Top 10 Universities In Africa 2021 – Latest Ranking

You probably have some idea of ​​the best universities in the United States, Europe, AustraliaCanada and even Asia. But have you ever stopped to ask yourself which are the best universities in Africa? Yes, the continent may not even be your first choice of study or exchange destination, but be aware that there are also top universities and internationally renowned schools in Africa.

Check out the 10 best universities in Africa

Below is a well-detailed article which focused on the list of the top 10 universities in Africa, take your time to read through.

1. University of Cape Town – South Africa

Founded in 1918, the University of Cape Town has existed as a college since 1829 and is a public institution located on the outskirts of Cape Town, the legislative capital and second largest urban, financial and cultural center in South Africa.

Cape Town University South Africa
Cape Town University ranks first among the best universities in Africa

The institution has about 20 thousand students spread over six campuses and is one of the universities that produce the most research in the entire African continent, standing out in the main international rankings. It is also the oldest university in Sub-Saharan Africa, next to Stellenbosch University, also in South Africa. Another interesting fact: 5 scientists associated with the institution have already been awarded the Nobel Prize.

2. University of Pretoria – South Africa

Founded in 1930 (it has existed since 1908 under other names), the University of Pretoria is a public institution located on the outskirts of the city of Pretoria, the administrative capital of South Africa. The UP, as it is known, has about 53 thousand students and offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral programs in various areas of study, such as Education, Economics, Engineering, Health Sciences, Law, Veterinary, Theology and Humanities.

University of Pretoria is one of the best universities in Africa
University of Pretoria

3. University of Witwatersrand – South Africa

Located in Johannesburg, the largest city in South Africa, the University of Witwatersrand was founded in 1922 and has just over 40,000 students (63% undergraduate and 35% graduate). It is popularly known as Wits University or simply Wits. One of its most famous alumni, none other than Nelson Mandela!

Witwatersrand University
Witwatersrand University

4. University of Johannesburg – South Africa

The University of Johannesburg (UJ) is also located in Johannesburg and is a public university that emerged in 2005 as a result of a merger between Rand Afrikaans University (RAU); Technikon Witwatersrand (TWR) and Vista University’s Soweto and East Rand campuses.

University of Johannesburg | Best Universities in Africa

Before the merger, the Daveyton and Soweto campuses of the former Vista University had already been incorporated into the RAU. As a result of this merger of Rand Afrikaans University, it is common for alumni to refer to the university as RAU to this day. The UJ has almost 50 thousand students. Of these, 3,000 are international students from 80 countries.

5. University of KwaZulu-Natal – South Africa

The University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN) is a public university with five campuses in the cities of Durban, Westville, Pinetown and Pietermaritzburg, all in the province of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. It was formed in January 2004, after the merger between the University of Natal and the University of Durban-Westville and today has about 50 thousand students.

KwaZulu-Natal University
KwaZulu-Natal University

6. University of Stellenbosch – South Africa

The University of Stellenbosch (SU) is a public institution located in Stellenbosch, a city in the Western Cape province in South Africa. Along with the University of Cape Town, it also holds the oldest university degrees in South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa.

University of Stellenbosch

SU designed and manufactured the first microsatellite on the African continent, SUNSAT, launched in 1999. It was also the first African university to sign the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities. It has about 19 thousand undergraduate students and 10 thousand graduate students.

Read Also: The 10 Most Expensive Universities in the United States

7. University of Nairobi – Kenya

The University of Nairobi (UoN) is one of Kenya’s largest higher education institutions, with more than 70,000 undergraduate students and 12,000 graduate students. Although its history as an educational institution dates back to 1956, the UoN only became an independent university in 1970. This year, the University of East Africa was divided into three independent institutions: Makerere University, Uganda; the University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and the UoN.

University of Nairobi - Kenya

8. North-West University – South Africa

The North-West University (NWU) is a public institution that emerged in 2004 from the merger of the Potchefstroom University for Christian Higher Education with the University of Bophuthatswana. It has three campuses in the cities of Potchefstroom (headquarters), Mahikeng (formerly Mafikeng) and Vanderbijlpark.

North-West University

It is one of the largest universities in South Africa in number of students: there are just over 64,000 enrolled in classroom and distance learning courses. Among its famous former students are the ex-Miss Universe Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters and Rugby players Gerhard Mostert and Warren Whiteley.

9. Cairo University – Egypt

Cairo University is a leading public university in Egypt and is ranked as one of the top 10 universities in Africa. Its central campus is in Giza, the country’s third largest city. It was founded on December 21, 1908, first in Cairo. However, in 1929, its faculties were being established on the current campus. But before you get confused, the explanation is simple: the two cities face each other, separated only by the River Nile.

Cairo University

It is the second oldest institution of higher education in Egypt, after Al Azhar University, founded in 975 AD! There is a record difficult to break rs. In the beginning, the institution was founded and financed by a citizens’ committee sponsored by the country’s monarchy. In 1925, it became a state institution under the regime of King Fuad I. In 1940, 4 years after his death, the institution was renamed King Fuad I University, being renamed once again after the Egyptian revolution of 1952.

The university currently has approximately 155,000 students in 20 colleges and 3 institutions, making it one of the 50 largest institutions of higher education in the world in terms of enrollment. Among his former students are three Nobel Prize winners.

10. University of the Western Cape – South Africa

The University of the Western Cape (UWC) is a public university located in the suburb of Bellville, in Cape Town, and among the academic institutions of South Africa, it is at the forefront of historical changes in the country, playing a distinct academic role in helping to build a more just and dynamic nation. The UWC’s main concerns about access, equity and quality in higher education arise from a broad practical involvement in helping the historically marginalized to participate fully in the life of the nation.

University of the Western Cape
The University of the Western Cape closes the TOP 10 of the best universities in Africa

The university was founded in 1960 by the South African government as a university for “people of color” only. The establishment of UWC was a direct effect of the University Education Extension Act of 1959, which created the segregation of higher education in South Africa. At that time, black students were only allowed in non-white universities, and to resolve this “issue ”, The University of the Western Cape, the University of Zululand and the University of the North were founded. But since long before the end of apartheid in 1994, UWC has become an integrated, multiracial institution. Today it has about 22 thousand students (16 thousand undergraduate and 6 thousand graduate students).

Honorable Mentions

  • 11. University of Lagos – Nigeria
  • 12. Addis Ababa University – Ethiopia
  • 13. American University of Cairo – Egypt
  • 14. University of Ghana – Ghana
  • 15. German University of Cairo – Egypt


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