Equivalence of University degrees: Algeria, US work to remove barriers

ALGIERS – Algeria and U.S. are working to remove barriers to the equivalence of US diplomas obtained by Algerian students in the USA but unrecognized in Algeria, said Meghann Curtis, Deputy Assistant Secretary (DAS) for Academic Programs.

"There is a willingness from the Algerian to solve the problem of diplomas equivalence obtained by the Algerian students in American universities. There is a better understanding of how the American education system functions and how these diplomas are issued," Curtis has said in an interview with APS.

Visiting Algeria on 2-3 February as part of a Maghreb tour, the US official added that the "progress" has been made at the end of her discussions with Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research Mohamed Mebarki.

Regretting that this obstacle "hampers" greater mobility of Algerian students to the US, she explained the "decentralized" nature of the American higher education system. Indeed, the questions related to the quality control and the issuance of degrees are not ruled by the government, she stressed.

In this regard, she wished that the number of Algerian students pursuing their education curriculum in American universities is more important, indicating that this number was 173 in 2014, against 176 in 2013. In the opposite direction, one single American student enrolled in Algeria last year.

In addition to the barrier of the equivalence of diplomas, the bilateral cooperation in education and higher education is faced with the constraints of language, noted the representative of US State Department.

To overcome this barrier, learning this language by high school students in Algeria will double during the current year, through micro-grants program called "Access" initiated by the US embassy, she announced.

More than 600 students have joined this program since the beginning of the year, as the courses are offered in addition to their academic program or during weekends, school holidays and out of high school study schedules, she underlined.

Source: Algeria Press Service

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