Best Universities in Spain for International Students 2022

Looking for a great and interesting place of study in Europe, to make your study experience abroad a life-changing one? Then, Spain has all it takes to satisfy this interest. Check it out and apply to study in the Best Universities in Spain for International Students.

Many students are attracted to Spain for its beach resorts, vibrant cities, local festivals and its beautiful architecture. Geographically, Spain shares the Iberian Peninsula with Portugal at the western end of the Mediterranean Sea.

There is much to explore throughout the country, from the Pyrenees to the coastal cities. Interestingly, it is the country with the third-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage sites, after Italy and China.

There are a lot of things to do, like eating in fancy
restaurants, visiting many art galleries and museums and spending time on the
beach and in the countryside.

In this writing, we shall bring to you, all the information you need to know about the Best Universities in Spain for International Students and how they are rated.

Universities in Spain

Spain has 45 of her universities included in the Times Higher Education 2022 World Ranking of Universities, with some of the most popular and best-ranked based in Madrid, Barcelona and the smallest cities of Seville and Granada.

Each region of Spain is different, so students should be based on where they want to study, not only in the university but also in the lifestyle associated with the region.

One of the reasons that contribute to the popularity of
Spain among international students is that, in general, it is relatively cheap
to live there. The cost of goods and services in Spain is below average
compared to other European countries.

One of the main reasons why students choose to study abroad is the opportunity to learn another language, and as the national dialect of Spain is the second most spoken language in the world, it has become a popular destination for international students

While most of the courses are taught in Spanish, there are
also a series of undergraduate and postgraduate courses in English to
accommodate foreign students.

Why study in Spain?

Getting your degree does not have to be boring, stressful or
a difficult event, especially if you take the leap to study at one of the many
universities in Spain or Spanish universities.

Whether you’re looking for the tranquillity of the sandy
beaches, the gentle breeze of the coast, a new perspective from the top of the
mountains or the hustle and bustle of cities, Spain has it covered.

With seventeen autonomous regions, you can experience not only the surprising differences in the natural landscapes of Spain but also the cultural differences.

Studying abroad in Spain can help you to experience a
pleasant and relaxed atmosphere full of international students from all over
the world.

Although conferences in universities and colleges in Spain
are formal, seminars and laboratory work are more relaxed, allowing students to
freely discuss with teachers and ask them questions about the materials of
their courses.

Universities in Spain for international students

Spain has 81 universities as a whole; About 50 are public and the rest are private. Universities are located throughout the country and all welcome international students for both graduate and undergraduate studies.

Students can obtain a master’s degree from all academic
disciplines in Spain, including arts and humanities; Sciences; Health Sciences;
Social Sciences; law; engineering and architecture.

Spanish universities are recognized for their quality, with
five universities listed in the World Ranking of the 400 best universities.

These schools include the Autonomous University of Barcelona, ​​the University of Barcelona, Autonomous University of Madrid, ​​the University of Valencia, and the University of Seville.

In Spain, you can enroll in any of the universities, some of them with a long history are constantly listed in international university rankings.

Apart from big cities like Madrid and Barcelona, you can also apply to universities in Spanish cities like Valencia, Alicante, Salamanca or Marbella.

Here is the list of the best universities in Spain for international students. The universities are rated according to the acceptance rate, world ranking on times higher education 2022 and students to teacher ratio.

  • University of Barcelona
  • Autonomous University of Barcelona
  • Autonomous University of Madrid
  • University of Valencia (La Universitat de València)
  • University of Sevilla
  • Complutense University of Madrid (Universidad Complutense de Madrid)
  • Pompeu Fabra University
  • University of Navarra
  • Pablo de Olavide University
  • University of Granada
  • University of Salamanca
  • University of Deusto (Deusto University)
  • Open University of Catalonia
  • University of Rovira i Virgili
  • University of Alcalá

University of Barcelona

If you are a football fan, you will be conversant with the
name of the city called Barcelona, because it is home to one of the best
football clubs in the world, FC Barcelona and playing field of some of the
world football stars.

The vibrant city is not just for football, but also, the centre of academic excellence as it houses the prestigious University of Barcelona. The University of Barcelona is one of the largest universities in Spain and receives a large number of students from Spain and abroad every year.

