Validation is the recognition that a State makes of a degree obtained in another country. This is done after an evaluation that allows the foreign credentials to be homologated with those that exist in that country.
In the United States, a person who has obtained a professional degree in Spain may need to have it validated for various reasons.
You may want, for example, to continue your studies in that country, practice your profession, get a job, or simply complete your immigration portfolio.
For any of these cases, in the United States, there is no official body in charge of validating and homologate professional qualifications obtained abroad. To do this, it is necessary to go to private institutions and companies.
The process of validating a degree in the United States depends on several factors, mainly on the degree that has been studied. Next, we will see some elements to learn more about the recognition of a degree in the United States.
What Are The Agencies In Charge Of The Validation Of Degrees In The United States?
In the United States, there is no equivalent of what in Spain we know as the General Subdirectorate of Validations and Titles of the Ministry of Education, Culture, and Sports. In fact, there is no state or government agency that is in charge of this process.
In that country, the recognition of degrees obtained abroad is in charge of the host universities themselves or of independent private accreditation and certification agencies. What these agencies do is “translate” the applicant’s educational and degree history into the US college credit and degree system.
These agencies generally operate at the national level. Its reports and resolutions are recognized in educational institutions and also in companies and professional associations. The latter is very important, since, in order to practice a profession in the United States, it is necessary to have a license granted by the respective professional associations.
What Is And How Long Is The Process of Validating A Degree In The United States?
The validation process depends mainly on the degree in question. It is very common for professionals who migrate to the United States to find themselves in a situation in which they cannot practice their profession immediately.
This happens because they do not know how to do the validation process or because they cannot do it due to the type of career they have studied.
Indeed, some careers such as psychology, medicine, law, or occupational therapy cannot be quickly validated. In most cases, additional studies are necessary. The examinations that in many cases must be carried out, as well as the costs for validation and homologation, are also factors that can delay the possibility of professional practice.
Generally speaking, degrees in the areas of administration, graphic design, accounting, marketing, and the like can take about six months to be approved and the cost of the paperwork is approximately $ 2,000. In contrast, in careers such as medicine, law, or psychology, degrees can take several years to be recognized and the process can cost up to $ 100,000.
However, it is important to know that, although it may seem somewhat complicated, it is possible to validate the titles and, without a doubt, it is worth doing.
What Are The Requirements For The Validation Of A Degree In The United States?
It is best to start the validation process before traveling. For this, it is essential to find out the specific requirements of the state in which you plan to live since each state has different regulations. All documents that prove that the applicant has completed university studies and completed the degree must be collected, if so.
If you want to continue your studies there, it is necessary to bring all the documents that prove the studies already carried out and the approved levels. In any case, there are basic documents that must be presented such as the original university degree (if you have one), the schooling certificate, and the bachelor’s degree.
The United States does not belong to the Hague Convention, so it is not necessary to apostille any document. However, all documents submitted must be translated into English by an accredited official translator. This includes study programs.