Humboldt University Berlin vs Freie University of Berlin | Student Reviews & University Rankings EDUopinions

Humboldt University Berlin vs Freie University of Berlin


If you are wanting to study in Berlin then you will have the benefit of living and learning in a capital city, with all the sights, sounds and experiences that come with living in such a place. But where should you choose to study? Here we take a look at the comments from those who studied at the Humboldt University of Berlin or at the Freie University of Berlin.

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Humboldt University of Berlin

People’s evaluation of the Humboldt University of Berlin is very good. There is a lot of love for the campus environments and buildings, especially the library. And they also feel that in the HUB they can get more opportunities to contact the international community. Some of them think that professors are experts in the field of study and think that this university is a good place for doing research and study. On the other hand, there are also two comments that show some of the shortcomings of the university. They think that the university’s computer equipment is slow and the system is confusing. Let’s take a look at the comments of the students:


Campus Adlershof - Pleasant and Modern

I studied at the HU campus outside the city centre in Adlershof, so I will review this part of the university. It is home to most natural science faculties. The area is well-reconnected and easily accessed from the south and eastern parts of Berlin. The campus is bright and tranquil, featuring modern buildings. Some, such as the Institute for Physics, are award-winning examples of sustainable architecture. The library in the Erwin-Schrödinger Zentrum is the centrepiece of the campus and one of the best in Berlin. It is well-stocked and spacious. You always find a place at a desk to study for your exams. This is in total contrast to the overcrowded Grimm-Zentrum library in Mitte.

In the lectures there is also enough space to sit and in the tutorials you will probably be in a reasonably small group. With some exceptions the professors are good at lecturing in general, and are all accomplished scientists in their fields. The quality of the tutorials is generally satisfactory to excellent. They are the most helpful aspect of studying. There are PC Pools for each faculty, with computer facilities and free printing. I found the computers sometimes too slow though. There was free software provided, that was useful for the study programme. While I don’t have another experience of studying the same subject elsewhere, I am happy I studied there.

In Berlin there is also an active local of a student organisation that I had the privilege to join, called AEGEE-Berlin. This is a large, interdisciplinary, Europe-wide organisation that is dedicated to forming young Europeans and raising our European consciousness in order to build a better world! AEGEE does this through a lot of amazing projects, the description of which would fall outside the scope of this review. But go check them out!

Programme: Physics
Degree: Bachelor's
Graduation: 2019
Campus: Berlin


Ian is very happy to study at the HUB. He is satisfied with the location of the university and the bright and secluded campus. He particularly likes the rich and large library. Regarding teaching lectures, he believes that there is no doubt about the quality of the university. The only thing he feels bad is that the university computer is too slow. Despite this, he lauded the free software that was given to students as part of their study programme.



Ian also speaks highly of the extra-curricular activities that are available to students, relating his own positive experience with one such organisation that was run by students.


Humboldt University

Humboldt University is sufficient platform for international studies . There are lots of opportunities to realize your scientific research. Especially students appreciate the libraries which are placed in different areas of the city, which makes it easier to use, just choose the nearest to your place. Especially pleasant thing are buildings of the university, referred to an imperial time style. Most rooms are modern, with transparent malls, and multimedia support. The studying system is sometimes confusing. It consist of moduls and students are supposed to compose their schedule by themselves . Sometimes it could lead to term’s missings and longer studying, or coinciding subjects . Scheduling could be improved in general.

Campus: Berlin


Valeria is also very satisfied with the convenience library and the building of the university. She believes that the university’s platform is international and helpful for doing scientific research which would be appealing to those looking to study at a post-graduate and higher level. The only real criticism Valeria has is that the learning system is confusing, with students taking a lot of responsibility for their timetables which could lead to conflicts in scheduling.


Anonymous student
Alma Mater Berolinensis

Amazing elite university with a long history and academic traditions! 🙂 A wide variety of prominent scholars have studied and/or worked here.
There are several campuses, one of which is situated directly in the centre of the city. Nearby is the outstanding Grimm-Zentrum — probably the largest library in Europe.
The university has a lot of international partnerships, which allows its students to participate in various exchange programms. Both international and “native” students can get support as well as advice.
One can only recommend this university!

Campus: Berlin


In this anonymous student’s commentary, there are many excellent experts in the HUB including prominent scholars who have been associated with the university. They agree that the university has “a long history and academic traditions”, and also has a superior location and the largest library in Europe, and there are many good international relationships.


Freie University of Berlin

People have different opinions about the FUB in the comments. Most of them think that the university is a good place to study. But they also think that the university is too sprawling which may make it easy to get lost – especially for students new to the area like international students. Others think that this university is more suitable for students who are studying independently. Half of the reviews believe that FUB has good professors, good teaching, and good academic background, and the university also has many practical scholarship opportunities for students. Half of the comments said that the campus is beautiful, but on the other, one person has a completely different idea.


