10 Best universities in Australia (2023)

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best universities in australia

The Australian National University ranks number 30 on the 2023 QS World University Rankings.

Do you know how many universities were included in the ranking? Just over 1,400!

That means the Australian National University is in the top 2% of universities globally.

Here’s more about Australia’s best university and the nine other universities that made up Australia’s top 10 in the QS rankings:

1. Australian National University (ANU): Canberra

  • Ranking: #30
  • Undergraduate Programs: 574
  • Postgraduate Programs: 146

The Australian National University (ANU) is consistently Australia’s highest-ranking university. The university is renowned for its exceptional teaching, research, and small classes.

More about the Australian National University (ANU)

  • ANU has seven academic colleges that house several schools and research centres that specialise in a range of disciplines:
    • Arts and Social Sciences
    • Asia and the Pacific
    • Business and Economics
    • Engineering and Computer science
    • Health and Medicine
    • Law
    • Science
  • Australia’s top university has more Nobel Laureates among staff and alumni than any other university in the country.
  • ANU is in Canberra, but the university also has other campuses in the ACT, New South Wales and the Northern Territory that support the university’s teaching, learning and research.
  • Some examples of ANU’s research programs include:
    • Environment and Sustainability: Biodiversity, climate change, earth and environmental sciences, energy alternatives, and resource and environmental management
    • Health and Medicine: Combating diseases and conditions, health policy, mental health and cognition, and population health
    • Future Security: Food security, resilience and adaptation, secure networks, security policy, and strategy and defence
    • See the complete list of programs on ANU’s website
  • ANU has 150 cultural, social, and educational clubs, including a chess society, cooking, dance and debating clubs, a science revue and a sign language collective.

2. University of Melbourne: Melbourne

  • Ranking: #33
  • Undergraduate Programs: 207
  • Postgraduate Programs: 204

The University of Melbourne educates around 65,000 students, including 30,000 international students from over 130 countries worldwide.

More about the University of Melbourne

  • The University of Melbourne is Australia’s leading research university and offers degrees in:
    • Arts
    • Biomedicine
    • Commerce
    • Design
    • Fine Arts
    • Music
    • Science
    • Agriculture
    • Oral Health
  • The University of Melbourne’s curriculum includes ‘Breadth Study’, which allows you to go beyond your study area. You could, for example, learn a new language or how to play an instrument.
  • Student life at the University of Melbourne includes various cultural activities, over 200 clubs and societies, and superb sports facilities.

3. University of Sydney: Sydney

  • Ranking: #41
  • Undergraduate Programs: 95
  • Postgraduate Programs: 228

The University of Sydney prides itself on its excellence in research and teaching and offers the broadest range of academic programs in Australia.

More about the University of Sydney

4. University of New South Wales (UNSW): Sydney

  • Ranking: #45
  • Undergraduate Programs: 116
  • Postgraduate Programs: 127

The University of New South Wales (UNSW) educates over 60,000 students from 130 countries and prides itself on being known for “innovative, pioneering research and high-quality education with a global impact”.

More about the University of New South Wales:

  • UNSW has seven faculties:
    • Arts, Design and Architecture
    • Business
    • Engineering
    • Law and Justice
    • Medicine and Health
    • Science
    • UNSW Canberra
  • The university’s main campus is in Kensington, Sydney, with two more campuses in the city and a campus in Canberra.
  • UNSW ranks third in Australia and 27th in the world for graduate employability
  • The university fosters a culture of innovation and is “world leaders in solar power, sustainable materials and quantum computing.”

5. University of Queensland (UQ): Brisbane

  • Ranking: #50
  • Undergraduate Programs: 116
  • Postgraduate Programs: 209

The University of Queensland is known for “excellence in teaching, learning and research”.

It’s not just empty words!

In 2021, UQ ranked in the top 50 in the U.S. News Best Global Universities Ranking and the Performance Ranking of Scientific Papers for World Universities, and in the top 100 in the Academic Ranking of World Universities and the Times Higher Education World Rankings.

More about the University of Queensland:

6. Monash University: Melbourne

  • Ranking: #57
  • Undergraduate Programs: 127
  • Postgraduate Programs: 214

Monash was founded in 1958. In the 64 years since then, Monash has grown from a single campus to a world-renowned university with a presence on four continents.

More about Monash University:

  • Monash has three international teaching locations, six campuses, and more than 100 partner universities
  • The university has over 150 active fields of research in areas as diverse as drug development and domestic violence, and more than 4,700 Higher Degree by Research students
  • Monash has 10 faculties offering numerous study areas:
    • Art, Design and Architecture
    • Arts
    • Business
    • Education
    • Engineering
    • Information technology
    • Law
    • Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
    • Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences
    • Science
  • Monash offers students the opportunity to start their degree in Australia and continue it at any of their 100 international partner institutions.

7. University of Western Australia (UWA): Perth

  • Ranking: #90

The University of Western Australia is not only one of the world’s top universities but also a massive part of Perth’s cultural scene. The UWA is the founder of the Perth Festival, and its campus is home to several galleries, museums, and theatres.

