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University placement data shows wisdom of diverse academic programmes

In Summary

  • Almost 90% of students who wrote KCSE 2020 were placed.
  • Appetite for TVET courses has also increased.

Universities with a diverse range of academic programmes are the biggest beneficiaries of the KCSE 2020 candidates placement.

The latest data by the Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Service (KUCCPS) shows that shared students were allocated to institutions with appropriate academic programmes.

Shared students are those unsuccessful during competitive placement. This year, there were 9,251 shared students. Of the 142,540 students who scored a mean grade of C+ and above (minimum requirement for direct entry to university), 128,073 students (or 89.85%) were placed into degree programmes, while 6,617 went into TVET programmes (4.64%). A total of 7,850 students (5.51%) did not apply.

Public universities received the lion’s share of students. Kenyatta University led with 6,733 followed by Maseno University (6,659), Jomo Kenyatta University of Technology (6,529), University of Nairobi (6,407) and Moi University (5,187) to close the top five.

Among the private universities, Mount Kenya University leads the pack with 5,489 followed by KCA University (2,724) and Catholic University (2,691).

Academic Programmes

The data also shows a direct correlation between number of academic programmes accredited by Commission for University Education and allocations of shared students. Maseno with 246 shared students has 215 accredited programmes. Moi, which received 224 students has 242 programmes. Kisii University with Kisii 212 shared students has 215 programmes. MKU, the largest private university in Kenya received 189 shared students. It has 166 approved programmes.

On the other hand, institutions such as African Nazarene University which received 8 shared students has only 28 approved programmes, while Dedan Kimathi University with 35 programmes received 102.

Academic KUCCPS placement George Magoha TV47
Education CS George Magoha: “Some of our children after completing Form Four choose that to be the end of their education.” PHOTO/TV47

The data was released today at the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development by Education CS George Magoha. This is the 7th placement cycle since KUCCPS was established.

“We have made major strides in improving our systems and processes to enhance efficiency, equity and transparency in student placement,” said Prof. Magoha.

Prof Magoha expressed concern over the 7,850 who did not apply for placement.

“Sadly, some of our children after completing Form Four choose that to be the end of their education,” he said.

Application Prior to KCSE

He also took issue with some secondary school heads over failure to direct their students to apply for university places prior to writing their KCSE exams.

KUCCPS says that of the 10,437 secondary schools whose students sat for KCSE in 2020, only 2,506 applied for university courses before taking the test.

The Education Ministry mandates all registered candidates to indicate their university and college preferences and courses while in Form Four.

“This signals a lost opportunity for career guidance as a majority of students wait for the KCSE results before they can think of career choice,” Magoha said.

The 2021 KUCCPS data also shows a rising appetite for TVET courses. 6,617 students who attained C+ and above chose TVET programmes and were placed appropriately, up from 2,632 in 2019.

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