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List of Top 20 Best Universities in Nigeria 2024 (Updated List)

Choosing the best universities in Nigeria comes with a lot of headaches, scrutiny and other measures that must be taken into consideration when carrying out the research. We have come out with the 2024 list of the top 20 best universities in Nigeria, please note that this is not just another regular list.

Nigeria is diverse country with 3 major ethnic groups and other minority ethnic groups with over 36 states with all clamoring for a university in their states. Currently there are more than 100 universities in Nigeria, Federal, States and private which is why JAMB Joint Admission and Matriculation Board) and the NUC (Nigerian University Commission) has a major role to play in the educational sector in Nigeria, so the quest to be amongst the top 20 best University in Nigeria comes with a lot of efforts and results put together.

When choosing the best university in Nigeria, we will not be partial, as we are doing our selections from private, states and federal Universities in Nigeria

Unlike primary and secondary schools where the best usually are chosen from the beauty and the expensive school fees, its a different case entirely with higher institutions, here we will highlight below, criteria for choosing the best university in Nigeria or any other country in the world.

Criteria For Our Selection Process

There are various criteria for choosing the best universities in Nigeria, but one thing must be made known, there is no university in that is best at everything, some universities are best at some courses  for example, we wrote about best university to study Accounting Medicine and surgery, best university to study engineering and other tech courses, but on the average, there are some universities that rank higher than the others when all is put together aside just education.

1. Learning Environments of the University

This is a major factor that is considered when choosing the top 20 universities in Nigeria, when you visit most Nigerian universities and their lecture halls, the heat that emanates from the overcrowded students inside the hall would be enough to boil a kettle of water. In cases like this, how can student’s concentration be at 100%, it is so bad that most of the students sit on windows, some stand while some stay at the corridor listening to the lecturer via the pathetic public address system. But a conducive learning environment says it all, there is concentration at its peak, lecturer to student interaction, rooms for practical, question and answering, not forgetting the ability to given tests and mark. All these put together can determine if a university is worth being on the top 20 list of best universities in Nigeria.

2. Quality and Quantity of Lecturers of the University

Quantity and Quality of lecturers in the university is another factor, there are cases where universities are short staffed, that are the main reason some courses are dis-accredited by the NUC, there is this popular saying “Garbage in Garbage Out” the truth is, you cannot give out what you do not have.  When much is given, much is expected, so is the case with having quality lecturers. When the technical know-how is passed on to the students, it is only normal for the student to be well grounded in the course of study. Do u wonder why some companies upon recruitment stipulate what university should apply for the job vacancy? This is what is obtainable when quality lecturers offer quality lectures to students. With this you would agree with me is one of the factors for choosing the top 20 best universities in Nigeria.

3. Learning Facilities

There is this saying that while you pass through the university, the university must also pass through you. It is vice versa, being educated does not literally means you are exposed. Being exposed is something that most schools have not acclimatized their students with. There are cases where so called graduates cannot make good use of a simple machine in the case of engineering students, or practical in the case of science students and the list could go on and on. Being able to practice the theoretical aspect of your course puts you ahead of others. The top 20 best universities in Nigeria usually have these facilities in place because it is a major criteria being among the top 20 universities in Nigeria.

Now to the nitti-gritty, we have collated the top 20 best universities in Nigeria, from the bottom to the number one spot. The top spot signifies the best university in Nigeria among the top 20 on the list.

List of Top 20 Best Universities in Nigeria [year] (Updated List) 1



If we were to choose the best university in Nigeria based on learning environment, school fees and beauty, the American University of Nigeria would be topping the list of the top 20 best universities in Nigeria. The university is saddled with all it takes to be a class of its own which is no surprise it falls on the 20th position of the top 20 best universities in Nigeria.

Established in 20014, Located in Yola, Adamawa State, with its fees paid in dollars averaging about 1.59 million in Naira equivalent and following the American style higher education programs at the undergraduate, graduate and professional levels., AUN as it is fondly called is on a class of its own.

