Diplomas and degrees
This page provides information on how to get a duplicate of your diploma or a prior certification for a legalization or apostille. Or you graduated from Fachhochschule Köln and are now wondering if your documents are still valid? And is your degree from TH Köln valid in the rest of the EU? Keep reading to find out.
Letter from the Vice President
Certificates issued by Fachhochschule Köln (Cologne University of Applied Sciences)
In September 2015, our institution changed its name from Fachhochschule Köln/Cologne University of Applied Sciences to Technische Hochschule Köln - University of Applied Sciences, usually abbreviated as TH Köln. Diplomas and certificates issued by Fachhochschule Köln/Cologne University of Applied Sciences continue to be valid. To prove that TH Köln and Fachhochschule Köln are the same institution, e.g. for job or university applications, you may use the letter from our vice president which is available for download in the info box. It is not possible to re-issue older documents with the new name and logo.
It is possible to issue a duplicate of your Bachelor’s, Master’s or Diplom certificate and/or examination certificate in case of loss or damage of the original documents. In exceptional cases, we can also issue duplicates to be submitted to foreign authorities. To request a duplicate, please contact the Office of Student Services on the campus where your program was offered by mail or email. Make sure to include the following information:
- First and last name
- Last name at birth (if applicable)
- Contact information
- Date of graduation
- Date and place of birth
- Copy or scan of the original graduation documents (if possible)
- Reason for requesting a duplicate
The fee for a duplicate of a Bachelor’s/Master’s/Diplom certificate, examination certificate or diploma supplement is € 25. If duplicates of two or three graduation documents are requested at the same time, the fee for all documents is € 30. Once we have received your request for a duplicate, we will send you a payment request.
(Fees are set down in sect. 1 (5) in conjunction with sect. 6 (1) of the Statute on Fees at TH Köln (Satzung über die Erhebung von Studienbeiträgen und Hochschulabgaben an der TH Köln).
Processing time for duplicates is usually three to four weeks.
Prior certification (Vorbeglaubigung)
Additional information on the certification of documents
- Bezirksregierung Köln (Cologne district government) The district government is in charge of apostilles and certifications of public documents for use abroad. Please note that their website is only available in German.
- Agency for Foreign Affairs (Bundesamt für Auswärtige Angelegenheiten) Information on additional certifications (Endbeglaubigung) by the Agency of Foreign Affairs [in German]
In most cases, it is necessary to have graduation documents issued by an institution of higher education certified to use them outside of Germany. This is called ‘legalization’. For states which are party to the Hague Convention there is a simplified procedure called 'apostille'. If you need a Bachelor’s, Master’s or Diplom certificate (Urkunde) and/or the respective examination certificate (Zeugnis) for a stay abroad, make sure to inquire in advance with the embassy or consulate of the respective country if you need to have your documents certified. Please also find out if you need to have the original document affixed with an apostille or legalization or whether it is sufficient if it is done on a copy (this is usually the case). Additional information (in German) is available on the website of the Bezirksregierung Köln.
If you need an apostille or a legalization, please contact the Office of Student Services responsible for your program to request prior certification (Vorbeglaubigung) of the original documents or a copy. You can then present your pre-certified documents to the Bezirksregierung Köln (district government) for certification (Beglaubigung) . For some countries, an additional certification (Endbeglaubigung) by the Bundesamt für Auswärtige Angelegenheiten (Agency for Foreign Affairs) is required.
Recognition of university degrees in within the EU
You want to work or study in the EU? The following websites provide detailed information on the recognition of university degrees within the EU:
European Union: Your Europe
In some EU member states, there are additional requirements besides a university degree that must be met to pursue certain professions (e.g. professional experience of a certain duration before being self-employed, additional qualifications). For details, please get in touch with the authorities of the country where you intend to work.