Best Universities in Paris Ranking 2024

Paris is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. With such a beautiful city, you should not expect the city’s universities to be a lesser good.

Since we all want to be associated with splendor, we have taken the liberty to bring you the best universities in Paris and the best courses you should consider studying in the world’s finest city.

QS World University Ranking has ranked 3 Parisian universities within the top 115 higher education institutions in the world.

If you desire greatly to read, write and speak French, viola, the Parisian environment will greatly influence and enable you to understand the French language faster.

In addition, French is also one of the official languages of many international entities (such as the United Nations) and can help prepare you for work in many international and multinational capacities.

Consequently, we are bringing you all the information required to enable you to make better choices among the best universities in Paris. We only ask that you meticulously read through it.

What University Has the Best Ranking System?

According to Top Universities, France boasts 36 entrants in the QS World University Rankings® 2024.

The rankings are based on a methodology that assesses each university on its academic and employer reputations, 10 of which are ranked within the world’s top 300.

The table immediately below captures the country’s top 10 universities;

QS World University Rankings 2024 – Top Universities in France
France rank Global rank University
1   52  Université PSL (Paris Sciences & Lettres)
2   68  Ecole Polytechnique
3   83  Sorbonne University
4   138  CentraleSupélec
5   161  Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon
=6   242= Ecole des Ponts ParisTech
=6   242= Sciences Po Paris
8   275= Université de Paris
9   287= Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne
10   291= ENS Paris-Saclay

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Is Paris Dauphine a Good University?

Paris-Dauphine is globally known as one of Europe’s leading research universities in management and social sciences. Paris is the dream city for students, investors, and inventions. It ranks high on the attractiveness of foreign investors.

Why are French Universities Ranked So Low?

One of the key reasons why French universities are doing poorly in rankings is that, after the 1968 student demonstrations, the government chose to split major universities into smaller sections in order to prevent the concentration of thousands of students in the same area.

Is France Good for International Students?

If you want to study in a country that is diverse and has an excellent academic reputation, France is your country. It’s one of the most popular study destinations, making it ideal for international students. The country provides an outstanding atmosphere for all foreign students.

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Which Course is Best in France?

France is preferred for economics courses because they are also much more advanced courses than those offered in many other European countries. Science is another excellent choice for study in France.

Some of the other top options for study in France include:

  • Pharmacology.
  • Sociology.
  • Geography.
  • Linguistics.

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How Many Universities are in Paris?

There are actually 31 universities in Paris.

Similarly, LanguageCourse specified that these universities in Paris are listed in 26 different university rankings (by the institution), as well as 4 different subject-specific rankings. 22 of them are listed in at least one institution or subject-specific ranking.

This shows that the ancient city values education despite being a tourist center.

It may interest you to know that all the universities that rank highest in the world from France are Parisian universities.

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List of the 10 Best Universities in Paris

Here is a list of the top universities in Paris

  • Paris Sciences et Lettres Research University (PSL) 
  • Sorbonne University
  • University of Paris
  • Université Paris-Sud 11
  • Télécom ParisTech
  • École Polytechnique (ParisTech)
  • Sciences Po Paris
  • Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne
  • ENS-Paris Saclay
  • École des Ponts ParisTech

Ranking Criteria

Actually, the top 10 universities in Paris have been ranked using the following criteria:

  • Top ranking resources like QS World Ranking and Times Higher Education
  • Number of programs they offer
  • Employability index
  • student to faculty ratio
  • Accreditation

#1 Paris Sciences et Lettres Research University (PSL)

According to the world university ranking 2020, PSL is number 45 globally and 1 in France. Formerly in 2019, it was the 4th young university.

QS and US News ranked it 53rd and 82nd, respectively.

Can you imagine that this great university was formed in 2010?

PSL teaches just about every field of knowledge, from the sciences and engineering to the arts, in addition to humanities and social sciences. There are nine faculties.

It was established to become one of the leading research universities in the world. We can say it has become that.

Also, it has a student-to-staff ratio of 11.5 to 1. Similarly, international students are 26%.

Their program is for undergraduates, masters, and Ph.D. alike. They have programs for continuing education students and those who wish to get licenses.

The École Normale Superieure is a PSL establishment and an affiliate school. This school accepts only 200 students a year.

Other affiliates are the Collège de France, ESPCI ParisTech, Chimie ParisTech, the Observatoire de Paris, the Université Paris-Dauphine, and the Institut Curie.

They have a student-to-faculty ratio of 4. Students are 20,000 and have a faculty strength of 4500.

