Getting Your Degrees Certified From HEC Is Not As Simple As You Think It Is

It takes an average of 3 to 4 years to get professional recognition in Pakistan. For skill-based education where the candidate is awarded a certificate or a diploma, the time duration is shorter. In reality, things take longer in Pakistan when it comes to completing your documents and being truly done with it all. This is what I will be going through today.

To keep things simple, I am going to depict everything here as per the Higher Education Commission’s website. This way the readers can realize how, with HEC in the mix, the time taken to get recognition may vary. I shall not go into the details of the HEC websites functionality and they way it is designed. That is a topic for another day.

Lets get down to things.

Pakistan Universities: By the Numbers

There are 177 HEC recognized universities and institutes all across Pakistan. HEC further recognizes an additional 95 Campuses (Both Public and Private) for its certification.

In addition to these, the HEC website also lists the “Non – Recognized / Under Process” list of institutes that number 163 in total. Then there is another layer of recognition which reflects the number of institutes being affiliated by the HEC recognized Universities (see list here).

For foreign affiliation programs and getting those degrees attested, you can visit the website to get it done. Please note that without the HEC equivalence letter, you cannot move an inch. If your institute name is not in the list at the time of creating your record then select HEC as the board.

Degree Attestation: A Gold Mine?

The biggest part of HEC website is related to the degree attestation process. There are around one million graduates coming out every year, so you can just do the math here.

It’s not only the graduates who need to certify their degrees. For immigrations and getting job abroad, attestation is now mandatory. According to latest reports, each year 5 million passports are issued to the citizens of Pakistan. The number, coupled with the graduates one, is staggering.

Specially since you consider that HEC charges Rs. 800 for degree / Transcripts and 500/- for photocopies, as seen here on their website. You can estimate yourself how much money they’re earning via attestation services.

Why Do We Need to Get Our Degrees Certified?

We need to make ourselves very clear here, that due to certain factors in Pakistan, the HEC certifications has become mandatory for people applying for Government jobs, banking sector, or immigration.

If you are getting a job abroad, then you need to certify your documents from the respective Foreign Office of that country. In that case, HEC-certified papers can help since they are recognized abroad as well.

Over 5 million passports are issued every year in Pakistan and more than 1 million students graduate each year

In the case of medical graduates, things get more interesting where Pakistan Medical Council also has to play its role as an attestation destination. PMC has 98 medical institutes under their jurisdiction. So please check which ones are also recognized by HEC before going further.

For engineers, the Pakistan Engineering Council plays the same role as Medical Council. When I first tried to access their list of institutes the site crashed. You can however check it at your end. The home page is working, but its user interface is very challenging for users.

What Documents Do You Need?

People, who wish to process their certificates and degrees by HEC, need to take care of the following important things. This includes documentation, preparations, and above all, patience.

First of all, the most important document you need is your Intermediate certificate. Without this document, HEC will not take anything under consideration. So if you don’t have it, visit your Board of Intermediate Education, with your Admit Cards, Enrollment Card, CNIC, Marks Certificates and a fee of around Rs. 600/- and get it.

Be ready for long lines and waiting lists. In case, you don’t have the admit card with you. then you’ll have to visit the college and get one. The form for duplicate admit card is available from Board office. Rest is dependent on your college staff and their cooperation.

The other documents you need are:

  • Original certificates/degrees from Matric onwards along with transcripts/DMCs
  • Original matric certificate
  • Original intermediate certificate
  • Original degree
  • Original transcripts/detail mark certificates (DMCs) showing date of admission and completion of program
  • Copy of Computerized Identity Card
  • Authority letter duly attested by a Grade 17 officer for the authorized person
  • HEC Attests degrees/transcripts and diplomas awarded by the HEC Recognized Universities/Degree Awarding Institutions  of Pakistan both in public and private sector.  

Please keep in mind that you should not have plastic coated documents, since they will be rejected. Also make sure to attest all the copies from a gazette officer before coming for the submission.

