Most universities in Ghana are renowned and well rank the world over.
A university is an institution of higher learning and research, which awards academic degrees in various academic disciplines.
Most universities in Ghana provide undergraduate as well as postgraduate education.
Below are 10 major universities in Ghana you must know.
University of Ghana (UG)
The University of Ghana is the oldest and largest of all public universities in Ghana.
It was founded in 1948, in the British colony of the Gold Coast, as the University College of the Gold Coast, and was originally an affiliate college of the University of London, which supervised its academic programmes and awarded degrees.
After independence in 1957, the college was renamed the University College of Ghana.
Later it changed its name again to the University of Ghana in 1961, when it gained full university status.
The original emphasis was on the liberal arts, social sciences, law, basic science, agriculture and medicine. However, as part of a national educational reform program, the university’s curriculum was expanded to provide more technology-based and vocational courses as well as postgraduate training.
The university is mainly based at Legon, about 12 kilometres northeast of the centre of Accra.
Its medical school is in Korle Bu, with a teaching hospital and secondary campus in the city of Accra.
It also has a graduate school of nuclear and Allied Sciences at the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, making it one of the few universities on the African continent offering programs in nuclear physics and nuclear engineering.
Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST)
The Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology is a public university established in the country, as well as the largest university in the Kumasi Metropolis and in the Ashanti Region.
KNUST has its roots in the plans of the King Asantehene Agyeman Prempeh I to establish a university in Kumasi as part of his drive towards modernization of his Ashanti kingdom.
This plan never came to fruition due to the clash between British empire expansion and the desire for King Prempeh I to preserve his Ashanti kingdom’s independence.
However, his younger brother and successor, King Asantehene Agyeman Prempeh II, upon ascending to the Golden Stool in 1935, continued with this vision.
Events in the Gold Coast in the 1940s played into his hands.
First there was the establishment of the University College of the Gold Coast. Second there were the 1948 riots and the consequent Watson Commission report which recommended that a university of sciences be established in Kumasi.
Thus, in 1949, the dream of the Prempehs’ became a reality when building started on what was to be called the Kumasi College of Technology.
The Kumasi College of Technology offered admission to its first students to the engineering faculty in 1951, and an Act of Parliament gave the university its legal basis as the Kumasi College of Technology in 1952.
The nucleus of the college was formed from 200 teacher training students transferred from Achimota College in the Greater Accra Region.
The college was affiliated to the University of London and in 1961, the college was granted full university status.
The main university campus, which is about seven square miles in area, is about eight miles to the east of Kumasi, the Ashanti Regional capital.
In November 2019, KNUST was ranked as the best university in Ghana and West Africa by the U.S News and World Report.
It was also ranked 14th in Africa and 706th in world ranking with a global score of 42.4.
KNUST is the premiere Science and Technology University and the first university in West Africa to have won the 2018 and 2019 Pan African Universities Debate Championship consecutively.
Visit KNUST at https://www.knust.edu.gh
University of Cape Coast (UCC)
The University of Cape Coast is a public collegiate research university located in Cape Coast, Ghana.
The university was established in 1962 out of a dire need for highly qualified and skilled manpower in education.
It was established to train graduate teachers for second cycle institutions such as teacher training colleges and technical institutions, a mission that the two existing public universities at the time were unequipped to fulfill.
The university has since added to its functions the training of doctors and health care professionals, as well as education planners, administrators, legal professionals and agriculturalists.
UCC graduates include Ministers of State, High Commissioners, CEOs, and Members of Parliament.
The university, which is five kilometers west of Cape Coast, is on a hill overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.
It operates on two campuses: the Southern Campus (Old Site) and the Northern Campus (New Site).
Two of the most important historical sites in Ghana, Elmina and Cape Coast Castle, are only a few kilometers from the university.
Visit University of Cape Coast at https://ucc.edu.gh/
University of Education Winneba (UEW)
The University of Education, Winneba (UEW) was established in 1992 by a government ordinance (PNDC Law 322) and with a relationship with the University of Cape Coast.
Its main aim is to train teachers for the education system of Ghana.
The University of Education, Winneba is charged with the responsibility of teacher education and producing professional educators to spearhead a new national vision of education aimed at redirecting Ghana’s efforts along the path of rapid economic and social development.
The University of Education, Winneba is expected to play a leading role in Ghana’s drive to produce scholars whose knowledge would be fully responsive to the realities and exigencies of contemporary Ghana.
In addition to three campuses in Winneba where its administrative office is located, the University has three extra campuses in addition to over 20 study centres:
The College of Technology Education – Kumasi Campus
The College of Agriculture Education – Mampong Campus
The College of Languages Education – Ajumako Campus
Visit University of Education, Winneba here https://www.uew.edu.gh
University for Development Studies (UDS)
The University for Development Studies (UDS) is Ghana’s first public University in the North.
It was established in May, 1992 by the Government of Ghana (PNDC Law 279) to “blend the academic work with that of the community in order to provide constructive interaction between the two for the total development of Northern Ghana, in particular, and the country as a whole
UDS was borne out of the new thinking in higher education which emphasizes the need for universities to play a more active role in addressing problems of the society, particularly in the rural areas.
The University by its mandate and constituency has a pro-poor focus.
This is reflected in its methodology of teaching, research and outreach services.
The specific emphasis on practically-oriented, research and field-based training is aimed at contributing towards poverty reduction in order to accelerate national development.
It began academic work in September 1993 with the admission of forty (40) students into the Faculty of Agriculture (FoA), Nyankpala and currently has student population of more than 19,720.
