Nairobi and Strathmore dominate 2021 university rankings in Kenya


The University of Nairobi.

By James Wakahiu

The University of Nairobi (UoN) has been ranked the best public university, Kenyatta University is second in the 2021 UniRank results released last week.  Strathmore University was listed as the best private institution of higher learning in Kenya as it took position three nationally.

The United States International University of Africa (USIU- Africa) was ranked fourth while Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Egerton University and Moi University took positions five, six and seven respectively.  Mount Kenya University (MKU) was ranked eighth, while the Catholic University of Eastern Africa and Kenya Methodist University completed the list of 10 top ranked institutions of higher learning.

The 2021 ranking by UniRank considered several factors in its analysis of the universities. Some of the metrics used included being chartered and offering at least four-year undergraduate degrees (bachelor degrees) or postgraduate degrees (master or doctoral degrees). Another criterion was delivering courses predominantly in a traditional, face-to-face, non-distance education format.

An analysis of the report showed that newly accredited universities, both private and public, are struggling to gain popularity in the country among both aspiring students and their parents and guardians.  

UniRank is one of the leading international higher education directory and search engine featuring reviews and rankings of over 13,800 officially recognized universities and colleges in 200 countries. “Our aim is to provide a non-academic League Table of the top Kenyan Universities based on valid, unbiased and non-influenceable web metrics provided by independent web intelligence sources rather than data submitted by the Universities themselves,” the organization said in a statement.

A similar ranking by Webometrics listed UoN as the best university in Kenya followed by Kenyatta University. Egerton University, Moi University and JKUAT were placed third, fourth and fifth respectively.

Meanwhile, a recent report showed there were 6,206 foreign students admitted to various institutions of higher learning across Kenya. UoN had the highest number of international learners at 1,300. In private campuses, USIU, Strathmore and MKU recorded the highest number of learners from other countries.

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