How to Validate a Foreign Diploma, Degree, or Professional Certificate in the US

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The Documented edition lists the initial steps to start the process of validating a foreign degree, qualification, or professional certificate in the United States.

How to validate a foreign diploma, degree, or professional certificate in the US

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There is no single body in the US that oversees these types of assessments, so any recognition of foreign degrees and qualifications is done at the state level. This means that you will need to coordinate the necessary steps and requirements with the respective states in which you live or wish to work.

There are three cases when you need to evaluate any foreign degrees and qualifications: if you are going to study work or engage in a licensed profession.

Subjects that qualify for study in the United States

You will have to deal directly with the educational institution you plan to enroll in. Before signing up for certification, contact the admissions office. They will tell you about the best options available.

Example: If you plan to evaluate some creditable subjects for study at LaGuardia Community College or another college, they will check your credits and count up to 30 of them towards your degree. The number and circumstances may vary depending on the institution.

For masters and other programs, it's a different and more complicated matter – for example, applying for a master's degree at Baruch College's Zickling School of Business implies that there are certain countries for which the institution will be able to assess qualifications. However, international students are required to pass an international assessment from an agency approved by the National Association of Identity Assessment Services (NACES).

Here are a few places to evaluate overseas education.

You may find the New York State Foreign Education Assessment Guide helpful.

Verification of Foreign Degrees, Skills, and Certifications

U.S. hiring entities typically refer you organizations that can and will evaluate your qualifications. But in cases where there is no specific recommendation, you can choose the assessment service yourself. The US Office of International Affairs recommends using one of the following services:

  • National Association of Identity Assessment Services (NACES) – it is an amalgamation of 19 credential assessment services with acceptance standards and a mandatory code of good practice.
  • Association of International Certification Evaluators (AICE) – it is an association of 10 certificate assessment services with a board of advisors and a mandatory code of ethics.

Please note that there is a fee for all assessments. It is recommended that you contact the organizations with any questions you may have before launching the service.

Validation of a foreign professional license

To validate a foreign professional license, you will need to meet the following requirements: education, a written exam and a clinical exam.

The verification process varies from state to state and also from industry to industry. It is recommended that you find the state regulator in the industry in which you wish to practice. They will have special protocols to help you verify your license to work in one of the states.

In most cases, you will need to live in the state for at least one year.

In New York, the agency that regulates most industries is the Office of the Professions. Here you will find a list of industries and links to related pages. Because the requirements for license verification vary by practice, it is difficult to list specific costs or standard steps.

Teilor Stone

About Post Author

Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Bobr Times, Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my sivertimes@gmail.com 1-800-268-7116
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