Anabin Guide #4 - the meaning of H+, H- and Н+/-

ZAB explains what you can do if your Anabin Status H+, H- or Н+/-

Although my articles are primarily written for IT professionals, the guidelines for document translation apply to anyone who needs to translate a diploma, certificate, attestation etc. into German.

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Anabin Status H+

To understand the H+ status designation, go to Anabin Home Page. Click on Institutionen (Institutions, on the left side of the page). You need the tab Info (12).
Now you can translate the explanation into English using the Chrom's right click (s.Screenshot 1.)

Click on Info and you will get to the page with explanations (screenshot 2).

anabin, work in germany, blue card, bluecard, 
                study in germany,zab,Zentralstelle fuer auslaendisches Bildungswesen,Central Office for Foreign Education Screenshot 2

Look at the figure (13) and a below:

The institutions are grouped together, the so-called "institution types", and provided with a specific "status". The status indicates whether an institution can be considered as university or not. The status of an institution can be H +, H-, and H +/-.

H+ means that the institution is recognized as an university in its home country and is also regarded as a higher education institution in Germany. H- means that the recognition / accreditation in the state of origin is missing and / or that it can not be classified as a university in Germany. H +/- denotes institutions for which no clear statement can be made. This is the case, for example, if certain programs are offered at an institution that belong to the higher education sector, while others are lower or not accredited according to their duration and level. In such cases, the examination of the individual financial statements is required. A look at the comment on the institution type can provide important additional information in this context.

What if Anabin status H-

First of all, don't panic :) This issue can be solved withing 1-3 months for about two hundred euro.

H- means that there is no recognition / accreditation in the country of origin and / or no classification as a university in Germany can take place.

In this case you have to apply to ZAB for your degree evaluation. You'll need to collect necessary documents and send them by "paper post" to ZAB head office in Bonn. This is the requirement of the German embassies for issuing of national visas for the purpose of employment for highly qualified foreign specialists (all IT professions included).

What to do if Anabin status H+/-

If the status of your university is H+/-, it means that some faculties are recognized, some are not. Here is what the Anabin says:

H +/- indicates institutions for which no clear statement can be made. This is the case, for example, when certain courses of study are offered at an institution that belong to the higher education sector, while others are lower in terms of duration and level or are not accredited. In such cases, the examination of the individual degree is required. A look at the comment on the type of institution can provide important additional information in this context.

Good news! You can call or email ZAB if you have questions around your degree.
Bad news: Very likely you will not receive any statement about your degree. For this you have to apply and pay the fee.

My institution cannot be found at Anabin. What to do?

ZAB support team has answered this question as follows:

Die Datenbank anabin erhebt keinen Anspruch auf Vollständigkeit, da die ausländischen Bildungssysteme der permanenten Veränderung unterliegen. Obwohl die Inhalte des Informationsangebots laufend aktualisiert und erweitert werden, kann es vorkommen, dass eine gesuchte Hochschule oder ein gesuchter Abschluss noch nicht in anabin aufgeführt ist.

The anabin database does not pretend to be complete, as foreign educational systems are subject to permanent change. Although the contents of the information offered are constantly updated and expanded, it may happen that a university or degree sought is not yet listed in anabin.

Important! If your degree is not listed in anabin, this does not automatically mean that your degree is not recognized in Germany.

In this case, ZAB recommend the the following:

Do not search for the specific degree (e.g. Master in ...) straight away.

Instead, search first for the Institution. And only then search for the degree type. In many cases, the information that the university and the degree type acquired there are recognised should be sufficient

MY QUESTION, sent on ZAB (on 24.12.19)

My case: an anabin status of my university is H+/-, which means some faculties are "plus" (accepted) while other faculties are "minus" (not accepted).

If the H+/- is there, how can be determined, which faculties are "plus" and which are "minus"?*

ZAB RESPOND (came on 02.01.20)

In this case you can find out about the type of degree and/or apply for an individual certificate assessment.

Information about the type of degree can be found in the Anabin database ( under following path:
- Hochschulabschlüsse (University degrees), then
- Suchen nach Abschlüssen (Looking for degrees), then
- Alle Länder: Land auswählen (Country selection (country selected)), then
- Suche starten (Start).

If an application for a certificate evaluation is desired, for application form go here:

(1) The form must be completed and submitted by clicking on 'Send'.

(2) A new page opens with a link to the completed PDF form.

(3) Please open, print and save the PDF form.

(4) The printed form must be signed by the applicant.

(5) The completed and signed form together with other documents must be sent by post to the following address:
ZAB im Sekretariat der Kultusministerkonferenz
Graurheindorfer Straße 157
53117 Bonn

  • Anabin Guide #1 - what is Anabin and why you might need it
  • ZAB - how to apply for evaluation of your qualification in Germany in 5 steps
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    12.05.20 - 24.10.20 ©️ Jaroslav Plotnikov ( All articles )