The University of Ibadan (UI) has overtaken Covenant University (CU) as Nigeria’s best varsity on the Time Higher Education’s (THE) 2021 Emerging Economies University Ranking.


Covenant University had emerged Nigeria’s highest-ranked institution on the list last year, taking the 91st spot.

But in the new list, released on Tuesday, CU ranked 201–250 out of the total 606 selected institutions.

UI held the 111th spot on the list to emerge Nigeria’s best institution followed by the Lagos State University (LASU) on 155th position. The University of Lagos (UNILAG) was ranked 172 which makes it Nigeria’s third-best varsity.


Also on the list was the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) which was ranked 401-500 while Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) was among 501-606.

Below are the six Nigerian universities that made the list:

  1. UI — 111
  2. LASU — 155
  3. UNILAG — 172
  4. CU — (201– 250)
  5. UNN — (401 — 500)
  6. OAU — (501 — 606)

The development comes about a week after TheCable Lifestyle had reported how UI was the only Nigerian varsity on the 2021 QS World University Rankings by Subject.


The University of Cape Town in South Africa retained its position from last year in the top 10 and remains the top-performing institution in Africa.

China was the most represented country on the list as it secured all of the top five positions in the ranking. It also has 91 institutions in total.

According to THE, the list “includes only institutions in countries classified by the London Stock Exchange’s FTSE Group as ‘advanced emerging’, ‘secondary emerging’ or ‘frontier”.

It added that the ranking was done using 13 key performance indicators of institutions including their teaching, research, knowledge transfer, and international outlook.


This year’s ranking includes a total of 606 universities up from 533 in 2020. It also featured 48 territories which are one more than last year.

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