University of Zambia

The University of Zambia
MottoService and Excellence
Established12 July 1966; 57 years ago (12 July 1966)
Endowment$35.81 million (2015)[1]
ChancellorNgwira Lackson
Vice-ChancellorAnne Lungowe Sikwebele (acting)
Academic staff
Administrative staff
15°23′41″S 28°19′56″E / 15.39472°S 28.33222°E / -15.39472; 28.33222
Campus2 urban campuses
AffiliationsAAU, ACU, HEA

The University of Zambia (UNZA) is a public university located in Lusaka, Zambia. It is Zambia's largest and oldest learning institution. The university was established in 1965 and officially opened to the public on 12 July 1966. The language of instruction is English.[2]


The beginnings of UNZA can be traced back to before the Second World War when the idea to establish a University in Northern Rhodesia was conceived. However, plans were halted when the war broke out and only revived after. The colonial government instituted plans to set up a Central African University College, for Africa, due to the development of higher education institutions in most parts of Africa.[citation needed]

The Central Africa council (CAC) appointed a committee to investigate requirements for a college for higher education and, it subsequently recommended that a college for higher education be established. A subsequent investigation into the need for higher education for Africans in Central Africa was conducted by Sir Alexander Carr-Saunders in 1952, with a follow-up report submitted in March 1953. The Southern Rhodesia Government accepted the establishment of a multi-racial University College and the commission consequently recommended that an institution be established in Salisbury. However, a minority report written by Alexander Kerr, provided a counter argument suggesting that the establishment of a higher education institution on the basis of equality between races was not feasible and thus recommended that a university for non-Europeans be established in Lusaka.[citation needed]

The political climate, as a result of the independence struggle, in the late 1950s and early 1960s made the idea of an all-inclusive University College of Rhodesia less attractive. As a result, plans to solicit support for the establishment of a higher education institution in Lusaka were initiated. In March 1963, the new Northern Rhodesia Government appointed a commission, the Lockwood Commission, led by Sir John Lockwood to assess the feasibility of setting up a university for Northern Rhodesia. The commission placed a lot of emphasis on autonomy and thus recommended the establishment of a university with no ties with already established universities in Britain. The report also recommended the establishment of the University of Zambia as a full-fledged university from the onset.[citation needed]

A Provisional Council of the University of Zambia was put in place after enactment of the University of Zambia Act, 1965. In July 1965, Douglas G. Anglin was appointed Vice Chancellor and, in October 1965, President Kenneth David Kaunda gave the assent of Act no 66 of the 1965 act.[3]

The University of Zambia was inaugurated on 13 July 1966 following the appointment of President Kenneth David Kaunda as the first Chancellor on 12 July 1966.

Following his release from prison South African anti-apartheid revolutionary and political leader Nelson Mandela addressed students at the University of Zambia in February of 1990 in his first trip abroad and first university speech since his release.[4]

The School of Veterinary Medicine was awarded the Japanese Foreign Minister’s Commendation for their contributions to promotion of international cooperation in the technical cooperation field on December 1, 2020.[5][6]


University of Zambia as seen from the School of Education

Its main campus, the Great East Road Campus, is along the Great East Road, about 7 km from the CBD. It also has the Ridgeway Campus also located within Lusaka City at the University Teaching Hospital; this campus houses students pursuing medical and pharmacological courses.[7]

University of Zambia School of Mines front view
University of Zambia Multi-Purpose Teaching and Learning Centre foundation stone


The University of Zambia has over 157 undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes. The University of Zambia is divided into the following faculties:

School of Agricultural Sciences[8]

  • Agricultural Economics and Extension Education
  • Animal Science
  • Food Science and Nutrition
  • Plant Science
  • Soil Science

School of Engineering[9]

University of Zambia School of Engineering
  • Agricultural Engineering
  • Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Geomatic Engineering

School of Education[10]

  • Adult Education and Extension Studies
  • Advisory Unit For Colleges Of Education
  • Educational Administration and Policy Studies
  • Educational Psychology, Sociology and Special Education
  • Library and Information Science[11]
  • Language and Social Sciences
  • Mathematics and Science Education
  • Primary Education[12]
  • Religious Studies

School of Humanities and Social Sciences[13]

  • Development Studies
  • Economics
  • History
  • Political and Administrative Studies
  • Population Studies
  • Psychology
  • Philosophy and Applied Ethics
  • Media and Communication Studies (formerly Mass Communication)
  • Literature and Language
  • Gender Studies
  • Social Work and Sociology

School of Law[14]

  • Public Law
  • Private Law

School of Mines[15]

  • Geology
  • Mining Engineering
  • Metallurgy and Material Processing

School of Medicine[16]

  • Anatomy
  • Biomedical Sciences
  • Physiological Sciences
  • Nursing Sciences
  • Medical Education Development
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Paediatrics and Child Health
  • Pathology and Microbiology
  • Pharmacy
  • Physiotherapy
  • Psychiatry
  • Public Health
  • Surgery
  • Internal Medicine

School of Natural Sciences[17]

  • Biological Sciences
  • Chemistry
  • Mathematics and Statistics
  • Physics
  • Geography
  • Computer Studies

School of Veterinary Medicine[18]

  • Biomedical Studies
  • Clinical Studies
  • Disease Control
  • Para-Clinical Studies
  • Central Services and Supply

Graduate School of Business[19]

  • Business Administration
  • Masters in Business Administration



UNZA is a member of the Association of African Universities, the Association of Commonwealth Universities, and the International Association of Universities.[citation needed]

Notable people


  1. ^ "Self-financing of public universities in Developing Countries: A case of the University of Zambia (page 2)". University of Zambia. November 11, 2017. Retrieved July 24, 2023.
  2. ^ "History | University of Zambia". Retrieved 2020-05-24.
  3. ^ "The National Assembly of Zambia" (PDF). National Assembly of Zambia. Retrieved May 24, 2020.
  4. ^ Macmillan, Hugh (2014). "The University Of Zambia and the Liberation of Southern Africa, 1966–90". Journal of Southern African Studies. 40 (5): 943–959. doi:10.1080/03057070.2014.946216. JSTOR 24566707. S2CID 144320655.
  5. ^ Foreign Minister’s Commendations for FY 2020 | Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan
  6. ^ Foreign Minister’s Commendations for FY 2020 (Groups) | Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan
  7. ^ "Medicine | University of Zambia". Retrieved 2020-05-30.
  8. ^ "School of Agricultural Sciences". University of Zambia. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
  9. ^ "School of Engineering". University of Zambia. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
  10. ^ "School of Education". University of Zambia. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
  11. ^ "Department of Library and Information Science". University of Zambia Department of Library and Information Science. 25 May 2020.
  12. ^ "Department of Primary Education | University of Zambia". Retrieved 2020-05-25.
  13. ^ "School of Humanities and Social Sciences". University of Zambia. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
  14. ^ "School of Law". University of Zambia. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
  15. ^ "School of Mines". University of Zambia. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
  16. ^ "School of Medicine". University of Zambia. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
  17. ^ "School of Natural Sciences". University of Zambia. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
  18. ^ "School of Veterinary Medicine". University of Zambia. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
  19. ^ "Graduate School of Business". University of Zambia. Retrieved 13 December 2017.
  • Southern African University
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