Mbarara University

From Education-Africa

Table of contents


Mbarara university of science and technology started in 1989 in western Uganda,Mbarara district as a medical school with only one faculty and the following courses were offered

  • Diploma in nursing
  • Degree in human medicine

Later,degree in pharmacy and medical laboratory science were introduced.


The main gate Mbarara University of Science and Technology

Later in 1995 the faculty of science was started to train science teachers as the country needed them to meet the growing demand for science teachers at that time. Physics and mathematics were the first teaching subjects.Biology and Chemistry also were introduced to widen the scope of science subjects in the faculty. Diploma and certificate Programmes in Laboratory Science Technology were started to train technicians for School Laboratories, Industry, and research institutions.

The faculty of development studies was started at around the same time with the help of foreigners who emphasized girl child education and the following courses were offered in this faculty.

  • bachelors in development studies
  • postgraduate diploma in development studies

There was need for business courses in the faculty and thus a new course was introduced that is bachelors in business administration.This new course was introduced to meet the growing demand for business managers in the country.

The institute of computer science was started in 2004 since the world was becoming computerized with the following course.

  • bachelors in computer science

In 2005,bachelors in information technology was started to cater for the growing numbers of students who opted to know more about computers and its software. Bachelors in computer engineering was introduced in the academic year 2008/2009 to train students who would operate on the computer hardware.

Faculties and Institutes

MBARARA University has the following faculties;

Faculty of science

This faculty offers the following courses;

  • Bachelor of science with education
  • certificate of laboratory technology
  • diploma in laboratory technology''

Faculty of medicine

This faculty is made up different departments and they are:

Department of Medicine Offering courses like;

  • Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (for under graduates)
  • Master of Internal Medicine
  • Master of Medicine in Paediatrics and Child Health
  • Master of Science in Biochemistry
  • Master of Dermatology
  • Master of Science in Anaesthesia
  • Master of Medicine in Ophthalmology
  • Master of Medicine in Obstetrics & Gynaecology
  • Master of Medicine in Pathology & Forensic Medicine
  • Master of Medicine in Community Practice and Family Medicine
  • Master of Public Health

Department of Nursing Offering courses like;

  • Bachelor of Nursing Science (Undergraduates)
  • Master of Nursing Science

Department of Pharmacy

  • Bachelor of Pharmacy

Department of Medical Laboratory Sciences

  • Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science

Department of Community Health

  • Advanced Diploma Health Services Management
  • Diploma in Counselling

Faculty of development studies

This faculty offers the following courses;

  • Bachelor of development studies
  • Bachelor of business administration

Institute of computer science

This faculty offers the following courses;

  • Bachelor of computer science
  • Bachelor of information technology
  • Bachelor of computer engineering

Institute of tropical forest conservation



Office of the Academic Registrar All Admissions to the University are carried out through the office of the Academic Registrar. So, if you are interested in pursuing a course leading to the award of a Certificate, Diploma, Bachelor's degree, Post-graduate diploma or diploma at the University then you have, over 32 courses to choose from.


  • An applicant should be a holder of the Uganda Certificate of Education (UCE) or its equivalent with passes in at least 6 subjects obtained at the same sitting.
  • Have obtained at least 2 advanced level passes of the Uganda Advanced Certificate of Education (UACE) or its equivalent taken at the same sitting, secured in the current year or previous two years.
  • For the Postgraduate programmes, applicants must have a good honors degree or its equivalent from a recognized University.

What Courses are Offered?

(1) Certificate Courses:

(2) Diploma Courses:

(3) Bachelors Courses:

(4) Masters Courses:

(5) PhD Courses:


The vice chancellor showing the visitors around the university library.

Research starts to be done at Bachelor level (third year students in faculty of science), master courses and PhD courses.

MUST offers day and night programmes to students taking different courses and different level of academics.


MUST has three major projects that is:.

1. MUST Peer Project (MPP)

2. MUST HIV Institutional Policy (HIP)

3. Lund University and Mbarara University of Science and Technology (LUMUST).

MUST Peer Project

MPP deals with peer education. It gives information to students and the rest of MUST community about HIV/AIDS. It is responsible for training more peer educators in the MUST community. Peer Education: Peer project was established. This has a students’ centre that addresses sexual reproductive health for MUST students. It has been very successful.

