History of The University of Belgrade

The University of Belgrade is the oldest university in Serbia, well-known for its tradition and quality of education, which lasts for more than 200 years. The founding father of the University of Belgrade was one of the leading regional intellectuals and philosophers of the time – Dositej Obradović. He founded the Great School (“Velika Škola”) in 1808, which grew into the University of Belgrade – the most important academic institution of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, also well-recognized throughout Europe.

During WWII the University was closed, while its students and professors left a significant mark in the Yugoslav struggle against fascism. After the war the University saw rapid expansion in the number of students and departments, growing into one of the largest universities in the Balkans.

Under the auspices of the University of Belgrade, almost all state universities in Serbia were founded. We can say that the University of Belgrade was alma mater to nearly all state universities throughout Serbia and a number of universities in the region.

The University’s main building, the Rectorate, was the endowment of one of the wealthiest Serbs of the time, Captain Miša Anastasijević, to his motherland. The building was built in 1863 and declared a Monument of Culture of Exceptional Importance in 1979. To this day it stands as one of the most beautiful buildings in Belgrade.

For several years in a row, the University of Belgrade has held high placement at global academic ranking lists. Since 2013, the University of Belgrade has been continuously ranked among the world’s top 500 universities at possibly the most prestigious global ranking list published by Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU), also known as Shanghai Ranking.