Pakistan Has the Weakest Higher Education System in the World: QS Report

Pakistan has the weakest higher education system in the world according to Quacquarelli Symonds (QS), a British ranking agency.

In the report that compares 50 countries, Pakistan ranks dead last with a score of 9.2. The U.S. and U.K ranked top with scores of 100 and 98.5 respectively while India was 24th with a score of 60.9.

The ranking measured each country’s high school education system across four dimensions: system strength, access, flagship institution, and economic context. Combining university rankings and other indicators gives governments and policy makers a national benchmarking tool to measure progress.

Here’s what the ranking categories measure:

  • System strength: Based on the number of institutions featured in the international rankings.
  • Access: It reflects the number of places available at internationally ranked universities.
  • Flagship Institution: It assesses the performance of each country’s leading university.
  • Economic Context: It factors performance in the global rankings against GDP per capita, to give an indication of the extent to which financial investment is translating into ranking representation.


The abysmal performance of the Pakistani higher education should be of great concern to the government, policy makers and activists alike. We like to talk about the potential in Pakistan due to it having the second largest youth population in the world but it is a useless statistic if we aren’t equipping them with the tools to succeed in life.

You can check out the detailed rankings here. The ranking methodology can be seen here.

Talal is the Editor in Chief at ProPakistani.