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Study Master in Switzerland 2024

Study in Switzerland

Switzerland, located in Central Europe, is the land of the Alps. Its tallest peak is the Dufourspitze at 15, 203 ft (4, 634 m) on the Swiss side of the Italian border, one of 10 summits of the Monte Rosa massif. Most of Switzerland is composed of a mountainous plateau bordered by the great bulk of the Alps on the south and by the Jura Mountains on the northwest.

Officially called the Swiss Federation, Switzerland lies in western Europe and is bordered by Italy to the west, Germany to the north, Liechtenstein and Austria to the east, and France to the west. Bern is the capital of Switzerland, a landlocked country that consists of 26 cantons, or territorial subdivisions that differ slightly in government administrational procedures. The majority of Switzerland's population (nearly eight million people) live in an area referred to as the Plateau, where the heavily populated cities of Geneva and Zurich are located.

Switzerland is famous for being one of the wealthiest countries in the world. Residents possess the highest amount of non-financial and monetary assets per individual as compared to any other citizens in the world. Additionally, Geneva and Zurich consistently rank as two cities exhibiting the best standards of living among all other global cities.

Switzerland's stable economy is attributed to its self-sufficiency through farming and effective manufacturing practices that allow it to export large amounts of goods. Other areas in which Switzerland shows excellent economic expertise include tourism, international banking, transportation, and biotechnology.

Switzerland's Climate

North of the Swiss Alps the climate is temperate but influenced by various altitudinal factors that involve wind exposure and atmospheric condition arising from mountain placement. Switzerland's average temperature is around 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 Celsius), with rainfall amounts fluctuating from as much as 67 (170 cm) inches near Lugano and as little as 21 (53 cm) inches around the Rhone Valley. North and west of the Alps, residents experience a rainy, somewhat cool climate with temperatures remaining around 32 degrees Fahrenheit (0 Celsius) in the winter and 70 degrees Fahrenheit (21 Celsius) in areas south and southeast of the Alps.

Essential Facts about Switzerland

  • The flag exhibits a white cross against a bright red background. The arms of the cross are slightly longer than their width.
  • The Swiss National Anthem, or Swiss Hymn, begins with the line "Radiant in the morning sky, Lord, I see that Thou are night".(Trittst in Morgenrot daher, Seh ' ich dich in Strahlenmeer)
  • Switzerland retained its own currency, the Swiss franc when Europe switched to the Euro. Coins of one, five, ten, 20, and 50 centimes comprise the other monetary units. Francs are available in one, two, and five francs. Franc "notes "come in ten, 20, 50, 500, and 1000 francs.
  • Switzerland uses the metric system for evaluating weights and measures
  • National holidays are New Year's, Labor Day on May 1, and Christmas. Ascension, Good Friday, Whitmonday, and Easter Monday are considered religious holidays.

Because Switzerland is bordered by several distinct countries, the state has four national languages--Italian, German, French, and Rhaeto-Romansch. The majority of Swiss citizens primarily speak German, while 20 percent speak French and eight percent speak Italian. Numerous dialects unique to certain cantons exist as well.

Change currency

Basic monthly living cost

  • Rent in a shared flat

  • Share of utilities

  • Internet subscription

  • Local transportation


Sample lifestyle cost

  • Fast food combo

  • Cinema ticket

  • Pint of local beer


About Switzerland

Higher Education in Switzerland

Switzerland has ten"cantonal" universities as well as two Institutes of Technology that are considered federal higher education facilities. In addition, numerous colleges are spread throughout the country to accommodate a growing number of international and local students. Universities and colleges in Switzerland adhere to the semester schedule, with the winter semester lasting from October to March and the summer semester continuing from April to July.

There are three basic academic degrees given in Switzerland: the License, the Diploma and the Ph.D. Obtaining a "Lizentiat "and a Diploma correspond to the equivalent of obtaining a U.S. Master's degree. Most students earn a License and Diploma within four to five years. Students must earn these two degrees first before they can pursue a Ph.D.

Potential students must present an application to the higher educational institution of their choice, detailing the anticipated field of study. Copies of examination results, a curriculum vitae and any other degrees or certificates that may influence acceptance into the school should also be included in the packet. Following acceptance, students will need to contact their country's Swiss Embassy for information regarding entry procedures for Switzerland. In addition, all students will need to provide proof of being financially stable while studying at a Swiss college or university.

All students must have a state-recognized maturity certificate or some other certificate that is recognized as being equivalent to the maturity certificate by the university to which they have been accepted.In addition to having excellent grades, students should possess adequate knowledge of the university's predominantly spoken language before applying to that university.

Upon arriving in Switzerland, students will have to obtain a residency permit at the local police department. They will need to present a valid passport, a letter of acceptance from the university, and a bank statement or other document verifying that they have sufficient financial means while in school. This residency permit will need to be renewed each year you are attending a Swiss higher educational institution.

