Istanbul is the largest city in Turkey and the fifth- largest in the world by population. The city is considered European but webbed in between two continents – Europe and Asia.
Istanbul is one of Turkey’s largest centres of education and is home to some of the country’s best universities. There are many universities in Istanbul, Turkey ( about 66) which are either public, state or private universities. We have compiled the best five (5) Universities in Instabul from about sixty-six (66) universities available.
Table of Contents
1. Koç University
The University is one of the leading research universities in Turkey and the region. The University aims to be a global centre of research and endeavours to influence intellectual, technological, economic and social developments on a global scale. The institution boasts of 132 research laboratories, 20 research centres, and 5 research and education forums. Koç University welcomes applications from international students and is in partnership with over 250 universities across the globe.
The institution offers full or partial scholarships for all Research Masters and PhD programs for international students. Over 95% of classes at Koç University are taught in the English Language( with the exception of the School of Law and School of Nursing).
2. Istanbul Technical University
Istanbul Technical University popularly referred to as ITU or The Technical University is a public (state) university that was established in 1773. ITU was founded by Sultan Mustafa III as the Imperial School of Naval Engineering (Ottoman Turkish: Mühendishane-i Bahr-i Hümayun), and it was originally dedicated to training shipbuilders and cartographers. In 1795, the school’s scope was broadened to train technical military staff for the modernization of the Ottoman army. In 1845, the training of architects was added. In 1883, the name and scope of the school were extended again. In 1909, the school became a public engineering school that was aimed at training civil engineers who could provide the infrastructure for the rapidly developing country. In 1944 the name of the institution was changed to Istanbul Technical University and in 1946 the institution became an autonomous university with architecture, civil, mechanical, and electrical engineering faculties.
It is the world’s third-oldest technical university dedicated to engineering sciences as well as social sciences recently and is one of the most prominent educational institutions in Turkey. It has six campuses( Ayazaga, Taşkışla, Macka, Gümüşsuyu, Tuzla, and KKTC), which are located in the most important areas of Istanbul. The university has 99 undergraduate programs, 192 graduate programs, 14 faculties, labs with a total of 154,000 m² area, and 12 research centres.
At Istanbul Technical University, the lecturer-to-student ratio is 1:25. ITU has an international agreement with the best Universities in America in which students studying at Istanbul Technical University can spend part of their education in world-famous universities, and obtain a certificate from these universities as well.
Istanbul Technical University focuses on research and development, the first boats in Turkey were built at this same University, the first hydrogen-powered boat and the first driverless car, in addition to the design of the first communication satellite in Turkey.
Students who want to study at ITU must take the SAT or ACT and have the minimum required scores for the various majors. Postgraduate and PhD applicants must have a TOEFL score of at least 213 or pass a language test administered by the university. English and Turkish are the Language used in their various disciplines.
3. Boğaziçi University
Established in 1863 by Christopher Robert, a wealthy American philanthropist, and Cyrus Hamlin, a Congregational missionary devoted to education at Robert College. In 1971, the Bebek campus and academic staff of Robert College were turned over to the Republic of Turkey to be transformed into a public university named Boğaziçi University.
Boğaziçi University is a research university located in Istanbul and is otherwise known as Bosphorus University. Boğaziçi University operates on six campuses in Istanbul (South, North, Hisar, Uçaksavar, Kilyos-Saritepe and Kandilli). Four of these campuses (South Campus, North Campus, Hisar Campus, and Uçaksavar Campus) are within walking distance of each other, and they are located on a hill in the affluent district of Bebek on the European side of Istanbul, overlooking the Bosphorus (hence the name).
The Institution has four (4) faculties and 2 schools, as well as 6 institutes where 33 undergraduate, 65 graduate and 33 PhD programmes are offered. It also boasts of 141 research laboratories and 31 research centres as it is one of the most prominent research universities in Turkey.
Boğaziçi University ranks 1st in Turkey and 197th internationally according to U.S. News & World Report 2021 Best Global Universities Rankings and shares the 5th rank among the Turkish universities according to the Times Higher Education World University Rankings of 2021 (internationally: 601 – 800). Degree programmes at Boğaziçi University are taught in English.
4. Sabancı University
Sabancı University is a young foundation University established in July 1994 by the Sabancı Group(one of Turkey’s leading family foundations, Sabancı Vakfı). The first academic session started on 20th October 1999.
Sabanci University is located in Tuzla, a quiet, suburb of Istanbul, located approximately 45 miles from the city centre. Sabancı University is the first and only university in Turkey to offer students complete freedom to choose their program.
Sabancı University has three faculties and a language school: the Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences (FENS), Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS), Sabancı Business School (SBS), and School of Languages.
Sabancı University ranked 10th worldwide in THE’s list of small universities, those institutions with fewer than 5,000 students but that teach and research across more than four disciplines. Sabancı University was also placed among the top 10,000 universities globally in the QS World University Rankings. In addition, the University has named the most innovative and entrepreneurial university in 2012 and 2016, and the most innovative foundation university in 2013 and 2014, in the Ministry of Science, Industry and Technology’s University Entrepreneurship and Innovation Index.
The university boasts of a large number of laboratories and research centres, including the most advanced Nanotechnology Research and Application Center in the region. It has 102 Laboratories, 8 Research Centers, and 2 Forums. The school keeps the faculty-to-student ratio at 1:11. Graduates of this institution are highly regarded across all spheres both professionally and academically. 96% of graduates find employment within a year of their graduation. 81% of overall alumni pursue professional careers in well-known companies. Sabancı University to date is still a small and remarkably focused University.
5. Instabul University
Istanbul University is a public institution of higher education in Turkey and is among the best Universities in Istanbul and rich with a long history of existence.
Istanbul university is accredited by the Council of Higher Education of Turkey ( referred to as Yüksekögretim Kurulu, YÖK). Istanbul University began academic activities far back in 1453 as founded by the Ottoman Sultan Mehmed II as a school of philosophy, medicine, law and letters, It later served as a madrasah (Ismalic theological school) and as an institution of higher education called the Darülfünûn (House of Sciences) in the 19th century, before being established as Istanbul University in 1933 after Mustafa Kemal Atatürk reformed Turkey’s education system. The central buildings of the university are located in the city of Istanbul.
The institution is known for its long existence and reputation and so, quite a large number of youth want to study at Istanbul University. Istanbul University stands out for its constant entry into the top 12 national list of the best universities in Turkey. The university has 15 facilities, 12 institutes, 2 vocational schools, 2 Schools, 2 departments, 74 research and application centres and 216 student clubs. The teaching staff consists of 2800 specialists and up to 82 000 students.
The mission of Istanbul University is to produce valuable knowledge for our country and humanity and to train competent individuals by bringing together the east and the west, the past and the future while the vision of Istanbul University is to become a leading university with its education at global level and its research shaping the future. Admission to the University is open to both citizens and non-citizens. On average, 5% of individuals that attend the University are foreigners (selection is based on performance at the entrance examination).
Conclusion: Why Study in Istanbul?
The cost of education in Istanbul is lower compared to its counterparts. Tuition fees for English-taught degree programs can range from USD 450 to 1,500. Living costs in Istanbul may range from USD 500 to 600 per month covering accommodation, food, clothing, books, transportation, and other utilities.
Due to the low cost of living and high efficiency in teaching in Istanbul, the city has become many foreign students’ destination for furthering their studies.