Validation (nostrification) is the conversion of a non-Austrian academic degree into a corresponding degree received after the completion of an Austrian degree programme. This means the complete equivalence of the two degrees, the right to use the respective Austrian academic degree and all the rights and duties connected with its use. This relates in particular to the entitlement to exercise a profession for which in Austria an academic degree is required.
Under which preconditions is a validation necessary/possible?
An application for validation can only be submitted if validation is essential for the applicant in order to practice his/her profession in Austria or is necessary for the continuation of his/her further academic education in Austria.
The applicants must offer proof that the validation is a legally necessary prerequisite (due to a law or another regulation) to exercise a certain profession (e.g. psychologists or teachers in grammar schools having completed their studies outside the European Union). In all other cases, it lies with the employer to validate the applicant’s studies abroad. A possible better classification with regard to salary does not grant a legitimation for the application of a validation proceeding.
Within the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland the access to a number of academic professions is regulated by special directives which make it possible for members of these states to take up a profession without any further requirements. In such cases, validation is neither necessary nor possible.
Validation is not possible:
- exclusively for the purpose of the use of the corresponding Austrian academic degree
- for admission to an Austrian diploma/master’s programme or a doctoral or PhD- programme
What is the legal framework of academic validation?
- 90 of the Universities Act 2002 (Universitätsgesetz 2002) https://www.ris.bka.gv.at
- Bye-Laws of the Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt, Part B Study Law, 20 para. 3 (Satzung der Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt Klagenfurt)
- Regulation by the Rector of Studies, pursuant to the Bye-Laws of the AAU Klagenfurt, Part B, 20 para. 3
Where do I have to apply for validation?
You may submit your application for validation to any Austrian university offering the degree programme corresponding to the foreign degree, which means several Austrian institutions in many cases. To view the full range of degree programmes offered at the Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt please visit the list of degree programmes.
Pursuant to the Universities Act, art. 90 para. 2 the same application for validation may not be submitted to more than one university simultaneously, nor may it be resubmitted to another university or institution of higher education after its withdrawal.
Who decides on the application for validation?
The organ in charge of study affairs at a university decides on the validation. At the Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt pursuant to art.19, para. 2, point 2 of the Universities Act this is the Rector of Studies who is established to administrate matters concerning the enforcement of study law in the first instance.
Which documents must be submitted?
The application for validation/nostrification (application form) shall be accompanied by the following documents and evidence:
- Passport (together with a copy)
- Evidence that pursuant to 90 para. 1 of the 2002 Universities Act, validation/nostrification of the foreign university degree is compulsory for the exercise of the profession or continuation of the education of the applicant in Austria (e.g. for psychologists and persons who wish to teach at higher schools);
- Birth certificate and any documents concerning changes of name (e.g. marriage certificate) if the records of study bear a previous name;
- Evidence of status/quality of the recognized foreign postsecondary educational institution if such is not beyond doubt for the Rector of Studies;
- Evidence of the studies pursued at the recognized foreign postsecondary educational institution, examinations taken and approved academic papers if the course achievements obtained are not already known to the Rector of Studies (transcript, curriculum, student guide, examination certificates);
- A copy of the Diploma or Master’s thesis or dissertation and/or a brief statement of the contents in German;
- Document issued as evidence of the award of the foreign academic degree or, if such was not to be awarded, as evidence of the due conclusion of the foreign course of study (original);
- Evidence of payment of the validation fee (this fee of € 150,– is payable in advance).
All documents shall be submitted in original or as authenticated copy. Documents in a foreign language shall be accompanied by an authorised German translation. Originals of the documents concerning the award of the academic degree or the completion of studies shall be submitted.
The obligation to submit individual documents shall be waived if substantiation is provided that their submission within a reasonable time is impossible or involves excessive difficulties (in particular, account shall be taken of the problems of political refugees) and if the documents submitted are sufficient for a decision.
Contact, information and support
The members of the Rectorate of Studies are at your disposal for further information or individual advice on matters of validation. Please contact us in advance by mail to stud_re [at] aau [dot] at before you apply for validation.
However, we cannot provide information about the prospective success of your application (no preliminary examination).
May I obtain a preliminary examination of my application?
No. As extensive and elaborate preliminary proceedings are necessary to review an application, it is not possible to provide binding information on the prospective success of an application.
What are the individual steps in the validation procedure?
As soon as all necessary documents have been handed in, the Rector of Studies will initiate the evaluation procedure. Taking into account the curriculum applicable at the Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt at the time when the application is filed, the Rector of Studies will assess under consideration of expert opinions whether the studies completed abroad are, in terms of the result of overall education, equivalent to the degree programme offered at the Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt. The criteria relevant in this evaluation are the content, scope and requirements of the Austrian degree programme for the completion of which the recognition of equivalence is sought. Random checks of the applicant’s knowledge in the individual subjects or modules are also admissible. If the qualification is basically equivalent, but the qualification holder has to fulfil individual additional requirements to obtain recognition, the qualification holder will be requested, by way of an official notice, to take specific exams and/or write an academic thesis. The official notice will specify an appropriate period for fulfilling these additional requirements. During this period, the applicant is admitted to the Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt as a non-degree programme student.
The Rector of Studies grants recognition by issuing an official notice of the academic validation.
The official notice states the Austrian degree programme to which the foreign degree programme corresponds and which Austrian academic degree the applicant is entitled to use instead of the awarded foreign academic degree.
A note recording issuance of such formal validation will be added to the original awarding document initially submitted as evidence of completion of the foreign degree programme.
Special procedures have been established for certain degree programmes completed in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Italy, Liechtenstein, Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro, Slovenia and at pontifical With these countries, specific agreements simplify the recognition of certain degree programmes.
Please contact ENIC NARIC AUSTRIA at the Austrian Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy for more information:
What is the procedure if additional requirements have to be fulfilled?
Applicants with a valid notice of validation (stipulating additional requirements) who have to take supplementary examinations and/or have to write an academic thesis need to apply for admission as non- degree programme students to fulfil these requirements. If they have not been registered at Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt before, the registration has to be done by means of online-enrolment.
Admission for non-degree programme students is possible until the end of the extension period of the semester in question (summer semester until April 30th; winter semester until November 30th) in the Office of Studies and Examination. Please bring with you the notice of validation as well as your passport or valid ID paper with photograph and evidence of nationality.
Moreover, a tuition fee has to be paid.
How long will the validation procedure take?
Your application for validation will be processed within three months. Any request to provide additional documents or information will interrupt this three-month period.
What does academic validation cost?
Currently the validation fee (Nostrifizierungstaxe) is € 150 and has to be paid in advance. It is forfeited if the application for validation is rejected or withdrawn and cannot be refunded.
In case supplementary examinations have to be taken and/or academic theses have to be written in order to make the degree equivalent, tuition fees will have to be paid up to the time these requirements have been fully met.
IBAN AT65 3900 0000 0251 5013
Indicate „Nostrifizierung“ as the purpose of payment