Asia's best cities for students – rankings

Asia's best cities for students  – rankings

Seoul, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Kyoto-Osaka-Kobe are the top five cities in Asia for students, according to QS Best Student Cities Index 2017.

The annual rankings showcase the best urban destinations for international students, based on five diverse, but equally weighted indicators: university rankings, affordability, student mix, desirability, and employer activity. This year, a sixth indicator, i.e. “student view”, featuring student opinions of the cities, was introduced into the index methodology.

Montreal emerged top of the index this year, beating the long-standing favourite city for students for the past four years, Paris. Cities in Europe and North America, the traditional favourites for student destination countries, continued their domination in the rankings.

But Asian countries are fast asserting their place in the rankings, with five Asian metropolises in the top 20: Seoul (no. 4), Tokyo (no. 7), Hong Kong (no. 11), Singapore (no. 14), and Kyoto-Osaka-Kobe (no. 17).

Meanwhile, the highest-ranking cities representing the two Asian giants, China and India, were Shanghai at no. 25 and Mumbai at no. 85 respectively.

A student who successfully passed the entrance examination of University of Tokyo gets a congratulatory toss as the result of Japan’s most prestigious university exam is announced at its campus in Tokyo, Japan, Wednesday, March 10, 2010. Image via AP Photo/Itsuo Inouye.
A student who successfully passed the entrance examination of University of Tokyo gets a congratulatory toss as the result of Japan’s most prestigious university exam is announced at its campus in Tokyo, Japan, Wednesday, March 10, 2010. Image via AP Photo/Itsuo Inouye.


Seoul jumped six places and ranks fourth globally this year, beating Tokyo, which was the top Asian country in the rankings last year.

The country’s emergence as the top study destination in Asia is due to its superb placement in the Employer Activity and University Rankings assessments, where it ranks second and third respectively.

According to QS, Seoul universities enjoy a strong reputation among both domestic and international employers and feature numerously in the QS World University Rankings® 2016-2017, through no fewer than 18 universities. Seoul National University is ranked 35th in the world in the said rankings.

Similarly, the other four Asian cities scored high in the Employer Activity category by placing within the top 20 cities globally in this aspect, and in the University Rankings category, averaging nearly ten universities in the QS World University Rankings® 2016-2017 per city.

Yet, with these attractive points come the high costs for students who study in these cities. These top five Asian cities scored less favourably in the Affordability category, with Hong Kong being the most affordable among the five at no. 55 and Singapore as the least affordable at no. 90 globally.

Referring to financial hub of Hong Kong, the QS report commented that in terms of affordability, the picture is somewhat complex.

“With space at a premium, rent is known for being exorbitantly expensive in Hong Kong, but general living expenses such as eating out and transport remain low,” the QS report said. “International tuition fees are somewhere in the mid-range – much lower than studying in the U.S., for example, but higher than those charged in Western European countries such as France or Germany.”

Whereas for Singapore, the QS report stated, “Singapore is ranked the 4th most expensive out of 209 cities in Mercer’s 2016 Cost of Living Survey, and tuition fees have also increased in recent years, particularly for international students.”

Source :

Akhyari Hananto

I began my career in the banking industry in 1997, and stayed approx 6 years in it. This industry boost his knowledge about the economic condition in Indonesia, both macro and micro, and how to More understand it. My banking career continued in Yogyakarta when I joined in a program funded by the Asian Development Bank (ADB),as the coordinator for a program aimed to help improve the quality of learning and teaching process in private universities in Yogyakarta. When the earthquake stroke Yogyakarta, I chose to join an international NGO working in the area of ?disaster response and management, which allows me to help rebuild the city, as well as other disaster-stricken area in Indonesia. I went on to become the coordinator for emergency response in the Asia Pacific region. Then I was assigned for 1 year in Cambodia, as a country coordinator mostly to deliver developmental programs (water and sanitation, education, livelihood). In 2009, he continued his career as a protocol and HR officer at the U.S. Consulate General in Surabaya, and two years later I joined the Political and Economic Section until now, where i have to deal with extensive range of people and government officials, as well as private and government institution troughout eastern Indonesia. I am the founder and Editor-in-Chief in Good News From Indonesia (GNFI), a growing and influential social media movement, and was selected as one of The Most Influential Netizen 2011 by The Marketeers magazine. I also wrote a book on "Fundamentals of Disaster Management in 2007"?, "Good News From Indonesia : Beragam Prestasi Anak Bangsa di dunia"? which was luanched in August 2013, and "Indonesia Bersyukur"? which is launched in Sept 2013. In 2014, 3 books were released in which i was one of the writer; "Indonesia Pelangi Dunia"?, "Indonesia The Untold Stories"? and "Growing! Meretas Jalan Kejayaan" I give lectures to students in lectures nationwide, sharing on full range of issues, from economy, to diplomacy Less
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