Prominent Swiss Universities

Popular universities in Switzerland include:

  • University of Bern (mostly German speaking)
  • University of Geneva (mostly French speaking)
  • University of Lausanne (French speaking)
  • Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (German and English speaking)

Switzerland also has many private colleges, fine arts universities, and pedagogical universities that offer diplomas recognized by the Swiss Conference of Cantonal Ministers of Education, or the EDK.

Tuition for attending a Swiss university or college varies between 2000 to 8000 Swiss francs, possibly more depending on the university and course of study.

Health Insurance Coverage

Anyone residing in Switzerland longer than three months must carry some kind of health insurance coverage, whether it is Swiss-based or recognized by another country. Students arriving from countries that offer international coverage may not have to obtain Switzerland's compulsory health insurance.

Why Study in Switzerland?

Switzerland is well-known for its innovative research and development industry so students endeavoring to major in biotechnology, genetics, pharmaceuticals, and other cutting-edge, health and medical-related careers will find Swiss higher education brimming with exceptional science and technology programs. Alternately, the Swiss are also highly respected for their financial and business acumen. Students endeavoring to pursue a career in the financial sector will also discover that Swiss universities provide comprehensive degree programs for business and finance majors.

Visa Requirements

  1. C visa – for short courses (summer schools, language schools) that last for up to three months.
  2. D visa – for courses that last longer than three months.

What type of Visa do you need?

Visa name

C visa; D visa

Price and currency


For a student visa, the application is free of charge; however, there might be some exceptions.

Who can apply for the visa?

Although Switzerland is not a member of the EU, it allows EU citizens to attend university in the country. Students that do not have EU/EEA nationality must contact the Swiss embassy or consulate in their home country to apply for a visa prior to entering the country.

For courses of up to three months – summer courses, language schools – you may need a short-term Schengen C visa; for courses longer than three months, you may need a long-term national D visa.

You cannot come to Switzerland on a three-month tourist visa and change it to a student residence permit after you have arrived in Switzerland. Thus, even if you are exempt from needing an entry visa, such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Japan, Malaysia, or Singapore nationals, you will still need to apply for a residence permit before you arrive if you plan to stay longer than 90 days.

All international students, including EU/EFTA citizens, will have to apply for a residence permit at a Residents Registration Office within 14 days after their arrival in Switzerland.

Where can you make the application?

Swiss embassy or consulate

You’ll need to apply for a visa through the Swiss embassy or consulate in your home country.


How to make the application?

When you have received confirmation of acceptance by a Swiss university or private school, you will need to contact the Swiss embassy in your country for information on entry formalities for Switzerland. You will have to show proof that you have adequate financial means to support yourself during your studies.

You will need to complete an application form and submit supporting documentation in French, German, or English, so you may need to translate your documents.

For short-term Schengen C visas, documentation includes:

  • a valid passport/travel ID;
  • proof of adequate financial resources to cover your costs while you’re in Switzerland;
  • healthcare/accident insurance;
  • confirmation of booked courses including fees paid;

if you’re under 18, a birth certificate and authorization to travel if coming to Switzerland alone, or copies of parents’ visas if they will be accompanying.

For a long-term D visa, documents will include:

  • a valid passport/travel ID;
  • proof of adequate financial resources to cover your costs while you’re in Switzerland, whether yourself or a sponsor, such as copies of bank statements or a letter from the bank;
  • proof of healthcare insurance which includes cover for accidents;
  • motivation letter outlining why you want to come to Switzerland to study and how this will be beneficial to your career;
  • confirmation of enrolment at a recognized Swiss educational institution;
  • confirmation of course fees paid;
  • your CV;
  • copies of previous educational certificates and diplomas;
  • a signed letter confirming that you will leave Switzerland at the end of the course.

You may also be asked to sit a language test to make sure that you will be able to follow lessons.

If you want to undertake postgraduate studies, you’ll need to submit proof that you’ve been admitted to a post-grad course and have the appropriate qualifications, sufficient financial means, and somewhere to live.

When should you apply?

You should schedule an appointment at the Swiss embassy or consulate in your area as soon as you get the acceptance letter from the Swiss educational institution. You should schedule the appointment for a visa interview as early as 6 months prior to the start of your studies but no later than ten weeks before your departure.

The processing times for short stay visa applications are 10-15 days; and eight to ten weeks for long-stay visas.

The length of the student visa depends on the length of your course. The residence permit is given for one year and can be renewed.

Processing time

10 Weeks

Work opportunities

You may take up part-time work for up to 15 hours a week in term time and full-time during holidays, but only after you have lived in Switzerland for six months.

If you already hold a Master’s degree from a foreign university and you’re in Switzerland working for your Swiss university or institute, you don’t have to wait six months but can start work right away. Your employer will need to get a work permit for you. You will need to maintain your full-time student status and show that you are continuing to make progress in your studies.

After graduation, foreign students can stay in Switzerland for six months to look for work.

Hours per week


Why do you need this type of visa?

Your visa application may be rejected if you are not able to show proof of the required funds, or if you provide incorrect or incomplete documents.