A User’s Guide: China’s New Non-Standardized Degree Certificate

By Claire Mengshi Zheng – in WES / WENR.

In July 2015, China’s Ministry of Education (MOE) announced a new policy giving each individual institution of higher education the right to design, print, and issue its own degree certificate. This policy, called “Measures for the Administration of Degree Certificates and Degree-Granting Information,” went into effect in 2016, when a handful of institutions began issuing degree certificates in new, non-standardized formats.

The change is just now making itself felt in significant volume in admissions offices around the world. It marks the end of an era for Chinese higher education degrees. Before the new policy, students were granted MOE-designed degree certificates. The design of these documents was standardized, making review relatively straightforward.

As the new, non-standardized degrees begin to proliferate, they are introducing considerable complexity into the work of anyone tasked with reviewing them. Given the hundreds of thousands of Chinese students who earn admittance to U.S. institutions each year, the burden on credential evaluators is significant.



Povl Tiedemann
April 2017

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