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Top 20 Most Competitive Universities in Nigeria

Wondering what the Most Competitive Universities In Nigeria are? Worry no more because we will list out the top 20 most competitive Universities in Nigeria.

Most Competitive Universities in Nigeria

If you are one of the aspirants searching to know the most competitive universities in Nigeria, this is information is for you.

There are some universities in Nigeria that are very competitive when it comes to admission. Such is because they do receive so many applicants. And as a result of this, their admission process always becomes very competitive.

So in the context of this post, you will get more detailed information on the most competitive federal and state universities in Nigeria and the number of applicants they receive every year.

As such, the information on this page will also give you answers to questions like; which universities are the hardest to gain admission in Nigeria? or which universities in Nigeria are the easiest to gain admission?

Top 20 Most Competitive Universities in Nigeria

1- University of Ilorin (UNILORIN)

University of Ilorin popularly known as Unilorin, is a federal government-owned university in Ilorin, Kwara State, Nigeria.

It was established by a Decree of the Federal Military Government in August 1975. The university has 16 faculties & over sixty academic departments.

UNILORIN school fees ranges from 20,900- 85,000 naira for freshers.

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2. University of Ibadan (UI)

Established in 1948, the University of Ibadan ( UI) as it is fondly referred to, is the first University in Nigeria.  It became a full-fledged independent University in 1962. 

University of Ibadan is the most competitive University in Nigeria Because of it’s high standard & they offer Many courses that aren’t offered in other universities. 

UI school fees depends on your course but the Lowest is 34,300.

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3- University of Benin (UNIBEN)

University of Benin (UNIBEN) Founded in 1970, is a research university located in Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria. It is among the universities owned by the Federal Government of Nigeria.

The school is very competitive because of it’s high standard & being among the first Universities in Nigeria. Their average school fees is 70,000 NGN.

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4- University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN)

The University of Nigeria, commonly referred to as UNN, is a federal university located in Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria. Founded by Nnamdi Azikwe in 1955 & officially opened in 1960. UNN have a population of about 36,000 students & operate102 academic departments across  fifteen faculties.

UNN school fees ranges from 40,000 to 80,000 NGN depending on the course and level of study.

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5- Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU);

Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) known as University of Ife & founded in 1962, Obafemi Awolowo University is a federal government owned and operated Nigerian university.

The university is in the ancient city of Ile-Ife, Osun State, Nigeria.

OAU always emerge Among the winners of academic quiz &  competitions in Nigeria.

Their low tuition fee has been one of the factors that led to their massive number of students. The school fees ranges from N43,000 to N57,000.

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6- Nnamdi Azikwe University (UNIZIK);

Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka popularly known as UNIZIK or NAU  is a Federal university in Nigeria.

OAU consists of four campuses in Anambra State.

Its main campus is located in the capital of Anambra State, Awka while three other campuses are located in Nnewi, Agulu and Ifite-Ogwuari, Anambra State.

Their tuition fees ranges from 65,000 to 70,000 NGN. The university have a total of 14 facilities & 57 departments.

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7- University of Lagos (UNILAG);

University of Lagos (UNILAG) popularly known as UNILAG, is a federal university in Lagos, Nigeria. It is one of the first five universities to be founded in Nigeria and it was founded in 1962.

The University presently has three Campuses in the Mainland of Lagos.

The populous nature of Lagos states is one of the reasons why the university is very competitive.

Their tuition fee is 55,500 & 53,000 for new science & art Students respectively. While Returning Students pay 15,000 & 14,300 for science & art departments respectively.

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8- The federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO);

The Federal University of Technology Owerri (FUTO) is a federal government university located in Owerri West, the capital of Imo State. 

Being the  premier federal university of technology in the South East and South-South parts of Nigeria account to it’s highly competition.

Freshers pay about 45,000 NGN while returning students paid about 47,300 NGN.

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9- Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria;

Ahmadu Bello University is a federal government research university in Zaria, Kaduna State, Nigeria.

The university is founded on 4 October 1962, as the University of Northern Nigeria.

The university operates two campuses: Samaru and Kongo in Zaria. ABU is the greatest University in the north & Among the best in the Nigeria. This makes the school very competitive.

Just like other Federal Universities universities, Tuition fee reduces as students go higher in ABU. Freshers pay 45,000 NGN as tuition fee.

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10- Bayero University Kano (BUK);

Bayero University Kano (BUK) is  situated in Kano, Kano State, Nigeria. It was founded in 1975, when it was renamed from Bayero University College and upgraded from university college to university.

Being the first University in Kano & the fact that people from Kano prefer to study in their hometown, is one of the main reason its very competitive.