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Who says the North is not known for higher education, Bayero University Kano popularly known as BUK was founded in 1977, it was initially known as Bayero University College and was subsequently upgraded from a university college to a full blown university. Bayero University kano  is located in Kano state as the name implies. Talking about quality and quantity of staff, BUK is known for it, with a staff strength of over 1,100, and an ample learning environment, BUK still retain its position as number  19 on the list of top 20 best universities in Nigeria.


One of the Christian universities in Nigeria known for discipline and uprightness, Babcock university is located in Ilishan Remo Ogun State Nigeria, being a private university, Babcock average undergraduate school fees is within the range of 345,000 naira. Being a private university, it is off the interference from the state or federal government which automatically makes it known for its speedy academic calendar, conducive learning environment, and up to standard learning facilities. Babcock University ranks on number 18th position on the list of top 20 best universities in Nigeria.


The Federal University of Technology Akure is one of the few Universities of technology in Nigeria, founded in 1981 by the Federal government of Nigeria, located in Akure, Ondo state precisely. The university in terms of experience in technology is second to none which is why till date, it keeps producing alumni of this great country. FUTA is holds it spot on the number 17th position in the ranking of the top 20 best universities in Nigeria.


This is indeed one of the most popular universities in Nigeria, earlier in this post when i m=talked about there not being a university that is best at everything, i made mention of some universities being best at some courses, LASU is one of them. LASU is known for being good at man professional courses like accounting, Business Administration and best of all is LAW, they are regarded as one of the best universities in Nigeria to study Law.

The Lagos State University used to be known for its slow academic calendar due to the high volume of students being absorbed yearly, but with the intervention of Lagos state Governors, the university is now operating at its peak. It ranks on the number 16th position on the list.


Those familiar with this university would agree with us that Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto, also known as Udusok was formerly known as University of Sokoto. It is a Federal university established in 1975 and located in the ancient city of Sokoto state. The university has a total number of over 24,000 students and with a very large and conducive learning environment, Usmanu Danfodiyo University. And gaining admission into this university is practically hurdle free. Simply with your 200 cut off mark with a minimum of 5 credits in courses relevant to the course of study chosen upon your UTME registration, you are good to go. This university ranks on number 15th position on the list of top 20 best universities in Nigeria.


The Federal University of Oye Ekiti FUOYE springs up on the 14th position of the top 20 best universities in Nigeria. It is government owned, the university is located in the ancient city of Oye-Ekiti, Ekiti state. It offered courses in undergraduate, graduate and post graduate programmes with includes Masters, PGD (Post Graduate Diploma) and PhD programmes. Oye Ekiti is known for its speedy academic session; with this students are able to plan and schedule activities beyond the university four walls.

Federal University Oye Ekiti was established in 2011, and has two campuses, one is located at Oye-Ekiti and the other at Ikole-Ekiti respectively.

Armed with 7 Faculties and 27 Departments and home to over 6,000 undergraduates not including their post graduate school. It definitely has every reason to be on the list.


This Federal University is simply known for one thing, Agriculture, it is one of the few Nigerian Universities with specialty.

Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta FUNAAB, located in Ogun state was founded on the 1st of  January 1988 by the Federal Government.

The Federal government in its bid to boost agriculture in Nigeria, injected resources and revamped the university to meet up to standard with the purchase of machines and tools for mechanized farming and other forms of agriculture. As usual, certain requirements must be met in order to gain admission into this university.

Students are expected to meet the cut off mark of 200 in the UTME and a minimum of 5 credits in relevant courses. FUNAAB ranks on the number 13th position of the top 20 best universities in Nigeria.


Federal University of Technology Owerri (FUTO) located in Owerri, Imo state was established in 1980 by the Federal government of Nigeria which makes it the oldest University of Technology in Nigeria, with aim to promote science and technology and made in Nigeria products. The Federal University of Technology Owerri stands out among the list of the Universities of technology in Nigeria. FUTO offers degree course in undergraduate and post graduate programmes. The University ranks as number 12 on the list of the top 20 best universities in Nigeria.

