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Top universities in Asia 2024 (by subject)

Top universities in Asia 2024 (by subject)

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The largest subject areas globally were Computer Sciences & Information Systems, and Medicine, taking into account 700 universities in its evaluation. This was followed by Biological Sciences and Chemistry.

The QS World University Rankings by Subject 2024 has been released, offering insights into the performance of universities worldwide across various subjects. The rankings were determined utilising various metrics, including their academic reputation, employer reputation, and the International Research Network (IRN) Index.

This year, the 14th edition of the rankings features five broad faculty areas: Arts and Humanities, Engineering and Technology, Life Sciences and Medicine, Natural Sciences, and Social Sciences and Management. These five domains encompass 55 subjects, from Music to Materials Sciences.

Overall, the largest subject areas globally were Computer Sciences & Information Systems, and Medicine, taking into account 700 universities in its evaluation. This was followed by Biological Sciences and Chemistry.

Arts and humanities

Globally, the top three universities in arts & humanities were Harvard University, University of Cambridge, and University of Oxford. In Asia, the top universities were as follows:

RankingUniversityRegionGlobal ranking
1Peking UniversityBeijing, China22
2The University of Hong KongHong Kong, Hong Kong SAR32
3The University of TokyoTokyo, Japan32
4Tsinghua UniversityBeijing, China36
5National University of Singapore (NUS)Singapore, Singapore37
6Seoul National UniversitySeoul, South Korea40
7The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK)Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR47
8Kyoto UniversityKyoto, Japan62
9Waseda University Tokyo, Japan63
10Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore)Singapore, Singapore66

Not far behind, Universiti Malaya ranked 15th (94th globally).

Looking further into the rankings by subjects, the National University of Singapore (NUS) excelled as the number one university in Asia for:

  • Philosophy (34th globally)
  • Linguistics (9th globally)
  • English Language and Literature (16th globally)
  • History of Art (2nd globally)
  • Architecture & Built Environment (5th globally) 
  • History (11th globally) 

The International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) also came in second in Asia for Theology, Divinity & Religious Studies (32nd globally).

Engineering and technology

Globally, the top three universities in engineering and technology were Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Stanford University, and University of Oxford. Rankings in Asia were as follows:

RankingUniversityRegionGlobal ranking
1Tsinghua UniversityBeijing, China11
2National University of Singapore (NUS)Singapore, Singapore13
3Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore)Singapore, Singapore15
4The University of TokyoTokyo, Japan18
5KAIST - Korea Advanced Institute of Science & TechnologyDaejeon, South Korea20
6Seoul National UniversitySeoul, South Korea27
7Peking UniversityBeijing, China33
8Shanghai Jiao Tong University Shanghai, China37
9Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech)Tokyo, Japan40
10King Abdulaziz Univeversity (KAU)Jeddah, Saudi Arabia42

The Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IITB) and Indian Institute of Technology Delhi (IITD)  also ranked at 12th and 13th regionally (both at 45th globally),

By subject, the National University of Singapore ranked first in Asia for:

  • Chemical Engineering (5th globally)
  • Civil and Structural Engineering (4th globally)
  • Computer Science and Information Systems (6th globally)
  • Data Science and Artificial Intelligence (6th globally)
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering (6th globally)
  • Mechanical, Aeronautical & Manufacturing Engineering (7th globally)

Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) came in second for Computer science and information systems in Asia (9th globally)

Life sciences & medicine

The leading universities worldwide for Life Sciences & Medicine were Harvard University, the University of Oxford, and Johns Hopkins University, ranking as the top three in this faculty area. Regional rankings are as follows:

RankingUniversityRegionGlobal ranking
1Seoul National UniversitySeoul, South Korea26
2National University of Singapore (NUS)Singapore, Singapore31
3The University of Hong KongHong Kong, Hong Kong SAR31
4The University of TokyoTokyo, Japan36
5Peking UniversityBeijing, China42
6The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK)Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR48
7Yonsei University Seoul, South Korea57
8Kyoto UniversityKyoto, Japan61
9Tsinghua UniversityBeijing, China64
10King Abdulaziz Univeversity (KAU)Jeddah, Saudi Arabia71

Within Asia, the University of Hong Kong claimed the top position globally for Dentistry (3rd globally). Similarly, the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) achieved first rank for Nursing (8th globally).

For Veterinary Science, the Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), emerged top regionally (40th globally).

Natural sciences

The top spots for Natural Sciences were taken by Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and the University of Oxford. Rankings in Asia were as follows:

RankingUniversityRegionGlobal ranking
1The University of TokyoTokyo, Japan11
2Tsinghua UniversityBeijing, China16
3Peking UniversityBeijing, China17
4KAIST - Korea Advanced Institute of Science & TechnologyDaejeon, South Korea24
5Seoul National UniversitySeoul, South Korea26
6National University of SIngaporeSingapore, Singapore29
7Kyoto UniversityKyoto, Japan31
8Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore)Singapore, Singapore37
9University of Science and Technology of ChinaHefei, China42
10Pohang University of Science And Technology (POSTECH)Pohang, South Korea45

The National University of Singapore claimed the top spot for Chemistry in Asia, ranking 7th globally, with Nanyang Technological University, Singapore following closely behind in second place (ranked 10th globally).

NTU Singapore also achieved the top position in Asia for Materials Sciences (5th globally). 

ALSO READ: 2024 Asian university rankings


Lead image / QS World University Rankings by Subject 2024

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