Study medicine in Italy: 5 reasons why you should do that

So, after spending years questioning your future career path, you have finally decided to become a doctor.

Congratulations, and get ready to embrace some of the most exciting years of your life!

Now that this choice has been made, another begins to arise: which country should you choose?

There are so many possibilities: the US, the UK, Canada… where to go?

If you’re struggling, here are five reasons why Studying Medicine in Italy might be one of the best choices, and you shouldn’t rule it out just yet.

1. Italian Medical Universities are among the best in the world

Is Italy a good place to study medicine?

According to the QS World University Ranking, in 2023, twelve Italian Universities were in the top 300 Medical Schools worldwide.

What is the No 1 medical school in Italy?

The University of Milan was deemed the highest at number 80. A little further down, at number 84, the University of Bologna was placed. Rome – La Sapienza and Padova placed respectively at number 112 and 125, but also Pavia, Naples, Milan – Bicocca and Rome – Tor Vergata appear along with some private universities.

Thus, Italy is praised for having among the oldest universities in the world and a noteworthy medicine tradition, and it also constantly provides new physicians with the best possible formation.

2. Studying medicine in Italy it’s extremely cheap

You’ve chosen to study medicine but are afraid of student loans and losing yourself in debt? Then Italy is just right for you!

How much does med school in Italy cost?
Most public universities offering a degree in Medicine and Surgery have minimal tuition and fees compared to other countries. We can definitely say that Italian Medical Schools are among the cheapest medical universities in Europe!

Moreover, there is no fixed cost: it depends on your family’s income. Thus, almost everyone can afford to study medicine in english. English books are even less expensive than those in many other languages.

Want more? Nearly every university has scholarships for merit, disability and international students wishing to study in Italy. It’s everything you may want and more!


3. It’s one of the few options in Europe that allows you to study Medicine in English

It may surprise you that, out of the thousands of medical universities in Europe, only a little over 100 have an English Medical degree, not counting the UK and Ireland. Of those, 22 are in Italy: 16 are public, while 6 are private.

Moreover, every single one is different: some allow you to get BLSD courses during the first year, others give you the chance to have many experiences abroad and some allow you to get a double degree. The possibilities are endless: you can choose whichever suits you best!

4. The International Medical Admission Test is manageable with good preparation

Is it easy to get into Med School in Italy?

Contrarily to other European countries, you must pass the IMAT test to study medicine in Italy. It’s a multiple-choice quiz divided into four parts: Logical Reasoning and General Knowledge, Biology, Chemistry, Maths and Physics.

It may seem anxiety-inducing, but it’s actually a blessing in disguise.

Everyone with good preparation can study medicine in Italy, independently from previous grades, GPA, age, SAT score or level of English.

Yes, you heard that right: no English certificate is required to sit for the IMAT, even if you’ll need to understand the questions to pass.

5. The teaching system aims at making you the best physician possible — with many chances to go abroad

Italian Universities intend to train future physicians to have 360-degree knowledge so that they’ll be able to assess any situation they may end up in. This is why most of them have a vast theoretical part and hospital practice throughout the six years of school. So, not only you’ll be immersed in a multicultural environment no matter where you go, but you will also deal with patients in Italian and learn medical terms in both languages.

That’s not all there is to say: the Medical degree is also recognised equally in all of Europe. Thus, once you’ve graduated in an Italian medical school,  you can move on to your residency anywhere.

Italy also provides students with many different possibilities to study abroad: the Erasmus+ program is the most popular, but each university also has others that will allow you to travel worldwide.

Bonus reason: Italy is wonderful!

We’d be lying if we didn’t say Italy is one of the most charming countries to live in. We’re not sure if it’s the food, the culture, the ambience or a mixture of all three, but each city is unique. You can never go wrong with any city and have many chances of travelling the country. Also, most Italians are friendly and helpful! Namely, we suggest learning the basics of Italian before moving or in the first few months after, but you’ll get the hang of it in no time!

Therefore, as long as you adapt to the Italian lifestyle of whatever city you will end up in, we’re positive you will fall madly in love with it.

Still unsure?

We asked some international students from different Italian public and private Universities if, given a choice, they would still choose to study Medicine in Italy. The response was outstanding: roughly 80% stated they would do it again. If you’re curious, here’s what some of them had to say.

“After attending the first semester of classes, I am satisfied with my choice. Compared to medicine in my home country, the course in Italy works better for me in terms of its contents and structure. Aside from that, I have been learning everything in English in high school, so continuing with an English curriculum works better for me.”

  • 1st-year student from the University of Bologna.

“ Everything works better here. I started uni in Poland and the differences are vast. The teaching style suits me much better; I’m happier here because of the weather and the overall lifestyle.”r

  • 1st-year student from the University of Bologna.

“It has been going well; no reason not to choose Italy as an option. It is also recognised internationally as a solid choice.”

  • 4th-year student from Humanitas University.

“The quality of education is exceptional, and I have had a wonderful time meeting people and travelling.”

  • 4th-year student from the University of Milan.

“I definitely would. It’s not perfect, but they constantly try to make us feel welcome and improve our experience/program. Italy is a country with beautiful people, culture and it’s impossible not to fall in love with it every day. For me, it’s the best place to make this dream come true.”

  • 1st-year student from Campania University – Naples “Vanvitelli.”

“The universities are internationally well-ranked for medicine. So far, the schedule does not seem to be as stressful as I thought it would be. The only problem would be the language gap of some professors, but nothing that you cannot overcome.”

  • 1st-year student from the University of Padova.

“Italian universities are very prestigious and respected worldwide, so I figured having a degree from an Italian university would be valuable for my career. Moreover, Italy offers scholarships and economic aid for foreign students.”

  • 3rd-year student from the University of Torino.

“I would choose it again definitely. I like the classes and made some amazing friends. Moving to a new country helped me look through things from a new perspective and challenged me in many ways. But it was all worth it. It is the best option available.

  • 1st-year students from the University of Milan-Bicocca.

“I’ve enjoyed being here in Milan and am happy with where I am. Of course, there are language difficulties, but if you are willing to learn the language, it is a delightful and diverse place to be.”

  • 2nd-year student from Humanitas University – MEDTEC.

“The detail taught in the course gives me confidence that I will be a competent physician.”

  • 2nd-year student from the University of Rome – La Sapienza.

“I would choose it again for the same reasons I chose it in the first place – it has lessons in English, it’s affordable and a good university ranking. Plus, it’s well-organised and I feel like I’m learning. In particular, the oral exams, even though they were hard to get used to, pushed me to study and learn the topics well. ”

  • 3rd-year student from the University of Milan.

“I think it is one of the best ways of studying abroad for Medicine.”

  • 1st-year student from the University of Bologna.

Italy is indeed full of international students. We believe that, if you’re willing to adapt to the Italian lifestyle and that of the city you’ll live in, studying Medicine in Italy will give you many satisfactions not only for your future career but also for your personal growth.

Keep reading our blog to learn more about the different universities, the IMAT admission test, and the ranking list!

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