• Latest edition of bird's TenX series looks at the best-performing varsities in continent
Sustained investments in Africa's educational system is transforming its higher education institutions into global centres of academic excellence.
The varsities are now appealing to a broad spectrum of students, attracting both local and international enrollees.
US News & World Report ranked them based on their global standing, assessed through research performance and academic community ratings both worldwide and regionally.
1. University of Cape Town (UCT), South Africa: Known for its stunning location at the foot of Table Mountain, UCT is the oldest university in South Africa as well as outside northern Africa and is renowned for its strong research output, diverse student body and highly qualified faculty. Its comprehensive range of programmes and its commitment to social justice and community engagement also contribute to its prestige. Its picturesque setting and diverse student body add to its appeal, making it a top choice for students seeking a world-class education in a unique environment.
2. University of the Witwatersrand (Wits), South Africa: Located in Johannesburg, Wits University is famous for its research-intensive approach and strong focus on science and technology. It has a vibrant campus life and has produced several Nobel laureates, showcasing its academic excellence.
3. Stellenbosch University, South Africa: Renowned for its programmes in agriculture, wine sciences and engineering, it combines academic excellence with a picturesque campus in South Africa's wine region. The institution's focus on sustainability and bilingual education enhances its attractiveness.
4. University of Ibadan, Nigeria: As one of the leading universities in Nigeria, it's known for its strong focus on research and development, particularly in the fields of medicine and social sciences. Its historical significance and contributions to the academic community make it a prestigious institution.
5. Cairo University, Egypt: This institution is a cornerstone of Egyptian higher education, known for its comprehensive disciplines, particularly in law, medicine and engineering. Its rich history and central role in the region's academic and cultural life attracts students from across the globe.
6. University of Kwazulu Natal (UKZN), South Africa: UKZN is distinguished for its research in health sciences, particularly in HIV-Aids and rural healthcare. The university's commitment to social justice and diversity makes it an attractive option for students interested in impactful research and community engagement.
7. University of Johannesburg, South Africa: UJ is known for its vibrant urban campus, diverse student body and strong emphasis on career-oriented education. It has made significant strides in research and innovation, particularly in the fields of science and engineering.
8. Mansoura University, Egypt: Located in Egypt, this university is recognised for its strong medical and health science programmes. Its reputation for quality research and academic excellence in these areas makes it a sought-after institution in the region.
9. University of Pretoria, South Africa: Known for its high-quality education in engineering, law and veterinary science, UP also emphasises innovative teaching methods and community projects, making it a comprehensive institution for holistic education.
10. North-West University, South Africa: NWU offers a balanced approach to education, blending academic rigour with an emphasis on sports and cultural activities. Its harmonious campus environment and strong sense of community attract students looking for a well-rounded university experience.
Other highly ranked African universities based on unRank's non-academic League Table sourced through independent web intelligence sources, rather than data submitted by the universities themselves, include The American University in Cairo (Egypt), Ain Shams University (Cairo, Egypt) and the University of Nairobi (Kenya).