Recognition and international comparability of qualifications

Recognition of qualifications refers to a decision on the eligibility that foreign qualifications provide when applying for a job or study place. In Finland, recognition decisions are made by different bodies for different purposes.

The Finnish National Agency for Education

Field-specific authorities decide on the professional rights that foreign qualifications give in Finland, within their area of competence (-> Professional rights on the basis of a foreign qualification).

Employers assess foreign qualification themselves when recruiting employees if national legislation does not specify qualification requirements for the position, such as a certain qualification, a qualification of a certain level, or professional practice rights.

Higher education institutions and other educational institutions decide on the eligibility that foreign qualifications give for further studies in Finland. They also decide on the recognition of studies completed abroad towards a qualification to be completed in Finland. On request, the Finnish National Agency for Education advises higher education institutions on matters that concern academic recognition.

The Finnish National Agency for Education has tasks which relate to how studies and professional qualifications completed in Finland are recognised abroad. The agency:

Click picture to open in new tab. You can also find the flow chart in Finnish, Swedish and Russian on the right side of the page.

Customer Satisfaction in Recognition Process Surveyed

The Finnish National Agency for Education has surveyed the satisfaction of its customers, i.e. people who have applied for the recognition of a qualification, on the services provided. The customers were requested to evaluate the quality of the FNAE’s service and to provide related development suggestions. The purpose was to also gain more information on the effectiveness of the decisions and the significance of the decision for applicants.

The target group of the survey was selected through a random sample of people who received a decision issued by the FNAE on the recognition of a qualification in 2008–2015. The total number of responses obtained was 340. Different statements concerned with the service process were used to examine customer satisfaction.

Overall, the customer satisfaction can be perceived to be good. The speed of the process, communications and answering to questions as well as the clarity and thoroughness of the process, advice and decisions were praised the most. The largest group of the customers’ improvement suggestions was concerned with the practices related to the process of recognition of qualifications.

Report in Finnish with summary in English, Russian and Swedish (pdf)


Contact information

Frequently asked questions

In other languages

Brochure and flow chart on recognition


Flow chart