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2019 Italian University Rankings - Top Choices for Postgraduate Study

As one of Europe’s historic centres of higher education, Italy has a long-standing university tradition. Impressively, it’s home to one of the world’s oldest universities: the University of Bologna, founded in 1088 (predating the Oxbridge universities).

If you decide to study a Masters in Italy, you’ll find a country that combines academic heritage with a commitment to research, as well as a nation with famously beautiful old cities and fantastic cultural opportunities.

This page summarises the position of Italian universities in the major international rankings tables.

Top Ranked Italian Universities

The following table lists the best 15 universities in Italy in 2019, according to global rankings.

This information is based on the latest rankings tables, researched and published by Times Higher Education, QS and the Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU).

Each ranking system uses its own methodology, with different factors having more or less influence on a university's result.

For more information on using international rankings as a postgraduate, see our guide.


Top 15 Italian Universities in 2019
University THE 2019 QS 2019 ARWU 2018
Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna =153 167 -
Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa =161 =175 -
University of Bologna 180 =180 201-300
University of Padua 201-250 249 201-300
Vita-Salute San Raffaele University 201-250 - 401-500
Sapienza University of Rome 251-300 217 201-300
University of Trento 251-300 =426 -
University of Milan 301-350 325 151-200
University of Naples Federico II 301-350 =472 201-300
University of Pisa 301-350 =422 201-300
Polytechnic University of Milan 301-350 =156 201-300
Free University of Bozen-Bolzano 351-400 - -
University of Modena and Reggio Emilia 351-400 801-1000 -
University of Perugia 351-400 751-1000 -
University of Salerno 351-400 - -
Information in this table is based on the latest Times Higher Education World University Rankings, QS World University Rankings and Academic Ranking of World Universities. Visit their websites for more information.

How do rankings work for Masters study?

International rankings use all sorts of metrics to assess universities and they aren't all equally relevant to postgraduate study. That's why we've put together a guide to university rankings for Masters students.

So, how good are Italian universities for Masters study?

With a handful of institutions in the world’s top 200 universities across all three rankings, Italy is a major hub for European higher education.

Home to some of the world's most historic universities, the country continues to present an attractive proposition for postgraduates from around the world (there are around 32,000 foreign students in Italy).

Domestic rankings

Another way to look at Italian universities is to consult a domestic league table such as the one produced by La Repubblica. These rankings compare Italian universities with each other, eliminating some of the disparities that can sometimes crop up in international tables.

Search for a Masters in Italy

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Last updated 02/10/2018

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