The Most Important Factor

Now here is the catch.

It is clearly mentioned on the website that:

  • Name of the Applicant must be same throughout his/her educational testimonials such as Matriculation, Intermediate, Bachelors and Masters onwards to PhD Degrees/Transcripts as well as on Computerized National Identity Card/ Passport; otherwise they would not be attested by HEC.
  • The Applicant’s Father Name must match on the applicant’s CNIC, Matriculation, Intermediate, Bachelors and Masters onwards to PhD Degrees/ Transcripts; otherwise they would not be attested by HEC.
  • Date of Birth of the applicant must match on the Applicant’s CNIC/Passport and Matriculation Certificate; otherwise they would not be attested by HEC.
  • Both Degrees/ Transcripts issued on the same date, or overlapping semesters between an Undergraduate Degree and a Graduate Degree will not be recognized/ attested by HEC.

If you have any such anomalies with your CNIC in relation to educational documents, then my advice is to visit NADRA’s office and have your CNIC edited to the same name as per the degrees and certificates. In case of wrong printing of names on any of the educations documents, you’ll have to get ready for an ordeal that involves getting duplicates and documents from each of the your institutes.

Please take care of the above while you are still at your university and make sure that this kind of blunder does not happen.

The Online Registration

Now, coming to the point where everything is perfectly in order and now you need to register yourself to HEC records.

For this the site provides a simple step-by-step guide:

  • Read the pre-requisites very clearly.
  • You will need to sign-up with your details. In which the site will also enter your user name as your CNIC number and a password. Please be aware, the email address on which the password and user name is sent should be your own. As the email clearly states your user name and password without encrypting it.
  • Once this is done, then you will need to enter all your education qualifications from Matric to the latest ones.
  • In the next step you will select which degree or transcript you wish to get attested. Each will be selected and you will be shown the total amount on the screen. Edits are not possible here, so be careful or else you’ll have to start over again.
  • You can also add Research Projects and Publications in the education section as well.
  • For equivalence degree attestations visit here.

For the next step, the system shall display you selections regarding which Degree, Transcript and Provisional certificate you need to get attested. For each the fee is displayed and there is a quantity column for photocopies as well.

You can then select the “regional office” from where the degree will be attested and you shall present your documents to, alongside timings and other details.

After this, you can proceed to “form printing” where you can print the form alongside the details of Bank Payment Vouchers. This payment shall be made at the time of form submission, once the documents and form is verified.

Getting it Done

The timings for all this activity starts from 8:00 am, so you need to be there at least 30 minutes earlier to get in that queue. The objective here is to get a token number, which is limited to 220 people daily.

After this, your documents shall be checked and verified and in case of any anomalies, you will be asked to return back, because you will not have time to come back again.

The second queue will be for the bank, where the fee is submitted, as per the requested attestations.

It is important to mention that the attested documents are returned with the originals in 5 working days, but make it 10 for safe side. Keep in mind if you are visiting the HEC offices in Islamabad, you can get your documents back the very same day

Make sure to bring along fresh water and some eatables since its a long queue. Also, do not get frustrated or angry on employees because that is counter-productive and causes unnecessary delays. If there is an error or rejection then simply ask what to do, note it down and return back one more time. As cumbersome as it sounds, that’s how things get done here.

I wish you good luck with the process. Also, if I am missing something here, then do let the readers know in the comments below.


  • Very well written. Hopefully this will be greatly beneficial for those seeking the attestation. Also, this opens up an opportunity for some entrepreneur to start offering attestation facilitation business.

  • What if there is a spelling difference in the name? Since it is written in English. if Amna on matric document is written Amnah in intermediate document. Will there be a problem?

    • Yes. It will be a problem. All the documents must have same spelling of the name, including CNIC.

        • You have to go to NADRA and have the CNIC edited, and if you have a passport then the name should be edited over that too. You should understand, that because of a mistake on your degree name, the ripples it creates goes a long way. I know because I have real accounts of people who have gone through this pain.

