Best University in Nigeria: Who wears the Crown?


If you ask any Nigerian student or alumni to name the best university in Nigeria, he/she is most likely to name his school as the best university in Nigeria. And really, I wouldn’t blame such a person because there is an African Proverb that says “If you haven’t been to another person’s father’s farm, you would always believe that your father has the biggest farm in the village”.

If you schooled in Lagos State University for instance, it’s only normal that you would believe that the best university in Nigeria is Lagos State University. If someone comes to you and says Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria is the best university in Nigeria; you might argue and even refuse to agree but how do you know it is not, especially since you didn’t school there?

A lot of lists have been compiled and a lot of researches have been conducted to reveal the best universities in Nigeria. Some of these lists were compiled by international agencies but now; let’s look at things from a Nigerian point of view.

Let’s do an objective analysis and then come up with the university that ranks highest. We would be rating these universities based on the following-:

  • Age
  • Facilities
  • Academic Staff
  • Learning Environment
  • Discipline
  • Security
  • Academic Standards
  • Performance of graduates.

Now, here are the four best universities in Nigeria:

1. University of Ibadan

University of Ibadan is the oldest university in Nigeria. It was established in 1948. University of Ibadan currently has ten faculties and a college of medicine. It also has a sports facility, a botanical and zoological garden and a well-equipped library.

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Other facilities include a bookshop, printing press, media centre and about 5 halls of residence. Some of its notable alumni include Chinua Achebe, Emeka Anyaoku, and Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State, Christopher Okigbo, Williams Kumuyi, Elechi Amadi, Gamaliel Onosode and Niyi Osundare.

2. University of Lagos

The University of Lagos was established in 1962, shortly after Nigeria gained independence from Britain. In terms of admissions, UNILAG has very strict policies and is very involved in research activities. UNILAG currently has 9 faculties, 3 schools, 24 centers and institutes, a well-equipped library and several other facilities including sports centers, medical centers guest houses, botanical and zoological gardens and several other units.

Notable faculty members include Wole Soyinka, J.P Clark, Ken Saro Wiwa, Lazarus Ekwueme, Grace Alele-Williams, Chike Obi and Cornelius Taiwo amongst others.

3. Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU)

Obafemi Awolowo University also known as University of Ife is one of the oldest universities in Nigeria. It was established in 1961 and commenced operations in October, 1962.

OAU is popularly known for its high level of discipline and student union activities.OAU currently has 13 faculties, two colleges and about 82 departments. There are 9 halls of residence for students including a postgraduate hall. There is also a sports center and a very well equipped library. The school also has an ICT center and standard medical health facilities. OAU also serves as home to some externally funded centers and international agencies. Notable alumni include Abike Dabiri, Bolaji Aluko, Micheal Faborode, Kunle Odunsi,, Professor Wole Soyinka, Rotimi Akeredolu(SAN), Sarah Alade, Babalola Borishade, Dele Momodu, Bamidele Ojo, Olusegun Oni, Oluremi Tinubu, Femi Falana(SAN), Enoch Adeboye, Yemi Adegbite and Akinwunmi Adesina.

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4. University of Benin

University of Benin also known as UNIBEN was established in 1970 as an institute of Technology and eventually became a fledged university in 1971. It currently has twelve faculties and a college of medical sciences with three schools as well as several centers and institutes including a center for entrepreneurship development, Center for Part-time programs, National Centre for Energy and Environment, institute of child health, institute of education, Center for distance learning, center for maritime and ICT and a Center for Gender Studies.

There is also an Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer office. UNIBEN also has an ultra-modern library with air conditioning system. Notable graduates of UNIBEN include the current governor of Lagos State, Babatunde Raji Fashola, The governor of Delta State, Emmanuel Uduaghan, Richard Mofe Damijo, Josephine Anenih, Victor Uwaifo Sabia Umeh and Professor Felix. E. Okiemen.



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