The University operates a multi campus system: The Faculty of Integrated Development Studies (FIDS), Faculty of Planning and Land Management (FPLM), School of Business and Law (SBL)and French Center are located on the Wa Campus.
The two Faculties were established in 1993 and 2017 respectively.
The UDS currently runs both graduate and undergraduate programmes at the various campuses of the University.
The University also runs community-outreach activities and research programmes geared towards creating an enabling environment for sustainable community development and economic growth.
Visit University for Development Studies (UDS) at https://uds.edu.gh/
Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA)
GIMPA was established in 1961 as a joint Ghana Government/United Nations Special Fund Project.
It was originally called the Institute of Public Administration, established to train public servants with administrative and professional competence to plan and administer national, regional and local services.
In 1999/2000, GIMPA was among a group of 200 public sector organisations in Ghana earmarked under the World Bank-funded Public Sector Reform Programme to be taken off Government Subvention.
GIMPA was subsequently selected under the National Institutional Reform Programme to be transformed, notably to be self-financing. Subsequently, GIMPA was taken off Government Subvention in 2001.
Today, GIMPA has been transformed from a small, public service institution to a comprehensive tertiary institution offering programmes in leadership, management, public and business administration, and technology, for both the public and private sectors, NGO’s, civil societies and many more.
Additionally, GIMPA has not only become a full-fledged university-level public institution, but also a top institute, recognised in Africa and around the world, offering excellent master’s and executive master’s degree programmes in business administration, public administration, development management, governance and leadership.
GIMPA’s clients come from the public and private sectors.
Visit GIMPA at https://nweb.gimpa.edu.gh/about/history-of-gimpa/
University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR)
The University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR) was established by an Act of the Parliament of Ghana, on December 31, 2011.
The University is a public funded national institution which seeks to provide leadership and management of energy and natural resources and be a centre of excellence in these critical areas.
The University approaches its programmes and research emphasizing interdisciplinary collaboration and taking into account, areas such as economics, law and policy, management, science, technology and engineering as well as social and political issues affecting energy and natural resources.
Prior to the passing of the bill establishing the University into law, the then President, set up a National Task Force Planning Committee on January 8, 2010 with the mandate to develop, organize and supervise the implementation of the programme for the establishment of the two new Universities at Volta and Brong Ahafo Regions.
The University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR) is a multi campus set-up and currently has three campuses located in Sunyani, Nsoatre and Dormaa Ahenkro.
The Sunyani campus which is approximately 85 acres is home to the School of Sciences; School of Natural Resources; School of Graduate Studies and the Main Administration of the University as well as the University Library.
The School of Engineering would be located at the Nsoatre campus which is approximately 2,000 acres.
The School of Agriculture and Technology and Geosciences would be situated on approximately 2000 acres of land at the Dormaa campus.
The University would also have four field training stations in Mim, Bronsankoro and Kyeraa for the Agriculture and Forest Resources Management students and one at Bui for Engineering students.
The University hopes to become a centre of excellence for the training of scientists and technologians for Ghana and beyond.
Visit University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR) at https://www.uenr.edu.gh
University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS)
The University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS) is one of the youngest public universities in Ghana.
It is located at Ho in the Volta Region of Ghana. Its operation started in September 2012, when the first batch of 154 students were admitted.
The university was established by an Act of Parliament which received the presidential approval in December 2011.
It, however, started admitting students in 2012. The university is devoted to teaching, research and service in the Health Sciences.
The university was formed with an Interim University Council that governs the affairs of the school chaired by Prof. Kofi Anyidoho, MA(Bloomington), PhD(Austin).
The Foundation Vice-Chancellor was Professor Fred Newton Binka, MBChB (Legon), MPH (Jerusalem), PhD (Basel) who served from March 2012 to July 2016.
In August, 2017, a new council was inaugurated.
Visit University of Health and Allied Sciences (UHAS) at https://www.uhas.edu.gh/en/
University of Mines and Technology (UMaT)
UMaT was first established as the Tarkwa Technical Institute in 1952.
In 1961, the university was changed to the Tarkwa School of Mines to help train manpower for the mining industry in Ghana.
UMaT became a faculty of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in 1976.
On 1 October 2001, UMaT was elevated to university college status and was known as the Western University College of KNUST.
UMaT became a fully-fledged University in November 2004 by act of Parliament (Act 677).
In 2008, the first batch of Students graduated in Tarkwa without going to KNUST for the ceremony On January 12, 2018.
The university was renamed to George Grant University of Mines and Technology in honour of Paa Grant.
Visit University of Mines and Technology (UMaT) at https://www.umat.edu.gh
University for Professional Studies (UPSA)
The University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA) formerly known as Institute of Professional Studies (IPS), is a public university in Ghana.
The main campus is located in Accra. UPSA is the first university in Ghana to provide both academic and business professional education.
The University of Professional Studies at 2012 changed the name from Institute of Professional Studies to University of Professional Studies.
UPSA is nationally and internationally accredited by the National Accreditation Board (Ghana) and the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) respectively.
It introduced the dual qualification scheme for its students ahead of the 2019/20 academic year.
With this new system, the students will be required to complete a chartered program such as the ACCA, ICAG, CIM, CIMA, ICSA and others, by the end of their degree study to better enhance their chances of employment in the job market.
Visit University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA) at https://upsa.edu.gh
A university is a place of higher learning and research.
A public university is that type of university that is own by the state, in other words they receives significant public funds through a national or subnational government.
In Ghana, public universities usually enjoy higher reputation domestically and they are often among the most influential research institutions in the world.
Many of the public universities in Ghana are ranked among the best in the world.
What public university in Ghana do you know that is not mention here?
Leave a comment below.
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