          • Thanks for the information. Actually name on CNIC is in urdu, but difference of spelling is in English.

            • I think that they can ignore. Also, ideal is to confirm it with HEC before going for the attestation process – so it happens in one go.

              • Mr. Arslan
                if the difference in name on id and documents is only of HAFIZ, then it should me change the name on id?

                • In my case is the difference in names with “Syed”, so I went to HEC office and asked if they can ignore my name with “Syed” – they said that it is a tolerable case. But in any case, do visit the office first and ask. They are very cooperative in this regard.

                  • mate I have 2 issues. First My dad name on my Inter certificate is Javed Hasan and on matric and cnic it’s Syed Javed Hasan is this an issue? 2nd is on my NIC my name is Ali Javaid and on all education docx it’s Ali Javed. I would really appreciate your prompt response

                  • My case is same as yours please kindly elaborate further does that attestation may affected with name “Syed” on some documents and also does that make any further issue with immigration.

                    • In my case my name on all degrees are same as per CNIC but my father name from matric to masters is different on degrees but on CNIC its like My father is name is Muhammad Aspeen khan but on my all degrees My father name is Aspeen khan tareen so i just want to say that that is the torelable case and on ssc and hssc certificates wo kr dety hain attest but HEC ky case main first ap pucho un sy apky father name sai hona chahye and spellings bhi second “SYED” and “MOHAMMAD” ka wo itna ni krty issue but phir bhi abi check kr lo ap first call them and ask them

                  • in my case my name on all degrees are same as per CNIC but my father name from matric to masters is different on degrees but on CNIC its like My father is name is Muhammad Aspeen khan but on my all degrees My father name is Aspeen khan tareen so i just want to say that that is the torelable case and on ssc and hssc certificates wo kr dety hain attest but HEC ky case main first ap pucho un sy

  • Lots of things in this article are exaggerated. First of all, you can’t claim that all 5 million passports issued, also necessarily require degree attestation.

    List of required document is not completely true, since the main and only documents required are: Mark sheet & certificate of Matric & Inter, Original NIC, Degree and Transcript. There is no need for enrollment card or admit card etc etc.

    Queues are not that long. I went to Karachi Centre, they closed the gate for new entries by 9am, and unfortunately I was late that day. The other day, I reached around 8:20am and they asked me to be in the line. I had my token number around 9am. Now, it was the waiting for my number to be called, which I guess is pretty standard procedure anywhere around the world. You can go back to office, go out for breakfast or home, its completely allowed.

    Its good to point out the weaknesses in the society, but exaggerating them in-front of readers to gain maximum attention is completely unacceptable and unethical. Thanks

    • Right said, also if you are not able to attest the degree and certificate by yourself, HEC’s registered service is TCS. I had done this in aug/sep 2015, just have all the documents you pointed only along with fee. No additional documents or additional payment has asked by TCS.
      May be writer is not that mature to proofread what he is going to post.

    • The enrollment card and admit card is a requirement for inter certificate NOT for the degree documents

  • Well all stated in this article is as per stated procedure. I myself got my documents attested with difference in name in NIC and degrees. Staff was very much helpful in Islamabad and I got late than the token time still they accepted my documents. There was no line and no restriction of entry at any time. If your documents are complete and you have token number, you may do it easily.

    • How did you handle that, can you please explain. I have a similar problem where my name is different on CNIC/ job experience vs. all educational docs, how should I handle it?

      • I went there personally and met Director or Asst Director. Explained him all situation. It was only sir name in my case which was not on degrees. You may ask them if they need some affidavit on stamp paper. I am sure they will understand and help you. All the best :)

        • This is the same case with me as well – I asked them prior going for the attestation, they ensured that this can be ignored

    • I have different spellings of my nane on SSC & HSSC certificates while on rest of the degrees, passpirt & CNIC are different.

    • It means you were a special cookie to whom was meted out special treatment. Rest assured we are the children of lesser god, who need to recklessly pursue these tyrants for a simple attestation..This article is a blessing and please stop misguiding others with your out of the ordinary experience.

