List of International Universities accredited by the German Government

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by RFValve, Nov 7, 2017.

  1. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    Many people come to this forum asking if a particular University is accredited or not, the link below from the German government provides a list of recognized Universities for immigration and work purposes in Germany. The list also provides a list of Universities that are not recognized. The site is in German but it is intuitive, you can also use a translator from Google. Interesting enough, many of the schools discussed here such as Walden, Capella, etc are not recognized. However, the big three (Excelsior, etc) are recognized. The site also explains that some of the schools discussed here like Azteca are only recognized for the programs on campus that have government approval but not for most of the online operations with other private institutions. A good resource for the online program seeker.

    Institutionen: Anabin - Informationssystem zur Anerkennung ausländischer Bildungsabschlüsse
  2. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    I have no problem reading German, but it's wise to learn to read "Anabin" lingo also, if you want to get real use from this list. And there's no Google Translate for "Anabinsprache" ...

    A sample: "If your university is classed as ‘H+’, it is an institution that is recognised in Germany. In the event that it is described as ‘H+/-’ , your specific degree programme will have to be evaluated individually.
    Should your institution have been given an ‘H-’ classification, it is not recognised in Germany and neither are any of the degrees offered by it."
    That's some pretty indispensable info. See source below:

    Good guide here, in English:

    Use it. Getting the best out of this list is not as easy as some make it out to be. But this helps...

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 7, 2017
  3. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    Thanks for adding this information. I know most people here have no intention of living in Germany but it is a good indicator of what is universally accepted or not. Most online schools are not considered in this list for some reason.
  4. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    About "universal acceptance." Maybe so, but remember that Germany has much stricter guidelines than some other European countries. e.g. You won't get your US MBA recognized unless it's AACSB accredited. Yep- AACSB or the Autobahn. Few other quirks, too. I'd say yes - if your degree makes the grade in Germany, - it'll likely make it anywhere. If it doesn't, there's still hope elsewhere. In that case, in the words of Smokey Robinson, "Better Shop Around." :smile:

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 7, 2017
  5. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    Tried to see if NA universities appear there.
    Cas Coast, Columbia Southern and couple of others.

    They are not listed or I'm not searching correctly?
  6. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    I don't believe they're recognized in Germany, Lerner. Definitely not recognized (officially) in UK. UK-NARIC will not evaluate them - period. However, individual universities in UK can make up their minds in each applicant's case. If they figure the prospective student with a NA degree has a good chance of success, they can admit him/her. NA degrees are sometimes problematic at home. More often, in other countries, it appears. In Germany - RA or the Autobahn, if it's a US degree. American MBA degrees have to be AACSB-accredited as well, or the same applies. Germany has a well-earned reputation for being strict about foreign degrees.

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 12, 2017
  7. muaranah

    muaranah New Member

    Johann has made an excellent point. To take it further, just because your university is in the Anabin database doesn't mean your degree is recognized (that's a separate approval process you've got to go through at the state level).
  8. heirophant

    heirophant Well-Known Member

    Disclaimer: I have just about zero interest in working or emigrating to Germany. (Don't prospective immigrants simply need to walk over the border?)

    That being said, I'm a little skeptical about this list. A number of America's best scientific doctoral programs aren't listed. The Germans seem unaware of or else uninterested in the small specialist institutions. (Though oddly, some are there. The City of Hope's graduate school is listed and Pardee Rand (though it only got a +/-) I couldn't find any sign of these:

    The Scripps Research Institute (RA with WASC) Multiple Nobel Prize winners


    The Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (NY Regents accredited) Multiple Nobel prize winners.

    The American Museum of Natural History's graduate school (NY Regents accredited)

    Memorial Sloan Kettering (NY Regents accredited).

    Sanford Burnham Prebys (RA with WASC)

    Sorry Germany. I intend to continue using my own judgement in these matters.
  9. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    hi Johann.

    Yes well aware of NARIC UK and the NA evaluation. I saw one, they basically stated that there are many forms of accreditation in the USA but they deem RA as equal to the UK degrees.
    Didn't stop my good friend with NA degree becoming Chartered in the UK.
    Looks like Employers and some universities are doing their own evaluation.
    NA BSc degree was accepted for registration as a Registered Scientist with the Science Council in the UK. It got fully recognized by the University of Scheifer and the IScT - Bachelor of Science degree is required to fulfill the academic requirements for registration as RSCi and MIscT. There is also the additional standard specs that one needs to meet, experience etc., that the Science Council requires. The guy is working as Lab Lead Scientist.

