There are approximately forty-eight universities in Kenya, twenty-two of which are public and twenty-six private. While public establishments are mostly funded by the state, only a small portion of places are sponsored by the government, and most students need to self-sponsor their tuition. The country’s private establishments charge fees for tuition as well as admission, which are generally higher than in the public sector. Language of instruction is English or Swahili for virtually all of the degrees, and the educational system is highly influenced by Anglo-Saxon tradition (see below).
Conditions for international students are subject to individual universities’ regulations, and to further requirements of residency. As of 2014, over 400 000 students were enrolled at Kenyan universities, approximately 215 000 of them in the private sector. For more information please refer to https://www.education.go.ke/.
The Kenyan educational system is strongly influenced by Anglo-Saxon educational tradition. It follows the ‘bachelor's master's doctorate system’: contrary to the UK, the length of Bachelor’s degree usually comprises four years. It is followed by a Master’s typically lasting two years, culminating in a Doctoral degree of two to three years. Some of the universities offer tuition by exclusively by research, others by coursework and thesis. Assessment for undergraduate degrees typically takes form of written examination, with a portion of the mark being awarded for in-class assignments.
Enrolment into Bachelor’s programs is conditional on possession of a Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education or recognized equivalent such as A-levels or IB. To be accepted to a Master’s or Doctoral programmes, students must have a relevant Bachelor or Master’s degree respectively, with second class Bachelor’s honours being commonly required. An intermediate level of proficiency in English (B2) is commonly required for non-native speakers, usually demonstrated with TOEFL certificate.
In terms of financing the studies, public as well as private universities charge a fee for each year of enrollment. While top performing home-based students may be eligible for government sponsorship, for other students the annual fees vary between approximately £750 and £1 360, with the exception of medical studies costing approximately £3 600. For international students, a surcharge of 20% is commonly required.
Information for International Students
Unlike in other countries, all foreign students are required to have a Kenyan pupil pass before the commencement of the admission process, which needs to be validated by the The Principal Secretary Ministry of Interior and Coordination. The admission process is usually administered by the university of one’s choice. Nonetheless, a proof of previous education, language proficiency certificate, two passport-quality photographs and tuition fee payment receipts form an integral part of virtually each admission process.
Living costs have been estimated at between £320 and £480 per month. Additionally, international students are, according to present governmental regulations, barred from working in Kenya alongside their studies, eliminating the possibility of generating any extra income.