More about the University of Western Australia:

  • The University of Western Australia has over 25,000 students, including more than 4,000 international students
  • UWA achieved five stars in the Good Universities Guide 2021 for Teaching Quality, Student Demand, and Student:Teacher Ratio.
  • The university has 22 schools and 12 study areas:
    • Agricultural, Environmental and Biological Sciences
    • Architecture, Design and Planning
    • Business and Commerce
    • Data and Computer Science
    • Education
    • Engineering
    • Health and Biomedical Science
    • Humanities and Social Sciences
    • Law
    • Music and Fine Arts
    • Physical Sciences and Mathematics
    • Psychology
  • The university also has 39 research centres and institutes and published 5,901 research publications.
  • UWA is the best university in Australia for on-campus events and activities, according to the International Student Barometer Survey. The university has:
    • State-of-the-art gym and sports facilities and equipment
    • Over 160 clubs and societies
    • Australia’s most active Student Guild
    • Numerous campus cafés, plus a grocery store, pharmacy, ATM, and more

8. University of Adelaide: Adelaide

  • Ranking: #109
  • Undergraduate Programs: 360
  • Postgraduate Programs: 198

The University of Adelaide prides itself on being a university with world-class degrees “infused with cutting edge research and technology that encourages critical thinking, problem-solving, teamwork and communication.

It’s not all talk, either! The University of Adelaide has produced 109 Rhode Scholars, 5 Nobel Laureates, and 130 Fulbrights Scholars.

More about the University of Adelaide:

  • The University of Adelaide has over 23,000 students from more than 100 countries, including China, India, Saudi Arabia, and Malaysia.
  • The University has three faculties, each with a number of schools and disciplines:
    • Arts, Business, Law and Economics
    • Health and Medical Sciences
    • Sciences, Engineering and Technology
  • Researchers at the University of Adelaide have contributed to game-changing inventions throughout history. Today, the research areas at the university include:
    • Agriculture
    • Food and Wine
    • Creativity and Culture
    • Defence
    • Cyber and Space
    • Energy, Mining, and Resources
    • Environment, Sustainability and Climate Change
    • Health and Biotech
    • Societal Wellbeing
    • COVID-19
  • Most of the university’s research is rated as ‘Above or Well Above Standard’ by the Australian Research Council’s Excellence in Research Australia program.
  • The university is recognised in South Australia as a significant contributor to the state’s health, wealth, and cultural life.

9. University of Technology Sydney (UTS): Haymarket

  • Ranking: #137
  • Undergraduate Programs: 184
  • Postgraduate Programs: 124

The University of Technology Sydney is a public university of technology, part of the Australian Technology Network (ATN) of universities. Its purpose is to ‘advance knowledge and learning through research-inspired teaching, research with impact and partnerships with industry, the professions and community.

More about the University of Technology Sydney:

  • The University of Technology Sydney offers undergraduate and postgraduate courses across 13 course areas:
    • Analytics and Data Science
    • Business
    • Communication
    • Design, Architecture and Building
    • Education
    • Engineering
    • Health
    • Health (GEM)
    • Information Technology
    • International Studies and Social Sciences
    • Law
    • Science and Mathematics
    • Transdisciplinary Innovation
  • UTS has exchange agreements with 185 universities worldwide so that UTS students can study at any of these universities during their degrees.
  • The university’s research centres are world-class, and its research focuses on six areas:
    • Health
    • Future Industries
    • Sustainability
    • Infrastructure
    • Communities
    • Transdisciplinary innovation

10. University of Wollongong: Wollongong

  • Ranking: #185
  • Undergraduate Programs: 458
  • Postgraduate Programs: 158

The University of Wollongong has 10 campuses and is one of the 20 best modern universities in the world.

More about the University of Wollongong:

  • UOW has four faculties offering a wide range of study areas:
    • Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities: Communication and Media; Creative and Performing Arts; Education; Geography; Humanities and Human Inquiry; International Studies; Liberal Arts; Literature and Language; Psychology and Human Behaviour; Social Sciences and Advocacy
    • Business and Law: Accounting, Finance and Economics; Business, Marketing and Management; Law
    • Engineering and Information Sciences: Engineering, Computer Science and Information Technology; Mathematics and Statistics; Physics
    • Science, Medicine, and Health: Environmental and Biological Sciences; Chemistry; Health; Medical Science; Nursing; Science
  • Aside from its Australian campus, Wollongong also has campuses in the United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong, and Malaysia. UOW also has a presence in China and Singapore and established partnerships with numerous international education institutions.
  • UOW has global sports programs that invite promising talent to Wollongong. These individuals benefit from professional coaching while gaining an education at one of Australia’s best universities.
  • The university has world-class sports facilities and more than 60 sporting teams, from water polo to rugby.
  • UOW has eight research institutes and facilities solving some of the world’s biggest challenges:
    • The Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security (ANCORS)
    • Molecular Horizons
    • Australian Health Services Research Institute (AHSRI)
    • Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute (IHMRI)
    • Early Start
    • Smart Infrastructure
    • Sustainable Buildings Research Centre
    • Global Challenges Program

Choose Australia for an excellent education!

It’s evident from the 2023 QS World University Rankings that Australia is a great place to study.

Narrow down at which university you’d like to study by choosing a course, considering the activities you’re interested in, and deciding where in Australia you’d like to live.

It’s safe to say that you can’t go wrong with so many great universities – no matter where you choose to study!

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