Top 20 Largest Universities in the World : Careersngr


Top 20 Largest Universities in the World

Filed in Choosing a School by on December 14, 2021 0 Comments

Have you ever wondered which university was the largest in the world? You are probably curious and that is why you are reading this article. I have a cure for your curiosity as I have carefully listed 20 of the world’s largest universities. The list is arranged according to the total number of enrollments across all campuses together with off-campus study.

Universities below confer degrees at bachelor level or higher, and either share a central board of governance, a single chancellor or president or confer degrees with the same institution name. See the list of the Most Affordable Colleges for International Students.



Top 20 Largest Universities in the World

Below is a list of the largest universities in the world.

1. Indira Gandhi National Open University          

Indira Gandhi National Open University, known as IGNOU, is a Central Open Learning University located in Maidan Garhi, New Delhi, India. Named after former Prime Minister of India Indira Gandhi, the university was established in 1985 with a budget of ₹20 million, after the Parliament of India passed the Indira Gandhi National Open University Act, 1985 (IGNOU Act 1985). IGNOU is run by the central government of India, and with a total active enrollment of over 4 million students, claims to be the largest university in the world.

2. Allama Iqbal Open University

Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) is a public university in Islamabad, Pakistan. The university is the world’s second-largest institution of higher learning, with an annual enrollment of 1,121,038 students (as of 2010), the majority are women and course enrollment of 3,305,948 (2011). The university has 44 regional campuses and centers throughout Pakistan including in Faisalabad Millat Road, Multan, Dera Ghazi Khan, Bahawalpur, and Rahim Yar Khan.

3. California Community Colleges

California Community Colleges is a post-secondary education system in the U.S. state of California. Despite its plural name, the system is consistently referred to in California law as a singular entity. The system includes the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges and 73 community college districts. The districts currently operate 115 accredited colleges. Albright College is not accredited. California Community Colleges is the largest system of higher education in the United States, serving more than 2.1 million students.

4. Bangladesh National University

The National University of Bangladesh is a parent university of Bangladesh that was established by an Act of Parliament as an affiliate university of the country to impart graduate and post-graduate level education to the students through its affiliated colleges and professional institutions throughout the country. It is the third-largest university in the world according to enrollment. Its headquarters is in Gazipur, on the outskirts of Dhaka.

5. Anadolu University

Anadolu University is a public university in Eskişehir, Turkey. Its Faculty of Communication Sciences is considered the best in Turkey and one of the best in Europe. Anadolu University was established in 1982 from the union of four existing higher education institutes in Eskişehir: the Academy of Economics and Commercial Sciences of Eskişehir, the State Academy of Architecture and Engineering, the Institute of Education, and a medical school. When the Academy of Economics and Commercial Sciences was founded earliest, in 1958, Anadolu University adopted that year as their date of establishment.

6. Azad University

The Islamic Azad University is a private university system in Iran. It is one of the largest comprehensive systems of universities, colleges, and community colleges in the world. Headquartered in Tehran, Iran, the Islamic Azad University is the world’s sixth-largest university.

From the establishment of Islamic Azad University in 1982 to 2013, the admission process of students was through Islamic Azad University’s entrance exam which was designed, held, and scored independently by the private university system. Post-2013, its entrance exam was merged with the Public University System.  Public and Private University systems in Iran are defined differently than other countries’ university systems like the United States.

Public University System holds the national entrance exam and the students who get admitted through this process would be exempt from paying any tuition. However, Islamic Azad University requires tuition which varies by different factors such as program, degree, and location. IAU has two independent and 31 state university branches across Iran, and four branches in other countries: the U.A.E., the United Kingdom, Lebanon, and Afghanistan.

Over the years, the university has accumulated assets estimated to be worth $20–25 billion. The Islamic Azad University’s activities quickly expanded throughout the country, so that today thousands of students are enrolling every year. Instead of relying on government funding, it receives charitable donations and charges tuition fees.

7. Laureate Education

Laureate Education, Inc. is a corporation based in Baltimore, Maryland, in the United States. Laureate owns and operates Laureate International Universities, with campuses in Mexico and Peru. The company is publicly traded. Laureate International Universities teaches various subjects at both undergraduate and graduate levels. Subjects covered by some of its remaining colleges include design, business, culinary, and hospitality. Laureate’s continuing operations have a total of approximately 184,000 students.

