Credential Evaluation: Why is it necessary?

Credential Evaluation: Why is it necessary?

8 mins read34.8K Views 6 Comments
Aishwarya Bhatnagar
Study Abroad Expert
Updated on Feb 15, 2023 19:03 IST

Credential Evaluation: Why is it necessary?

The elementary foundation stone of one’s career in Education. The amount of time and energy one invests in education is crucial to his/her future success. If these educational degree does not get recognised justly by foreign universities, then all the hard work might seem a waste. Therefore, it is vital to get your degrees/diplomas evaluated by expert organisations before applying to foreign universities. Procuring a credential evaluated degree is also the first step for a skilled worker aspiring to work abroad/ gain employment. In short, credential evaluation helps you to achieve recognition for your academics. Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE), World Education Services (WES), and Educational Perspectives (EP) are three of the famous agencies that provide this kind of service. Before we get to know about ECE, WES and EP, let’s understand the concept and requirement of a Credential Evaluation.

Credential Evaluation and its importance

In simple terms, a Credential Evaluation is the valuation of your degree/ diploma through expert analysis. It basically analyses your national education degree to provide an American or Canadian equivalent, i.e it converts your academic credentials to fall in line with the academic credential system in that of the USA or Canada. It is done majorly for countries such as Canada and the USA as they do not have a national education ministry to evaluate foreign degrees. Hence, universities, employers, etc expect an evaluated degree from independent credential auditors. While there are some US universities that evaluate degree on their own terms, but most of the times, the university will ask for an evaluated degree. Even if you are called upon for a job in these countries, you need to submit evaluated degree during the documentation process. As it is a crucial process, only an expert with an all-round knowledge of international education systems can perform a full credential evaluation.

The necessity of a credential evaluation arises from the fact that the education system of each of the countries in the world is distinct from each other. Thus, accurate and precise validation of a candidate’s marks/percentage and degree can be rightly calculated only through a proper evaluation. This is where organisations like WES and EP step in. They are able to analyse and compare the given degree of a certain university to that of the U.S or Canadian education system so that your hardwork is duly recognized, along with prior education and experience.

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Credential Evaluation from ECE, WES and EP

Let us discuss about the three agencies and see how they work:

Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE)

Formed in 1980, ECE is a non-profit organisation that has helped more than 600,000 internationally educated people, including almost 40,000 from India over the past 10 years, receive recognition for their educational achievements. The ECE Reports are valid for a period of five years. Colleges, universities, employers, and governments trust this organisation to evaluate international education as part of their admission or hiring process.

ECE generates reports that are:

  • Completed fast with an average turnaround of five business days
  • Developed with the highest level of quality and integrity
  • Offered at a competitive, often the lowest, cost
  • Easy to order online
  • Supported by excellent customer service that has earned ECE a 95% customer satisfaction rating

ECE has an A from the Better Business Bureau and was the recipient of the BBB Torch Award for Ethics in 2018. Besides, it was a founding member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) in 1987.

Read: How does ECE help in the evaluation of your documents?

What is WES evaluation?

WES offers credential evaluation services since its origin in 1974. Here, the evaluation process starts with the candidate sending all the required documents to the organisation. Next, a credential evaluator is assigned to verify and authenticate the documents sent by the candidate. Once it is done, the credentials are assessed on the basis of the following points:

  • The education system of your country
  • The reputation of the educational institution you attended
  • The curriculum and content of your programme
  • Any other requirements you had to fulfil while getting admission to the university/college

Post this, the obtained data is then calculated according to the American or Canadian standard depending upon the university/ country you will be going to. This includes the grades obtained, credit hours, and courses converted to their American or Canadian equivalent points. After the first evaluation report is generated, it is sent for a review to check its accuracy and then, sent for approval to a senior credential evaluator. The whole process takes about 7-8 business days right after the verification of the candidate’s documents.

Know more about How WES converts Grades to GPA? and the WES report on How Master's Students Choose Institutions

Educational Perspectives (EP)

EP is a non-profit international education research organisation, dedicated to assisting candidates in evaluating their educational degree so as to be accepted internationally. They boast of highly experienced evaluators who are actively involved in the field of international education. Being members of the National Association of Graduate Admission Professionals (NAGAP), American Association of Collegiate Registrars (AACRAO), and the European Association for International Education (EAIE), the evaluator is up-to-date with any change in the evaluation process.

Since 2003, EP itself is a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES). It also one of the signatories of the Groningen Declaration that attempts to find a common platform for individuals seeking academic and professional help for international mobility worldwide. The declaration ensures that interested parties and stakeholders are brought together to serve such candidates. Known for their quick response, EP usually takes five business days to complete a credential evaluation.

While now you must be clear about why students require a Credential Evaluation, there must be a lot of questions arising in your mind regarding it. Here are a few FAQs to clear your doubts:

For any doubts, please drop us a comment below and we'll be happy to resolve your queries!

