Life Sciences & MedicineOutstanding Placings in QS Rankings by Subject

5 March 2021

Top position in Germany goes to subject area Life Sciences & Medicine, and to Medicine in the individual ranking by subject

In the new 2021 QS World University Rankings by Subject, Heidelberg University has performed outstandingly in the subject area of Life Sciences & Medicine. Ranked 34th internationally, it tops the list of German universities, ahead of Ludwig Maximilian University Munich (LMU, ranked 40th worldwide) and the Technical University of Munich (68th). Besides its ranking of broad subject areas, the QS Rankings by Subject, published in early March, comprises a second part listing individual subjects. In the individual subject ranking for Medicine, which moves up from 31st to 30th place internationally, Heidelberg has gained first place Germany-wide for the second successive year, ahead of LMU (43) and Charité – University Medicine Berlin (58). In the international comparison, Classics & Ancient History rank 5th – the best placing of a German university in the whole QS Rankings by Subject – and thereby come out top in Germany.

In the rankings of the individual disciplines, other subjects represented at Heidelberg University are also very well positioned. Besides Classics & Ancient History, the subject area of Arts & Humanities also sees Theology, Divinity & Religious Studies (which have improved by ten places to 15th internationally), Archaeology (38th) and History (44th) ranked among the best 50 universities worldwide, with Theology, Divinity & Religious Studies moving to second place in Germany (previously third) and with Archaeology in third place. Besides Medicine, the subject area of Life Sciences & Medicine sees the Biological Sciences ranked 39th and Pharmacy & Pharmacology 49th, also placed in the international Top 50; the Biological Sciencesthen come second Germany-wide and Pharmacy & Pharmacology rank third. The subject area of Natural Sciences is ranked 53rd internationally and shares third place in Germany with the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. In the individual subject ranking, Physics & Astronomy are placed 31st worldwide and likewise take third place nationally. Geography also comes third in Germany, and is positioned internationally in the ranking group 51 to 100. In the subject area of Social Sciences, the discipline of Law & Legal Studies at Heidelberg University occupies 55th place at the international level, which also gives it a top placing in Germany (3rd).

The subject area ratings and rankings by subject are primarily based on data obtained from surveys of academics and employers carried out for QS World University Rankings and evaluated here on a subject-specific basis. Account is also taken of citation analyses. The results are weighted differently depending on subject indicators.