There are 26 Canadian universities in the QS World University Rankings® 2023/2024, ranked based on six indicators, including employer and academic reputations and citations per faculty member, a measure of research impact. Read on to count down the 10 best universities in Canada in this year’s ranking, plus a look at how its other institutions performed.
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- 1 10. Queen’s University
- 2 9. University of Calgary
- 3 8. Western University
- 4 7. University of Waterloo
- 5 6. Université de Montréal
- 6 5. McMaster University
- 7 4. University of Alberta
- 8 3. University of British Columbia
- 9 2. McGill University
- 10 1. University of Toronto
- 11 The other 16 top universities in Canada are:
Queen’s University, based in Kingston, Ontario, continues to rank 10th among the best universities in Canada, although it dropped slightly globally to joint 239th place this year. One of the oldest Canadian universities, its founding in 1841 predates the founding of Canada itself (by 26 years).
Ranked 229th in the world in 2019, the University of Calgary is made up of five campuses, including a branch campus in Doha, Qatar, which was opened in 2007 and focuses on nursing education.
Western University is located in London, Ontario and is ranked joint 214th in the world in 2019, achieving the best score in this top 10 for its percentage of international faculty members, ranking 62nd in the world.
Ranked joint 163rd in the world in 2019, the University of Waterloo is in the top 100 globally for the citations per faculty member indicator. It was established in 1956, making it one of the younger best universities in Canada.
Down from fifth to sixth among the best universities in Canada, the Université de Montréal, established in 1878, is nonetheless the top-ranked Francophone institution in the country at joint 149th.
Ranked 146th in the world in 2019 and the fifth highest-ranked university in Canada, McMaster University is based in Hamilton, Ontario and is particularly well-regarded for its medical school.
Down slightly on last year but nonetheless Canada’s fourth highest-ranked institution, the University of Alberta is ranked 109th and is mainly based in Edmonton. It’s a huge economic driver for the province of Alberta, contributing five percent of its annual gross domestic product (GDP).
Up four places this year to now rank within the global top 50 at 47th, the University of British Columbia is located in Vancouver and Kelowna in British Columbia (the country’s westernmost province). It has graduated eight Nobel Prize winners and 71 Rhodes scholars.
Ranked 33rd in the world this year, just five spots behind the University of Toronto, McGill University has the best score for its percentage of international students out of the top 10, with students coming from some 150 countries.
The University of Toronto holds on its first-place position among the best universities in Canada, climbing three places to rank 28th in the world this year. It gets its best score for its academic reputation (18th in the world) and is also in the top 50 for its reputation among graduate employers.
The other 16 top universities in Canada are:
- Simon Fraser University – ranked joint 264th in the world
- Dalhousie University – ranked joint 279th
- University of Ottawa – ranked joint 289th
- University of Victoria – ranked joint 359th
- Laval University – ranked joint 402nd
- University of Saskatchewan – ranked joint 461st
- Concordia University – ranked joint 464th
- York University – ranked joint 481st
- Université du Québec – ranked 541-550
- University of Guelph – ranked 581-590
- University of Manitoba – ranked 601-650
=22. Carleton University – ranked 651-700
=22. Memorial University of Newfoundland – ranked 651-700
=22. Université de Sherbrooke – ranked 651-700
=22. University of Windsor – ranked 651-700
- Ryerson University – ranked 801-1000
Find out more about studying in Canada with our complete guide, including advice on applications, visas, fees and more.
For information about ranking categories, and answers to other frequently asked questions, click here.