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FUTMINNA  as it is popularly known as is another Federal university of technology in Nigeria situated in Minna northern Nigeria, in fact it is the only university of technology in the region. This was set up by the Federal government in order to serve the northern region just like it’s eastern(FUTO) and Western counterparts (FUTA) FUTMINNA was established in 1983, The objective for its establishment is to give effect to the Nation’s drive for the much-needed self-reliance in Science, Engineering and especially Technology which currently it is delivering. FUTMINNA holds number 11 position on the ranking table. Thumbs up to the great institution.


Finally, a university from the south-south region of Nigeria makes the list. I do not think it is surprising rather, it is expected. The University of Port Harcourt (Uniport) ranks as number top 10 on the list of top 20 best universities in Nigeria. The university also a wide range of courses judging from the list of courses offered In Uniport. Structurally, UNIPORT is well grounded, in terms of experience of lecturers and quality of education, they are known for it. With up to standard library for research and findings, they are top notch so tell me why they would not be ranked among the best universities in Nigeria. Kudos to this great university. They still maintain the number 10 spot on the list.


This is pretty new on the list of Federal Universities in Nigeria, UNIABUJA  is widely regarded as one of the fastest growing universities in Nigeria. Located in Mohammed Maccido Rd, Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

The University of Abuja was established on January 1, 1988 as a dual-mode university with the mandate to run conventional and distance learning programmes.  The University is number 9 on the ranking list.


The students of this ever corrosive university are regarded as Unibest. This Federal University was established to serve the then mid western state formerly known as BENDEL state. Uniben has two campuses with the main campus at Ugbowo and the other known as Ekenwa campus which is meant for Theatre and sculptural art students.

The university of Benin students are always full of high spirit, educationally, intellectually and articulately they are sound, thumbs up to their lecturers. The University of Benin is one of its kinds in the South-South part of Nigeria, with large lecture halls and basements for all sorts of events, state of the art Library, powerful generating set that lights up the entire university in case of power failure and other facilities which make the university one of the best in Nigeria.

They boast of some of the best engineering lecturers in West Africa, the university is a mixyure of beauty and brain. Did we forget to say it was established in 1970 and has a total enrolment of over 40,000 students? That’s it about the University of Benin. The University ranks as number 8 on the list of top 20 best universities in Nigeria.


The University of Nigeria Nsuka (UNN),  was founded in 1955, after the university of Ibadan, UNN is the second oldest universities in Nigeria located at Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.

NSUKA is known for quality education and speedy academic session. Structurally too, they are at the top, their learning facilities are also top notch, research and development are encouraged, recently, a group of Nsuka engineering students build machines meant for lifting heavy loads. These are as a result of some of the practical classes being encouraged simply because the facilities are available, even though not all, at least basic facilities.

They also offer degree courses in undergraduate, post graduate levels. UNN is ranked as number 7 on the list of best universities in Nigeria.


Without doubt, this privately owned university is among the best universities in Nigeria and beyond it shores. On the private level, Covenant University is unarguably the best University in Nigeria. They are stylishly referred to as CU students. The university turns out one of the highest number of 1st class students yearly and the truth remains that they prove it beyond the four walls of the university.

Covenant University is owned by popular clergy man Bishop Oyedepo who is regarded as the richest pastor in Africa and top 3 in the world. He is known for instilling discipline on his students though many have kicked against his high handed ness towards students considering the rate of expulsion and suspension not minding the huge school fees being coughed out by parents and guidance.

Talking about beauty and learning environment, Covenant University is top notch, with state of the art facilities, quality lecturers, speedy academic session and robust calendar to accommodate various programmes, Covenant University sits comfortably on the number 6 spot on the list of top 20 best universities in Nigeria. That is truly a feat to behold.


