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List of Universities in Kenya and their Location

Kenyatta University main gate

In the early 2000s, Kenya had only six chartered public universities catering to the entire high school graduate population. These were the University of Nairobi, Kenyatta University, Moi University, Egerton University, JKUAT, and Maseno Universities. Back then, a mere four percent of high school leavers secured admission to public universities, highlighting the limited access to higher education.

Fast forward to today, the landscape has significantly changed. The population of high school graduates seeking university degrees is rapidly growing, fueled by a rising demand for higher education credentials. Every year, data from the Ministry of Education’s KCSE results reveal that roughly 150,000 graduates qualify for undergraduate studies in Kenyan universities.

This surge in demand cannot be solely met by public universities. Hence, students who don’t secure spaces in public institutions have the option to explore private universities.

To ensure quality standards across both sectors, the Ministry has established a C+ (Plus) minimum entry grade requirement for both public and private universities. Graduates who fall below this threshold are encouraged to pursue diploma or certificate programs at public TVET colleges, enabling them to build valuable skills and pursue fulfilling careers.

See also: List of Accredited Engineering Courses in Universities in Kenya

Difference between a University and a University College

In Kenya’s higher education landscape, differentiating between universities and university colleges can be confusing. While both offer academic programs, they possess distinct characteristics:


  • Full-fledged institutions: Chartered by the government, universities hold the authority to offer a comprehensive range of undergraduate and postgraduate degrees across various disciplines. Think of them as independent entities housing multiple schools or faculties, each specializing in specific academic areas.
  • Comprehensive offerings: From bachelor’s programs to master’s and PhDs, universities cater to diverse academic interests and aspirations.
  • Research focus: A hallmark of universities is their active engagement in research activities, contributing to the advancement of knowledge and innovation.
  • Regulation: All universities in Kenya fall under the purview of the Commission for University Education (CUE).

University Colleges:

  • Affiliated entities: Unlike universities, university colleges typically function as constituents of established universities. This affiliation restricts their program offerings primarily to undergraduate and graduate degrees, along with diploma courses within a limited range of disciplines.
  • Focused scope: Rather than encompassing a vast spectrum of academic areas, university colleges often concentrate on specific fields aligned with their parent university’s expertise.
  • Regulation: Like universities, they are subject to CUE regulations.

Read: TVET Approved Courses in Kenya

That being said, I present a comprehensive list of public and private universities in Kenya and the county they are located.

Zetech university receiving a charter
Zetech University granted a charter by the then President of Kenya Uhuru Kenyatta.

Public Chartered Universities in Kenya and Their Location

  1. The University of Nairobi – Nairobi County
  2. Moi University – Uasin Gishu
  3. Kenyatta University – Kiambu
  4. Egerton University – Nakuru
  5. Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology – Kiambu
  6. Maseno University – Kisumu
  7. Chuka University – Tharaka Nithi
  8. Dedan Kimathi University of Technology – Nyeri
  9. Kisii University – Kisii
  10. Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology – Kakamega
  11. Pwani University – Kilifi
  12. Technical University of Kenya – Nairobi County
  13. Maasai Mara University – Narok
  14. Meru University of Science and Technology – Meru
  15. Multimedia University of Kenya – Nairobi County
  16. South Eastern Kenya University – Kitui
  17. Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science and Technology – Siaya
  18. Laikipia University – Laikipia
  19. University of Kabianga – Kericho
  20. Karatina University – Nyeri
  21. University of Eldoret – Uasin Gishu
  22. Kibabii University – Bungoma
  23. Kirinyaga University – Kirinyaga
  24. Machakos University – Machakos
  25. Murang’a University of Technology – Murang’a
  26. Rongo University – Migori
  27. Taita Taveta University – Taita Taveta
  28. The Co-operative University of Kenya – Nairobi County
  29. University of Embu – Embu
  30. Garissa University – Garissa
  31. Kaimosi Friends University – Vihiga
  32. Alupe University – Busia
  33. Tom Mboya University – Homa Bay
  34. Tharaka University- Tharaka Nithi
  35. Open University of Kenya (Online)
University of Nairobi premises
University of Nairobi premises. One of the oldest chartered universities in Kenya.

Public University Colleges

  • Turkana University College – Turkana
  • Bomet University College – Bomet

Read: How to Apply/Revise for KUCCPS Courses and Colleges Online

Private Chartered Universities

  1. University of Eastern Africa – Uasin Gishu
  2. Catholic University of Eastern Africa – Nairobi County
  3. Daystar University – Machakos
  4. Scott Christian University – Machakos
  5. United States International University – Nairobi County
  6. Africa Nazarene University – Kajiado
  7. Kenya Methodist University – Meru
  8. St. Paul’s University – Kiambu
  9. Pan Africa Christian University – Nairobi County
  10. Kabarak University – Baringo
  11. Strathmore University – Nairobi County
  12. Africa International University – Nairobi County
  13. Kenya Highlands Evangelical University – Kericho
  14. Mount Kenya University – Kiambu
  15. Great Lakes University of Kisumu- Kisumu
  16. Adventist University of Africa – Kajiado
  17. KCA University – Nairobi County
  18. KAG – East University – Kajiado
  19. Lukenya University – Machakos
  20. Zetech University – Kiambu
  21. Kiriri Women’s University of Science and Technology – Nairobi
  22. The East African University – Kajiado
Zetech University Ruiru Campus
Zetech University Ruiru Campus premises

Private University Colleges

  • Tangaza University College – Nairobi County
  • Marist International University College – Nairobi County
  • Regina Pacis University College – Nairobi County
  • Uzima University College – Kisumu
  • Hekima University College – Nairobi County

Private Universities with Letters of Interim Authority

  • Aga Khan University – Nairobi County
  • GRETSA University – Kiambu
  • Presbyterian University of East Africa – Kiambu
  • Management University of East Africa – Nairobi County
  • Pioneer International University – Nairobi County
  • Riara University – Nairobi County
  • Umma University – Kajiado County
  • International Leadership University – Nairobi County
  • RAF International University – Nairobi County
  • AMREF International University

We have reached the end. I hope this information will help you choose a certified and recognized university in Kenya to further your dreams.

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