Academic degrees, titles and professional titles from foreign educational institutions
Do you have an academic degree from a foreign educational institution, e.g. licencjat, inzener, kandidat-nauk, that you would like to use in Germany? If it was properly awarded by a recognised institute of higher education, you can use it without obtaining approval provided you comply with certain conditions stipulated in Baden-Württemberg’s Higher Education Act (Landeshochschulgesetz). In this instance, you must use the form in which the degree was awarded and specify the institute of higher education that awarded it. If your degree does not comprise Latin characters, you may transliterate it into Latin script. You can also add the literal German translation in parentheses. You may also use an abbreviated form of your foreign degree (specifying the institute that awarded it)
if this form of usage is admissible or customary in its country of origin.
You do not need to stipulate the institute of higher education that awarded the degree if you acquired the degree
- within the European Union (EU)
- within the European Economic Area (EEA)
- from the European University Institute in Florence
- from the Pontifical Universities
However, you must take note of the equivalency agreements concluded with other countries and the resolution passed by the Kultusministerkonferenz on 26 June 2014 concerning the use of foreign academic degrees. The equivalency agreements and the resolution passed by the Kultusministerkonferenz contain special regulations that work in your favour. This applies in particular to certain doctoral degrees
from Russia, Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada and the USA. You are not permitted to convert or transcribe the foreign degree into the corresponding German degree. Exceptions (permits) may be made in special cases involving
degrees acquired by late repatriates, their spouses and descendants.
Tip: You will find additional information in the leaflet “Führung von im Ausland erworbenen akademischen Graden, Ehrengraden, Titeln und Tätigkeitsbezeichnungen” (Using academic degrees, honorary degrees, titles and job titles obtained abroad) published by the Wissenschaftsministerium. You can retrieve information about equivalency agreements and resolutions passed by the Kultusministerkonferenz from the “anabin”portal provided by the Zentralstelle für Ausländisches Bildungswesen.
the Ministerium für Wissenschaft, Forschung und Kunst
Note: With regard to foreign degrees, the Wissenschaftsministerium is concerned solely with issues relating to the use of degrees (exception: degrees acquired by persons who fall under the Federal Law on Refugees and Exiles (Bundesvertriebenengesetz)). The Wissenschaftsministerium does not perform assessments, comparisons or classifications with corresponding German degrees or diplomas.
The prerequisites are:
- degree from a recognised institute of higher education abroad
- use of the degree in Baden-Württemberg
You do not require state approval or permission for the use of foreign degrees, titles or job titles.
However, you may require written information about the use of your degree and the applicable legal basis, e.g. for presentation to
municipal authorities, register offices, professional chambers and professional associations.
In such instances, you can send an informal application to the Wissenschaftsministerium and submit the necessary documents.
- officially certified copy of the original foreign diploma or
- degree certificate
- officially certified copy of the translation of the foreign diploma or degree certificate
- copy of passport or personal ID card
- if you have changed your name: appropriate evidence such as a copy of your marriage certificate, a declaration
- concerning your name change
- Personal data sheet
- § 37 Landeshochschulgesetz (LHG) (Führung ausländischer Grade, Titel und Bezeichnungen; Zeugnisbewertung nach der Lissabon-Konvention)
The German original version of this text was drafted in close cooperation with the relevant departments. The Ministerium für Wissenschaft, Forschung und Kunst released it on 02.11.2016. Only the German text is legally binding. The Federal State does not assume any liability for the translated texts.
In cases of doubt or if you have any questions or problems, please contact the relevant authorities directly.