It stands out as the best Universities in Spain for International Students.

There are 73 undergraduate courses, more than 140 official
university master’s courses, more than 400 UB-specific master’s courses and
postgraduate diplomas, and 48 doctoral programs.

The two-grade courses are taught entirely in English
(international business and English studies) and five are partially taught in

Acceptance Rate: 10%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 11:8

World Ranking: 201-205

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University of Sevilla

The University of Seville has more than 500 years of
teaching experience, adapted to meet the modern standards of the European
Higher Education Area (EHEA). It is reputed to be one of the best universities
in Spain for international students

In 1505, the university was established by Catholic royalty
as the Colegio Santa María de Jesús.

The university has an innovative cultural policy based on
cutting-edge ideas to develop art in all its forms. Cultivate relationships
with the city’s many artistic institutions, organizing collaborative
performances and exhibitions.

Previous collaborations have taken place at the Teatro de la
Maestranza, the city opera and the impressive colonial buildings of the old
tobacco factory.

Acceptance Rate: 6%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 20:6

World Ranking: 801–1000

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University of Valencia (La Universitat de València)

Located in the third-largest city in Spain, embracing the beautiful Mediterranean coast is the historic University of Valencia.

It is reputed to be one of the best universities in Spain for international students. With beginnings dating back to 1499, it is one of the oldest universities in Spain.

The three main campuses extend throughout the urban city but are located close enough to the coast so you can escape to the beach for a quick walk.

Do not let the use of Valencian, a variety of Catalan,
discourage you. Most of the locals also speak Spanish, just be sure to register
for classes taught in Spanish or English instead of Valencian.

Acceptance Rate: 12%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 14:9

World Ranking: 401-500

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Complutense University of Madrid (Universidad Complutense
de Madrid)

Continually gaining a place in the list of the best universities in Spain, in addition to wearing the title of the most prestigious academic institution in Spain, the Complutense University lives up to expectations.

It has a great reputation as one of the best universities in Spain for international students.

With lists of famous and award-winning former students, you
will surely feel challenged and academically motivated.

The university has a strong focus on research and gives you
the opportunity to learn from world leaders in your field. The great student
body and urban feeling can be challenging for some; however, it is certainly
worth it if you can find your place and feel at home.

Acceptance Rate: 13%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 19:7

World Ranking: 500-600

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Pompeu Fabra University

Pompeu Fabra University is still a fairly young university that was established in 1990 in Barcelona. The specific strengths of the university is in the social sciences, humanities, health, life sciences, communication, and ICT.

The university is named after the linguist Pompeu Fabra, an
expert in the Catalan language, who is credited with recognizing the language
he has today.

Catalan is the official language of the Pompeu Fabra
University. Students who wish to learn Catalan will have many opportunities in
Barcelona and around Pompeu Fabra.

There are three campuses located around the city of
Barcelona. Social and human sciences are studied in Ciutadella, health and life
sciences in Mar and communication and computer science in Poblenou.

Acceptance Rate: 13%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 21:6

World Ranking: 143

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Study in Spain: Tuition Fees, Cost of Living and Admission Requirement

Autonomous University of Madrid

The main campus is located on the outskirts of Madrid, in
the Cantoblanco area, and is connected to Madrid on a commuter train.

There are 16 cafes and dining rooms, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a medical center, sports fields, and beach volleyball courts, as well as a train station and bus services on campus. It stands out as one of the best universities in Spain for international students

Former famous students include several former government
ministers, Gaspar Llamazares, former leader of the United Left Party and HM
King Felipe VI of Spain who graduated with a law degree and economics courses.

Acceptance Rate: 14%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 13:4

World Ranking: 251–300

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Autonomous University of Barcelona

The main campus is located in Bellaterra, in one of the main industrial and technological locations of Mediterranean Europe, just 25 minutes from the center of Barcelona.

It is reputed to be one of the best universities in Spain for international students

The university offers 87 bachelor’s degrees, 315 master’s degrees and 68 doctorate programs. Also, university degrees in business administration and administration, economics, primary education, and tourism are offered entirely in English, and many other degrees offer subjects in English.

