Recognition of Academic Records


According to § 63a Hochschulzukunftsgesetz NRW it applies that: Examinations performed at foreign universities are recognized upon request. For recognition it has to be provided that there is no substantial difference between the examination included in the curriculum and the examinations achieved abroad, which are intended to replace them. Subject for the determination of significant differences is a comparison between the contents, scopes and requirements of both examinations.


Different types of recognition

In the division of Earth Science and Geography, there are three different types of recognition conceivable:

  • Equivalent recognition of examinations, which are included in the curriculum of the enrolled degree program. In this case, the lecturer of the respective course from RWTH confirms the equivalence of the examination achieved abroad. The equivalence is checked based on the corresponding module description of the host university.
  • Recognition as voluntary courses for the extension of the individual competence profile (e.g. language courses). Voluntary courses can be added to the diploma stating grade and credit points upon request of the student. The corresponding grades do not contribute to the final grade. An approval by the Examination Board is not necessary.
  • If included in the respective curriculum: Recognition for so-called "mobility modules", in which for a specified number of credit points examinations achieved abroad can be flexibly recognized. The examinations have to be reasonably related to the qualification profile of the enrolled study program. A recognition of language or sports courses is not possible (see recognition as voluntary additional courses).

Against the background of planning security for the students, it is recommended to check and confirm in writing the possibility of a recognition - especially in the case of equivalent recognition - already before the start of the semester abroad. The written confirmation could be in the form of the "Certificate of Equivalence" or the "Learning Agreement". A subsequent check of recognition after or during the stay abroad is also possible. In the case of stays abroad in the frame of ERASMUS +, the possibilities of recognitions must be checked in advance as a basis for the "Learning Agreement".


Process of recognition after the semester abroad

The final recognition of examinations achieved abroad is carried out without exception by the responsible examination committee after completion of the semester abroad. The following documents must be submitted:

  • Official "Transcript of Records" of the host university stating the examinations achieved.
  • In the case of an equivalent recognition: the "Certificate of Equivalence" signed by the respective lecturers from RWTH (e.g. Learning Agreement).

The recognition procedure may take up to three months of processing time after the submission of all required documents.


Grade conversion of academic performances and examinations achieved abroad

For graded study and examination performances achieved abroad, the foreign grades must be converted in order to be recognized by RWTH. The International Office provides a conversion table .