Top 10 Universities in the Philippines for International Students

The Philippines, or the Pearl of the Orient, is popular for its white-sand beaches. Apart from these, the country provides foreign students a chance to study in any of its reputable universities. With courses taught in English – and very cheap tuition fees – the Southeast Asian nation is a worthwhile choice for students who wish to study abroad. In this article, we will be looking at the best universities in the Philippines for international students.

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Are international students satisfied with studying in the Philippines?

Yes. According to Study Portals, foreign students gave the Philippines a 4.44 score for its diverse student body.

What do foreign enrollees study in Philippine universities?

The most popular courses taken by international students are Engineering, Commerce, and Medical/Allied Healthcare studies.

How many international students are living in the Philippines?

About 5,000 foreigners are taking tertiary-level programs in Philippine universities.

What is the best university for international students in the Philippines?

The University of the Philippines – which is the country’s national institution – is considered the most prestigious school for local and foreign students alike.

Best Universities in the Philippines for International Students

1. University of the Philippines

The University of the Philippines, which was founded in 1908, is the state’s national university system. It has 8 constituent schools, including the main campus of Diliman, and the satellite branches of Manila, Los Banos, Baguio, Cebu, Visayas, Mindanao, and the Open University. The University of the Philippines is the best university for international students due to the prestige of its programs.

The flagship Diliman campus offers undergraduate and graduate courses in the fields of Architecture, Education, Fine Arts, Business, Communications, Home Economics, Language, Law, Information Science, Natural Science, Performing Arts, Public Administration, Tourism, Social Science, and Sports Science, to name a few.

The university system has a competitive admission rate of about 18%.

2. De La Salle University

De La Salle University is a private educational institution known to the locals as La Salle or DLSU. It was founded in 1911 as a boys’ school, before offering a 2-year Associates program in Commerce 9 years after.

The university offers a variety of degree programs, 14 of which are characterized as “Centers of Excellence”. It also has 5 “Centers of Development”. These courses are delivered by the Colleges of Education, Law, Liberal Arts, Computer Studies, Science, Engineering, Business, and Economics.

Its College of Engineering is named one of the 18 National Research Institutions by the internationally-funded Asian Regional Research Program on Environmental Technology.

3. Ateneo de Manila University

The Ateneo de Manila University is a Jesuit-run private institution. Founded in 1859, the former school of the Spanish elite is now recognized as one of the Philippines’ best universities for international students. It has a main campus in Quezon City, with satellite branches in Makati and Pasig.

Ateneo offers 48 undergraduate, 76 master’s, and 16 doctorate degrees. These cover the disciplines of Law, Medicine, Business, Chemistry, Biology, Physics, Mathematics, Engineering, Computer Science, Environmental Science, and Government.

The university also works with various foreign institutions for some of its programs. These include the Sun Yat-Sen University for its Mandarin Chinese courses and the Queen Mary University of London for its Masters in Media Arts Technology.

4. University of Santo Tomas

The University of Santo Tomas (UST) is the Philippines’ oldest existing university. Founded in 1611 by then-Archbishop Miguel de Benavides, the Manila-based university has one of the biggest enrollment rates at more than 44,500 students.

The university’s faculties and colleges specialize in Theology, Philosophy, Canon Law, Civil Law, Medicine, Pharmacy, Arts & Letters, Engineering, Education, Science, Architecture, Commerce, Music, Nursing, Rehabilitation Science, Fine Arts, Physical Education, Accountancy, Tourism, Information Science, and Graduate Studies.

The Quacquarelli Symonds University Rankings has given the university 5 stars in terms of inclusiveness, social responsibility, employability, and facilities.

5. Polytechnic University of the Philippines

The Polytechnic University of the Philippines is one of the country’s state research universities. It was founded in 1904 as the Manila Business School before it was made a chartered university in 1978. As one of the top universities in Philippines for international students, Polytechnic University of the Philippines has a wide university system that encompasses 20 campuses and more than 70,000 enrolled students.

It offers more than 90 degree programs through its 14 schools. These are the Colleges of Accountancy & Finance, Architecture, Arts & Letters, Communication, Business Administration, Education, Computer Science, Political Science, Human Kinetics, Science, Social Science, Tourism, and Technology.

6. University of Asia and the Pacific

The University of Asia and the Pacific (UA&P) is a private university founded in 1967. It started as the Center for Research and Communication, which functioned as an economic and social think tank.

The Pasig-based university offers 15 undergraduate and 11 graduate programs. These courses are geared towards the studies of Management, Law & Governance, Engineering, Arts & Science, Communication, Economics, and Education & Human Development.

The university has a dedicated Public and International Affairs office for its full-time and exchange foreign students.

7. Silliman University

Silliman University or SU is a private research university located in the province of Negros Oriental. Founded in 1901 by the Presbyterian Board of Foreign Missions, it is the first American higher learning institution in the country. The university is named after Dr. Horace Silliman, who made a $10,000 endowment for the university’s establishment.

The university’s undergraduate and graduate degrees are overseen by the Colleges of Agriculture, Business Administration, Arts & Science, Computer Studies, Law, Engineering, Education, Nursing, Mass Communication, Performing Arts, Public Affairs, Medicine, Divinity, Clinical Laboratory Science, and Rehabilitation Science.

As a member of the United Board for Christian Higher Education in Asia, it has student exchange linkages with the International Christian University (Japan), University of Washington (US), and Hanyang University (South Korea), to name a few.

8. University of San Carlos

The University of San Carlos (USC) is a private educational institution with 5 campuses in Cebu. It was founded in 1783 as the Colegio Seminario San Carlos before it became a university in 1948. It is currently run by the Society of Divine Word Missionaries.

USC’s bachelor’s programs are administered by the Schools of Education, Engineering, Arts & Science, Business, Architecture & Fine Arts, Law & Governance, and Healthcare Professions. It also has a graduate department that offers masters and doctorate courses in the above-mentioned fields.

The university has a strong research program, with which an endowment of $2.5 million has been given. As a result of its strong research program and academic rankings, the University of San Carlos makes our list of best universities in the Philippines for international students.

9. Mapúa University

Mapúa University is a research-oriented educational institution with campuses in Manila and Makati. It was founded in 1925 by the Philippines’ first registered architect, Cornell graduate Tomas Mapúa.

The former Mapúa Institute of Technology’s Manila campus offers undergraduate, graduate, and double degree courses in Architecture & Industrial Design, Media Studies, Mathematics, Arts & Letters, and Physics. It also specializes in various branches of Engineering – Chemical, Biological, Materials, Civil, Geological, Environmental, Manufacturing, Mechanical, Electrical, and Electronics & Communications.

The Makati campus, on the other hand, offers degrees in Information Technology and Business & Management.

The university has a dedicated Office of International Career & Exchange Programs for its foreign students.

10. Asian Institute of Management

The final university in our list of top universities in the Philippines is the Asian Institute of Management, a globally-recognized management school and research institution. Founded in 1968 in conjunction with the help of 4 organizations, the school is one of the few Asian institutions accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.

It has a very select admission process, which is why it only has about 500 students enrolled at any one year.

The Makati-based school offers graduate programs in the fields of Business (MBA and Executive MBA), Development Management (Rural Development and Program for Development Managers), Executive Education (Operations, Strategy, People Management, Leadership, Finance, and Innovation), and Innovation, Technology & Entrepreneurship (Data Science, Innovation in Business, and Entrepreneurship).

Through its International Student Exchange Program, the school’s top MBA students get to embark on exchange programs in partner schools throughout the world.


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