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Mr. Zheng

Degree Authentication required?

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Howdy.

Have been reading some chatter on some other boards that our college degrees need to be "authenticated", and would like to know if anyone, especially Americans have gotten this done and what might be required, especially for Americans. I plan on going back to the USA in January and would like to stay on top of things. One thing that is a concern is having to deal with the Chinese consulate, with the nearest ones near me is hundreds of miles away, and walking around the streets of Chicago (Chicago in Russian is "Siberia") in February looking for an address is not my idea of entertainment.

I guess I can swing by the Foreign Expert Bureau and ask them. However what frustrates me no end about Chinese is that they do not know anything, or give bad or incorrect information. Has anyone gone through this process if necessary? Thank you.

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4 hours ago, Mr. Zheng said:

Howdy.

Have been reading some chatter on some other boards that our college degrees need to be "authenticated", and would like to know if anyone, especially Americans have gotten this done and what might be required, especially for Americans. I plan on going back to the USA in January and would like to stay on top of things. One thing that is a concern is having to deal with the Chinese consulate, with the nearest ones near me is hundreds of miles away, and walking around the streets of Chicago (Chicago in Russian is "Siberia") in February looking for an address is not my idea of entertainment.

I guess I can swing by the Foreign Expert Bureau and ask them. However what frustrates me no end about Chinese is that they do not know anything, or give bad or incorrect information. Has anyone gone through this process if necessary? Thank you.

I haven’t authenticated my diplomas and I am not even American but I have authenticated other American–issued documents so I believe what I write below is accurate.

Let me briefly explain about apostilles and document authentication. There is an internationally agreed procedure of how a private person can obtain a legal document in one country and present it in another. It is called apostille, it is basically a certificate of validity issued by the Foreign Ministry, the Department of State in DC in case of the US. 

Let’s start from the end.

Say, you would like to submit an American–issued legal document to a Chinese institution. For it to be accepted in China it has to be authenticated by the Chinese embassy / consulate in the US.

For the Chinese embassy to touch it, it has to be apostilled by the Department of State in DC. State Department will only apostille legal documents issued by the federal government (e.g. something issued by the FBI) OR a legal document that has already been apostilled by the respective Department of State in the capital of that state.

Now comes the catch. Not everything is considered legal documents. Something authenticated by a notary public IS a legal document. But just any notary cannot “authenticate” your diploma because there is nothing for them to authenticate. Usually it is a University–provided authentication service where they employ a certified notary public, who when presented with the original of your diploma has the means to check that it is indeed authentic and will then make a certified copy. It will be a photocopy of your diploma on a legal size sheet of paper with an addendum below stating that it is indeed a notarized copy of the original diploma and the signature of the notary.

Of course, if you can find a notary that will just blindly do it for you the outcome will be the same, the thing is that most notaries won’t.  

So to reiterate:

Present the original diploma to your University -–> get the notarized copy –> get this copy apostilled in the state capital –>  get it apostilled in DC –> get it authenticated at the Chinese embassy –> Bingo!

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On 11/12/2016 at 2:25 PM, unclemax said:

So I wasted my time to write this wall of text just for nothing? No discussion, no thank you. Geez, no wonder this forum sucks. 

Thank you!  I read it.  I actually brought my original degree along with me this time, as things just keep changing.  But of course a notarized copy would be ideal.   I think like Mr. Zheng, I might try to do the same when I go home in January.  That said, it's a slow process.  

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Actually I have an update on that. Apparently there’s a government department that does foreign degree authentication. You can submit documents right here in Hangzhou, near Gudang. They only need the original diploma (no apostille required), passport(s) and some paperwork in Chinese. And you get to keep all the originals, they only need to see it once and take pictures / copies. 

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On 11/12/2016 at 2:25 PM, unclemax said:

So I wasted my time to write this wall of text just for nothing? No discussion, no thank you. Geez, no wonder this forum sucks. 

