These are the 10 oldest universities in Africa

A look at some of the oldest universities in Africa with some of them dating back to centuries ago.

Universities in Africa do date far back in years.

Africa prides itself in having some of the oldest learning institutions not just in the continent but in the world as well. Here are some of the oldest universities in Africa with some of them dating back to centuries of years ago.

10. American University,Cairo (1919)

The American University is an independent, research university located in Cairo, Egypt. The university offers American-style learning programs at the undergraduate, graduate and professional levels, along with a continuing education program.

9. University of Algiers (1909)

The University of Algiers started as a group of 4 schools due to a Law in 1909. It is located in Algiers and currently tutors more than 100,000 students in law, medicine, and Islamic sciences.

8. Cairo University (1908)

Located in Giza, Egypt, the University of Cairo was established in 1908. Its student population is about 280,000 students and has 18 faculties.

7. University of Khartoum (1902)

University of Khartoum (UofK) was founded as Gordon Memorial College in 1902 and established in 1956 when Sudan gained independence. It is the largest and oldest university in Sudan.

6. Stellenbosch University (1866)

The university’s origin can be taken back to the Stellenbosch Gymnasium, which opened in 1866.  It became the Stellenbosch College in 1881. In April 1918, it was awarded university status and became Stellenbosch University. Its student population stands at 30,000.

5. University of Liberia (1862)

Authorized by the national government in 1851, University of Liberia opened in 1863 as Liberia College and became a university in 1951. The school is one of the oldest institutions of higher learning in West Africa.

4. University of Cape Town (1829)

The University of Cape Town located in Cape Town, South Africa is without doubt one of Africa's oldest universities. It currently admits about 27,000 students.

3. Fourah Bay College (1827)

Fourah Bay College, also referred to as the University of Sierra Leone, was established by the Church Missionary Society in 1827.  It started as an Anglican missionary school to train Africans as schoolmasters, clergymen, and catechists.

2. Al-Azhar University (970 AD)

Al-Azhar University is Egypt’s oldest university and is located in Cairo, Egypt. Currently, more than 90,000 students are enrolled there.

1. University of Al Quaraouiyine (859 AD)

Located in Fes. Morocco, the University of Al-Karaouine or Al-Qarawiyyin is said to be the oldest continuously operating institution of higher learning not just in Africa but also in the world. It was founded in 859 AD and is one of the leading spiritual and educational centers of the Muslim world.


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