Recognition of primary and secondary education


According to the legislation in force, foreign qualifications giving access to higher education in Slovakia are recognised by a competent district office seated in one of the regional capitals. Their competence is based on the place of your residence in the Slovak Republic. At present, there are 8 district offices seated in regional capitals.

During the process of nostrification, leaving certificates and diplomas issued by foreign schools are examined in terms of equivalence of the scope and content of education obtained abroad with the corresponding study programme in Slovakia

Completed application form for recognition of education must be submitted together with the following documents:

  • copy of the identification document
  • certified copy of the leaving certificate or diploma
  • transcript of completed courses and completed exams
  • in a case of vocational secondary education, a confirmation issued by the secondary school about the scope of practical education

The application form is available on the website of the Ministry of Education. The original educational documentation must be authenticated (apostilled or superlegalised) by a competent body of the state in question and its certified copy must be translated into Slovak.

The department of education of the district office considers the application within 30 days after its receipt. If the application doesn’t include all the required documentation, the district authority interrupts the process and prompts the applicant to submit the missing documents or to correct any found deficiencies.

After the receipt of a complete application, the district office decides within two months about the recognition of the educational document, its refusal or about a prescription of a differential exam.

In case that the study in a foreign school corresponds to the curricula of secondary schools in Slovakia only partially, the district office could lay down the obligation to take a differential exam. It is meant to verify the knowledge and skills of the applicant in subjects, or in their parts, which were not studied by the applicant in a foreign school and which have a direct relation to the applicant’s profile or the field of study pursued. A graduate, who is not a Slovak national, does not have to take a supplementary examination in the Slovak Language and Literature. The district office determines the content, the exact date of examination and the secondary school, where the graduate shall take the differential exam.

A different procedure applies if the documents were issued by a foreign school located in an EU/EEA Member State, Switzerland or in a state, with which an agreement has been concluded on mutual recognition of documents on education by which the Slovak Republic is bound (the Slovak Republic has sign agreements with Austria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Romania and Ukraine). In this case, the recognition for academic purposes (continuing in higher education in the Slovak Republic) is done on an automatic basis and the documents are considered as equal without nostrification. The district office shall issue a decision within 15 days since the submission of a complete application.