Actually, I read your description of the process last year, and in my opinion, it was excellent and needed no response because it was so well written.

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On 12/01/2017 at 3:22 PM, HZ_Time said:

Actually, I read your description of the process last year, and in my opinion, it was excellent and needed no response because it was so well written.

He was saying - no-one expressed any form of appreciation! Only 1 upvote, and the OP didn't even bother to come back to thank him for it!

 

I didn't comment or upvote, because it's American.... some of what's written is purely for Americans, and does not apply to other countries in the world (which do actually exist :p) It's well-written, but slightly inaccurate (although, sort of irrelevantly).

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On 10/01/2017 at 8:38 PM, unclemax said:

Actually I have an update on that. Apparently there’s a government department that does foreign degree authentication. You can submit documents right here in Hangzhou, near Gudang. They only need the original diploma (no apostille required), passport(s) and some paperwork in Chinese. And you get to keep all the originals, they only need to see it once and take pictures / copies. 

Yeah, I'd really trust that!!! :doubtful:

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On 1/12/2017 at 3:22 PM, HZ_Time said:

Actually, I read your description of the process last year, and in my opinion, it was excellent and needed no response because it was so well written.

It’s great that you found it useful! But please notice that all that I described apparently doesn’t apply to diplomas. I only recently found this out but there is a government agency that can authenticate your diploma, they only need to see the original, no prior authentication of any sort is required. 

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5 minutes ago, sainthood said:

He was saying - no-one expressed any form of appreciation! Only 1 upvote, and the OP didn't even bother to come back to thank him for it!

 

I didn't comment or upvote, because it's American.... some of what's written is purely for Americans, and does not apply to other countries in the world (which do actually exist :p) It's well-written, but slightly inaccurate (although, sort of irrelevantly).

With respect to diplomas it seems to be totally inaccurate! The advice was based on my experience authenticating the health check and no criminal record forms. However there’s a government office in China that can authenticate your diploma for you. 

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Just now, unclemax said:

With respect to diplomas it seems to be totally inaccurate! The advice was based on my experience authenticating the health check and no criminal record forms. However there’s a government office in China that can authenticate your diploma for you. 

You had to get your health check authenticated??? WTF?

Q: what do you mean by 'diploma'? In Australia, a 'diploma' is a very specific level of qualification - not a generic piece of paper. ie, we don't have a 'high school diploma'. It comes between the Certificate IV and the Advanced Diploma (after which is the Bachelor degree).

 

Also, the only real difference between your version and the Aus version is basically that it needs to go to the capital city for authentication by a gov department. Everything else was (or could be) basically the same.

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11 minutes ago, sainthood said:

You had to get your health check authenticated??? WTF?

Q: what do you mean by 'diploma'? In Australia, a 'diploma' is a very specific level of qualification - not a generic piece of paper. ie, we don't have a 'high school diploma'. It comes between the Certificate IV and the Advanced Diploma (after which is the Bachelor degree).

 

Also, the only real difference between your version and the Aus version is basically that it needs to go to the capital city for authentication by a gov department. Everything else was (or could be) basically the same.

Why, yes! As I mentioned, if the document originates from outside of China it has to be authenticated. At least that’s what I’ve been told. 

By diploma I literally mean just a piece of paper from an accredited University stating that you have earned BA, MA, MSci, MEng, PhD or what ever degree. 

They collect your information such as dates, student ID number, etc and apparently have the means to verify it. When I was submitting my application I saw someone with diplomas from University of Edinburgh, University of Melbourne…

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I am back in my home country now and trying to find out if I need to get my diploma authenticated and need a no criminal certificate. I have been reading that the government will basically federalize the process and everyone throughout China will be under the same system. Of course, no one seems to know anything. I just want to stay on top of what might be required, especially if I have to change jobs, which I may do.

