Supriya Ghosh (Editor)

University of Zurich

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Michael Hengartner


Total enrollment
26,065 (2015)


1.377 billion Swiss francs

Academic staff
3,702 (Full-time equivalent)

Administrative staff
2,051 (Full-time equivalent)

Rämistrasse 71, 8006 Zürich, Switzerland

League of European Research Universities

Undergraduate tuition and fees
Domestic tuition: 720 CHF (2017), International tuition: 1,220 CHF (2017)

Notable alumni
Albert Einstein, Eduard Einstein, Carl Jung, Jean Piaget, Mileva Marić

ETH Zurich, University of Geneva, University of Bern, University of Basel, University of St Gallen


University of zurich universit t z rich uzh

The University of Zurich (UZH, German: Universität Zürich), located in the city of Zürich, is the largest university in Switzerland, with over 26,000 students. It was founded in 1833 from the existing colleges of theology, law, medicine and a new faculty of philosophy.


Currently, the university has seven faculties: Philosophy, Human Medicine, Economic Sciences, Law, Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Theology and Veterinary Medicine. The university offers the widest range of subjects and courses of any Swiss higher education institution.

The university of zurich main building


The University of Zurich was founded on April 29, 1833, when the existing colleges of theology, the Carolinum founded by Huldrych Zwingli in 1525, law and medicine were merged with a new faculty of Philosophy. It was the first university in Europe to be founded by the state rather than a monarch or church.

In the University's early years, the 1839 appointment of the German theologian David Friedrich Strauss to its Chair of Theology caused a major controversy, since Strauss argued that the miracles in the Christian New Testament were mythical retellings of normal events as supernatural happenings. Eventually, the authorities offered Strauss a pension before he had a chance to start his duties.

The university allowed women to attend philosophy lectures from 1847, and admitted the first female doctoral student in 1866. The Faculty of Veterinary Medicine was added in 1901, the second-oldest such faculty in the world. In 1914, the university moved to new premises designed by the architect Karl Moser on Rämistrasse 71.


The university is scattered all over the city of Zurich. Members of the university can use several libraries, including the ETH-library, and the Zurich Central Library, with over 5 million volumes. In 1962, the faculty of science proposed to establish the Irchelpark campus on the Strickhofareal. The first stage the construction of the university buildings was begun in 1973, and the campus was inaugurated in 1979. The construction of the second stage lasted from 1978 to 1983. The campus also houses the anthropological museum Anthropologisches Museum, and the cantonal Staatsarchiv Zürich.


The Institute and Museum for the History of Medicine is part of the university.


The University of Zurich as a whole also ranks in the top ten of Europe and in the top fifty worldwide. Notably in the fields of bioscience and finance, there is a close-knit collaboration between the University of Zurich and the ETH (Federal Institute for Technology, just across the road). Their faculty of chiropractic medicine is six years.


  • Shanghai Jiao Tong University Ranking (heavy emphasis on research output – citations, Nobel prizes etc.)
  • 54th globally and 15th in Europe.
  • THES – QS World University Rankings (heavy emphasis on peer review)
  • 61st globally and 14th in Europe.
  • QS World University Rankings 2014
  • 57th globally.
  • Professional Ranking of World Universities (Based on the number of alumni listed among CEOs in the 500 largest worldwide companies.)
  • 32nd globally and 10th in Europe.
  • University Ranking by Academic Performance (URAP) 2010
  • 52nd globally and 1st in Switzerland.

    According to Handelsblatt, the Department of Economics was ranked first (in 2009?) in the German-speaking area and in 2009 the faculty of Business Administration was ranked third in the German-speaking area.

    Language policy

    Bachelor courses are taught in Swiss Standard German ("Hochdeutsch"), but use of English is increasing in many faculties. The only bachelors program taught entirely in English is the "English Language and Literature" program. All Master courses at the Faculty of Science are held in English. In some highly competitive and international programs, such as the Master of Science in Quantitative Finance, all lectures are held in English.

    Notable fellows of the university

  • Rolf Pfeifer – Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, IFI
  • Albert Hofmann - Medicinal Chemistry
  • Albert Einstein - Physics and Philosophy
  • Student life

    The university's Academic Sports Association (ASVZ) offers a wide range of sports facilities to students of the university.

    Nobel Prize laureates

    Associated with the university are 12 Nobel Prize recipients, primarily in Physics and Chemistry.

    Associated institutions

  • Corpus Córporum, digital library created and maintained by the University’s Institute for Greek and Latin Philology.
  • Swiss National Supercomputing Centre
  • References

    University of Zurich Wikipedia

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