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Admissions Based on Educationally Less Developed States, Catchment Areas and Merit

Admission is given based on three factors - Ratio 45:35:20


In short, you're on this page to know the meanings of Merit, Catchment areas and Educationally Less Developed States - all having to do with allocation of admission spaces for prospective candidates.

If you’ve been seeking admission for some years now, you could have come across all these terms. Let me show you what they are.

Before some schools will admit new admission seekers, they first divide their proposed lists into what they will give on merit, catchment areas and less educated states.

See also: How JAMB and Each School Will Give Admission This Year

Merit Admission List

By merit, these are candidates whose scores meet or beat the departmental cut-off marks. Hence, such candidates can’t be limited by anything. Sure admission! This division is usually 45% of the entire admission list. This is in accordance with JAMB and Federal Government directive.

Catchment Areas

For Catchment areas, some schools recognize the states where they’re situated and neighboring states. Hence, they consider indigenes from these states with less marks than departmental cut-off marks. This division accounts for 35% of the total admission list.

Educationally Less Developed States

By Less educated states or less education privileged states, these include applicants from states of the nation categorized as those who are not well educated and needed to be encouraged. Meanwhile, the federal government has encouraged schools to lower their requirements for candidates from these states in order to accommodate them. This division accounts for 20% of the total admission list.

Some schools strictly comply with this formula while some recognition the catchment areas and leave the less educated states unfavoured and vice versa. For examples, let’s see the list of well-known schools and their catchment areas.

See also: How to Change Institutions/Courses the Third Time. See Guide!

A few Nigerian Schools and their Catchment Areas

  1. Ahmadu Bello University: Kaduna Adamawa , Bauchi,  Benue, Borno, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Gombe,Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Katsina, Niger, Plateau, Sokoto, Nasarawa, Yobe, Zamfara, Taraba
  2. ATBU: Bauchi Adamawa, Bauchi, Benue, Borno, Gombe, Taraba, Yobe
  3. BAYERO: Kano Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Sokoto, Zamfara
  4. FUTA: Ondo Ekiti, Lagos, Osun, Oyo, Ondo
  5. FUTMinna: Minna Niger, Benue, Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Nasarawa, Niger, Plateau,Sokoto, Zamfara
  6. FUTO: Imo Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi, Imo, Enugu
  7. FUT Yola: Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Taraba, Yobe
  8. OAU: Osun Ekiti, Lagos, Osun, Oyo, Ondo
  9. UDU: Sokoto Jigawa, Kwara, Kebbi, Katsina, Kano, Kano, Kaduna, Nasarawa, Niger, Sokoto, Zamfara
  10. UNN: Enugu Abia, Anambra, Bayelsa, Cross-River, Delta, Ebonyi, Edo, Enugu, Imo, Rivers
  11. UNIBEN: Edo Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross-River, Delta, Edo, Rivers
  12. UNICAL: Cross-Rivers Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross-River, Delta, Edo, Rivers
  13. UNIJOS: Plateau Benue, Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Nasarawa, Niger, Plareau
  14. UNILAG: Lagos Ekiti, Lagos, Osun, Oyo, Ondo, Ogun
  15. UNILORIN: Ilorin Benue, Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Nasarawa, Plareau, Sokoto, Zamfara
  16. UNIMAID: Borno Adamawa, Borno. Bauchi, Gombe, Taraba, Yobe
  17. UNIUYO: Akwa-Ibom Akwa-Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross-River, Delta, Edo, Rivers
  18. UNIZIK: Anambra, Abia, Anambra, Enugu, Ebonyi, Imo

Schools that Don't Use Catchment Areas

Here is the list of schools that don’t recon with catchment areas but only less privileged states
  1. University of Abuja (UNIABUJA)
  2. University of Ibadan (UI)
  3. Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike (UMUDIKE)
  4. University of Agriculture, Makurdi (MAKURDI) 
  5. University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT) 
  6. Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB)
  7. Federal University of Petroleum Resources Effurun (FUPRE)

Educationally Less Developed States

Now, let’s see the list of states categorized as less educated or less privileged states.
  • Adamawa, 
  • Bauchi, 
  • Bayelsa, 
  • Benue, 
  • Borno, 
  • Cross-River, 
  • Ebonyi 
  • Gombe, 
  • Jigawa, 
  • Kaduna, 
  • Kano, 
  • Katsina, 
  • Kebbi, 
  • Kogi, 
  • Kwara, 
  • Nasarawa, 
  • Niger, 
  • Plateau, 
  • Rivers, 
  • Sokoto, 
  • Taraba, 
  • Yobe, 
  • Zamfara.
See also: What JAMB and Schools Do When you Reject Admission on CAPS


When a friend of yours gains admission and you think you’re cheated for being deprived, his success could have emerged from any of the formula 45, 35, 20. If you take a closer look you may finally see beyond your nose.

After taking everything else into consideration - good O’level results, UTME score and Post UTME score, your chance to be given admission may still depend on the factors mentions above.

If your total aggregate mark is perfect for your course, in any school, no one can deny you.

If you’re limited by this, you can take advantage of these institutions that favour more of catchment areas and less privileged states. In order to do this, you must have claimed any of these states during UTME registration or earlier done change of state/local government.

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