Research in FUB

It seems to me that it is an excellent university with a very good academic degree and the teachers focused on teaching their students as much as possible, excellent also clean buildings and in the best of the states, all very technological and modern.

Campus: Berlin


Emmanuel comments five stars good mark to the FUB, he feels that “it is an excellent university” with good teaching and the nice buildings.


Fairly disorganized

Our university is located in the South Western part of Berlin, has excellent faculties of Political Science and Humanities. But as with most universities, bureaucracy isn’t very efficient and also frequent construction can lead to students being a bit disoriented. Also the buildings are quite old and ugly.

Campus: Berlin


Tobias has the different opinion about the FUN, he feels the building is old and ugly and comments on the frequent construction works which can be a distraction and result in students getting lost if they don’t know their way around. Tobias is pleased with the actual teaching quality of the university but has issues with the bureaucracy of the administration which could be better.


Massive scholarship factory

I enjoyed my time here, though I was sometimes bothered by the overwhelming anonymity- a feeling that many of my colleagues have expressed over the course of our studies. I would recommend the FU Berlin to anyone who is better able and willing to study independently and keep track of every bit of their due work themselves, rather than work in smaller groups and take lots of tutorship. This school might just be too massive for that.

Campus: Berlin


Aleksandar also feels that the university is too big and that he wasn’t able to work in smaller groups. If you’re the kind of student who likes working independently though and managing your entire workload without close tutorship, then this may be the ideal university for you.


Free University Berlin

Free University Berlin is a big and beautiful campus with lots of international students. There are associations for international students, but there is also a special international office for foreign students within the host university.
The university takes part in the so called Excellence Initiative. This state programme allocates special funds to the very best of German universities and thus enables the university to found graduate schools and transdisciplinary research clusters, which provide very good opportunities for those who are pursuing an academic career.
The Free University of Berlin also offers a variety of other activities and sports, which are subsidised by the university thus making more expensive sports available to students.
Students who would like to study at this university should keep in mind that it is situated in Dahlem Dorf. This district in the southwest of the city is far away from the city centre. Therefore I recommend checking beforehand how long it will take from your future home to get to university. Students should also check where exactly on campus their department is situated.
University does not cost that much. In case you cannot afford to pay for it, you’ll be given a loan which you could pay back once you find a job. Every student must pay a fee (around 240 Euro per semester). This allows you to travel with the local transport without restriction for six months.
Berlin is perfect for students and young people and it is really easy to meet other people willing to get in touch. The university is good, has average lessons and professors are great.
I would strongly recommend an experience in this university and city because of the open mindedness of the local people and because of the very high level of the professors providing students with a great amount of knowledge as well as the skills to raise critical judgement.
The people are generally internationally oriented and tend to regard foreigners as an added value of the city. This means you really feel part of the city.
During my study experience abroad, I attended courses where there were only 5% international students, but the local students were still very nice and helpful with us, as well as the professors.
I would say that having the opportunity to study at the Freie University Berlin was the best thing that happened in my life. Living and studying in Berlin changed me in a good way and it has opened my mind. I would say that this city and this university are the best choices I could have made.

Campus: Berlin


For Petia, she felt that the FUB campus was very large and beautiful, and her classes and professors were great. The FUB offers some studying programs, activities, sports, and some good opportunities for future research work. Petia believes the real weakness of the university is its location which is a little outside the city centre which may put potential students off with the extra travel needed, especially if you are living in the centre.



Which University Is Right for You?


In general, according to the students’ reviews on the EDUopinions website, we know that most people think that both the HUB and the FUB have beautiful buildings, campuses, and excellent professors. The HUB has a large library, while the FUB has a large campus. The advantage of the HUB is that it is located near the centre of the city. HUB students have more opportunities for international relations. This advantage is the disadvantage of the FUB. It is too far from the city centre and the campus is too large to enjoy focused learning. However, the HUB also has some disadvantages, such as the inconvenience of using computer equipment and its slow speed. Differently, FUB has a good reputation for student support. There are many different scholarships available for FUB students.


The conclusion is that since everyone has different preferences, and each person’s most concerned part is different. So I suggest that you first find out which part of the university you care about most, consult the university’s information and student reviews, pick the university that suits you best, then start enjoying the journey of study!



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Chunning born in Taiwan and graduated from the University for Creative Arts in the U.K. Master of Arts, Design, Innovation & Brand Management. Currently, she is an freelance for writing, illustration, and design. She is natural and style life lover. Skilled in interpreting complicated stories and transforming them into simple visual images and words. She is taking discoveries from daily life and spiritual growth as motifs for creations.

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