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Best State Universities in Nigeria [Top 11]

Most beautiful university in Nigeria

Looking through the list of the top 10 universities in Nigeria, you will discover that 90% of the universities on the list are federal government-owned universities. Although federal universities generally do well than their state counterparts, some state universities are blazing the trail in terms of international ranking and standard of curriculum.

There are many state-owned universities in Nigeria that do well and offer a quality standard of education to their students. However, many of these state universities are underrated in terms of ranking, especially when compared to their federal government universities.

The fact that federal universities receive funding and publicity from the federal government makes it easier for them to make it to Nigeria’s top ten high institutions. Notwithstanding, State universities are not backbenchers when it comes to academic excellence.

Many state-owned universities in Nigeria have proven their worth and are doing fairly better than some federal government universities. In this post, we are going to check up the top ten best state universities in Nigeria as of 2021.

Ranking Criteria

We did not just manufacture this ranking from our wildest imaginations, a set of criteria were followed ranking these universities based on the following factors;

  • The reputation of Academic Programmes.
  • Relevance of certificates to employers.
  • Faculty/Student Ratio.
  • Citations per faculty in reputable journals.
  • International Lecturers.
  • The number of International Students.

Let us take a look at the Top ten state universities in Nigeria

#1. Lagos State University (LASU)

On the #1 position on our ranking of state universities in Nigeria is the Lagos state university. Located inside Nigeria’s economic capital and most populous city, Lagos state university popular referred to as LASU was established by the Lagos state government in 1983.

The university has two campuses. The main campus is located in Ojo town and the other campus is located at Epe.  A few months ago the Lagos state university was ranked alongside UI and Unilag as one of the top universities in the world.

The university has the following faculties as of 2020.

  • Faculty of Science
  • Faculty of Law
  • Faculty of Arts
  • Faculty of Social Sciences
  • Faculty of Basic Medicine
  • Faculty of management
  • Faculty of clinical sciences
  • Faculty of Education

Notable alumni of the university include;

  • Oluranti Adebule, former Deputy Governor of Lagos State.
  • Brymo, singer, and songwriter
  • Chioma Chukwuka, musician, actress
  • Liz Da-Silva, Nigerian actress
  • Yinka Durosinmi, former Chairman of Ojo local government
  • Oba Saheed Ademola Elegushi, a traditional ruler
  • Desmond Elliot, actor, producer, and politician.
  • Tara Fela-Durotoye – celebrity make-up artist
  • Mudashiru Obasa – Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly.
  • Cossy Orjiakor – actress, singer
  • Ruggedman – rapper
  • Rukky Sanda – actress
  • Farida Waziri, former EFCC chairman

Website: Lasu

#2. Rivers State University of Science and Technology (RSUST)

River State University formerly known as River state university of Science and Technology is a state government-owned university located in Diobu, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria is the #2 best state university in Nigeria.

The university has total staff strength of about 2800 and a student population of about 20,000 as of 2019. In 2014 the university was ranked the best in terms of the e-learning program.

The school-run programs are mostly accreditated by the National University Commission. These programs are separated into various faculties.

  • Faculty of Sciences
  • Faculty of Engineering
  • Faculty of Law
  • Faculty of Management Sciences
  • Faculty of Environmental Sciences
  • Faculty of Agriculture
  • Faculty of Education
  • Faculty of Humanities

Notable Alumni of the University include;

  • Eberechi Wike, Judge, Rivers State High Court of Justice
  • Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, Governor of Rivers State
  • Mujahid Dokubo-Asari, Ijaw activist and Youth Leader
  • Manuela George-Izunwa, Politician
  • Austin Opara, fmr Deputy Speaker, House of Reps
  • Goodluck Nanah Opiah, Politician and Activist
  • Magnus Abe – senator
  • Judith Amaechi, fmr First Lady of Rivers State
  • Tonto Dikeh, Nollywood Actress
  • Felicity Okpete Oval, Popular Engineer
  • Mary Uranta, Actress

Website: RSUST

#3. Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT)

The#3 on the list of best universities in Nigeria is Enugu State University of Science and Technology.  The university was established on July 20, 1980, with the sole aim of filling the knowledge gap in society, the growing industrial-tech manpower demand also to catalyze the technological advancement of the people, Therefore the university’s motto is “Technology for Service”.

The university runs the following faculties;

  • Faculty of Agricultural & Natural Resources Management
  • Faculty of Applied Natural Sciences
  • Faculty of Education
  • Faculty of Engineering
  • Faculty of Environmental Sciences
  • Faculty of Law
  • Faculty of Management Sciences
  • Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • Faculty of Social Sciences

Notable Alumni of the University include;

  • Chigozie Atuanya, Nigerian actor, producer, and entrepreneur
  • Osinakachukwu Ideozu – Nigerian businessman and People’s Democratic Party politician
  • Lawrence Onochie – Nigerian pastor
  • Dave Umahi – Governor of Ebonyi State
  • Blossom Chukwujekwu – Nollywood Actor
  • Sandra Ezekwesili – Nigerian Broadcast Journalist, Radio Presenter, Public Speaker, and Compere

Website: ESUT

#4. Ambrose Alli University Ekpoma (AAU Ekpoma)

Ambrose Alli University is a Nigerian state-owned university located in Edo State, Nigeria. It was established in 1981 by the then governor of Bendel State Professor Ambrose Alli. It was formerly known as Bendel State University, Edo State University before it was changed to its present name in honor of Professor Ambrose F Alli. It is well accredited by the National Universities Commission (NUC).


