Education System in Uganda


 EducationSchool/LevelGrade FromGrade ToAge FromAge ToYearsNotes
PrimaryPrimary Education1771377+4+2
MiddleLower Secondary - Ordinary Level  14174Uganda Certificate of Education
SecondaryUpper Secondary, Advanced Level    2Uganda Advanced Certificate of Education
VocationalVocational/Technical    3 
TertiaryTertiary      

Primary Education

Despite its best intentions, there a few really free state schools in Uganda, and the quality of paid private schools varies tremendously too. The education program that runs from February through to December, begins with 7 years of primary school education. For pupils in a class size of up to one hundred who fail to pass their leaving examinations, this ends their hopes.

Middle Education

The first phase of secondary academic education takes 4 years, at the end of which time students must pass their O-Levels before proceeding further. Alternatively they may attend a technical college for 3 years instead, and then go on to study at a technical institute, or primary teacher training college for example.

Secondary Education

Like so much of Ugandan education, secondary schooling still follows the British academic model where traditional subjects continue to be taught. A successful A-Level pass opens up the possibility of tertiary education for the lucky few who made it this far.

Vocational Education

Uganda is riddled with unemployment and young people without much hope. An urgent need exists to kick-start the economy. Many foreign aid agencies and governments are working hand in hand with local authorities, in an attempt to turn this into a reality.

Tertiary Education

Uganda EducationThere are 5 state universities, 11 religiously-affiliated universities, and 10 private secular universities in Uganda. There are also 4 technical colleges, of which 1 is private. Of the Ugandan students who qualify for tertiary education less than 50% find places though.


The second oldest, and by far the largest institution is the University of Makarere founded in 1922 and sited on a hill overlooking Kampala. It has a number of campuses, and 8 halls of residence, of which 2 are for women.


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