School Website

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#2 École Polytechnique (ParisTech)

This prestigious French public institution is known by the nickname X.

Ranked as the third-best university in France and 93rd in the world by Times Higher. QS World ranking says it is 53rd in the world.

The acceptance rate is 11%.

It is very popular for Engineering programs. It doubles as the most intensive program in the university.

They admit around 400 nationals, while foreigners have to undergo a preparatory class. But, Other french colonized nationals can gain admission by the normal university exam.

Other foreign students who do not want to take the preparatory exam can go for an exchange program in the school for one semester. But, this is for undergraduate courses.

They teach English for the bachelor’s program. The masters are affiliated with other universities. Their doctoral degrees are equipped with work in laboratories.

Furthermore, the school has links with employers and has a partnership with many schools in the world such as the Australian National University (ANU) and the UK’s University of Cambridge.

Meanwhile, they have a teacher-to-student ratio of 3.8, with 17,000 students and 4,500 teachers and researchers.

School Website

#3 Sorbonne University

Sorbonne University is ranked 77th in the world in 2020 by QS and it continues to be the third highest-ranked university in the city of Paris.

Times Higher Education ranks it 80th in the world and second in France.

Actually, this university was founded in 2018 by the merging of Paris-Sorbonne University and Pierre and Marie Curie University.

Although it is a new institution, it has the largest arts and humanities faculty in France. Also, it has a student community of 55,600, including 10,200 international students.

In the same vein, you can actually go to their campus in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, where you can study literature, languages, the humanities, and the sciences.

Finally, the university has three faculties: humanities, science, and medicine. Law is taught by Panthéon-Assas University (Paris 2).

Students per staff number of approximately 12 which is 4,879 faculty staff and 42,857 students. These are full-time students admitted. And 21% (about 10,200)of international students.

Their acceptance rate is quite high.

School Website

#4 Sciences Po Paris

The Institute d’Etudes Politiques de Paris, known as Sciences Po Paris, specializes in the humanities and social sciences.

As a result, she spends approximately 35 percent of her budget to fund research on these subjects.

Specifically, in the 2020 QS World ranking she is ranked 242nd in the world. Sciences Po Paris has seven campuses across France.

49% of its students are international.

In 2011, over 40% of her students were on scholarships.

The Sciences Po Undergraduate College runs its bachelor’s degree for a three-year and it includes one year abroad as a transfer student at one of 470 partner universities.

The seven graduate schools offer 30 Master’s degrees and five Ph.D. programs. 

Moving on, it has a high employability index as 87% of its graduates are hired in the first 6 months of graduation.

School Website

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#5 Télécom ParisTech

Télécom ParisTech is placing 249th in the world and fifth among the top universities in Paris, according to QS.

Times Higher says it is 188 in the world and the 5th best university in Paris.

It is one of the most prestigious engineering schools in France, which has ranked among the global top 300 for engineering and technology. 

This is according to the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2019.

In like manner, it is among one of the best schools with the highest number of international students.

For instance, more than half of its students are international students.

They have 6 faculties. And an English program on its Sophia Antipolis campus.

In addition, there is a number of 6 students per staff.

Similarly, it is a highly selective school which makes the acceptance rate very low.

It accepts around 250 graduate students from abroad each year.

There are four departments – electronics and communications, computer science and networking, signal and image processing, and economics and social science.

School Website

#6  École des Ponts ParisTech

École des Ponts ParisTech is now ranked 250th in the world, which means she moved up 13 places this year. This is according to QS ranking.

Times Higher Education gave a close ranking of 251-300.

Ponts offers undergraduate and postgraduate teaching in engineering, science, and technology. Also, it is widely regarded as one of the better technical universities in France and has a positive reputation internationally.

79% of their students are PG students, and just 21% are undergraduates.

It may interest you to know that 90% of the postgraduate students are even international students.

Generally, 40% of their students are not-french.

6 departments are at Ponts that teach courses. In addition, they have a whole lot of research centers and labs that train Ph.D. students and postgraduates.

Also, they offer exchange semesters for their students in partnership with some of the most famous technical schools in the world including Berkeley, Georgia Tech, and Imperial College, London.

School Website

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#7 University of Paris

Do not confuse this university with the old one that has been in existence since 1970.

The new University of Paris was just established in 2019 as a merger of Université Paris Descartes, Université Paris Diderot (Paris 7), and the Institut de Physique de Globe de Paris (The Paris Institute of Earth Physics, IPGP). 

It has around 61,000 students.

Times Higher ranks it 130th in the world and number 4 in Paris. QS ranks 253. The difference is huge.

