university degree
Picture used for illustrative purposes only Image Credit: Photo by Ekrulila from Pexels

Dubai: The Ministry of Education today unveiled a new ‘University Certificates Recognition’ system that makes the process easier for degrees issued by foreign higher education institutions (HEIs). The simplified process eliminates several conditions that were in place under the previous ‘University Qualification Equivalency’ system.

Dr Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of Education, said the updated system for recognising certificates from foreign HEIs aims to offer students streamlined services in completing their educational or employment procedures.

Dr Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi

He added: “The Ministry of Education has adopted the new system for recognising certificates issued by foreign higher education institutions, after communicating and consulting with all relevant authorities and taking into consideration the observations and suggestions of students on ways to develop the current services we offer. We were committed to ensuring that the new system takes into account those institutions’ international rankings and field of specialisation, in alignment with national and Ministry standards.”

read more

What has changed?

The updated system has removed a number of conditions and criteria that were present in the previous system.

These include the need for attesting previous degrees, and complying with a minimum physical presence requirement of 30 days for master’s graduates and 168 days for bachelor’s graduates.

It also eliminated other criteria and conditions like the credit transfer limits, and distance learning credit caps.

Obtaining certificates entirely through distance learning (or e-learning) is also now permitted.

Ranking for universities

According to the new system, recognition criteria include the category of the HEI which issued the certificate. The lower the rank of the HEI, the more conditions and requirements are applied to attain recognition. For example, for universities ranked from 1-200, it is enough to verify the validity of the certificate, and no other criteria or conditions are required for recognition, excluding certificates related to specialised professions.

Under the new system, certificates related to certain specialisations and issued by foreign HEIs are immediately recognised once their validity is verified and if the university is accredited in case it ranked 601 and above, without any additional conditions or criteria. This, in turn, enhances the efficiency of the overall recognition procedures.

All programmes are subject to these updates, except certificates related to specialised professions like engineering, medicine, and law.