This page outlines the various systems, tools and services that enable qualifications to be readily understood and comparable across European countries.
The Bologna Process
It established the European Higher Education Area to facilitate student and staff mobility, to make higher education more inclusive and accessible, and to make higher education in Europe more attractive and competitive worldwide.
As part of the European Higher Education Area, all participating countries agreed to:
- introduce a three-cycle higher education system consisting of bachelor's, master's and doctoral studies
- ensure the mutual recognition of qualifications and learning periods abroad completed at other universities
- implement a system of quality assurance, to strengthen the quality and relevance of learning and teaching
In Europe, recognition of degrees and diplomas is arranged through a common credit system known as the European Credit Transfer System or ECTS.
Recognition of academic diplomas
There is no automatic EU-wide recognition of academic diplomas. You may therefore need to go through a national procedure to get your academic degree or diploma recognised in another EU country, if you seek admission to a further course of study there. If you already know that you will eventually want to pursue further studies in a different country, check before you start whether your diploma will be recognised there.
In most cases, you can obtain a "statement of comparability" of your university degree, stating how it compares to the diplomas delivered in the EU country you are moving to. To do so, contact the ENIC/NARIC centre in the country where you would like your diplomas assessed for "comparability". This could be your home country if you return home after your studies, or another EU country if you move there for work or further study.
For Naric Ireland contact details, see: https://www.qqi.ie/Articles/Pages/NARIC-Ireland.aspx
As a general rule, a profession is regulated if you have to hold a specific degree to access the profession, sit special exams such as state exams and/or register with a professional body before you can practise it.
If your profession is regulated in the EU country where you want to practise, you may need to apply to get your professional qualification recognised there.
Regulated professions differ across the EU. Check the regulated professions database to find out if your profession is regulated in the EU country you are moving to.
If you don't find any information about your profession in the database, you can ask the national contact points for professional qualifications in the country where you want to work. They can help you understand the rules which apply in your case.
Specific EU rules apply to the recognition of professional qualifications of certain sectors such as lawyers, air traffic controllers, pilots, etc..
Check if you need to apply for recognition of professional qualifications and what type of application you need to submit.
Recognition of Qualifications
Quality and Recognition of Qualifications from state funded universities and Institutes of Technology.
Quality and Qualifications Ireland sets and monitors standards at all levels of higher education and training up to PhD level.
The quality and standard of Irish educational awards is recognised globally.
For more information click below:
The National Academic Recognition and Information Centres (NARIC) network are responsible for comparing qualifications between countries.
NARIC centres provide information and advice about qualifications from all over the world allowing people to move for work and study.
The NARIC Ireland database offers a quick and direct route for individuals who wish to have their existing qualifications recognised and can be accessed below.
For more information in relation the ENIC-NARIC gateway, go to: http://www.enic-naric.net/ireland.aspx