    But NA recognition is problematic and definitely not mainstream, anecdotal examples are there and there are also rejections among them.

    I see the RA Western Governors University Salt Lake City, UT H +/-

    "H +/- denotes institutions for which no clear statement can be made. This is the case, for example, if certain programs are offered at an institution that belong to the higher education sector, while others are lower or not accredited according to their duration and level."
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 12, 2017
  10. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    I think the new director at DEAC may try to approach NARIC and ENIC others in EU.

    For example, if they take Grantham Universty, their BSEET is now ABET accredited so in the UK, its considered, Sydney accord and possibly Washington accord comparable.
    NARIC may provide a positive evaluation of the ABET-accredited degree.

    I speculate here.
    But DEAC can build a case for it.
    I think such international recognition would be in their interest?
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 13, 2017
  11. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Indeed. Many of them do, I'm sure, Lerner. In UK, they have that right - as I mentioned in post #6.

    Scheifer? I can find no such university. You were talking about UK, so do you possibly mean Sheffield? Just guessing, here.

    Yes. I think I mentioned H+/- status in post 2 above. It means exactly what you said. Individual degree programs may/may not qualify.

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 13, 2017
  12. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the correction, yes Sheffield.
    Scheifer is the last name of a colleague I used to work with.
    I always confuse these two names.

    As for NARIC, I'm curious how they would evaluate if at all ABET accredited degree from Grantham U.
  13. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Your wish is my command, Lerner. I was able to dredge up this quote from elsewhere, dated 2009. No opinion or guarantees on authenticity.

    NARIC Reference Number: 1957XXXXXX Mr D XXXXXXX

    Dear Mr XXXXXXX,

    Thank you for recent enquiry.

    Further to this, I am now able to confirm the following:

    Country of Qualification: United States of America

    Title of Award: Bachelor of Science in Electronics Engineering Technology

    Awarding Institution: Grantham University

    Year of Completion: 2008

    Assessment: Is considered comparable to British taught Bachelor(Honours) degree standard

    Recommendation for further Study / Employment in the UK

    For information on employment and registration in the field of Engineering, Technology in the UK, you can contact the Engineering Council UK

    246 High Holborn
    London, WC1V 7EX
    Tel: +44(0)20 3206 0500
    Fax:+44(0)20 3206 0501

    Yours sincerely


    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 13, 2017
  14. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Someone may be pulling my leg here, on that 2009 quote. I came across a later (2010) DI thread with the following quote from a UK NARIC letter, concerning a NA (Aspen) degree:

    Assessment: No comparability available

    Additional information: We have checked our information on the institutions in USA, However, the Aspen University is not listed as one of the regionally accredited higher education institutions in the USA. Therefore I regret that we are unable to comment on the standing of this qualification.

    There are various accreditation bodies in USA. However, for the purpose of comparability of US qualifications, the institution awarding the former has to be accredited by one of the six Regional Accrediting Associations recognized by the US Secretary of Education . The list is as follows: ...."

    Thread is here. Don't know what to believe, now. Don't know if it's still "RA or the M1" or not.

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 13, 2017
  15. Lerner

    Lerner Well-Known Member

    Thank you, Johann, I appreciate your taking time to search and provide a reply.
    The one from Aspen is the one I seen in the past.

  16. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    Prospect immigrants can just walk over the border but still need a credential evaluation report to get a professional job.

    In the US, credential evaluation is quite inconsistent, you can bring your degree to one company that says that your degree is not equivalent while other might say it is.

    For TN Visas, I have a friend from India that is Canadian Citizen that was not able to get his degree evaluated by WES as equivalent but found another one that said it was equivalent. US immigration only needs a report from a "reputable" firm that means normally some sort of membership with NAFSA, NACES or alike. He got his Visa approved after shopping around.

    In Europe is more consistent, if you want a work permit to the UK or Germany, they need to be evaluated by one place like NARIC. If you don't have their blessing, your visa does not get approved.

    I noticed that most of the online RA schools like Walden, Capella, NCU, etc are not in the list. This means that a professor might not get his Visa approved if he or she holds a degree from an RA online school.

    In the UK or Germany like in most countries, once you are in, it is up to the employer to decide if the credential is acceptable or not. Aspen might not make it to get your Visa approved but a German citizen might be able to use it if an employer is convinced that is good enough for the job.
  17. mintaru

    mintaru Active Member

    This posting became quite long. Sorry about that. I hope there still will be someone who reads it.