Image: cat.jpg

MUST Community workshop


  • Workshops
  • Talent shows
  • Weekly prints
  • cousreling and guidance
  • Information gathering


  • To enhance the University’s capacity to develop safety measures, information management, preventive and control measure.
  • To put in place sensitive procedures and practices in regards to; Admission, recruitment, promotion, HIV sensitization, Voluntary Counseling and testing for sero status and HIV/AIDS health care.

MUST HIV Institutional Policy

At MUST, the HIV/AIDS policy was launched in 2004 with the purpose of providing HIV/AIDS information, care and support to the MUST community. The HIV/AIDS Institutional Policy is currently being implemented with support from Sida through the LUMUST Project.


The mission is to improve health by providing support and information on HIV/AIDS


  • To enhance the University’s capacity to develop safety measures, information management, preventive and control measure.
  • To put in place sensitive procedures and practices in regards to; Admission, recruitment, promotion, HIV sensitization, Voluntary Counseling and testing for sero status and HIV/AIDS health care.
  • To Support the national efforts to develop and communicate HIV/AIDS prevention, care and advocacy messages in the neighboring community.
  • To develop linkages with the local and international community, government and nongovernmental organisations

HIP Activities

  • Workshops are conducted with stakeholders; MUST staff members and students, faith based organisations, local council leaders and hostel owners among others with the aim of enhancing staff members’ and students’ welfare.
  • Voluntary counseling and testing services are provided to the MUST community.
  • Curriculum development and review to integrate HIV/AIDS into teaching has been carried out.
  • Capacity building through courses, peer education and workshops for the students and staff members are ongoing.


HIP meeting in the conference hall (Faculty of development studies)


Counseling exercise


During the period of March 2001 to May 2001 meetings were between staff of Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST), Uganda and Lund University, Sweden. The output of the meetings was a joint proposal which was presented to SIDA for possible funding. Funds for Phase I (January 2001 to December 2003) were released.

SIDA was impressed with the performance of phase one and accepted to extend the project to a four year second phase (January 2004 – December 2007).

Project Objectives

The overall objective is to improve the access and quality of health care for the population in South Western Uganda.

Specific Objectives

  • To increase understanding and interest among undergraduate students of health challenges in other countries.
  • To contribute to development of curricula in community health teaching.
  • To contribute to the development of teaching and managerial/administrative staff.
  • To develop and implement short post graduate courses.
  • To jointly develop courses and educational methods/materials.
  • To improve the content and quality of on going health interventions, building on current evidence base and on research linked to project.
  • To support project activities and enhance communication and learning skills by the use of the learning centre.

Project Activities and Achievements

  • Institutional Collaboration
  • The Masters of Public Health course offered by Lund University and done by students at MUST has been in progress. 14 students have benefited from this course that is net based.
  • Students Exchange: At least five students from either institutions have participated in the students exchange program each year since 2001 and the number is increasing.
  • Staff Exchange: There has been staff exchange aimed at improving Human Resource Development and Technical back up from Lund University, Sweden.
  • Peer Education: Peer project was established. This has a students’ centre that addresses sexual reproductive health for MUST students. It has been very successful.
  • Net Based Learning Centre: The Learning Centre hosts the Masters of Public Health Course offered by Lund University Sweden, and done by students at MUST. It also hosts other Short Net Based Courses.
  • Development of Short Courses in Participatory Approaches and Medical Informatics.
  • Collaborative Research.

Academic staff

The academic staff of Mbarara University of Science and Technology is divided according to the different faculties

  • Science, Medicine,Development studies and Institute of Computer Science with the different corresponding courses.

They work towards academic excellency among the students through continuous assessment; assignments,tests and other projects. Their success is attributed to their working hand in hand with the administrative staff. They too are responsible for the supervision students' and personal research. The academia at MUST have a good working relationship with their students.

the academic staff of MUST has a very good working relationship with its students ie they participate in the sports activities and games such as football, netball, basketball and many other activities.


Students having a friendly march with the academic staff

The academic staff at the University try their best to ensure that at the end of it all their students achieve their academic credentials.This encourges the public to want to associate with this marvelous University.




Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST) has a student body of over 3,000 students. It is one of the universities in Uganda where students receive quality accommodation facilities. Students are provided with good health standards, good feeding standards and entertainment through its numerous projects like MPP.

