10 Colleges in Europe That Are Basically Free

Don’t let America break your bank

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@Boris79 via Twenty20

Year after year, the cost of attending college in the United States continues to rise. With the average cost of college for students during the 2017-18 school year being $20,770 for public and $46,950 for private, more and more Americans are looking abroad to further their education.

While European universities do not offer the same Division I sports, large campuses and Greek life as American universities, the affordability might be worth the trade. Most public European colleges are tuition-free with some small student fees, even for international students. Yes, that’s even cheaper than attending some American community colleges. Studying abroad also allows Americans to explore different cultures and travel within Europe on a low budget. We’ve put together a list of the top European universities that won’t leave you in years of debt.

University of Bordeaux: Bordeaux, France

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© Joseph Hilfiger

Located in southwestern France, the University of Bordeaux offers several classes in English, some including courses in law, political science, economics and management, science and technology, health sciences and human sciences. The university also offers over 20 master’s programs. Tuition fees for American students range between EUR 2700 to 3770, depending on the course of study.  The city of Bordeaux offers students history and culture as one of the most popular wine-growing regions and home of the Gothic Cathédrale Saint-André and many 18th to 19th-century mansions. With over 56,000 students and a No. 24 ranking from Reuters Europe’s Top 100 Innovative Universities, Americans can’t go wrong with this phenomenal school.

University of Oslo: Oslo, Norway

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University of Oslo

While the University of Oslo does not offer any undergraduate English-language degrees, Americans have better luck coming here for graduate school. With more than 70 graduate degrees taught in English, ranging from Media Studies to Peace and Conflict Studies, you’re bound to find something at this tuition-free university. Norway’s oldest university is a great choice for anyone wanting to explore and live in the vibrant and busy capital city, Oslo.

University of Mannheim: Mannheim, Germany

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Wikimedia Commons

American students will feel right at home at this internationally-diverse university. Every fifth student at the University of Mannheim comes from abroad. A fully English-taught MBA is offered as well as several other English-taught undergraduate courses. A few include the areas of business, communications, economics, English, history, philosophy, political science, psychology and sociology. While most public colleges in Germany are tuition-free, tuition fees apply to all international students who have enrolled at a higher education institution in Baden-Württemberg since the fall semester 2017/18. At Mannheim, American students can expect to pay EUR 1,500 per semester.

Heidelberg University: Heidelberg, Germany

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Heidelberg University

The benefit of attending a public university in Germany is that most schools are tuition-free. Heidelberg, one of the top 75 universities in the world, is the oldest college in Germany. It’s known for its large international student population and low cost, usually only requiring students to pay around $160 in student fees and $1000 per month in living costs. While the official coursework language is German, there are several options for undergraduate English-languages classes and 10 full master’s programs.

Humboldt University: Berlin, Germany

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Humboldt University

Another tuition-free school, Humbodlt is located in Germany’s capital city, Berlin. The city of Berlin is known for its international population and low cost of living. With student fees at Humboldt only range from $55 to $280, American students can rest assured that they shouldn’t incur debt while studying here. Despite German being the official coursework language, there are two English degree programs in Gender Studies and other various English-language courses. Berlin is also an English-speaking city and easily accessible to American culture. The university is often ranked as a top 100 school and has housed the teaching of renowned figures like Albert Einstein, W.E.B. DuBois and Karl Marx.

Lund University: Lund, Sweden

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Lund University

Ranked among the top 4% of schools in the world, Lund is one of the oldest and most reputable schools in Europe. There are a number of undergraduate English-based programs offered at the university, with some including development studies, fine arts, international business, mathematics, and ecosystem science. Lund is tuition-free for exchange students and those pursuing a Ph.D. The town of Lund is cobble-stoned and features architecture mimicked from medieval times.

University of Bologna: Bologna, Italy

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University of Bologna

Ranked as one of Italy’s most distinguished schools, University of Bologna offers English-language classes in both undergraduate and master’s programs. International students are charged the same as Italian students, ranging between $1900 and $4400 for tuition. While this price might seem hefty for European study, it still racks in way less than American university fees.

Aarhus University: Aarhus, Denmark

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Aarhus University

Arhaus University ranks as the best school in Denmark and also ranks as a top university in Europe. Program tuition for Americans usually runs below $9,000 per year. The university offers over 70 English-language programs, with the majority being at the master’s level. Rich in history, Arhaus offers an underground Viking Museum and the Aarhus Cathedral for students to dive right into the culture.

University of Vienna: Vienna, Austria

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University of Vienna

Ranked as Austria’s top public university, the University of Vienna offers more than a dozen English-language master’s programs and a few undergraduate courses. Tuition will cost you around $800 per semester and $25 for student fees—a price even cheaper than American community colleges.

University of Ljubljana: Ljubljana, Slovenia

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University of Ljubljana

Located in the capital city of Slovenia, the University of Ljubljana offers 19 English-language undergraduate programs and several master’s programs. Tuition is inexpensive and students can expect to pay anywhere between $2700 and $3400. Ljubljana is a beautiful city, offering many historic museums, green spaces and the cafe-lined Ljubljanica River.

Related: This Is the Easiest Way to Get a College Degree Without Debt

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