    To be honest, I'm not sure what both of you are talking about. Maybe the situation in 2015? In that case, the answer is: No, things have changed and it's at least somewhat more difficult now. But maybe I'm wrong and you mean something else, like the right of freedom of movement for workers within the EU, for instance, and then the answer is yes. Anyway, I hope I am not starting a political discussion here since that's really not my intention.

    However, being from Germany myself, I am not sure Anabin is such a good resource for the online program seeker If that person lives outside of Germany. First of all, there is a reason why there is only a German version of Anabin. Virtually no one in Germany thinks the rest of the world should have the same rules as Germany. What is right in Germany isn't necessary right in the US or elsewhere. (That should be a no-brainer, and I'm sure most or even all people here think it is.)

    And then there is the problem with sometimes huge differences between different education systems. For instance, Germany's higher education system knows no real equivalent to the Associate's degree.
    There is literally no counterpart to a transfer degree and the closest equivalent to a vocational Associate's degree is graduation from a program within Germany's so-called 'dual education system' which combines an apprenticeship with a vocational school program. But that's a vocational qualification and no degree.

    Americans may think that means an Associate's degree isn't recognized in Germany, but that's not the truth. The whole point of recognizing foreign degrees is to verify equivalence to a domestic qualification, and if there is no one-to-one equivalent, like in that case, then there are only two options left. Either the degree isn't recognized at all, or it is recognized as equivalent to the most similar domestic qualification. And I think it doesn't help that Americans, in general, see vocational education as inferior to a college degree. That's generally not the case in Germany and at the educational level of an Associate's degree, it's even vocational education which is seen as superior.

    By the way, the fact that there is no real German equivalent to the Associate's degree is also the reason why Anabin lists all community colleges and other two-year schools as H-. There are neither two-year colleges nor two-year degrees in Germany and Anabin only deals with degree-granting schools. All that doesn't mean Associate's degrees from these schools aren't recognized in Germany. It only means such a degree isn't recognized as equivalent to a German degree because it wouldn't make any sense to do that.

    That's true, Germany has very strict guidelines, but "AACSB or the Autobahn" may not always be a real problem. It is a problem if you want to study or work at a German university. If you "only" need a visa, however, then a regionally accredited Bachelor's degree may very often be enough to get it. Unless, of course, you want to work in a regulated profession, but even then it's possible that your MBA is seen as not relevant. The problem with Germany's strict guidelines is that there will be many 'false negatives' if a person from outside Germany tries to use Anabin to verify the recognition of an online degree in his or her home country.

    "AACSB or the Autobahn" is also the reason why Anabin lists quite a few regionally accredited universities as H+/-. It only needs a single "unrecognized" degree, and very, very often that degree is an MBA without AACSB accreditation. That's, for instance, the case with WGU.

    That's true, but at least in Germany there is one exception from that rule:
    That quote is from this German government website:

    That is possible, but the simple fact that a school isn't listed only means that there never was a single person with a degree from that school who wanted his or her degree getting recognized. That's most likely also the reason why the the small specialist institutions on heirophant's list aren't listed.

  18. Johann

    Johann Well-Known Member

    Thanks, mintaru. That answers a lot of questions - including some I never thought to ask. Great explanation.

  19. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member

    The first was a sarcastic comment about the US politics, there is a lot of heat in regards the building of a wall that has the intention to stop illegal immigration from Mexico and Latin America. Many believe that things are lax in the border so anyone can just cross and become an American resident without any legal papers. The debate on immigration is a topic of discussion that I rather avoid as it is not related to education.

    As the German database, there are not many public databases of international schools accredited by a European Government. NARIC UK has one but it is a paid database.

    As many people come to the forum asking for advice about foreign schools, the database is a good point of reference at least to rule out fake schools that appear legit (e.g. Common Wealth University, Pebble hills University etc).
  20. mintaru

    mintaru Active Member

    I know about that wall and the immigration debate. All that is quite well known on this side of the Atlantic. But I didn't know that comment was about US politics, it could have been about German politics as well.

    That's of course true. But I wouldn't say these schools are "accredited" by the German government. The official term here in Germany is "recognized", and that is different from educational accreditation in Germany. By the way, the entity who did recognize these schools isn't the German federal government. It is the so-called "Kultusministerkonferenz", a joint organization of the federal government and the 16 German states. That's because the responsibility for the education system in Germany lies primarily with the states, while the federal government plays a minor role.

    But that only works if the school in question is listed in anabin as H-. The fact that a school isn't listed means nothing, except the fact that there never was a person with a degree from that school who wanted his degree to be recognized. With other words, using anabin may or may not work. However, that is of course still better than nothing.

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