Credential Evaluation FAQs

Q. What are the different kinds of Evaluation Reports?

A. Commonly, a candidate request for a ‘basic’ credential evaluation that generally is an overall evaluation of the degree. A ‘detailed’ evaluation (course-by-course) report is the one that entails detailed information about the candidate’s grades, credits, course content, etc. This is only mandatory in cases where the applicant is applying for transfer credit or a graduate degree. An ordinary report will include evaluation of the degree as well as all other details obtained in accordance with the foreign country’s education system. The university from where the candidate has completed his education will be judged on the basis of recognition of the university, credential name, entrance/ admission requirements, programme duration, the field of major/ specialisation, date of graduation/ completion of the course, and so on. An addition of analysis of each course on the transcript will cost you extra. They will be converted into credit hours or grades as per their U.S or Canadian equivalent. Some institutes also calculate the GPA (Grade Point Average), a standardised system majorly followed by the USA. For a freshman,  Document-by-Document evaluation is recommended whereas, for transfer and graduate applicants a  Course-by-Course evaluation is more suitable.

Q. How much does a Credential Evaluation cost?

A. As explained above, there are different kinds of detailed evaluations required according to the course or university requirements. Thus, according to each of these detailed evaluations, expenses will also differ. The cost will depend on factors like the depth of analysis required, number of courses, processing time, charges by the agency, and so on. In general, a ‘basic’ evaluation report will cost you anywhere between USD $70 to $150, on the other hand, a detailed report will be ranging from $150 to $350. Further, the total fee would also depend on your need whether it is for academic, employment, visa, etc. In WES’s website, you will find a separate option for each of these categories, which further have divisions depending on the level of education, employment, etc. For a better understanding, you can visit their site and choose according to your own requirement. A detailed analysis of documents required and a fee breakup will be presented.

Q. Is Credential Evaluation universally recognized?

A. The simple answer is ‘No’. The evaluation does not apply to all foreign universities as it depends on certain factors. Firstly, credential evaluation differs from country to country, hence it is important to mention the country to you apply to/ going to before sending your documents for evaluation to the agency. Secondly, not all foreign universities require credential evaluation as some countries’ education system have their own evaluation system. In some cases, universities themselves evaluate your degree. Thirdly, there are also certain universities/ countries that recognize the Indian education system as it is. There are a number of agencies offering the services of credential evaluation. Thus, it is advised to do some research by before selecting any one agency as some universities might not recognise evaluation from some agencies.

Q. What to do if my university is not listed in WES?

A. Students must ensure that they check the universities listed by WES before submitting a request for score report and the requisite fee. In case the applicant applies for a WES evaluation and his/her university doesn't accept this evaluation, one the university will not accept and two it will be a sheer waste of money and time. Hence, students must make sure that their university accepts WES evaluation before making any official requests. Also check out the list of WES approved universities to be on a safe side. 

Q. How much does NACES evaluation cost in India?

A. The following is the course by course credit and GPA conversion rate for evaluation by NACES, cost for Indian students are also given below:
NACES Evaluation Type NACES Evaluation Cost in USD NACES Evaluation Cost in India in Rupees
Standard (3 day) $165 INR 13,669.67
Rush (3 day) $215 INR 17,811.78
Special (1 day) $265 INR 21,954.06
Same day $365 INR 30,238.61
The rates are subject to change, check carefully before applying.
About the Author
Written by
Aishwarya Bhatnagar
Study Abroad Expert

Aishwarya is a professional Writer currently working as a Study Abroad Expert in the Editorial Team at Shiksha. She has over 5 years of experience and is skilled at creating Online Content with leveraged knowledge i... Read Full Bio

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Avihhan kumar

2 years ago

i had applied for florida state university for undergrad(freshman). They have asked for secondary school evaluation. what shall i have to do. Do i need my 12th mark sheet/ certificate to be evaluated from WES. shall it be document to document or course by course.

Reply to Avihhan kumar

Course by course is preferred by most universities. Kindly confirm with the university by contacting them.

Hi, I am applying to a Canadian college for a Diploma course, and it requires high school transcripts. Do I need to get a transcript from 9 to 12, or my 10th and 12th mark sheet alone is sufficient?

Reply to Sheetal Dhasmana

Check the college requirements on its website. Usually, 9-12 transcripts are required.

If anybody done MSc cosmetology and health care .Is she eligible for dermatology Diploma or not?

Reply to jasspinder preet

Please check the university requirements for this. Each university has different requirements and even each country will have different entry criteria for such subjects.


Nidhin Suresh

3 years ago

It about CANADA?? If you want to study pg diploma in mechanical engineer field in a college (not in a university), do you still need to get credential assesment on the previous education you had? Credential assesment is only needed to join in universities and not needed in institutional colleges?

Reply to Nidhin Suresh

Colleges or universities, both require evaluation. Some institutions do self-evaluations as well. Thus, it will be better to check the respective university/college's website before sending your transcripts for evaluation.



3 years ago

Do Swiss institutes like ETH Zurich and EPFL require an evaluation?

Reply to Kiyan

This can be found on their respective websites. Usually, US and Canadian universities require evaluation.