  • Faculty of Education
  • Faculty of Engineering & Technology
  • Faculty of Environmental Studies
  • Faculty of Law
  • Faculty of Agriculture
  • Faculty of Arts
  • Faculty of Communication Sciences
  • College of Medicine
  • Faculty of Basic Medical Sciences
  • Faculty of Clinical Sciences
  • Faculty of Life Sciences
  • Faculty of Management Sciences
  • Faculty of Medical Laboratory Science
  • Faculty of Physical Sciences
  • Faculty of Social Sciences

Notable Alumni include;  Samantha Agazuma, a Nigerian cricketer.[10]

  • Alibaba Akpobome, a popular Nigerian comedian
  • Don Jazzy, singer
  • Festus Keyamo, lawyer, socialist, and Minister
  • Tony Elumelu, Chairman Heirs Holdings
  • Benedict Ayade, Governor, Cross river state.
  • Aisha Buhari, First Lady of Nigeria and wife of the current President
  • Pastor Chris Oyakhilome – Christ Embassy

Website: AAU Ekpoma

#5. Ekiti State University (EKSU)

On the #5 spot of our ranking is the Ekiti State University Ado Ekiti also known as EKSU. The university was established in Ado-Ekiti on 30 March 1982 during the rule of Michael Adekunle Ajasin, the first civilian head of government of Ondo State, Nigeria. The school is an active member of the Association of Commonwealth Universities. The school has a student population of about 25,000.

Website: EKSU

#6. Plateau State University (PLASU)

On the #6 spot in our ranking of best universities in Nigeria is the Plateau State University. Also notable is that it is the first university in Northern Nigeria to make the list. The University was established in 2005 by the Plateau state government, although academic activities did not begin until 2007. In 2016, the NUC accredited seventeen of its program giving it full university status.

Website: PLASU

#7. Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU)

On the #7 spot is the Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU) which is owned and operated by the Ogun state government. The university was established on March 7, 1982. Notable Alumni of the university include;

  • Uchechukwu Sampson Ogah, entrepreneur
  • Debola Ogunseye, football player
  • Yetunde Onanuga, Deputy Governor Ogun state
  • Lola Shoneyin, Nigerian poet and author
  • Toun Okewale Sonaiya, radio broadcaster
  • Sunkanmi, songwriter and singer
  • Weird MC, rapper
  • Toyin Abraham, award-winning Nollywood actor
  • Lateef Adedimeji, award-winning Nollywood Actor
  • Zainab Ahmed, current Minister of finance

Website: OOU

#8. Olusegun Agagu University of Science and Technology (OAUSTECH)

The Olusegun Agagu University of Science and Technology (OAUSTECH), Okitipupa formally known as the Ondo State University of Science and Technology (OSUSTECH) is a state government-owned and operated Nigerian university.

Ondo state university is a state-owned university located in Ondo state. It is the 8th best state university in Nigeria The school was established in 2011, although full academic activities did not begin until 2016.


#9. Osun State University (OSU)

Osun State University established by the Osun State Government under the leadership of Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola occupies the 9th position in our ranking. The university has over six campuses spread across the six zones of the state.

The university is known for not joining Nationwide ASUU strike, also has  The university also has the repute of being one of the fastest universities in Nigeria due to its speedy academic sessions.

Website: OSU

#10. Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University (COOU)

Formerly known as the Anambra State University, this university is the #10 university in Nigeria. It was established by the Anambra state government in 2000. In 2011 NUC accredited most of the institution’s programs.

Website: COOU

#11. Nassarawa State University, Keffi

Located in North central Nigeria, Nassarawa state university which was established in 2003 is the #11 spot in the list of best state universities in Nigeria.

Website: Nassarawa State University

Important Questions related to the State Universities in Nigeria

Which university is the best in Nigeria in 2020?

University of Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria

Which state university is the cheapest in Nigeria?

In May 2021, Governor Seyi Makinde slashed the salary of Lautech, Making it the cheapest state university in Nigeria

Which State University is the most expensive in Nigeria?

The Kaduna State University is the most expensive university with a total  fee of about N150,000

Is OOU You the best state university in Nigeria?

No. OOU is the #7 best University in Nigeria according to the ranking.

Which university is the most beautiful in Nigeria?

University of Ibadan has  the best architecture of all Universities in Nigeria.

Author Profile

Fishon Amos
Fishon Amos writes on Education, Rankings, Wealth, Technology, Politics and others with He has published several articles online and hopes to keep educating people through his writings. When he is not writing, he plays chess and listen to crime Podcasts on Spotify.

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