World Education Services

Thousands of refugees fleeing conflict and disaster in countries such as Syria face major hurdles in their new host countries. Credential assessment can be an unexpected one: Too often, lack of verifiable educational credentials blocks refugees from access to higher education or skilled professional employment.

This report is an overview of WES’s extensive research on worldwide practices in the assessment of credentials and qualifications of refugees and other displaced individuals. It seeks to provide educational institutions, licensing bodies, and employers – particularly in North America – with an understanding of promising and actionable practices for recognizing the qualifications, credentials and abilities of students and trained professionals.

This report includes:

  • An overview of the challenges in assessing the credentials of refugee students and professionals
  • Basic legal and theoretical frameworks in assessing such credentials
  • An overview of recommended practices to help institutions recognize refugee applicants qualifications when full, official or verifiable documentation is missing
  • Alternative methods for recognizing refugee qualifications when it is not possible to recognize the applicant’s full claimed background