  • HEC online verification demand first and last name but what do that candidate who have only single name????

  • There is too much exaggeration in this article, especially related to HEC. I attested my degrees five years ago and HEC part was most easiest in whole process. I am not sure how much it is changed in last five years.

    I also like to mention that not all gratuadets need it, neither it is requirement for Passport (or even not all Visas require it). I was going abroad and was thinking that I might need it. I haven’t used it so far. So far it is just waste of money.

    I think the most time consuming part is to attest your matric and intermediate certificate from your board and then inter board commission. You have to go in person to do it.

  • It took a few days without much hassle in Islamabad. With all fake degrees around, good documentation is required as minimum. Article seems exaggerated with a heading that is a click bait

    • I think we should all appreciate the writer for working hard and publishing this article which can be of great concern for many of us. This article is not like rest of the articles on propak which are mostly copy paste even the typos are copy paste they don’t even bother to correct that.
      So instead of maligning someone we should appreciate his efforts, at least he has given us some knowledge about something very contemporary.

      I request the author to also highlight the rest of the parts of degree attestation, like from Education Department, Equivalence and attestation from the Intermediate Board, and Foreign Office etc. Where else the degrees and certificates are supposed to be attested and verified from before or after the HEC,

      • This is not maligning and not my intention also. The heading prepares you for negativity. The information could’ve just been shared without making it sound like painful if that was the intent.

        • Appreciate your inputs, while writing opinion pieces we tend make things a bit out of the line so we can have good discussions and readers who actually read the contents – such as yourself :) I sincerely appreciate your inputs here :)

        • Dear, you should also take into consideration that if we do not appreciate the great and real work of the authors like Arslan Ali’s then we will only be left here with such news like ..
          “Qandeel Baloch fb account suspended…restored….”….and that too with tag “breaking news” and a “see through picture” .

          so please try to appreciate the quality work and hard work of someone.

        • Yes it is a very cumbersome process that I have endured. They returned my documents which have already been attested by them but now they are not attesting the photocopies of the already attested original documents due to a slight difference of spelling in matric/SSC certificate which they previously ignored… why? Because they have become monsters sitting on heaps of easy money. Their employees are uncooperative, corrupt men without conscience.
          You should thank your stars that God saved you from an ordeal. But my dear look around you and you will find yourself not at the center of the universe there are other human beings who have really at the hand of this draconian/tyrannical and corrupt to the core organization. It should be in fact shut down.

          Well done Mr. Arslan. I thank you for your humane gesture.

        • Thank you dear, hope to see your article soon covering the whole procedure from A-Z. thanks once again for such great effort.

  • It is better to get your documents attested from HEC Islamabad because there are certain international institutions which do not accept documents attested by regional HEC offices.

      • @Xahid:disqus I don’t think there is any. The regional offices are created to facilitate people. As in most cases it took time to get things done “only” from ISB. But, there are some matters like Medical Degrees (I think) where the degrees are attested from ISB only (need confirmation here)

  • There are certain international degree accreditation institutes which only accept HEC Islamabad attested documents. So, if anyone who wants to get his or her degrees/transcripts accredited for immigration purpose should get them attested from HEC Islamabad.

    • Thanks Umair, this is the exact purpose for this article, so that everyone can guide everyone with good suggestions and tips :)

    • All immigration purposes documents to be attested from Islamabad? Is there a difference in khi office attesting and Islamabad hec arresting?

  • All certificates should be online and any one can verify…there should be no manual verification, attestation, photocopies attestation…. It will save a lot of paper, time, money and make it impossible to make fake degrees. A central system for issuance of certificate.

    • This is correct. I recently visited inter board office and university as well for Certificate and Degree issuance, you would not believe the amount of paper mountains these guys are sitting with!!! it is simply scary to see that much of paper and record keeping these fellows have to do!

  • Thank you Arslan it is a great knowledge for planning the Attestation of Degrees/Certificates from HEC. Keep it up !