The university attracts many international students because of this.

The university has 13 faculties that include biosciences,
communication, arts and humanities, medicine and translation and

Acceptance Rate: 16%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 12:6

World Ranking: 157

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University of Deusto (Deusto University)

The University of Deusto is a private university, it is the oldest private university in Spain and the founder of the first business school in Spain.

This academically and historically important university attracts both local Spanish students and a large number of international students.

Found in the Basque country of northern Spain, students experience a mixture of Spanish, French, and Basque culture and language. While religion-affiliated schools are not for everyone, Catholics and non-Catholics are successful in their world-renowned programs.

Acceptance Rate: 11%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 21:8

World Ranking: 801–1000

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University of Salamanca

If the life of the big city and the merger with the background of a crowded conference room are not your scenes, the University of Salamanca will surely be the place for you.

While studying in this historic city with a feeling of a small town, you will find yourself immersed in the daily life of Spanish culture.

With the unique title of the oldest founded university in Spain, the University of Salamanca is a coveted destination for students from all over the world.

It is known to be among the best universities in Spain for international students.

Acceptance Rate: 16%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 17:6

World Ranking: 601–800

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University of Navarra

The private non-profit university was founded in 1952 by the founder of Opus Dei, Josemaría Escrivá de Balaguer, to convey the values ​​of the movement. It has a great reputation among the best universities in Spain for international students.

Initially, it started as a law school and now has 14 faculties, two university schools, 17 institutes, a business school, and many other centers and institutions. The university offers more than 120 degrees, but all courses include aspects of theology.

The university has agreements with other universities,
including the University of Washington, the University of Hong Kong and the
University of Edinburgh to encourage international exchanges between students.

The university is located in Pamplona, ​​famous for the bull
confinement during the San Fermin festival.

Acceptance Rate: 22%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 13:0

World Ranking: 251–300

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Study Masters in Spain: Admission, Tuition Fee, Visa Requirement

Pablo de Olavide University

Pablo de Olavide University is located on the outskirts of
the city center of Seville and extends over several hectares. A quick bus trip
will take you to the heart of Seville, where you can walk the pedestrian
streets and experience the birthplace of flamenco.

This beautiful university was built in 1997 and offers many
modern amenities that include Wi-Fi throughout the university, dormitories on
campus, sports fields and a huge library.

With only 10,000 students, you may not get as many program
options or connections as in other universities, but you will get a more
traditional university experience and form deep bonds with your fellow

Acceptance Rate: 18%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 14:4

World Ranking: 801–1000

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University of Granada

The fourth-largest university in Spain, the University of Granada welcomes a large percentage of international students every year. Widely considered not only one of the best universities in Spain, but also one of the best universities for international students.

With five campuses and a wide variety of subjects to study,
you will surely feel attended and meet students from all over the world. It is
known to be among the best universities in Spain for international students.

Acceptance Rate: 20%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 15:4

World Ranking: 601–800

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Open University of Catalonia

The university is based in the capital of Catalonia, Barcelona. More than 50,000 students are enrolled in a remote course.

Together with his undergraduate and master’s degree courses, he offers a doctoral program in digital subjects such as electronic law, e-learning, networking society, education and online communities.

The Open University of Catalonia (UOC) offers remote courses in Catalan, Spanish and English. Among the 27 bachelor’s and 44 master’s degrees offered there are courses in psychology, computer science, education, and economics.

In line with other open universities, most resources are available to students within their homes. This makes it a good option for anyone who wants the flexibility to study at their own time or without traveling to a university campus.

It was founded in 1994 and has built a reputation for its
research on e-learning and online participation. The university’s e-learning
center was created in 2009 and has focused on time patterns in online learning.

Acceptance Rate: 2%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 84:5

World Ranking: 501–600

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University of Rovira I Virgili

The Rovira I Virgili University (URV) was created in 1991 by the Catalan parliament. Located in southern Catalonia, it has developed a multicenter structure with six campuses.

The URV employs almost 1,000 full-time equivalent academic
employees (4 percent international, 38 percent associate professors) and 640
administrative and service personnel.

