This study aimed to determine university students’ perceptions concerning the concepts of “water” and “water pollution” by means of metaphors. The study group was composed of 258 undergraduate students attending Hacettepe and Gazi Universities in the 2015–2016 academic year. A semi-structured questionnaire containing the statement “water/water pollution is like……. because ……” was administered to the participants. The technique of content analysis was employed in analysing the data, for which the MAXQDA 12 software programme was used. Results showed that the students perceived the concept of water as a need and an indispensable part of life, while they perceived the concept of water pollution as the end of life.