Best universities in India 2018

Explore India and some of its most influential universities, using Times Higher Education’s World University Rankings

September 28 2017
IIT Guwahati, Assam, India

India’s system of higher education is one of the largest in the world, after China and the United States, and is especially known for its engineering schools. The Parliament declared institutes of technology in India as “institutes of national importance” in 1961, which helped the then newly established universities to grow and develop their reputations.

The national competition for a place at one of India’s best universities is fierce but an increasing (yet still small) number of international students go to study there too. An obvious advantage for international students is that all courses are taught in English.

The country’s rich culture, luscious landscape and unforgettable food are further reasons why you may want to experience India as a student. Many Indian universities are placed in luxurious natural parks. Whether located in rural or urban settings, many of the best institutions host a series of festivals and events that make campus life more exciting. As one of the most diverse countries in the world, you may want to choose your university based on the state, its location and local culture.

Read about some of India’s best universities based on the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2018 below. 


Best universities worldwide

Best universities in Asia
Best universities in Singapore
Best universities in Pakistan
Best universities in the UK
Best universities in the United States
Best universities in Europe
Best universities in China


Top 6 universities in India

1. Indian Institute of Science

Founded in 1979, the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore is one of the highest regarded Indian institutions, located in the south western Karnataka state. The university only offers one undergraduate programme: a four-year BA in science. The programme’s core modules are in physics, mathematics, chemistry, biology and humanities. In their final year, students do an individual research project. The university is heavily focused on research, with around 70 per cent of its student body undertaking PhD and MA research projects. The institute boasts with more than 75 winners of the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize for Science and Technology (SSB).

2. Indian Institute of Technology Bombay

The Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, set up in 1958, has made its reputation by nurturing some of India’s most respected engineers and scientists and employing internationally renowned professors. The university offers both long and short courses. Its premises are located between India’s financial centre, Mumbai, and the resplendent Sanjay Gandhi National Park, where one can see leopards, panthers and other wild cats.

The institute hosts Techfest, one of Asia’s largest science and technology festival, established in 1998, as well as Mood Indigo, one of Asia’s biggest cultural university festivals. Notable alumni include Nitin Nohria, the 10th dean of Harvard Business School, the designer of the rupee sign Udaya Kumar, professor of computer science Sarita Vikram Adve, winner of Fulkerson and Knuth Prizes Ravindran Kannan, co-founder and chairman of Syntel Bharat Desai and archaeologist Sharada Srinivasan.

=3. Indian Institute of Technology Delhi

The Indian Institute of Technology Delhi is located in the capital of Delhi. More specifically the university is situated in South Delhi, surrounded by the Hauz Khan area and buildings such as the Lotus Temple and Qutub Minar. 

The university has 13 different departments including applied mechanics, humanities, physics and mathematics. There are also 11 inter-disciplinary departments, where students are able to study subjects that overlap with one another. 

=3. Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur 

The India Institute of Kanpur is located in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh. It was established in 1959 and was one of the first Indian Institutes of Technology to be created. In it's first decade, a group of nine US universities including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Princeton University and Ohio State University helped set up the institutes research laboratories and academic programmes under the Kanpur Indo-American Programme. It was also the first institute in India to offer courses in computer science. 

=3. Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur

IIT Kharagpur, founded in 1951, is the oldest and one of the most respected Indian Institutes of Technology. Although its focus is on science, technology, engineering and mathematics, the university also has programmes in humanities and social sciences. IIT Kharagpur is one of the few universities in the world based on the site of a former prison, the Hilji Detention Camp, used by the British colonial power to lock up independence campaigners.

=3. Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee

IIT Roorkee was initially established in 1847 and was given university status in 1949. It was then converted to an Indian Institute of Technology in 2001, making it the seventh institute of technology to be created. The university offers courses in engineering, technology, applied sciences and management. 


Student experience in India

Personal development at IIT Guwahati, India
International perspective: from Delhi to Toulouse
Indian students encouraged to apply for scholarships in France
India, Russia and Eastern Europe are cheapest places to study at a ranked university
Best universities in emerging economies: BRICS rankings


Top universities in India 2018

Click each institution to view its full World University Rankings 2018 results

India Rank 2018  World University Rank 2018  University City  State
1 251–300 Indian Institute of Science Bangalore Karnataka
2 351–400 Indian Institute of Technology Bombay Mumbai Maharashtra
=3 501–600 Indian Institute of Technology Delhi New Delhi Delhi
=3 501–600 Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur Kanpur Uttar Pradesh
=3 501–600 Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur Kharagpur West Bengal
=3 501–600 Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee Roorkee Uttarakhand
=7 601–800 Aligarh Muslim University Aligarh Uttar Pradesh
=7 601–800 Banaras Hindu University Varanasi Uttar Pradesh
=7 601–800 University of Delhi Delhi Delhi
=7 601–800 Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati Guwahati Assam
=7 601–800 Indian Institute of Technology Madras Chennai Tamil Nadu
=7 601–800 Indian School of Mines Dhanbad Jharkand
=7 601–800 Jadavpur University Kolkata West Bengal
=7 601–800 National Institute of Technology Rourkela Rourkela Odisha
=7 601–800 Panjab University Chandigarh Punjab
=7 601–800 Savitribai Phule Pune University Pune Maharashtra
=7 601–800 Tezpur University Tezpur Assam
=18 801–1000 Amrita University Coimbatore Tamil Nadu
=18 801–1000 Andhra University Visakhapatnam Andhra Pradesh
=18 801–1000 Annamalai University Chidambaram Tamil Nadu
=18 801–1000 Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani Pilani  Rajasthan
=18 801–1000 University of Calcutta Kolkata West Bengal
=18 801–1000 Cochin University of Science and Technology Cochin Kerala
=18 801–1000 Jamia Millia Islamia Jamia Nagar Delhi
=18 801–1000 University of Kerala Trivandrum Kerala
=18 801–1000 Osmania University Hyderabad Telangana
=18 801–1000 Pondicherry University Puducherry Puducherry
=18 801–1000 Sri Venkateswara University Andhra Andhra Pradesh
=18 801–1000 Thapar University Patiala Punjab
=18 801–1000 VIT University Vellore Tamil Nadu
=31 1001+ Amity University Noida National Capital Region
=31 1001+ G.B. Pant University of Agriculture & Technology, Pantnagar Pantnagar Uttarakhand
=31 1001+ GITAM University Visakhapatnam Andhra Pradesh
=31 1001+ Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University Anantapur (JNTUA) Anantapur Andhra Pradesh
=31 1001+ Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda Vadodara Gujarat
=31 1001+ Manipal University Manipal Karnataka
=31 1001+ University of Mysore Mysuru Karnataka
=31 1001+ PSG College of Technology Coimbatore Tamil Nadu
=31 1001+ SASTRA University Thanjavur Tamil Nadu
=31 1001+ Sathyabama University Chennai Tamil Nadu
=31 1001+ SRM University Tamil Nadu Tamil Nadu
=31 1001+ Tamil Nadu Agricultural University Coimbatore Tamil Nadu

Read more: Best universities in the world 

Have your say

Log in or register to post comments

Related articles