Here are important guidelines for international students to learn if they are looking to study overseas in Canada or the US. This concerns the need to submit original documents with the WES (World Education Services), a requirement that’s also called an “apostille” requirement.
What is WES?
The WES is a non-profit organization that evaluates international educational qualifications, assists the integration of immigrants into the workforce, and provides support to organizations that serve immigrants. For those with plans to study overseas in the USA and Canada, the evaluation of credentials will serve as their authentic proof of eligibility to join and study in institutions in the USA or Canada.
This could involve:
- providing a transcript’s copy in an envelope sealed and stamped
- the institution sharing files via secure electronic transmission
- uploading certain types of files (degree certificates or translations)
How to prepare the sealed documents?
Use the Academic Records Request Form when you contact your educational institution for the release of your academic documents. This form is available in multiple languages. This is an optional form. However, it instructs the institution clearly regarding the way to prepare and submit your documents to be submitted to WES.
How to submit your documents?
The instructions for submission of your documents to WES, and the method of submitting them, will be different between countries or territories where you studied. Here are some important instructions to ensure that your evaluation is completed on time.
- Unless it’s stated specifically on the Required Documents page or there’s a request from WES, you must not submit your original documents as they cannot be returned to you.
- Don’t use email to submit your required documents. Except in specific cases of agreements with an educational institution, WES doesn’t accept documents that are sent via email or as an email attachment.
- Your documents must reach WES by online submission, courier service, or postal mail. In many instances, WES accepts documents that are electronically shared through exchange networks and online platforms.
- In case the document requirements for your country suggest that you are allowed to submit a copy of the document, you may fax the copy to WES. Fax is acceptable only for documents where a photocopy is necessary.
- Put your name and WES reference number on the cover sheet and each page.
You can even upload photocopies of your documents to your account. However, this option will be available after you submit your application.
Does WES return original documents?
You don’t have to submit your original documents unless it’s specifically required of you to do so. If submitting your documents is involved, they will be returned after the completion of the evaluation.
Can my institution send my degree certificate as well as a transcript in the same envelope?
Your institution can send multiple documents in the same sealed envelope.
Do I have to send all required documents to WES myself?
While some documents are for you to send, others have to be sent by the institution.
Will WES accept academic documents sent by third parties?
WES accepts only those academic documents that are sent by the issuing institution. No documents sent by a third party will be accepted.
What should I do if my institution no longer has my individual results?
Let your school send a confirmation of award letter to WES in a sealed envelope. This letter should include the name of your field of study, credential, biographical data, and year of the award. The letter should also indicate the fact that the institution no longer has your records.
What should I do if my documents were sent before I applied?
You must submit an application to confirm that your documents have arrived at WES.
Does WES offer translation services?
No. Translations of documents will be accepted from your academic institution, University Language Services, or any other translation service that’s certified.
It’s mandatory that documents in any language other than English must be translated. You must note that:
- WES requires precise, verbatim translations in English.
- You must send photocopies of your translations to WES. Don’t send the original documents as they can’t be returned.
- Translations you submit won’t replace original degree certificates and transcripts.
WES needs translations along with degree certificates and transcripts in the original language.
Can I email my documents to WES?
The authentication process of WES needs to receive documents from the institution directly (unless stated otherwise on the WES website). WES does have arrangements with lots of institutions to accept electronic documents sent via secure and official channels. Please make sure your institution has this capability.
What should I do if my documents were sent to the wrong WES office?
WES can match your academic documents to your account if your WES reference number was written on the envelope or the WES Academic Records Request Form was included with your academic documents.
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