Universities in Singapore - QS Best Student Cities Ranking | Top Universities

Study in Singapore

By Holly Hemmings

Updated September 21, 2023 Updated September 21, 2023

QS Best Student Cities ranking: 15th

Small but densely populated, Singapore's reputation as a centre of educational excellence has flourished in recent years. Its top universities, the National University of Singapore (NUS) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU) now rank in 8th and 26th place respectively in the QS World University Rankings®. This year, although the city has dropped two places in the QS Best Student Cities ranking, landing the 15th spot, it remains one of the most desirable student destinations in Asia and indeed the world.

Alongside growing prominence in the global higher education sector, Singapore remains renowned for its prosperity and low levels of crime and unemployment. In keeping with the city’s strong corporate reputation, Singaporean graduates are much sought-after by international employers, especially throughout Asia, and the city comes 16th in the employer activity indicator.

The downside to Singapore's high standard of living is correspondingly high prices. Singapore is ranked 109th in the world for affordability - nevertheless, tuition fees have decreased in recent years.

One thing you certainly won't need to shell out for in Singapore is central heating; its position next to the equator means it is equally scorching all year round. And if you fancy exchanging the concrete jungle for the real thing, Singapore is surrounded by tropical scenery, both throughout adjacent Malaysia, and in nearby exotic destinations such as Indonesia, Cambodia, Vietnam and the Philippines.

Internationally ranked universities in Singapore

World Ranking University
8th National University of Singapore
26th Nanyang Technological University
=429th Singapore University of Technology and Design
=545 Singapore Management University

More about Singapore

Singapore, one of Asia's main business hubs, drops slightly to the 15th place in this year's Best Student Cities ranking. However, the city's performance in the desirability and student view indicators signals a shift in student perspective. Singapore has in fact become a friendlier and more vibrant student destination with a great quality of life despite slightly higher costs of living than its Asia-Pacific counterparts.

To find out how each of the above categories is calculated, view the methodology. 

Number of universities ranked by QS


Highest-ranked institution

National University of Singapore (NUS) (8th)



Average international fees (at ranked unis)


Desirability rank


Employer Activity rank


Affordability rank


Student View rank


Why study in Singapore?

High-quality education

Singapore is renowned around the world for its academic excellence. Two of its main universities -  the National University of Singapore (NUS) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU) - rank among the top 30 globally in the QS World University Rankings®.

Studying in Singapore will without a doubt give you an advantage in the job market not only in the Asia-Pacific, but in other global employment hubs too.

Great quality of life

Singapore's high quality of life earned it a high score for the desirability indicator. Its cutting-edge economy combined with efficient city planning, warm weather and safe environment make it an ideal student city for people from all backgrounds.

Never get bored

Singapore is a city you'll never get bored in. Between skyscrapers, rainforests, nature reserves, restaurants, nightclubs, shopping centres and museums, there's always something to do in this vibrant city. Plus, thanks to its connections, it's extremely easy to travel to other destinations in the Asia-Pacific, such as Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand.

Life & culture in Singapore

Singapore is a highly multi-cultural society. Locals are used to interacting with people from all over the world and are respectful of different backgrounds. It's no surprise that there are four official languages in the city: English (the language of business), Chinese, Malay and Tamil.

Living in Singapore is a safe and enriching experience. Thanks to excellent infrastructure and a plethora of amenities, students have access to various forms of entertainment daily, from a vibrant nightlife to great cuisines from all over Asia. 

Careers in Singapore

Singapore is in the top 20 for employer activity. The city is in fact one of the world's biggest business hubs, home to local and global firms such as United Overseas Bank, Flex, DBS Bank, Singapore Airlines and Singtel.

Singapore also makes it easy for students to make money while studying. In fact, students can work part-time for 16 hours a week for subsidised tuition fees during their course and during vacation periods.

This article was originally published in November 2014 . It was last updated in September 2023

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