Private Universities In Kenya [Best Private Universities In Kenya]

Last updated on July 26th, 2023 at 01:59 pm

If you missed a chance in all the public universities in Kenya, don’t give up yet- there are a couple Private Universities in Kenya you can join and still pursue your dream career.

This article will introduce you to the topnotch Private Universities in Kenya including their locations, contacts, websites, and more to help you make an informed decision.

Let’s get started.

Private Universities In Kenya [Best Private Universities In Kenya]

 So, which are the best Chartered private universities in Kenya that you can attend to fulfill your educational dreams?

Here is the complete list…

Mount Kenya University

 Mount Kenya University (main campus) is in Thika.

It’s a fully certified university and has branches in a number of counties in Kenya.

It has heavily invested in ICT not to mention other technologies which aid in delivering quality learning.

Note that at MKU, learning is flexible and favorable to every Tom, Dick, and Harry.

You can join full Digital learning , Full time classes, Part time study (weekends/evenings) and even Institution-based learning (for teachers who want to study during school holidays).

Keep in mind that MKU is considered one of the cheap private universities in Kenya – the fees is generally cheaper than in most private universities).

MKU Contacts:

 Telephone: +254 709 153 200


Strathmore University

 This is one of the top leading universities in Kenya. It is at Ole Sangale Rd, just off Langata Rd, in Madaraka Estate (Nairobi).

Believe you me, Strathmore University is among the best private universities not only in Kenya but also in the eastern Africa region.

This exceptional university teaches nearly everything from medicine, ICT, and to engineering.

Strathmore Contacts:

Telephone: (0) 703-034000/200/300



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Daystar University

 Another one of the top 20 best private universities in Kenya is Daystar University. It is situated 40km from Nairobi CBD in Athi River(main campus) in a serene area.

You will love its classic science and computer laboratories, futuristic media studios, and roomy and comfortable classes.

More importantly, students enjoy holistic education (Christian values are also instilled).

Daystar University Contacts:

Telephone: 0724256408, 0735992991



Kiriri Women’s University of Science & Technology (KWUST)

KWUST is unique in that it is the only women-only private university in Kenya.

The university concentrates on Science, Technology, and Innovation studies and is in Mwihoko area, near Githurai 45, Nairobi.


Kiriri Women’s University Contacts:

Telephone: 0736 329642 /0718 896 389



Catholic university of eastern Africa(CUEA)

 CUEA is another church-owned private university in Kenya (it was founded by the Catholic Church).

The main campus is sited in Langata, Bogani East Road, just  off Magadi Road, Nairobi.

It is best known for education, theology, and law programs.

Catholic university Contacts:

Telephone: 0709 691 000



African Nazarene University

 This institution is in Nairobi Kenya too and is still church owned- it is sponsored by the international Church of Nazarene, whose vision and mission follows the unique Wesleyan holiness tradition.

There are over 13 degree programs in the University’s 5 schools- Law school, Business school, School of science/Technology, School of Religion/Christian Ministry, and School of Humanities/Social sciences.

Nazarene university Contacts:

Telephone: 0713 587 980


Riara University (RU)

 This fast-growing private university is located in Nairobi along ,Mbagathi Way next to Nyayo Highrise estate.

Riara empowers student to become the finest they can by ensuring high quality teaching.

It has an amazing law school.

Riara university Contacts:

Telephone: 0703 038 000



USIU University

United States International University Africa is accredited by the CUE (Commission for University Education) in Kenya plus the WASC (Western Association of Schools and Colleges).

It is one of the best thanks to outstanding facilities, higher graduate absorption rate (in the labour market), and professional management.

And oh, you will mingle with a significant number of international students at USIU.

USIU university Contacts:

Telephone: 0730116000, 0730116690, 0730116300, 0730116522


Kabarak University

Kabarak University is yet another private Christian university. It is established on an expansive 600-acre farm, about 20kilometres from Nakuru (along Nakuru–Eldama Ravine rd).

The campus offers magnificent academic, recreational, and religious facilities in a quiet environment.

The university has campuses in Nakuru and Nairobi too.

Kabarak University Contacts:

Telephone: 0729 223 370


Zetech University

Zetech University was founded by renowned Engineer Ken Mbiuki(in 1999) and it mainly majors in business, ICT, and hospitality courses.

It has its main campus in Ruiru, just along the Nairobi-Thika Superhighway.

Zetech University Contacts:

Telephone: 0719 034500


KCA University

The former Kenya College of Accountancy is now a respected business university.

It has also expanded its programmes to include courses in technology, education,  and even social sciences.

