Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)

1. What do I need to do in the event I want to defer?
In the event a student wants to defer, he/she should write to the Academic Registrar through the Dean.
Deferment is given for a maximum of 2 years.
Once the student feels that they are ready to come back, they should request for readmission by writing to the Academic Registrar through the Dean.
2. How do I go about interfaculty transfer?
For new students, first they should report to the Academic Registrar where they are required to pay a fee. Then they go online to request the transfer. Transfer is only effected if the student meets the requirement for the course.
For continuing students, first and foremost they must have passed all the units being offered where he/she is. Then they should write to the Academic Registrar through the Dean requesting for the transfer.
3. What are the course requirements for new applicants?
A person shall be registered as a candidate if he/ she satisfies the prescribed University and School minimum entry requirements.
In addition, the candidates must have passed KCSE with a mean grade of C+ or equivalent qualifications, with passes in at least three subjects from either of the two alternatives (A or B)

Course Requirements
Alternative A Alternative B
Chemistry - C+ Physical Sciences - C+
Biology - C+ Biological Sciences - C+
Physics - C+ Geography - C+
Geography - C+ Mathematics - C+
Mathematics - C+  

4. Who qualifies for a scholarship?
Several scholarships and grants are available for both undergraduates and Post graduate students who are seeking for financial assistance. The information below is available for those willing to apply for aid.
Scholarships available for undergraduates are;

  • Rattansi Education
  • The Rockefeller Foundation
  • Aga Khan Foundation
  • Prof. Muriuki Scholarship; Offered by University of Nairobi

Scholarships available for Postgraduates are;

  • Gandhi Smarak Nidhi Fund Board of Trustees
  • DAAD Scholarships
  • DADA- Alice Atieno Oluoko
  • Gandhi Smarak Nidhi fund; Offered by University of Nairobi
  • The Rockefeller Foundation
  • Aga Khan Foundation
  • Prof. Muriuki Scholarship; Offered by University of Nairobi

5. What is a Supplementary examination?
Supplementary examination is an examination offered to provide an opportunity for students who fail to meet the required number of units passed to proceed to the next year.
6. What is a Special examination?
A Special Examination is any examination other than the regular or Supplemental Examinations. Permission to write a Special Examination may be given on the basis of compassionate or medical grounds with appropriate supporting documents.
In order to qualify, the reason for missing the exam with supporting documentation must be reported to the Dean before the commencement of the normal examination.
7. Under what circumstances do I do a supplementary exam?
A student will be admitted to supplementary examination in the courses that he / she has failed provided that he/ she has passed in at least seven units in the first or second year or in six units in the third year or fourth year.
If after sitting supplementary examinations in the first and second year a candidate passes in less than 10 units, he/she will be required to repeat the year.
Similarly if in the third and fourth year a candidate after sitting supplementary examinations passes in less than eight units, he/she shall be required to repeat the respective year of study.
8. I was admitted to pursue a Bachelor of Science but I would like to pursue Biochemistry. Is it possible?
Yes it is. If one intends to be admitted into Biochemistry after their first year of study, he/she will be required to select units from Chemistry Department and other units
from the School of Biological Sciences that is, Botany/Zoology units and School of Mathematics. This is a competitive programme which admits only the best twenty to thirty (20 - 30) first year students who have fulfilled the requirements. Students admitted to this programme will in addition to the one year taken at the School of Physical Sciences, take four (4) years. Thus, in total the students take a total of five (5) years.
The student must therefore notify their sponsor because of the extra 1 year which they will be required to pay for themselves.
9. Are there on-campus jobs for needy students?
Yes there are. However, the student should visit Prof. Muriuki of the Special Student Advisor, or see the Assistant Dean of Students at the College.
10. I have been admitted for a Bachelor of Science degree. How will my certificate read?
During the third and fourth years of study, students specialize in either one or two of the subjects within the school. The area of specialization in the third and fourth years of study shall be indicated in the degree certificate. It could be one subject major or a combination of two subjects.
11. In the event I repeat a year. Will HELB cater for the extra year?
No. HELB caters for the duration of the programme. For undergraduates for instance, HELB will only cater for four years.
12. What should I do if I lose my I.D or examination card?
In the event you lose your Student I.D or examination card, you should visit a police station and obtain an abstract.
13. If I am to leave the university for a few days, who should I notify?
If a student is to leave the University a couple of days, he/she should notify the Department office or Dean’s office.
14. Are there any consequences if I do not attend lectures?
Yes. The University requires that students meet the two thirds (2/3) class attendance threshold to be allowed to sit examinations.
15. Are there any placement opportunities?
Students should enquire from their respective Departments.
16. How are the degrees classified?
The final award of the degree shall be based on the average scored in the 3rd and 4th years of study and shall be classified into First Class, Second (Upper division), Second Class (Lower Division), and Pass as follows:

  • 70 - 100% First Class Honours
  • 60 - 69% Second Class (Upper Division)
  • 50 - 59% Second Class (Lower Division)
  • 40 - 49% Pass

A student who repeats the course and retakes examinations in such courses in the third and fourth part of study, or, does a supplementary exam outside the four years period shall not be eligible for the award of an honours degree.
17. Are there any mentors in the School?
Every department in the School of Physical Sciences has a mentor allocated for each year of study.
Female students are also mentored by Women in Science.
18. What is the clearance process?
Clearance is done online. However the student must first and foremost get clearance from his/her Department.
Those seeking online clearance must avail his/her student I.D and Departmental clearance document.
19. As a foreign student, how do I get a pupils pass?
The Centre for International Programmes and Links (CIPL) has been mandated to assist the students in processing of Pupil’s Pass. Therefore foreign students should apply for pupils pass through that office. However, students are expected to pay for the pupils pass annually (each academic year).
They must also register with (CIPL) which is based at the Main Campus

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