The number of publications per permanent faculty member is
the fourth highest in Spain. The special emphasis that the URV has placed on
research allows it to play a leading role in regional development, especially
in areas that are closely related to the economic strengths of the region

Acceptance Rate: 11%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 12:3

World Ranking: 501–600

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University of Alcalá

The University of Alcalá (UAH) is a public university
located in Alcalá de Henares, Madrid, a UNESCO world heritage site and one of
the oldest European universities, dating from 1293.

The University of Alcalá is a modern institution, founded in
1977, which offers a wide range of undergraduate and graduate programs that
cover all fields of knowledge.

The university has four associated teaching hospitals where
students can complete their internships. The university is firmly committed to
research, technological innovation and collaboration with companies and

Acceptance Rate: 18%

Student-Teacher Ratio: 12:9

World Ranking: 601–800

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Best Universities in Spain that offer Online degrees

Low tuition fees and hourly flexibility are the main
advantages of a distance bachelor. It is the perfect way for students to reduce
their expenses.

Online bachelor’s degrees include the option of night and
weekend classes, ideal for adults looking for a career change or high school
graduates looking for an early start.

Whether online or requiring regular meetings on campus, most online degree programs offer virtual classrooms, teacher support, and student study groups.

One of the best universities in Spain that offer an online degree is the Open University of Catalonia. The Open University of Catalonia has an impeccable record of offering an online degree program through her virtual schools.

It has the largest number of online students from all around the world.

Others include;

  • The National University of Education at Distance (UNED)
  • Virtual Barcelona University
  • Virtual University of Salamanca (USAL)
  • University of Sevilla (US)
  • Virtual Learning Centre of the University of Granada (CEVUG)
  • University Pompeu Fabra (UPF)
  • University of Valencia (UV)

Best Universities in Spain for a masters degree

Due to the current economic situation in Spain, postgraduate employment within Spain is less likely than before. However, employers around the world have high regard for master’s degrees obtained from a Spanish university.

Graduates of the master’s degree programs may also consider
follow-up work in a doctoral program or apply for research positions in
officially recognized research centers.

What is the cost of Tuition in Spanish Universities?

Yearly tuition at a private university is approximately €6,000. Master’s programs require 60-120 credits, which normally require 1-2 academic years.

A thesis of 6-30 credits with a public defense is also required. The average cost to obtain a postgraduate degree at a university in Spain is between 120 and 240 euros per year (two semesters).

Most institutions begin the academic year in October and end
in June. Most schools have two semesters, with exams at the end of each

Can I take English classes in a Spanish University?

If taking Spanish classes is not part of your study abroad
plan, don’t worry, most of the universities in Spain have a selection of
classes available in English.

However, it is important to keep in mind that, even if a university offers courses in English, they may not be the courses you want to take or may not be sufficient to complete a typical semester or an annual course load.

The best thing you can do if you are looking to study in
English is to contact the college or university and find out what specific
classes they offer or choose a Spanish university or a university in Spain
where classes are only offered in English.

There are many English-speaking universities in Spain that
offer full degrees in English, as well as international universities in Spain
that offer all their classes in English.

Best Universities in Spain | FAQs

Is education free in Spain for international students?

EU-students are able to study abroad in Spain for free by enrolling in a Spanish university. Even if you have to pay tuition, the undergraduate fees at public universities in Spain for international students are reasonable, costing anywhere between 680-1,280 Euros per year

Do universities in Spain teach in English?

A couple of universities in Spain that do offer teaching in English include: Global Business School – Located in Barcelona, this private university offers bachelor’s degrees as well as master’s degrees in a number of different studies.
There are students at this university from around the world.

Is Spain good for international students?

Spain is a popular destination for study abroad students for many reasons — there is something for everyone. No matter your experience you’ll be sure to grow as a person and develop skills that will benefit you for years to come.

What is the best university in Spain?

Madrid is home to some of the best Spanish universities, including two which feature in the QS World University Rankings: Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (159th) and Universidad Complutense de Madrid (206th)


Your study abroad experience in Spain can be an interesting
one. Enjoy the scent of nature, sights of ancient cultural sites and some of
the oldest buildings in the world, and of course, studying in the Best
Universities in Spain for International Students.


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