The State of Higher Education in Lesotho: 2015 – 2018

The Council on Higher Education disseminated a comprehensive report in February 2020 on the state of higher education in Lesotho covering a three-year period from 2015/2016 – 2017/18. The dissemination was through a workshop where all key stakeholders were invited including higher education institutions, relevant Government Ministries, regulatory bodies, private sector, civil society and HE students. This report is compiled periodically as part of monitoring and evaluating implementation of the Higher Education Policy and the Higher Education sub-sector Strategic Plan. It is the third time this kind of report is produced. The report shows that there is progress in a number of indicators within the sub-sector. However, there are areas in which there is no progress.  The highlights are as follows:

  • Number of higher education institutions – 15
  • Government through NMDS is the main financier of higher education students.

Enrollment Statistics

  • Total enrollment in all 15 institutions was 23, 223 – Females 61.2% and Males 38.8%;
  • Students of age group 20-24 years were highest in number in institutions followed by age group 25 – 29 years;
  • Students with disability – 20 students in 2014, and 32 students in 2018 in all institutions;
  • 11,833 students studying towards diploma qualifications;
  • 8,880 students studying towards bachelor’s degree qualifications;
  • 1,061 students studying towards honours qualifications; and
  • 11 students studying towards PHD.

Foreign Students Studying in Lesotho 

SADC Protocol on Education and Training provides for 5% foreign students from SADC member states to study in Lesotho.

  • 2014 there was 1.4% foreign students studying in Lesotho; and
  • 2018 there was 0.4% foreign students studying in Lesotho.

Basotho studying outside the country in select areas:

  • Engineering – 367
  • Social Sciences – 352
  • Science – 248
  • Medicine – 131
  • Architecture and Construction – 32


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