Recognition FAQ's

In this page, you will find quick answers to some frequently asked questions about the process of Recognition of Foreign Degrees/Diplomas in Portugal. Please, just check if your question is already clarified here.

How should I validate my Diploma in Portugal?

If you hold a foreign degree/diploma and you want it to have legal validity in Portugal, you must go through a Recognition process. More information here.

I need to do an equivalence. How does it work?

With the entry into force of Decree-Law no. 66/2018, of 16 August, the Equivalence process ceased to exist. Now, foreign diplomas or degrees can be submitted to a Recognition process, with 3 different types of Recognition. More information  here.

Which one of the three types of Recognition should I choose?

All 3 types of Recognition (Automatic, Level and Specific) have the same legal validity, but not all of them serve the same purposes. You should choose the one that best suits your purposes:

  • If you only want/need recognition of the Degree/Level of the higher education degree you hold (e.g. Bachelor's degree) you can choose Automatic or Level Recognition.
  • If, in addition, you also want to obtain a Recognition of the scientific course/area (e.g. Degree in Biology) you must choose the Specific Recognition.


My Degree/Diploma does not appear in the Automatic Recognition list, but what I have is equivalent to one of them. Can I ask for Automatic Recognition?

No. Automatic Recognition only applies to Degrees/Diplomas on this list . Your Degree/Diploma must be exactly the Grade stated therein, and cannot be “equivalent to…” or “equal to…”


Who can do Automatic Recognition?

DGES and all public Higher Education Institutions in Portugal.


Who can do Level or Specific Recognition?

Only public Higher Education Institutions in Portugal.


To apply for Level or Specific Recognition, should I go directly to a public Higher Education Institution?

No. The request must be made through an online form (available here), where the desired Institution is selected.


I made a request for Automatic Recognition through the online form. Was it the DGES that received it?

It depends. If you chose DGES as the entity to analyse your request, then your request will be analysed by DGES. If you chose a public Portuguese Higher Education Institution, your request was automatically entered in that Institution and not in the DGES.


Where can I find the number/reference of the Recognition application I submitted?

When submitting the request in the online form, the information “Application submitted successfully” will appear on the screen, indicating the number/reference associated with it. You will also have automatically received an email confirming the submission of the request with the same number/reference. If you haven't received the email, check your Spam inbox.

I do not understand the number/reference of my request for Recognition.

Your number/reference can be read as follows:


I have questions in the online form, how can I clarify?

Please use the Manual/Practical Guide to support the submission of the online form, which describes, in detail, each step of the filling of the online form.


The form shows an error message. Who should I contact?

Before contacting DGES, we recommend you to close and the reopen the webpage and then fill it all in again, by consulting the Manual/Practical Guide to support the submission of the online form. If the error persists, please take a print screen of the error message and send it to us via the Electronic Desk .


The foreign Higher Education Institution I attended couldn’t be chosen on the online form. What should I do?

Send us a message through the Electronic Desk informing us of this, attaching a document (preferably your Diploma) of the Higher Education Institution so that we can verify.


I spoke to the Higher Education Institution in Portugal where I want to do the Recognition and they said that DGES takes care of everything.

DGES only provides and manages the Recognition online platform in Portugal. The online form and the platform are both universal and shared between DGES and all Portuguese public Higher Education Institutions. Therefore, if you want to make a request for Recognition for a specific Institution, just access the online form and choose the Institution you want.


How much do I need to pay to request the Recognition process?

It depends. The amount to pay for a Recognition process depends on the type of recognition you are going to require and the Higher Education Institution/Entity you choose to analyse your request.


How long does it take until the Recognition process should be finalized?

If it is an Automatic Recognition, it takes a maximum of 30 days. If it is a Level or Specific Recognition, it takes a maximum of 90 days. All referred deadlines refer to working days and are counted just since the correct and complete submission of the request by the applicant.


My foreign degree has a qualitative final course grade. Can I ask for the Conversion to Portuguese scale?

