A new academic year is about to start. For those of you who already enrolled in one of the plenty of university programs available in Czech universities, it’s just a matter of time and concentration to end your studies and start working.
But what about those starting this year? And what if these youngsters are coming from abroad?
When enrolling in the local system, there’s one thing newcomers will be required to provide: the acknowledgment certificate of the former education abroad called validation of foreign studies and degrees or in Czech “nostrifikace”.
The nostrification is a mandatory process that each student who’s not Czech native must face when coming to the country for academic purposes. A procedure which will prove neither easy nor short.
Foregners can help at making nostrification less complicated by dealing with the bureaucracy and necessary paperwork in cooperation with the applicant.
Let’s now follow the procedure step by step in order to comprehend the importance of providing the correct documents and facilitate our Expat & Immigration Consultants in their work.
First of all, the student should contact us and submit an online request. The candidate shall then present:
1) a valid high school diploma.
2) the transcript of records including the number of hours attended per week for each subject. Usually, transcripts of records do not include the number of hours per week which must be displayed to accomplish the nostrification process. If that’s the student’s case, the school should be contacted in order to collect a further document comprising the missing requirement.
3) the proof of address in the Czech Republic. If the student does not live in the country at the moment of the application, the certificate is to be considered not compulsory, although this will slow down the process of 1 to 2 months.
4) the power of attorney signed, which draft can be provided by our consultants.
All the documents must be apostilled or super legalized before they can be utilized in the Czech Republic according to the nostrification process. The first procedure provides the documents with apostilles, a special type of legalization based on particular agreements, the second sees the embassy authenticating those documents already apostilled or legalized. This formality must be carried out in the student’s home country.
When in possession of the docs above mentioned, the student must send them to the Expat & Immigration Consultant with whom has been in contact and wait for their notarization and translation. These 2 further steps are not included in the nostrification service that Foreigners.cz provides and must be paid separately.
When everything will be ready, the docs will be submitted to the nostrification board.
The decision process tends to take from 1 to 2 months if the applicant has the residence address in the country, and requires 3 to 4 months when the candidate doesn’t. Whether the student can’t come to the Czech Republic in advance, the Expat & Immigration Consultant can offer proof of accommodation to make the procedure faster. The proof must be paid by the candidate for a total amount of 5000 CZK + 21% VAT.
If everything has been done accordingly, the acknowledgment certificate should be accepted, and the process will conclude with the acceptance of the student’s application.
Nevertheless, a certain percentage of applicants still have to attend what is called the nostrification exam, a test (usually oral) that proves the student’s knowledge and eligibility to study in the country.
Why does this happen? The nostrification board compares the student’s education to the Czech national education. In the case of missing years at high school (for instance: less than 4) or lack of essential subjects normally taught in the Czech Republic, the board is allowed to require the student’s attendance at the exam.
The exam includes 1 to 5 subjects focusing on geography, social sciences, English, history, physics, chemistry, math, etc… depending on the student’s dearth. The board is in charge of deciding which subjects have the priority and will notify the candidate about them in advance.
The test is held in Czech, that’s why the student may need a certified interpreter, a professional whose cost amounts to 1000 CZK + VAT for each nostrification exam attended (hopefully, the student won’t need to do it twice).
Our Expat & Immigration Consultants can arrange the dates of the exam but cannot influence the outcomes of the test itself. By failing the exam, the student will have to do the nostrification process all over again.
Nothing forbids the applicant to face on his own the mentioned procedures, but the outcomes shall not be given for granted and some support could definitely make the difference between a successful candidate and a failing one.
Therefore, we strongly recommend getting in touch with our experienced consultants specialized in this field of interest. They will guide the student through every single step of the process, solving any issue which might occur.
Don’t be afraid! Although the nostrification process can’t be considered the easiest bureaucratic procedure you’ve ever dealt with, with our support it’ll be easier than you thought!
Updated: 31. 8. 2020