Ask us about the Federal University with the fastest academic calendar in Nigeria and we will point at the University of Ilorin (UNILORIN). This federal university was established in 1975 and is located at 1515, Unilorin Staff Quarters, Amodu Bello Way, Ilorin, Kwara state.

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The university as at today has a total enrollments of over 20,000 undergraduate students and offers various degree courses you can look through the list of courses offered in Unilorin for confirmation, also post graduate diploma, Masters and PhD programmes are offered in the university.

With sound professors, ample learning environments, standard learning facilities and all requirements to be listed among one of the best universities in Nigeria, The university of Ilorin ranks on number 5 position of the top 20 best universities in Nigeria.


This is the flagship universities of the north. Occasionally known as ABU Zaria, was established on October 4th 1962, a year before Nigeria became a republic. it is the only Northern University to rank amongst the top 10 on the list of top 20 best Universities in Nigeria and automatically makes it the best university in the Nigeria (northern region).

ABU Zaria boasts of quality lecturers and conducive learning environment, hostel facilities to accommodate its students for undergraduate and post graduate level. It ranks on the number 4th position on the list of the top 20 best university in Nigeria. That’s a huge feat to achieve.


Whenever OAU is mentioned, the first thing that comes to mind is their unique structural design, built to accommodate the topographical nature of the soil the school is built on.

OAU has the best structure in Nigeria and West Africa. A den for professors and radical students though intelligent. Formerly known as the University of Ife before being named after one of Nigeria’s foremost leaders Chief Obafemi Awolowo.

OAU was established in 1961 but proper lecture commenced in October the following year (1962), therefore, not many would argue why OAU should be on this list, a visit to the university would convince you. OAU holds the number 3 position also known as the 1st runner-up on the list of the top 20 best universities in Nigeria.


The University of Lagos upon establishment used to be a Federal Government research university upon its establishment in 1962. UNILAG has a total number of about 58,000 students both Undergraduate and Postgraduates combined. I remember back in the days, university of Lagos used to be for the rich kids, and this put pressure on many that were not in the league of fresh kids just to match up. This is a university with style, class, and pride. Structurally, one thing they are known for is their Senate Building, cozy environment and standard learning environment. It is the only University in Nigeria with its customized radio station known as UNLAG FM.

UNILAG till date prides itself as one of the best universities in Nigeria  with an organized DLI (Distant Learning Institute) this gives workers most especially the opportunity to acquire a degree certificate in the course of their choice. Well, Some refer to it as the best university in Nigeria, it is a personal opinion though.

Also, their Post Graduate School is top notch, top personalities holding key positions in Nigeria can attest to this claim. The University of Lagos Akoka prides itself on the number 2 position of the Best University In Nigeria. Double Thumbs up to them, getting to the top is tough but remaining there is tougher.


Finally we are here, this is the moment everyone has been waiting for, the question for the best university in Nigeria is finally answered. Being the premier university in Nigeria does not in any way make it the best, the unequivocal truth is that the University of Ibadan is an embodiment of completeness in totality.

When you come across a UI student, its not hard to decipher, he or she wears he awe around, the school is known for producing the best. An average UI student is equals to an above average student in any the university in Nigeria. They make use of CGPA rather than GPA that other Universities in Nigeria make use of, so they work extra hard to get good grades which practically leaves no room for unwarranted gallivanting.

Structurally, they are almost second to none, Talking about lecturers, they have some of the highest professors in Nigeria, UCH (University College Hospital) ranks among the best in African, just name it, The University of Ibadan is in a league of their own therefore regarded as the best university in Nigeria which automatically make it top the 2024 list of top 20 best Universities in Nigeria

What is your opinion? you can send your questions and comments via the comment section below and our team would be on hand to respond swiftly. YOU could also share this information via Facebook, Twitter, instagram and other social media platforms at your disposal.

See you at the top guys!


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