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Recognition of foreign school-leaving certificates

General information

Education records obtained abroad can be recognised in Saxony. On request, the equivalence with Saxon high school-leaving certificates (Hauptschulabschluss, Realschulabschluss) or tertiary entrance qualification (Abitur) is assessed, and a verdict given.

If you are planning to attend school abroad, you can also receive advice on the requirements for subsequent recognition of foreign education records in Saxony.

Competent body

Requirements

The recognition requirements vary greatly, and always depend on the individual case.

You can request a recognition if you live in the Free State of Saxony or need the recognition for an apprenticeship, course, professional occupation or other occupation in the Free State of Saxony.

Tertiary entrance qualification

The central office of foreign education for the Conference of Education Ministers contains extensive documentation for a number of states regarding education, the various foreign university degrees and qualifications, the requirements for obtaining them, and information on classifying these in relation to the German university degrees and qualifications.

Process

Residence in Saxony

If you reside in Saxony and are aged 25 years or less, first contact the regional office of the Saxon Education Agency relevant to your place of residence (Bautzen, Chemnitz, Dresden, Leipzig, Zwickau). There, you can arrange a special “academic career” consultation during which you will be advised of your education options in the Free State of Saxony. In the event the consultation results in your academic career being continued, no formal recognition procedure is necessary. Bring the originals and a single copy of any previous certificates or academic records to the academic career consultation. You will be given proof of this consultation, which you should enclose with your request for recognition.

If you are aged over 25 years, you are not entitled to any special academic career consultation, and should thus lodge your request for recognition directly with the Dresden Regional Office of the Saxon Education Agency.

 

Place of residence in another federal state or country

Lodge the request for recognition of your qualifications directly with the Dresden Regional Office of the Saxon Education Agency.

Decision

After submitting your application, it is assessed, and a decision is made regarding the equivalence of your academic record to a German qualification. You will receive a written notice.

Note: 

As part of the study approval procedure, some universities classify proof of foreign preparatory training independently; this classification only applies for the respective university. In that case, an ordinary recognition procedure through a certificate recognition office would not be necessary. If applicable, enquire beforehand about the procedure used at the university you wish to attend.


If you intend to apply to several different universities or vocational colleges, the notice of recognition from the certificate recognition office, which is only issued once, would be beneficial given its scope of application, as it is accepted by all centres.

 

Forms & online services

Necessary documents

  • recognition of foreign school-leaving certificates – Request for recognition of lower secondary school completion certificate, intermediate secondary school completion certificate, university entrance qualification
  • recognition of foreign school-leaving certificates – Request for recognition of educator qualifications, technical school qualifications and teacher training courses
  • recognition of foreign school-leaving certificates – Data sheet on recognition of a lower secondary school completion certificate, intermediate secondary school completion certificate, university entrance qualification

Use the relevant form to lodge your request. Complete it in full and submit it along with the following documents:

  • academic records / school leaving certificate issued abroad or report from the educational institution last attended (including the translation of this proof)
  • proof of school attendance in Germany
  • proof of academic career consultation (for applicants aged 25 years or less)
  • copy of ID card or passport
  • if applicable, proof of refugee status
  • if applicable, proof of name change (marriage certificate, with a German translation if necessary)

Insofar as you have already sat a university admission examination or completed a university course in your country of origin, add the following proof to your documents:

  • proof of foreign university admission examination
  • proof of foreign course(s) with course and examination marks (overview of subjects and grades)
  • if applicable, a foreign degree (for example Bachelor’s degree)
  • translations of the aforementioned proof
Important information: 

All documents (except documents stating civil status) which you submit for the purposes of having foreign training qualifications recognised must be done so as certified copies. The certification on the copy must be in the original and contain the following:

  • declaration that the copy matches the original
  • date and place of certification
  • original signature of the certifying public servant
  • original imprint of the official seal (generally includes an emblem, not just a script stamp)

Only submit the original certifications; no originals (except documents stating civil status), uncertified copies, or copies of authentications!

Furthermore, all foreign-language documents must also be submitted as a German translation. These are only accepted by the evaluation office if they have been performed by a legally authorised translator accredited in Germany (or by the German embassy in the country of origin).

Costs

  • Recognition of foreign school certificates, including school-leaving diplomas and similar proof of preparatory training for university entrance, as well as academic qualifications: EUR 20.00 to EUR 200.00
  • Exception: Recognition of examinations or competency certificates for entitled parties according to the Federal Refugees Act, insofar as a request has been made within three years of permanent residency in the Federal Republic Germany: free of charge

Legal basis

 

Impressum  (Freistaat Sachsen)

Freistaat Sachsen
Sächsisches Staatsministerium des Innern

Der Freistaat Sachsen ist eine Körperschaft des Öffentlichen Rechts. Er wird vertreten durch den Ministerpräsidenten Stanislaw Tillich.

Verantwortlich im Sinne von § 55 Abs. 2 RStV:
Andreas Kunze-Gubsch (Pressesprecher des Sächsischen Staatsministeriums des Innern)

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Release note

Based on the German version authorized by Sächsisches Staatsministerium für Kultus. 2014-07-11

Date of authorization:  07.04.2015

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