The University of Trento has long been in top positions in national rankings, and it is well positioned in international ones. This result is due, in particular, to the University’s ability to finance itself, its success in scientific research, its openness to Europe and the world, and the satisfaction of students.

The University gained recognition at international level, as confirmed by independent sources such as THE - Times Higher Education Rankings and QS-Quacquarelli Sysmonds.

The University of Trento has achieved an excellent position, in the 251-300 group, in the World University Ranking 2018 by the Times Higher Education magazine, which ranks the best universities in the world and examined 980 universities in 79 countries worldwide.

UniTrento placed first among the 25 Italian universities included in the European Teaching Rankings 2018, and 36th in the general ranking of the 240 European universities that were ranked. The pilot ranking, carried out by Times Higher Education, is based on student evaluations of a number of aspects of the learning environment (adequacy of universities’ human resources and facilities, quality of teaching, ability to prepare students for the requirements of the labour market) and other quantitative parameters that measure the performances of universities (student/teacher ratio, number of published papers and citations, percentage of students who graduate within regulation time, inclusivity).

In the QS World University Rankings 2019 the University of Trento has increased its position by 15 places compared to 2018 with a score of 426 points, ranking 10th among the 30 Italian Universities included in the world's best 500.
The QS ranking confirms the excellent visibility of the University’s scientific publications in terms of citations and faculty reputation.

The Research Quality Assessment (VQR) on research conducted by Italian universities in the 2011-2014 term, released by ANVUR at the end of December 2016, confirmed the University of Trento in top position among State universities, and sixth in the general ranking which also includes institutions of higher learning and research institutes like Sant’Anna and the Scuola Normale Superiore in Pisa.
The VQR data form the basis for the distribution of the part of the 2016 Ordinary Financing Fund that is allocated according to merit to (State and non-State) universities.
A second Research Quality Assessment, released in February 2017, confirmed the quality of research at the University of Trento in four different academic disciplines: physics, biology, psychology, political and social sciences.
The data are presented based on the size of universities and reflect the academic area under investigation, with (again) very positive results for the University of Trento, which in fact ranks first among medium-sized universities in the areas of psychology and political and social sciences, and third in the areas of physics and biology (among small universities).

The University of Trento ranks third in the CENSIS ranking of Italian universities 2018/2019 in both the general ranking and the ranking of medium-sized universities with 97/100 points. The performance indicators concerning "scholarships and student aid" (108) and "international outlook" (97) played a key role for the final score.

The University of Trento ranks 2nd in the last Il Sole 24 Ore ranking of the best Italian State Universities. The strengths of the University are the high percentage of students coming from other regions (“Attractiveness” indicator), the number of eligible students who receive scholarships (“Grants”), and the indicators measuring “the quality of scientific outputs” and “research competitiveness”. Trento obtained positive results also in terms of final marks at graduation, international mobility, quality of doctoral studies, number of students who continue their studies in the same university after the first year.