It offers 29,000 courses in the following fields Arts, Humanities and Languages, Human, Economic and Social Sciences, Science and Technology, Medicine, and Dentistry.

Of the 45,625 students she has, 69% are undergraduates, and 31% are PG students. The staff is 3,968 giving staff to student ratio of 11.5.

International students make up 68% of postgraduate students.

School Website

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#8 Université Paris-Sud 11

Ranked 262nd in the world in the 2020 QS World University Rankings, Université Paris-Sud 11 prides itself on its wide scope of multidisciplinary courses and is spread across four campuses in the southern suburbs of Paris.

They have a complete and varied range of courses from undergraduate degrees to PhDs. These courses are recognized for their quality because of the reputation and commitment of their teaching staff.

School Website

#9 Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne

The university is currently ranked 305 in the world.

The Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne is a successor of the historic University of Paris’ law school.

It is considered particularly prestigious for arts and humanities subjects. For example, it came 18th  in the world for archaeology.

Actually, it is one of the largest French universities.

Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne enrolls roughly 43,000 students in more than 14 teaching and research departments. 9,090 of those students are from outside France.

School Website

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#10 ENS-Paris Saclay

It is Formerly known as ENS Cachan, École normale supérieure Paris-Saclay (ENS-Paris Saclay).

ENS is ranked 312th in the QS World University Rankings 2020.

They have about 65,000 students, and 9,000 academic staff members, asides from the 11,000 technical and administrative staff members.

With a total of 27,132 students, the international students make up 4,424.

68% of the postgraduate students are international students.

School Website

English Universities in Paris

We all know that Paris is not an English-speaking city.

However, we still expect universities to teach in a central language to accommodate international students.

Paris is not left out in fulfilling this obligation.

Actually, many of the schools in Paris, teach in English. Although English is partly used.

But, the best universities in Paris that teach in the English language are the University of Paris, École des Ponts ParisTech, École Polytechnique (ParisTech), Sorbonne University, and Télécom ParisTech.

Actually, Sciences Po and Neoma Business School teach the most in English.

Music Universities in Paris

Music is life.

In this context, music goes with culture. This means you need to learn the basics of the language.

You can study music fully or come as a transfer student.

The best Parisian universities to study music are the Conservatoire de Paris, Paris College of Art, MEP Paris College of Music, Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris, and American School of Modern Music

French Universities in Paris

To answer this straight, all the universities in Paris teach the French language.

Most of them have a campus dedicated to teaching the French language.

So, you are in safe hands. The Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, the University of Paris, and the famous Sorbonne University are some of the best options to study French.

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Engineering Universities in Paris

Many universities already listed are proficient in Engineering.

Whether you are an international or a local student that wants to study Engineering, just choose a university in Paris and you are good to go.

However, these universities are among the best globally in Engineering courses. They are Sorbonne university, PSL, École Polytechnique, École des Ponts ParisTech, and Paris Tech.

Universities in Paris for Interior Designing

Since the city is full of cultural artifacts and very beautiful.

It is only natural to have a school that learns interior decoration as a course.

Here they design homes, spaces, and even offices with colors and materials to make them more comfortable.

The best schools are the Paris College of Art and the LISAA Design school.

Technology Universities in Paris

Technology is something that is not new in Universities in Paris.

The universities that teach Technology in Paris are École des Ponts ParisTech, Paris Tech, and PSL.

Law universities in Paris

There are so many universities in Paris that study law.

Some are even products of former law schools.

The best schools for a law degree in Paris are Sorbonne University and Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne.

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FAQs

Can international students in Paris study while they work?

Yes, as an international student with a study visa in France, you can take on paid work – 964 hours in a single year (about 60 percent of full-time employment for a year) – while you are on the course, as long as you have a valid residency permit.

Are there English programs available in Paris?

While some French universities offer individual courses in English on subjects like economics and business, no French schools allow you to do a complete academic program in English. There aren’t enough English-language courses available, and at least some of the core classes are taught in French.

What are the best universities in Paris?

Paris Sciences et Lettres Research University (PSL) 
Sorbonne University
University of Paris
Université Paris-Sud 11
Télécom ParisTech
École Polytechnique (ParisTech)
Sciences Po Paris
Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne
ENS-Paris Saclay
École des Ponts ParisTech

Conclusion

There are more universities in Paris than there are in some Canadian cities. While it is a good thing, many students who really wish to study in Paris will find it difficult to make a choice. Because of this, we have helped you to narrow them down to the top 10.

Don’t you think we did a good job? Take your time to read so that you can get the full details. You can share your experience with us if you have attended a Parisian university.

References

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