How to get foreign qualification recognized by SAQA?

I decided to get my bachelor degree recognized by SAQA – South African Qualifications Authority. I registered at their official site and filled out the necessary information (personal data, the degree, institution that awarded me the degree). Carefully, I read all the downloadable documents and information on the site. In my case, I had no job offer from a South African employer and no sponsor to cover the expenses of the evaluation.

The required documents in my case were:

  1. Copy of passport/id *
  2. Copy of university diploma * **
  3. Copy of diploma supplement (containing all the subjects in the programme and grades) * **
  4. Application for the evaluation of foreign qualifications – generated by SAQA with the information given in application, downloaded from the website
  5. Consent Form for Release of Information – generated by SAQA, downloaded from the website
  6. Printed email of Payment Confirmation to SAQA – sent to the applicant after a successful online payment to SAQA. It serves as the proof of payment.

*stamped and signed by a Commissioner of Oaths, costed me 50zł (13$)

**since it’s in English I didn’t have to pay for a sworn translation

My recommendations

The qualification documents, such as diploma and diploma supplements have to be translated into one of the official languages of South Africa. Before heading to a sowrn translator, ask your university if they can issue you your diploma in English. It can save you a lot of money.

I recommend not to wait to pay for the evaluation too long. I had to wait 2 days (still quick) before my transaction made it to South Africa, so I couldn’t print out the email (point 6). Since my first transaction was unsuccessful because of my debit card, I sent the documents 5 days later than planned.

Because of some doubts I emailed SAQA but after 2 days I still didn’t receive any response. I tried Twitter and received an answer within 1 hour. If you got a question, tweet them!

I had doubts regarding my diploma supplement. The were some fragments that were left in the original language (might be a requirement by European Union, UNESCO or the country, who knows). Those fragments were some insignificant parts, not the name of subjects or grades. I was told the document would be accepted.

Also, the title in the university documents was left untranslated (that’s a practice in Europe not to translate titles). I asked if I should use the original title “inzynier” or “Bachelor of Engineering” in the application form. It was the latter.


50zł / 13$ – signing by Commissioner of Oaths

2240ZAR / 146$ / 583 zł – application fee to SAQA

30zł / 8$ – international transaction fee in bank

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