and research, especially in the field of engineering. Its engineering (petroleum) subject is ranked #33 in QS Subject Rankings, and many others are also among the top 100 in the world. This university is a great fit for students pursuing higher education in the field of art, as NTNU has the widest range of programs in the art subject in all of Norway.
Having partnership agreements with all major industrial companies in Norway, NTNU seeks to bring the world of academia and industry together. Its students and graduates have access to opportunities for internships and jobs, and its researchers can produce relevant research by working closely with companies. With all its perks as well as being free, NTNU is certainly a great choice for international students.
7. Masaryk University (MUNI)
Fees are required for programs in English
We end our list of free universities in Europe with Masaryk University. If you speak Czech or if you have always gotten a knack for language learning, Masaryk University (MUNI) is definitely a university you should consider. The policy regarding higher education tuition fees in Czechia is that all programs taught in Czech in public universities are free, and they only charge you for programs in English.
The strongest subjects of this university lie in the fields of language and environment. Its linguistics studies and English language and literature are the strong suits of the arts and humanities field, and its forestry and agriculture and environmental studies are also recognized as outstanding.
Czechia, compared to other European countries, has a relatively lower cost of living. Combined with its free world-class higher education, it is one of the most ideal location for students looking to study in a field of their interest.
I hope that this article on the free universities in Europe was helpful.