KCAU is along Thika Road (in Ruaraka), Nairobi, Kenya.

KCA University Contacts:

Telephone: 020 2211263


Kenya Methodist University (KEMU)

KEMU is also a chartered private university in Kenya.

It was sponsored by Methodist Church and has been in operation since 1997.

KEMU is in Meru County, approximately five kms from Meru Town CBD.

Kenya Methodist University Contacts:

Telephone: 0724-256162, 0734-310655


Other Private Universities in Kenya

  1. Saint Paul’s University Limuru
  2. University of Eastern Africa Baraton
  3. Africa International University (Nairobi Evangelical Graduate School of Theology)
  4. Pan Africa Christian University
  5. Adventist University of Africa
  6. Management University of Africa
  7. Tangaza University College
  8. Great Lakes University of Kisumu
  9. Umma University
  10. Presbyterian University of East Africa (PUEA)
  11. AMREF International University
  12. Scott Christian University
  13. Gretsa University
  14. Uzima University College
  15. The East African University Kitengela
  16. Pioneer International University
  17. Kenya Highlands University
  18. Lukenya University
  19. KAG East University
  20. International Leadership University (Nairobi International School of Theology)


Are Private Universities Worth The Cost?

Private universities are widely believed to be the most expensive universities in Kenya which is largely true (when you are privately sponsored).

For example, USIU and Strathmore are quite pricey with Kabarak University following closely.

So, are they worth the cost?

Well, in my opinion, if you can afford these private institutions, they truly are worth the cost.

Here is why:

  • Smaller sizes of classrooms- this is a great advantage since the professor-student ratio is low. This largely contributes to improved learning because as a student, you are able to acquire additional personalized teaching
  • Open enrollment- Unlike many public universities where the intake calendar is controlled by the government through CUE (commission of university education) and KUCCPS, there is flexibility in private universities- you can join your degree of choice soon after the release of KCSE results in some.
  • Academic excellence– it is an open secret that graduates from some private institutions (think of Strathmore) are considered better qualified by employers compared to graduates from some public universities. That again boils down to the higher quality training here.


Which is the most expensive university in Kenya?

Strathmore university- in order to finance your education at Strathmore, you will definitely dig deeper into your pocket.

Fees may go up to Ksh. 250,000 and beyond per year. All the same education here is of high quality.

How many private universities are there in Kenya?

 More than 30- believe it or not, there are more than 30 Private Universities In the country.

That said, it is good to note that only 20 are chartered (at the time of writing this).

These are:

  1. University of Eastern Africa, Baraton
  2. Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA)
  3. Daystar University
  4. Scott Christian University
  5. United States International University
  6. Africa Nazarene University
  7. Kenya Methodist University
  8. Paul’s University
  9. Pan Africa Christian University
  10. Strathmore University
  11. Kabarak University
  12. Mount Kenya University
  13. Africa International University
  14. Kenya Highlands Evangelical University
  15. Great Lakes University of Kisumu
  16. KCA University
  17. Adventist University of Africa
  18. KAG EAST University Registered
  19. Umma University
  20. Presbyterian University of East Africa


Which are the top private universities locally?

 Here is the list of how the top private universities across the country rank according to the webometrics rakings (at the time of writing this).

Ranking (among both public and private universities in Kenya) World Rank University
8 4183 Strathmore University
12 5723 USIU
13 6304 Daystar University
16 7649 Mount Kenya University
24 10077 Kabarak University
26 10172 Kenya Methodist University
29 10724 Catholic University
30 11127 Saint Paul’s University (Limuru)
35 13084 Africa Nazarene University
40 14565 KCA University
43 14960 University of Eastern-Africa, Baraton
44 15104 Zetech University
47 15305 Africa International University (AIU) (Nairobi Evangelical GraduateSchool of Theology)
48 16236 Riara University
50 16460 PACU(PanAfrica Christian University)
51 16489 Adventist University of Africa
52 16642 MUA(Management University of Africa)
56 17665 Tangaza University College
58 18016 Great Lakes University (of Kisumu)
61 18772 Kiriri Women’s University
62 18845 Umma University
63 18903 Presbyterian University
64 18903 AMREF International University
68 19519 Scott Christian University
69 19654 Gretsa University
75 21289 Uzima University College
76 21716 East African University(Kitengela)
79 21914 Pioneer International University
80 21979 Kenya Highlands University
84 22432 Lukenya University
85 22432 KAG East University
91 23482 International Leadership University (Nairobi-International-School-of-Theology)

Note: These ranks keep changing so it’s best to visit the webometrics website for the latest ranking.



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