8. Bangladesh Open University        

Bangladesh Open University or BOU is a public university with its main campus on Board Bazar, Gazipur District, Dhaka Division. It is the 7th largest university in the world according to enrolment. The university was established on 21 October 1992. As the only public university in Bangladesh to use distance education as a method of delivery, BOU is mandated to promote through multimedia; instruction of every standard and knowledge (both general and scientific) by means of any form of communications technology, to raise the standard of education and to give the people educational opportunities by democratizing education and creating a class of competent people by raising the standard of education of the people generally.

9. Terbuka      

Universitas Terbuka is Indonesia’s state university and employs an open and distance learning (ODL) system to widen access to higher education to all Indonesian citizens, including those who live in remote islands throughout the country as well as in various parts of the world. It has a total student body of 1,045,665 as of 2019/2020 according to Indonesia’s Ministry of Education Higher Education database. According to a distance education institution in the UK, UT, including one from “The Top Ten Mega Universities” UT-3 ranks after similar universities in China and Turkey.

10. National Technological Institute of Mexico

The National Technological Institute of Mexico is a Mexican public university system created on 23 July 2014 by presidential decree. At the time of its foundation, the Institute incorporated the 263 former Institutes of Technology that had been created since 1948; first under the patronage of the National Polytechnic Institute (IPN) and, since 1959, directly dependent on the Secretariat of Public Education (SEP).

11. State University of New York system         

The State University of New York is a system of public colleges and universities in New York State. It is the largest comprehensive system of universities, colleges, and community colleges in the United States, with a total enrollment of 424,051 students, plus 2,195,082 adult education students, spanning 64 campuses across the state. Led by Chancellor Jim Malatras, the SUNY system has 91,182 employees, including 32,496 faculty members, and some 7,660 degree and certificate programs overall, and a $13.08 billion budget. The State University of New York was established in 1948 by Governor Thomas E. Dewey, through the legislative implementation of recommendations made by the Temporary Commission on the Need for a State University (1946–1948). The commission was chaired by Owen D. Young, who was at the time Chairman of General Electric. The system greatly expanded during the administration of Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller, who took a personal interest in the design and construction of new SUNY facilities across the state.

12. Tribhuvan University   

Tribhuvan University is a public university located in Kirtipur, Kathmandu. Established in 1959, TU is the oldest university in Nepal. In terms of enrollment, it is the 12th largest university in the world. The college offers 2,079 undergraduate and 2,000 postgraduate programs across a wide range of disciplines. Additionally, the institution has 61 constituent campuses and over 1,100 affiliated colleges across the country. Because it is government-funded, the tuition fees are less expensive than that of private college campuses.

13. Chaudhary Charan Singh University     

Chaudhary Charan Singh University (CCS University), formerly Meerut University, is a public state university located in Meerut, Uttar Pradesh, India. The university was established in 1965. It was later renamed to its current name after Chaudhary Charan Singh, former prime minister of India. The university celebrated its silver jubilee in 1991.

14. University of Mumbai 

The University of Mumbai, informally known as Mumbai University (MU), is a collegiate public state university located in the city of Mumbai, Maharashtra, India. In accordance with “Wood’s despatch”, drafted by Sir Charles Wood in 1854, the University of Bombay was established in 1857 after the presentation of a petition from the Bombay Association to the British colonial government in India. The University of Mumbai was modeled on similar universities in the United Kingdom, specifically the University of London. The first departments established were the Faculty of Arts at Elphinstone College in 1835 and the Faculty of Medicine at Grant Medical College in 1845. Both colleges existed before the university was founded and surrendered their degree-granting privileges to the university. The first degrees awarded in 1862 were Bachelor of Arts and Licence in Medicine. Medical schools such as Sindh Medical School in Hyderabad, Sindh were affiliated with the University as well.

15. University Bangkok

Ramkhamhaeng University (RU) is Thailand’s largest public university. It was named in honor of King Ramkhamhaeng the Great of Sukhothai. The university provides an effective and economical way to meet public demand for higher education.

