UoN rises into top 1,000 world varsity rankings

The University of Nairobi entrance.  

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

The University of Nairobi (UoN) has moved into the top 1,000 universities in the world in the QS World University Rankings 2025, continuing an upward trend in international post-secondary institutional standings.

The institution was ranked in the 909-950 band in a pool of 1,500 published international institutions, up from the 1,000-1,200 band it has held since 2022.

The UoN’s improved ranking this year is a result of gains in key categories including employment outcomes, academic reputation, international research and faculty-student ratio.

The institution's highest ranking indicator was employment outcomes, which increased by 92.5 percent and was placed in the 251-300 band. Academic reputation increased slightly from 9.6 percent in 2023 to 10 percent currently.

Reputation category

In the employer reputation category, a metric that assesses employers' perceptions of post-secondary graduates, the UoN recorded a 2.9 percent drop to 11.7 percent, down from 14.6 percent last year.

“However, the institution saw an improvement in the ranking of citations per faculty, which stood at 20.1 percent and positioned itself in the 1,051-1,100 range. This indicator is based on a ratio measuring the average number of citations per faculty member,” the data shows.

The UoN is home to many researchers, some of whom are among the world's most highly cited in fields such as health sciences.

In the category of international research networks, the university scored an average of 50.1 percent, an indicator that assesses the richness and diversity of an institution's research partnerships.

The lowest scoring indicator was sustainability, with 1.8 percent, despite being one of the leading institutions charting the course and driving change towards a more sustainable future.

Last year, UoN was ranked 1,425 out of 2,000 institutions by the Centre for World University Ranking, the only Kenyan university listed.

Employment outcomes

Kenyatta University, which joined the rankings last year, has maintained its position in the 1,201-1,400 range, with employment outcomes being the highest indicator.

Regionally, South Africa holds the top four positions on the African continent, with the University of Cape Town the continent's highest-ranked institution at 171, up two places from last year.

Cairo University in Egypt completes the top five in Africa, ranking 350 globally.

Globally, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology held the top spot for the thirteenth year, while Imperial College London moved up to second place.

The University of Oxford and Harvard University are ranked third and fourth respectively. The University of Cambridge completes the top five.

This global ranking is the first to include both sustainability and employability factors as key measures in its methodology.

Since the 2024 ranking, the group has added a five percent weighting to sustainability to reflect the crucial role universities play in setting the course and driving change towards a more sustainable future.

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Note: The results are not exact but very close to the actual.