A number of independent surveys have ranked Mount Kenya University (MKU) as one of the top universities in Kenya.
The latest listing of Webometrics’ ranking of world universities puts MKU in the league of top five private universities and number 13 overall in Kenya.
Latest Alexa ranking shows that MKU’s website is the third most visited in Kenya.
On its part, UniRank ranks MKU among the top six nationally and number 96 in Africa. This was in a survey of the top 200 recognised higher education institutions in Africa.
MKU principal in charge of corporate services and quality assurance, Prof Peter Wanderi, explains that the university’s growing popularity is a result of its commitment to share activities with the global community through online publishing.
“In this Information Age, it is only right to inform our publics what we are doing in teaching and research,” he says. “Through various digital platforms, we are able to share knowledge widely.”
He adds: “We are doing our best to register improvement in the world map ranking as we strategically position MKU among the premier universities in the world.”
In its survey, uniRank considered 62 universities in Kenya. The ranking also rated universities’ social media presence. MKU scored highly on many criteria. Its Facebook page was ranked number two. Its YouTube posts scooped position three, whereas its Twitter account came in fourth. The university’s Instagram page was, however, not ranked.
On its website, Webometrics explains that its rank of a university “is strongly linked to the volume and quality of the contents it publishes on the Web”.
Prof Wanderi reports that MKU developed 15 sub-websites for schools, alumni and its counselling centre. He believes continuous uploading of university publications and documentaries on YouTube contributed to its top listing.
MKU also submits its links to trusted external directories and updates sitemaps.
“We continuously maintain the university’s websites while implementing best practice,” Prof Wanderi added.
Faculty members are encouraged to cite each other in their publications.
The university uploads course material videos on YouTube and Slideshare, amassing likes as a result.
In the recent past, it has uploaded more scholarly content on its e-repository, one of the riches in the region.
Late last year, the university organised three conferences (the 5th International Interdisciplinary Research Conference, Public Health Conference and Hospitality Conference). The findings from these conferences have been documented online.
Prof Wanderi adds that the university started an e-help desk where students can interact with customer care officers through a live chat system and social media pages: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
MKU’s increased partnerships and linkages with industry and local, regional and international universities have also boosted its online presence.
Prof Wanderi says the university bets on continuous improvements in e-service delivery as key in enhancing its future ranking. “We look forward to offering more e-interaction through our teaching portals and I-Hub solutions,” he explains.
“MKU will continue sharing research findings through our e-platforms and repository portals,” he adds.
The university, he says, shall strive to offer competitive academic programmes at all times.