The final grade conversion to the Portuguese scale (from 0 to 20 values) can be requested simultaneously with the automatic recognition or level recognition, or, in some cases, after having already obtained yours:

• Degree/Diploma Recognition, or

• Professional recognition

With the exception of the specific situations provided for in some cases of classifications awarded in the United Kingdom , Malta and the United States of America , the final grade conversion to the Portuguese scale is done by applying the following arithmetic formula:

Cfinal = {[(C - Cmin )/( Cmax-Cmin )]*10} + 10

on what:

Cfinal = final grade converted to the Portuguese scale;

C = final grade of the academic degree or foreign diploma;

Cmin = minimum grade corresponding to approval in the foreign final grade scale;

Cmax = maximum grade in the foreign final grade scale.


It is also important to mention that this process of converting the final course grade to the Portuguese scale does not apply to the Doctor's degree, but only to the Bachelor's and Master's degrees.

For the Doctor’s degree, as well as for situations in which there was no attribution of a final classification by the Higher Education Institution of origin, the mechanism for attributing a final classification can be applied, which is an integral part of the process of Specific Recognition.


What documents do I need to present to apply for a Recognition?

Here you can check the documents required for each type of Recognition. However, before submitting your request in the online form, we recommend to establish contact with the Portuguese Higher Education Institution where you want to carry out the Recognition (for example, by consulting its website), which are the specific requirements/documents and costs required by that Institution.


With my degree recognized, can I start working?

It depends on the situations. In Portugal, the access and the practice of professions is free in accordance with the constitutional principle of freedom to choose a profession, which means that, for most (non-regulated) professions, the requirements to work will depend on each employer.

However, in situations of regulated and regulatory professions, certain access and practice requirements for the professions are necessary (please check this  information).

If you consult the list of regulated professions , you will be able to confirm whether yours is a regulated profession in Portugal and, if so, which national entity is responsible for this professional recognition, with which we recommend contact for information on the specific conditions of access to the profession.


I want to apply for a master's degree in Portugal. Do I need to recognize my degree?

The access to and the entry into master's study cycles in Portugal is carried out through competitions organized by each Higher Education Institution, so it should be from them that specific information can be obtained on access and entry into these study cycles, namely the requirement concerning the recognition of previous trainings or degrees.


Do I need to translate my documents to apply for a Recognition?

If the documents were originally issued in English, French or Spanish, no. If the documents are issued in other languages, the Institution/entity you choose to assess your application could demand the translation of your documents into Portuguese (certified translation) if deems it necessary, and also, they may decide that, as an alternative to Portuguese, the translation is made into English, Spanish or French.

We emphasize that this certification must focus on the content of the translation and not just on the signatures of the parties involved in the acts in question.

In accordance with the current Portuguese legislation (Código do Notariado and Decree-Law no. 237/2001, of 30 August), the following entities are allowed to make and certificate translations:

  • Portuguese Public Notary;
  • Portuguese Consulate/Embassy in the country where the document was issued;
  • Consulate/Embassy in Portugal in the country where the document was issued and a suitable translator;
  • Conservators of any Conservatory;
  • Lawyers and Solicitors;
  • Chambers of Commerce and Industry recognized under the terms of Decree-Law no. 244/92, of 29 October.

It can also be done by a suitable translator and certified by any of the services or entities mentioned above. In this case, the translator must attend in person before the notary, registrar, registry officer, lawyer, solicitor or chamber of Commerce and Industry, and under oath or commitment of honour, he must declare that the text has been faithfully translated by himself.


I made a mistake when submitting the application and I want to change the Higher Education Institution that is analysing my request. What should I do?

In this case, you should directly contact the Institution to which you sent your request and ask for its cancellation. After cancelling, you can go back to the form and submit a new request. We warn that the DGES will only be able to cancel requests that were allocated to DGES itself; all others requests will have to be threated and go through the Institution that was originally chosen.