Applying to university in Nigeria

Updated - April 30, 2024

If you’re an aspiring higher education candidate in Nigeria, we understand that navigating the application process can be a daunting task. That’s why we’ve created this step-by-step guide to help simplify the process for you. Whether you’re a fresh high school graduate or a working professional seeking to advance your education, this guide is designed to provide you with all the information you need to successfully apply for admission to a tertiary institution in Nigeria. So let’s dive in and get you started on your journey to academic success!

Step 1


The first step in applying for admission to a university in Nigeria is to research the universities available. Look for universities that offer programs in your chosen field of study, and check their admission requirements. You can find information on the universities’ websites or by contacting their admissions office.

Step 2

Select a University & Program

After researching, choose the university and program you want to apply for. Make sure the program aligns with your career aspirations and you meet the academic requirements for the course/institute. This will be needed when registering for JAMB.

Step 3

Obtain an O'level Result

To apply to any Nigerian university, you must have a minimum of five(5) credit passes in your O’level result, which must include English and Mathematics. Ensure you obtain your O’level result from a recognized examination body such as WAEC, NECO, or NABTEB.

To apply for direct entry admission in Nigeria, you must have a minimum of two A-Level passes or equivalent, and a National Diploma (ND) or Higher National Diploma (HND) from a recognized institution.

It’s important to note that registration dates can vary from year to year, so it is crucial for students to check with the examination body or their schools for the specific and up-to-date dates and requirements for the year they intend to take the exam.

Neco logo

Step 4

Register & take the JAMB UTME

Register for the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination: UTME is a standardized exam that is compulsory for all candidates seeking admission into Nigerian universities. 

Apply to the university of your choice through JAMB CAPS by filling out the appropriate application form and making payment for the application fee, making sure you scan and upload your O’level and/or A’level results, National Diploma (ND) or Higher National Diploma (HND) certificate, and any other relevant documents required by the university and JAMB.

For Direct Entry: Purchase and complete the Direct Entry (DE) application form from the JAMB website or designated banks.

Ensure you meet the minimum score required by the university you intend to apply to.

To register for UTME, visit

Step 5

Obtain the University Post-UTME Form

Most universities require candidates to purchase their post-UTME form and complete an online application. Ensure you provide accurate and up-to-date information, including your O’level result, JAMB result, and personal details.

Direct entry candidates are also required to register and participate in the Post-UTME screening exercise of the chosen institution.

Step 6

Attend the University Post-UTME Screening

Once you have successfully completed the online application, the university will invite you to attend the post-UTME screening exercise. Ensure you arrive early and bring along your printout of the application form and other required documents.

Step 7

Check Admission Status

After the post-UTME screening exercise, check the university’s admission list to confirm if you have been offered admission. If you have been offered admission, accept the offer and proceed to complete the registration process.

Step 8

Accept or reject admission

If you are offered admission, you can either accept or reject the admission offer. If you accept the admission offer, you will be required to pay the acceptance fee and follow other instructions to complete the admission process.

Step 9

Complete registration

After accepting the admission offer, complete your registration by paying the required fees and submitting all necessary documents to the university.


Admission requirements vary by institution and program, but generally include a minimum score on the UTME exam, credits in certain subjects at the SSCE level, and meeting the institution’s specific cutoff mark.

The UTME exam is usually held in April, and universities begin accepting applications after the exam. It’s best to start researching and preparing for the application process several months in advance to ensure you have all necessary documents and meet admission requirements.

The application process varies by institution, but generally involves submitting an application form online or in person, along with supporting documents such as academic transcripts, certificates, and other required documents. Be sure to carefully review each institution’s specific application process and deadlines.

Application fees vary by institution, but typically range from ₦2,000 to ₦10,000. Some institutions may also require additional fees for specific programs or services.

Contact the admissions office of the institution(s) you are interested in applying to for more information. You can also consult with a guidance counselor or education consultant for assistance.

Please check our comprehensive guides page for more information and guidance.

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