Introduction to CAPS

One of the terms Jambites are bombarded with is the acronym “CAPS”. Jambites always hear of CAPS, CAPS, CAPS everytime and some newbies don’t really know what it is all about. Anyways, this CAPS is not the normal cap you wear, this one is an acronym that means Centralized Admissions Processing System (CAPS).

In 2017, the CAPS system was introduced to replace the manual process of granting admission to admission seekers in Nigeria. This was with a view to eliminate human voluntary and involuntary errors associated with manual procedures.

What is CAPS?

CAPS is an acronym that stands for Centralized Admissions Processing System (CAPS). In previous years, universities have the autonomy of independently granting admissions to candidates. However, the government saw the need to be involved in the tertiary admissions procedure, hence, CAPS was introduced.

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CAPS gives the government (in this case, JAMB) the opportunity to screen admission list before being released by Universities.

Why Was CAPS Introduced?

CAPS was introduced by JAMB to ensure quality control, transparency and credibility of the admission process. It was initially possible that universities can put guidelines aside and grant admission to candidates with special backings. However, with CAPS, such has become very difficult. No matter who recommends you, certain requirements must be met before you can be granted admissions.

For example, if university send your name in a list to JAMB, JAMB will screen the list and if you do not score above the minimum cutoff mark, JAMB will remove your name. If you do not upload your O’level result in JAMB portal, it is the same that you do not have result, your name will never appear.

So, CAPS acts as a check and balance to the admission process in Nigeria.

How Does CAPS Work?

Your CAPS account is embedded in your JAMB profile. So, when you login to, you will see CAPS in your profile homepage. You can click on it to access your CAPS account.

CAPS consist of the following buttons:

Check Admission Status

From here, you check if you have been admitted. If you are offered admission on the JAMB CAPS portal, you can choose to accept or reject the admission.


JAMB CAPS makes provision for a “market place” in the JAMB portal where institutions can go and “request for students in Nigeria who score their cut off points.” These institutions will write to JAMB to request for the students and also give them (students) three days to respond. Also, only three universities can request for a candidate.

O’level Result

These days, JAMB requires all candidates to upload their results. No O’level result uploaded, no admission. So, JAMB created this button for candidates to confirm that their results are well uploaded.

The new policy also gives the academic board or senate of an institution the power to ‘allocate percentages to JAMB, the school and O’level results as these will be calculated to get the students’ cut off marks for post-UTME.’

JAMB wants to ensure there is a unified time for closing admission in all universities and there is now portal for admission which is be based on cut off points, quota system and catchment areas.

The CAP System is such that institutions can only admit those who meet their cut off points. According to an admission officer for a tertiary institution. “If a candidate does not meet the cut off, no matter whom he or she knows, such person cannot be admitted.”

Also, the JAMB CAPS now makes provisions for candidates to accept and reject any admission being offered to them.

CAPS also looks out for candidates who are unable to go for National Youth Service, NYSC, because they do not have JAMB admission letters. This set of students can now pay a fee for regularisation and will be able to go for the youth service.

CAPS and Universities

Each tertiary institution have a Dashboard with JAMB CAPS. This Dashboard is managed by the admission officer of each institution. The admission officer sets the university admission criteria, the admission quota and number of candidates expected for each course on the Dashboard. The criteria includes the institution’s general UTME cutoff marks, the UTME cutoff marks for each course ot programme (for merit, catchment, etc.), Post-UTME screening cutoff mark, O’level or SSCE result grading as well as other admission criteria the institution wants to use in selecting candidates.

The admission criteria differs from institution to institution. Some institutions may use all the criteria specified by JAMB (UTME Score+Post UTME score+SSCE result grading), while some institutions may use UTME Score or SSCE result grading.

The admission officer also determine the percentage weight for each of the admission criteriaset on CAPS, e.g., URME Score = 50%, Post UTME = 30%, SSCE result grading = 20%, the total of which is 100%. You should also kbow that many of the universities admit only candidates who choose them as first choice.

After all these parameters has been set, CAPS automatically rank and list the candidates that applied to an institution and are qualified for admission into the institution based on the criteria the institution has set for the system. The admissions officer downloads this list and send to the VC for approval. After ratification and approval, the admissions officer uploads the list to CAPS portal. This is where admission status is communicated to admitted students via their CAPS profile.

Upon being admitted, candidates have the right to accept or reject their admission. If you are granted the course you chose or a related course you like to study, you are expected to accept the course within a stipulated time. IF however, you were granted a different course not related to your initial course of study, or one you do not like, you have the sole right to reject that admission.

What Will Happen If I Reject My Admission?

If in any case you rejected your admission, your details is placed on JAMB Market Place as discussed above. This gives other institutions the opportunity source for you and send you admission if you qualify for their admission. In the 2019/2020 admission year, a candidate rejected political science in Niger Delta University. Surprisingly, the same institution later gave him the Law he initially chose. This is very rare though.

What Happens After I Accept My Admission?

Once admitted and you accept it, it means that you are off the admission seeking line. You have been gainfully admitted to that institution and you no longer have access to reject. You then proceed to the university for clearance as stipulated by the university. Also, you will not also appear in the JAMB Market Place again.

Benefits of JAMB CAPS (Advantages of JAMB CAPS)

1. CAPS prevents backdoor admission. This means that no matter who you know, if you do not choose and institution from the beginning, you cannot get admission into that institution because CAPS will not accept a newly introduced name.

2. The result you upload is verified by JAMB through the original body like WAEC, NECO and NABTEB who granted you that result.

3. This method ensures that universities maintains uniform academic calendar.

4. It helps institutions to comform with admissions guidelines, timeline and criteria.

5. If at all there are courses which still requires more candidates to be admitted because of low choice of such course, such institutions can visit the market place to source for candidates.

6. This method of market place in CAPS helps students with no hope of admission in one university to be admitted in another with space.

7. There is no way to gain multiple admission. Once you accept an admission, you are off the market.

8. This process ensures inclusiveness, equity, transparency and accountability in the admission circle.

9. A candidate’s academic status can be updated throughout his/her academic life in the institution (admission, deferment, transfer, withdrawal, rustication, expulsion and death).

10. Governemtn departments and institutions (e.g. NYSC, Scholarship Boards, State and Local Government, etc.) can easily access these data for official purposes.

Our major aim in Admissions and UTME Nigeria is to see that admission seekers across Nigeria get the right information at the right time to take the right decision at the accurate timing. Therefore, subscribe to our newsletter and get updates regularly.

Understanding JAMB’s Central Admission Processing System (CAPS): How it works and its Benefits to Candidates


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