Germany’s Top 10 Oldest Universities

21K School · Jul 9, 2023 · 3 min read

Germany is home to some of the oldest and most beautiful universities worldwide will excite any student who wants to study in the country. These historical institutions have produced exceptional brains, which are still in use today.

Germany has a rich and intriguing history of higher education institutions. Germany’s top 10 oldest universities are listed by their official founding year.

1- Heidelberg University (1386)

Heidelberg, a small city of 150,000 people halfway between Stuttgart and Frankfurt am Main, is home to Germany’s oldest university. Heidelberg Institution was established in 1386, making it the sixth-oldest university in Europe. As one of the top universities in the world, Heidelberg University retains a long legacy as a research institution. It has recently given birth to more than 30 Nobel laureates.

2- Leipzig University (1409)

Leipzig University is Germany’s second-oldest higher education establishment. The institution is home to about 29,000 students and offers more than 190 programs in various subjects. According to the QS World Rankings 2022, Leipzig University is 447 worldwide.

The university has a strong alum presence with networks from all over the world and a list of famous graduates. However, 90% of the courses at the University of Leipzig are taught in German. Thus, international students must be fluent in both written and spoken German.

3- University of Rostock (1419)

The oldest institution of higher learning near the Baltic Sea is the University of Rostock. It began by instructing in law, medicine, and philosophy after being founded in 1419. As the first “traditional” German university, the University of Rostock added a faculty for technological research and instruction in the 1960s, beginning with maritime engineering.

4- University of Greifswald (1456)

The University of Greifswald is one of Germany’s oldest public universities. With more than 10,000 students, 777 of them from abroad, it is renowned for its diverse student body. Moreover, the University of Greifswald provides a pleasant environment for its students.

The University of Greifswald provides a range of undergraduate, graduate, and doctorate programs through its five faculties. International applicants must have a solid command of the German language because almost all university courses are offered in the native language.

5- University of Freiburg (1457)

With a 450-year history, the University of Freiburg consistently ranks among the top universities in Europe. When choosing a German city to study in, Freiburg im Breisgau, which is close to the borders with France and Switzerland, is one of the most representative German cities. In addition, it is renowned for having the most sunlight anywhere in the nation.

6- LMU Munich (1472)

LMU Munich, also referred to as the University of Munich, is recognized as one of the most prestigious universities in the entire world. The university now has around 50,000 students enrolled. LMU Munich offers more than 200 programs in various academic subjects, teacher training programs in 140 additional topics, and 100 majors along with its degree programs. LMU Munich is one of the most selective colleges in the nation, with a 10% admittance rate.

7- University of Tübingen (1477)

Nearly a third of the residents of the little town is made up of the more than 28,000 students at the University of Tübingen. It was recognized as top research and educational institution by the German federal government’s recent “Excellence Initiative,” along with several other universities in this article.

8- Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (1502)

Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg has been educating students since 1502 and is one of Germany’s oldest higher education institutions. The university’s ten faculties provide 260 bachelor’s and master’s degrees. This university has more than 2,100 international students.

Both the winter and summer semesters accept new applications. The majority of courses, however, are only available during the winter semester. According to the QS rankings, the university was placed 470th worldwide.

9- Philipps-Universität Marburg (1527)

The University of Marburg, approaching 500 years old, is renowned for its chemistry and life sciences research. It was the first university in the world to create a professorship in chemistry in 1609; its on-campus interactive chemistry museum honors this tradition. Marburg, where about a third of its 75,000 residents are students, maybe the typical university city you’re searching for if you want a picture-book study abroad experience in Germany.

Choosing a college involves lengthy pros-and-cons lists, countless hours of research, and extensive deliberations on the merits of each institution. Here’s a guide on how to pick your dream university.


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