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Recognition of foreign qualifications and Artificial Intelligence: the work of a credential evaluator

AI Explained

How will the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) impact the educational sector and the recognition of qualifications? How will it influence the work of a credential evaluator1 who is called upon to assess foreign qualifications? What will be its positive and negative implications?

These, among others, are the questions that the document published by CIMEA in November 2023, “Artificial Intelligence and recognition of qualifications: opportunities and risks from an ENIC-NARIC perspective” tries to address. CIMEA, the Information Centre on Academic Mobility and Equivalence, is the Italian National Information Centre entrusted by the Ministry for Universities and Research (MUR) with the task of conducting activities concerning the recognition of qualifications, the Italian higher education system and the qualifications awarded at national level. Against this background, CIMEA has explored the impact of AI on credential evaluation, both in the perspective of recognition workflow, as well as its influence on credential evaluators’ daily work.
In this regard, the document wants to encourage the reader to question the positive and negative use of AI in the field of education and mainly, for credentials evaluators, when assessing a foreign qualification. Indeed, considering the typical tasks of a credential evaluator, i.e. to evaluate and arrive at an opinion/decision to recognize a qualification in terms of comparability and equivalence2, as well as determining if the qualification is genuine or not, AI can play a crucial role.

Following this path, in its Chapter “Artificial Intelligence in higher education: ethical perspectives”, the document deals mainly with five dimensions for AI in recognition: (1) equity, (2) recognition workflow, (3) learning outcomes (LOs), (4) the European framework and regulations and (5) international academic mobility. In each of these dimensions, a few
questions emerged, such as: how to respond to the inequalities that AI might generate in the educational sector, if it can be used to automatize the assessment procedure as well as support fraud detection, how the description of LOs will change considering the widespread usage of Chat GPT and other methodologies of text analysis, how and if AI can boost automatic recognition3 in Europe and whether the internationalization and mobility of students can be supported by AI tools in order to overcome obstacles and barriers.

With specific reference to the work of a credential evaluator when assessing foreign qualifications, AI can provide a significant contribution, regarding time-consuming and lowadded-value-tasks. In this context, it is important to consider that a change in the processes by introducing AI into the daily work needs to be followed by an increase in the level of awareness and competences of the credential evaluator him/herself, such as digital competences, data
analysis, research skills and critical thinking capabilities.
In conclusion, what the document aims to deliver is both a set of issues to reflect on regarding the positive impact that AI can have on the work of a professional who evaluates foreign titles, as well as its consequences when deciding to introduce these new technologies into the daily work.

Read the full article here.

1 The Credential Evaluator is a capable and qualified professional, whose responsibility is the evaluation of scholastic and academic qualifications, professional qualifications, and any other certification, even partial, relating to one or more sectors of school and higher education in a country. Indeed, credential evaluation professionals help higher education institutions, employers, government authorities and other bodies responsible for the various recognition procedures to evaluate foreign qualifications in an appropriate way (Italian Professional Association of Credential Evaluators – APICE).

2 APICE. Professional Profile. Credential Evaluator, junior level. Available:

3 “[…] the right for holders of a qualification of a certain level that has been issued by one Member State to be considered for entry to a higher education programme in the next level in any other Member State, without having to go through any separate recognition procedure […].”. Council recommendation on promoting automatic mutual recognition of higher education andupper secondary education and training qualifications and the outcomes of learning periods abroad. 26 November 2018. Available: