First University in the World

First University in the World

5 mins read180 Views Comment
Aishwarya Bhatnagar
Study Abroad Expert
Updated on Jan 10, 2024 14:44 IST

Aiming to study abroad, and interested in some general trivia? Here’s an article about the first university in the world for studying, subject-related and based on how old the university is. Interested students can check out this article for details.

first university in the world

Talking about the history of education abroad, there’s a lot to discover, from the first university that came into existence to the first-ranked university in the world and is still operating. Read on the article for some insights for international students about the first university in the world, 1st university in the world for various subjects and the first-ranked university in the world.

1st University in the World Details

The first ever university in the world is the University of Bologna which is located in Italy. Established in the year 1088, the University of Bologna was one of the first medieval European universities also operating for the past 936 years. 

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The University of Bologna is still operating and invites applications for admissions each year. Also, the University of Bologna is the first medical university in the world. Check out the details of the University of Bologna in the following section:

University of Bologna Highlights

Established in 


Known as 

First University in the World | First Medical University in the World

Also Called as 


Total Enrollment


Campus Size

1,036,109.13 square metres

Oldest Course at Bologna

Law courses

Number of Campuses


Total Departments 


Study for Free at Bologna


Why Study at UNIBO?

The students should consider studying across various courses at University of Bologna is because:

  • UNIBO has systematised the education system of the entire Europe for higher education. 
  • The tuition fee at UNIBO is lower for its UG and PG courses.
  • There are options for scholarships here, also there are fully funded courses.
  • The faculties here function in the oldest departments and there is room for good opportunities after graduating. 

Apart from the world’s first university in the world which is still operating, there are other universities also which are counted as first of the firsts based on the subjects they offer to students. Check out the world’s first universities for various subjects in the sections below. 

World’s First Forensic Science University

The world’s first forensic science university is the National Forensic Sciences University (NFSU) which is located in Gujarat, India. This university was first referred to as Gujarat Forensic Sciences University. It was established first in October 2020 and was termed as the institution of national importance. There are three major campuses of NFSU and the 50+ courses are offered across 10 schools. These schools majorly revolve around areas of Forensic Sciences and offer courses at NFSU in all major areas relating to this subject area. Applicants can also find specialized Forensic Science courses in:

  • Cyber Security & Digital Forensics
  • Behavioural Forensics
  • Police Science & Security Studies
  • Medico-Legal Studies 

Thus, the reason for choosing NFSU is for its specialized courses across different areas of study. 

First Agriculture University in the World

The first agriculture university in the world was established in the year 1848 is Royal Agricultural University (RAU). With more than 175 years of operations in the UK, RAU offers courses at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. There are around 20 undergraduate courses along with MSc courses across different areas of study at the world’s first agricultural university in the world. Applicants can apply for courses at RAU in the following areas:

  • Agriculture
  • Agriculture Farm Management
  • Agriculture Management
  • Agroecology
  • Agricultural Technology & Innovation
  • Archaeology

Why Study at Royal Agricultural University?

There are top three reasons to consider if willing to apply to RAU for admissions:

  • RAU can enrol over 1,100+ students in one academic year.
  • There are various course options available for those who want to specialise in Agriculture.
  • Finally, there are good placement opportunities after graduating from Royal Agricultural University.

First Engineering Colleges in World

The first Engineering college in the world is Czech Technical University which was established in 1707. There are over eight faculties at Czech Technical University where courses across undergraduate, graduate and doctoral are offered. Some of the courses offered across different areas of study are:

  • Civil Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Nuclear Sciences & Physical Engineering
  • Architecture
  • Transportation Sciences
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Information Technology

Courses at Czech Technical University are around 502 which are all accredited and around 352 courses are offered in the English language. Though its rated in the 2000’s globally but holds a greater value because it's the first engineering college in the world and in Europe as well. 

Similarly, the world’s first petroleum university was the Petroleum University of Technology established in 1939 in Iran. This university was formerly known as Abadan College of Technology and later was termed as Petroleum University of Technology. Courses here are offered in petroleum and natural sciences areas. 

1st Open University in World

The 1st Open University in the world is the Open University of UK, established in the year 1969. World’s first open university which is also known as the Open University of UK offers admissions to international students as well. The following table throws light on the details of the Open University of UK:

World’s First Open University Ranking



8,000+ students from 157 countries 

Total Courses Offered

UG: 150+

PG: 100+

Course Types

Distance | Part-Time

Undergraduate Courses Offered

Bachelors degrees, Diplomas and Certificates

Postgraduate Courses Offered

Masters degrees, PGDip, PG certificates

Areas of Study

Business, Engineering, Arts, Healthcare, Politics, Law, Marketing, and others. 

Language of Instruction


Learners Till Date

23+ million

Why Study at Open University in UK?

Applicants choose to study in UK at its Open University because:

  • There are over 200+ areas of study to choose from to study across various levels of study.
  • The distance courses offered at Open University in UK are all accredited and are acceptable across the globe.
  • Those who wish to go for business courses and go for them because they are also accredited by management agencies and are acceptable globally. 

Apart from the first university in the world and 1st university in the world for various subjects, there are also first-ranked universities. The first ranked university in the world is the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) since the ranking agencies started ranking universities which is from 2004.

Hopefully, this was an informative piece for all the readers, applicants can also choose to apply at these reputed universities based on their liking. If you are looking for admission to study abroad? Get admission and application-related queries sorted by signing up for our free Shiksha Abroad Counselling. Or you can write to us in the comments below. 

About the Author
Written by
Aishwarya Bhatnagar
Study Abroad Expert

Aishwarya is a professional Writer currently working as a Study Abroad Expert in the Editorial Team at Shiksha. She has over 5 years of experience and is skilled at creating Online Content with leveraged knowledge i... Read Full Bio