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I am back in my home country now and trying to find out if I need to get my diploma authenticated and need a no criminal certificate. I have been reading that the government will basically federalize the process and everyone throughout China will be under the same system. Of course, no one seems to know anything. I just want to stay on top of what might be required, especially if I have to change jobs, which I may do. I have read that one may have to do the whole process including FBI or national criminal check for even changing jobs.

Very difficult to stay on top of stuff.

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1 hour ago, Popcorn Sutton said:

I am back in my home country now and trying to find out if I need to get my diploma authenticated and need a no criminal certificate. I have been reading that the government will basically federalize the process and everyone throughout China will be under the same system. Of course, no one seems to know anything. I just want to stay on top of what might be required, especially if I have to change jobs, which I may do. I have read that one may have to do the whole process including FBI or national criminal check for even changing jobs.

Very difficult to stay on top of stuff.

I would suggest - get your degree authenticated (a few copies, if you can afford it). It's going to be handy to have this regardless, and authentications don't expire (although, a Chinese authentication won't help if you're going to other countries...). Therefore, get a few copies authenticated by the local government (US??), but only one (or maybe 2) sent to the Chinese consulate for their bits.

The Criminal History Check, however, is only valid for about 6 months, so it might be worth doing now... or it might not.

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1 hour ago, sainthood said:

I would suggest - get your degree authenticated (a few copies, if you can afford it). It's going to be handy to have this regardless, and authentications don't expire (although, a Chinese authentication won't help if you're going to other countries...). Therefore, get a few copies authenticated by the local government (US??), but only one (or maybe 2) sent to the Chinese consulate for their bits.

The Criminal History Check, however, is only valid for about 6 months, so it might be worth doing now... or it might not.

If he’s in the US criminal history check is going to be a major pain in the ass. You have to be fingerprinted (physically), have the prints sent to the FBI and response takes 11+ weeks. Oh, and that’s without State Department apostille and Chinese embassy authentication. 

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1 minute ago, unclemax said:

If he’s in the US criminal history check is going to be a major pain in the ass. You have to be fingerprinted (physically), have the prints sent to the FBI and the response takes 11+ weeks. Oh, and that’s without State Department apostille and Chinese embassy authentication. 

Bwahahahahaaaaa......

For Australia, it was jsut some info sent through the internet... name(s), address, ID (D/L)... all done within 24 hours! AND I was sent multiple copies! :D:D:D

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On 1/16/2017 at 2:43 PM, unclemax said:

It’s great that you found it useful! But please notice that all that I described apparently doesn’t apply to diplomas. I only recently found this out but there is a government agency that can authenticate your diploma, they only need to see the original, no prior authentication of any sort is required. 

Do you have the contact info or website for the place??? I might be reaching out to them

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On 1/16/2017 at 2:53 PM, sainthood said:

You had to get your health check authenticated??? WTF?

Q: what do you mean by 'diploma'? In Australia, a 'diploma' is a very specific level of qualification - not a generic piece of paper. ie, we don't have a 'high school diploma'. It comes between the Certificate IV and the Advanced Diploma (after which is the Bachelor degree).

 

Also, the only real difference between your version and the Aus version is basically that it needs to go to the capital city for authentication by a gov department. Everything else was (or could be) basically the same.

Yea its actually a piece a paper, 

that says you have graduated from high school, you get one even after elementary and middle school

I guess its a thing in the US

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On 1/19/2017 at 1:56 PM, sainthood said:

I would suggest - get your degree authenticated (a few copies, if you can afford it). It's going to be handy to have this regardless, and authentications don't expire (although, a Chinese authentication won't help if you're going to other countries...). Therefore, get a few copies authenticated by the local government (US??), but only one (or maybe 2) sent to the Chinese consulate for their bits.

The Criminal History Check, however, is only valid for about 6 months, so it might be worth doing now... or it might not.

Do you have any experience with "online" notary's?