Mbarara University has a number of students from all over the country from different ethnic groups, back ground and religion who socialize in accordance to the norms of the university.

Descent dressing is encouraged at MUST especially for the female students to keep the ethical values of the university. Students doing different courses usually interact in activities like sports through the inter-faculty sports challenge, entertainment activities and trips.

Democracy is highly respected in MUST. Students are given a chance to choose their leaders starting from the highest political position of guild president to the lowest political position of a class president.The guild president is strictly allowed to serve for only one academic year.

MUST like any other institution of learning has rule and regulation that are expected to be followed by the all students in order to control their moral, social and ethical behavior.

Views of students doing different courses

From faculty of science.

MUSOKE CHRISTOPHER BS Student II (Biology and chemistry)

MUST is a great place to have your first degree from. The attention from our lecturers is high making it one of the best university in the country as far as academics is concerned. Although the work is challenging, the people you meet and experience you have, far outweighs the course load. It's a great opportunity indeed. The academic environment is stimulating,open-minded and progressive. To have good grades you have to take classes regularly in different course units, get to know your professor and pick his/her brains and work hard. Those that just want a degree and get out, MUST isn't for them. Students here are definitely on their tangents, busy and hardworking in their fields of research, projects and journals to raise science in the country, however still friendly and warm. Being at MUST you get the chance to meet some of the most amazing people, not just in terms of talent & brain power, but in terms of character, generosity, and caring heart/vision for others. With the brilliant lecturers we have in our faculty, course works are a routine and hard just to stimulate our reading culture.Lecturers are generally approachable, though you have to take the initiative to meet them.Faculty of science is a faculty with a very distinguished set of professors and Lectures, If you make an effort to speak with professors I have found that they are almost universally interested in your thoughts and more than happy to spend time talking with you. The education in science and psychology which you are given is second to none and the world of ideas to which you are exposed is mind blowing.

Accommodation isn't the best here although it still makes you feel at home. Meals, aesthetic struture, finacial aid in researches are fairly good but i think there is still room for improvement.Though am not a person who enjoys partying, let me give my view about the campus social life. There are parties and things going on most weekends, but I have heard they are lame. There is less a culture of partying here than at some other higher institutions of learning. Probably because the university does not make much of an effort to provide any unified social experiences and i think this makes us less of a community.


Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST) has many activities which are carried out on a semester and academic year interval. Activities include;

  • Games and sports
  • Elections
  • Examinations assessment
  • Community work and many others

SPORTS ACTIVITIES MUST engage in a number of games and sports activities, these include;

  • Football
  • Net ball
  • Darts
  • Chess
  • Volley ball
  • Table tennis
  • Athletics and many others

Both male and female students participate equally in various games and sports activities. MUST participate in big inter-university competitions and other big national competitions. This has enabled to keep the spirit of sports at MUST. A number of students have been given scholarships due to their talents in various sports activities.

There are Inter-faculty and inter-course competitions where students from different faculties and from different course programmes respectively compete in various games. This has enabled students to develop their talents at a lower level.

The sports activities at MUST are carried out throughout the academic year.

Elections MUST students utilize their rights and freedom in choosing student leaders. This is done in the second semester of each academic year. All students in different faculties are allowed to stand for any position in the guild office except those in first years irrespective of the course. This has enabled MUST students to develop the spirit of democracy since the guild office is held democratically.

Academic Assessment. This activity is carried out at the end of each semester. Students are examined and marks are awarded according to the student's performance. The academic assessment is very important at MUST as it determines who to continue at MUST. Consistant poor academic performance may lead to expulsion thus academic excellence is paramount at MUST.

Community work Different faculties send their students to communities to perform specialized and professional work. This activity is carried out in the beginning of second semester. This enables students to practice their specialized professions in different communities. Student teachers in the faculty of science go for school practice, Medical students from faculty of medicine go for community practice, Information Technology students go for industrial training among others.




Mbarara university has a good study environment. Reading venues range from the natural cool venues and calm environment to the manmade facilities such as lecture rooms and the main library. These provide an opportunity to both staff and the students to do their studies in an appropiate places. The cool breeze from River Rwizi creats an environment that is condusive for personal reading. Be encouraged to come to a university of good reapition.