Academic recognition is the recognition of a foreign qualification for the purpose of further studies.
In academic recognition, the evaluators mainly seek to assess whether the applicant is capable of continuing studies in the chosen direction and at the chosen level.
The need for academic recognition may arise when a person holds a diploma of the home country and seeks admission to a further stage of studies in a foreign country or seeks admission to further studies in the home country after completion of the previous stage or period of studies abroad.
On principle, academic recognition is only sought for admission to further studies. Some applicants, however, choose to receive a statement of academic recognition before seeking employment in the professions where recognition of a foreign degree/diploma is not officially required (i.e. in non-regulated professions). This kind of recognition (academic recognition for professional purposes) helps employers understand what the home country's qualification is compared to the foreign one.
In Estonia, the Academic Recognition Information Centre (Estonian ENIC/NARIC) is responsible for academic recognition.
EU recognition of professional qualifications
Any national of a member state of the European Union (EU), European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland has the right to work, seek work, set up business or provide services in any other member state. Directive 2005/36 is in place to aid mobility between the member states of the EU, EEA and Switzerland. This directive applies to regulated professions including sectoral and general systems. The Directive works on the principle that a qualified professional in one member state is qualified to exercise the same profession in another member state. In order to work in a regulated profession with foreign qualifications, one must apply for the recognition of these qualifications by a competent authority.
Information about regulated professions, competent authorities and application procedures, etc. in a certain country is provided by the contact points for professional recognition.