16. Savitribai Phule Pune University

Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU), formerly the University of Pune and the University of Poona, is a collegiate public state university located in the city of Pune, India. It is spread over a 411 acres (1.66 km2) campus.          The University of Pune was established on 10 February 1949 under the Pune University Act, passed by the Bombay legislature in 1948.M. R. Jayakar became its first Vice-Chancellor. Its first office was started by the Nizam Guest House, which is part of Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute on Law College Road. The university operates at Nizam Guest House until 1 June 1949. Its current building was originally called the Governor’s House. As its name suggests, it was the seasonal retreat of the Governor of Bombay. B. G. Kher, Chief Minister and Education Minister of the government of Bombay helped ensure the university received a large allocation of land for their campus. The university was allocated over 411 acres. The institution’s name was changed from the University of Pune to Savitribai Phule Pune University on 9 August 2014 in honor of Savitribai Phule, the 19th-century Indian social reformer who played an important role in improving the lives of women and the Dalit communities in Maharashtra during the British colonial rule. She and her husband Mahatma Jyotirao Phule founded India’s first native-run school for girls in 1848.


17. California State University system  

The California State University (Cal State or CSU) is a public university system in California. With 23 campuses and eight off-campus centers enrolling 485,550 students with 55,909 faculty and staff, CSU is the largest four-year public university system in the United States. It is one of three public higher education systems in the state, with the other two being the University of California system and the California Community Colleges. The CSU System is incorporated as The Trustees of the California State University. The California State University system headquarters are in Long Beach, California.    

18. University System of Ohio       

The University System of Ohio is the public university system of the state of Ohio. It is governed by the Ohio Department of Higher Education. Ohio University rose to the top of the rankings in one category and moved up to several others in the latest U.S. News and World Report rankings. OHIO jumped four places in the Best Value Schools rankings, making OHIO the number1 Best Value School in the state among national public universities and 33rd nationally.

19.  University of Punjab       

The University of Punjab also referred to as Punjab University, is a public research university located in Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan. The Senate house is now known as Punjab university’s old campus, Lahore Designed by architect Bhai Ram Singh in 1911, Punjab University is the oldest public university in Pakistan. With multiple campuses in Gujranwala, Jhelum, and Khanspur, the university was formally established by the British Government after convening the first meeting for establishing higher education institutions in October 1882 at Simla. Punjab University was the fourth university to be established by the British colonial authorities in the Indian subcontinent; the first three universities were established in other parts of British India.

20. Dr. B R Ambedkar Open University     

Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Open University, also known as Telangana Open University, is a public university in the city of Hyderabad, Telangana, provides free study material for enrolled students with material with standards. The university was established in August 1982 by the Act of the State Legislature. It was inaugurated by the President of India. The founder and first vice-chancellor were Prof. G. Ram Reddy. The university was renamed “Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Open University” on 24 October 1991 after the architect of the Indian Constitution Dr. Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar on the occasion of the centenary of his birth. The principal aim of the university is to provide an opportunity to those who are not in a position to avail themselves of the facilities for higher education through regular on-campus study at conventional colleges/universities. It adopts a flexible approach to eligibility, age of entry, choice of courses, method of learning, the conduct of exams, and operation of educational programs. The university makes use of a variety of learning media including radio, television, film, audio cassette, and printed study material, besides arranging contact and counseling programs and Sc ‘Practicals’ which makes for the traditional teacher-student interaction. The university functions through a network of 117 study centers located in the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad and all the districts of the State.

Frequently Asked Questions about Largest Universities in the World

Which Colleges are the biggest in the U.S?

  • University of Central Florida.
  • Texas A&M University—College Station.
  • Florida International University.
  • Ohio State University—Columbus.
  • Liberty University.
  • Arizona State University—Tempe.
  • The University of Texas—Austin.
  • Broward College.

Which college has the most billionaires?

Over 2,755 people on Forbes’ 2021 World’s Billionaires list received their undergraduate degrees from universities across the world. The American University Harvard dominates the list, with at least 29 billionaire alumni.

Now that we have successfully gotten to the end of the article, I hope you enjoyed what you have read. No knowledge is wasted and you do have a great day.

Now It’s Your Turn

Now I’d like to hear from you:

Which among the Largest Universities picked your interest?

Are you going to apply for admission right away?

Or maybe you’re ready to start searching for scholarships.

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