The tuition fee is ranges from 33,000 to 42,000 NGN for Nigerian Students while Non-Nigerian Students pay about 200,000 to 300,000 depending on their course of study.

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11- University of Calabar (UNICAL);

Popularly known as UNICAL,  university of Calabar is situated in Calabar, Cross River State, Nigeria. It is one of Nigeria’s second generation federal universities.

The University of Calabar was a campus of the University of Nigeria until 1975.

The university have 10 faculties & three institutes. Science students pay N35,750 while non science Students pay N34,750 as tuition fee per session.

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12- University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT);

The University of Port Harcourt is a university in the Nigerian city of Port Harcourt. Founded in 1975 as University College, Port Harcourt and was given University status in 1977. 

In 2015, The University of Port Harcourt was ranked the sixth in Africa and the first in Nigeria by Times Higher Education (THE).

Their high standard of education is one of the reason why the school is highly competitive.

Their tuition fee between 50,000 – 120,000 NGN.

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13- University of Jos (UNIJOS);

The University of Jos (UNIJOS) is a Federal University in Jos, Plateau State, central Nigeria. Despite the occurrence of ethnic group crisis in Jos, University of Jos is still among the most competitive universities in Nigeria.

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14- Lagos State University (LASU)

Established in 1983, by the enabling Law of Lagos State of Nigeria, for the advancement of learning and /establishment of academic excellence.

LASU is the most competitive University in Nigeria with a population of about 35,000 Students enroll in full time.

Their school fees ranges from N100,000- N150,000.

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15- Delta State University, Abraka (DELSU);

Established in 1992, The Delta State University, Abraka – popularly known as DELSU – is a State university in Delta State, Nigeria with the main campus located at Abraka, Delta State and two campuses at Anwai, Asaba and Oleh.

DELSU Students are called Great Delsuites

DELSU started as a Government Teachers’ Training College during the colonial era and some years into the post-colonial era.

It became a College of Education that awarded Nigerian Certificate of Education (N.C.E.) from 1971-1985.

In 1981, it was affiliated to the University of Benin, Benin City and consequently offered degree programmes from 1981 till 1985 when it became the Faculty of Education of the then Bendel State University with its main campus at Ekpoma. 

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16- Covenant University (CU);

Covenant University is a private Christian university in Ota, Ogun State, Nigeria. It is affiliated with Living Faith Church Worldwide and is a member of the Association of Commonwealth Universities, Association of African Universities and National Universities Commission.

Her high education standard well equipped laboratories & education friendly environment is what makes her among the most competitive universities despite having a high tuition fee of 800,000 NGN to above.

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17. University of Uyo (UNIUYO):

University of Uyo (UNIUYO) which is located in the state capital of Akwa Ibom state (UYO).

The University receives as much as 45,851 applicants who choose them as their first choice during JAMB registration. The UNIUYO general JAMB cut off mark for admission has always been 180.

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18. Ekiti State University (EKSU)

Ekiti State University (EKSU) was established by the administration of Chief Michael Adekunle Ajasin, the first civilian governor of Ondo State.

Ekiti State University, Ado-Ekiti, as it is known today, is the only university in Nigeria that has within a quarter of a century had its name changed four times.

Fact: EKSU was formerly called Obafemi Awolowo University (1982), Ondo State University (1985), University of Ado-Ekiti (1999) Ekiti State University (2011)

The university is a member of the Association of Commonwealth Universities. It is located about 12 minutes drive from the center of the city of Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State in Western Nigeria.

Their school fees is between N95,000 to N201,000 while their JAMB cut-off mark has been a minimum of 180.

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19. Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU)

Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye is a state (owned and operated) university in Ago-Iwoye, Ogun State, Nigeria.

The university was founded July 7, 1982 as Ogun State University (OSU) and was renamed Olabisi Onabanjo University on May 29, 2001 in honour of Chief (Dr.) Olabisi Onabanjo, whose efforts as the then civilian governor of Ogun State gave birth to the university.

OOU minimum JAMB UTME cut-off mark has been 180 even when Universities were allowed to accept 160.

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20. Igbenedion University Okada;

The University is located at Okada, headquarters of Ovia North-East Local Government Area, Edo state. Being the first Private University Established in Nigeria in the 1999, Igbenedion University is among the most competitive universities in the country.

It has a low tuition fee of about 500,000- 800,000 NGN compared to other Private universities.


Attending the most competitive schools doesn’t give you a unique degree, so it’s advisable to choose a university in Which the course you’re to study is accredited there. And also a university to suit your financial class

Article Contributors:

  • Alli Khadija
  • Joeberry Emmanuel
  • Allschool Editorial Staff


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