I am seeing more and more ads about them after a couple google searches

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On 1/19/2017 at 3:21 PM, unclemax said:

If he’s in the US criminal history check is going to be a major pain in the ass. You have to be fingerprinted (physically), have the prints sent to the FBI and response takes 11+ weeks. Oh, and that’s without State Department apostille and Chinese embassy authentication. 

What about the 10 Digit finger print you must do when entering the country for the first time? (its a requirement now) What if you have been to court? Wont that kinda speed up the process a bit???

The FBI wont have records of that? it must be a fresh print? lol Do you mean its a whole other process JUST for the criminal report???? Man that is tough  lol I had to get a criminal certificate from Colombian to open up a company ( and that's a whole other level of headache) but I didn't think Id need to do somewhat of the same process IF I'd wanna do my masters 

I was never asked for this when applying to Zhejiang University (I will note that it was the language program ) but they did ask for a school diploma I showed them the original 

this was during the 2014 semester, I had no problems what so ever

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2 hours ago, jodihe93 said:

Do you have any experience with "online" notary's?

I am seeing more and more ads about them after a couple google searches

No, no experience of such. Though, I've been told about them - you need to do it through Skype or similar, so they see your face, and all. I'm dubious about them because of the chances for fraud.

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41 minutes ago, jodihe93 said:

What about the 10 Digit finger print you must do when entering the country for the first time? (its a requirement now) What if you have been to court? Wont that kinda speed up the process a bit???

The FBI wont have records of that? it must be a fresh print? lol Do you mean its a whole other process JUST for the criminal report???? Man that is tough  lol I had to get a criminal certificate from Colombian to open up a company ( and that's a whole other level of headache) but I didn't think Id need to do somewhat of the same process IF I'd wanna do my masters 

I was never asked for this when applying to Zhejiang University (I will note that it was the language program ) but they did ask for a school diploma I showed them the original 

this was during the 2014 semester, I had no problems what so ever

Ah, the one reason I refuse to go to the US... "you want to enter our country, you must be a criminal, so we'll treat you like one". (fingerprinting is ONLY legally required otherwise for citizens who are being arrested...).

I would imagine that you would NEED to supply fresh prints. After all, how else do you guarantee that the person on that passport is REALLY the same person who did the degree???

Remember - this is for GOVERNMENT - not just the university...

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1 hour ago, jodihe93 said:

What about the 10 Digit finger print you must do when entering the country for the first time? (its a requirement now) What if you have been to court? Wont that kinda speed up the process a bit???

The FBI wont have records of that? it must be a fresh print? lol Do you mean its a whole other process JUST for the criminal report???? Man that is tough  lol I had to get a criminal certificate from Colombian to open up a company ( and that's a whole other level of headache) but I didn't think Id need to do somewhat of the same process IF I'd wanna do my masters 

I was never asked for this when applying to Zhejiang University (I will note that it was the language program ) but they did ask for a school diploma I showed them the original 

this was during the 2014 semester, I had no problems what so ever

If the criminal record check is needed for work you can scan your prints at a few places and get the result relatively quickly, however I believe that such result cannot be apostilled by the State Department. So for our purposes, yes. You need to find a fingerprinting specialist, do the prints on a special form and mail it to the FBI.

 

3 hours ago, jodihe93 said:

Do you have the contact info or website for the place??? I might be reaching out to them

I don’t know what’s their website, I attach the map showing physical location. I suggest asking a Chinese friend to help you find their website though because if you want to submit diploma for authentication you need to pay a fee in advance.

Screen Shot 2017-02-14 at 12.49.29.png

Screen Shot 2017-02-14 at 12.49.04.png

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On 2/14/2017 at 11:57 AM, sainthood said:

No, no experience of such. Though, I've been told about them - you need to do it through Skype or similar, so they see your face, and all. I'm dubious about them because of the chances for fraud.

That's for sure! 

Ive seen a few but still a but worried if they would even be accepted lol I am guessing they mail in the certificate 

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