  • A.o.a sir My name is muhammad anus miraj on my degrees and on id card my name is muhammad anus.is there any problem for getting job in police…while i have completed all the procedures except interview..please guide me about this .i am very worried..

  • @Author: Thanks for writing very detailed article on HEC attestation. I appreciate your effort.

  • What about the people, who did from non-hec degree because of cost of education, Lack of knowledge or ony institute in the local vicinity. what HEC is doing about those guys.

  • Hi,
    I want to attest my document , I am trying to open ( pre-request page ) but here is saying that ” page not found’ page you are looking for does not exist .

  • If a person is living in dubai and done his masters from Malaysia and now want to do job in dubai so is it necessary to attest degree from hec also or only attestation from Malaysian education commission is enough.

  • i want to attest degree from hec. and i have matric original sanad and inter original sanad . but im confuse that what is difference between inter original certificate and orginal sanad. both are same?

  • They made it simpler now if you know what you’re doing. I went there recently and before arriving I prepared myself for the worse after reading this article and besides knowing the situation of government run departments. To my surprise, it was not so bad, probably because being a woman gives you an advantage in terms of securing an earlier token number as they give away tokens alternately to gents and ladies and there weren’t as many female applicants.

    Firstly, Matriculation and Intermediate TRANSCRIPTS Original and Photocopy are not required. They returned mine at the spot. But keep it, just in case.

    Secondly, you don’t need to attest your photocopied documents from a gazette officer as the writer mentioned. If you do, there is no harm either way. But make sure your final transcripts from university are photocopied on both sides as the course titles printed on the back of your transcript are crucial to verification process.

    Thirdly, print the form and Challan on separate A4 size sheet of paper. Don’t print on the back. I almost had to go back and come up with a newly printed form because I made a blunder of printing at the back. But luckily I had the presence of mind to print an extra copy of the form for situation like that. It’s usually consisted of three pages.

    If your name is different on your Degrees/Transcripts and your CNIC then you can probably resolve the issue by showing them your father’s CNIC copy. That’s what I heard, not sure.

    Now they return your verified documents in less than 5 working days. They have quickened the service considerably.

    I appreciate the author’s input and guideline despite my slight varied personal observation. Probably would have gone to Leopards Courier Karachi (who charge 240/- for HEC Islamabad verification) if I hadn’t read the article. :)

    PS: I would encourage ladies to personally verify their degrees if they can because it was not that much of a trouble. Just be there before 8AM. Break a leg!

  • Dear Sir,
    Can you tell me about the fee submission procedure through walk -in attested? Either it will submit on HEC office or in bank?
    from Adnan

  • Does HEC attest the transcript which is incomplete? I’m graduating in January 2017 and need to get my transcript attested in Dec 2016. My 3 courses are still incomplete. It will be completed by next month. Can I still get my HEC transcript attested for the VISA procedure?

  • NEVER GET YOUR DEGREES & TRANSCRIPTS “HARD LAMINATED” !!! IF YOU DO , YOU WILL NEVER GET ATTESTATION FROM HEC!!!!!!

  • NEVER GET YOUR DEGREES AND TRANSCRIPTS “HARD LAMINATED” !!!!! IF YOU DO …. HEC WILL NOT ACCEPT IT FOR ATTESTATION….

  • Hello.
    I want to get my bcom degree attested from hec. I did apply for atteststion through leopards courier but i got an objection saying father’s name is not matching.

    On my documents, my father’s name is mentioned as mansoor abdeali. On my fathers cnic, his name is mansoor, and his father’s (ie my grandfather) name is abdeali.

    Now, what should I do? Should I resubmit my application to hec Islamabad with my dads cnic also attached, or should I visit khi hec office? Does it make a difference if I attest from khi centre and use it for immigration purposes? Do they have different stamp or smthng that distiguishes?

    If it doesn’t work out, how to go about it? Can I modify my cnic to include my grandfather’s name also along with my father’s name? Are the fields such as father’s name open for modification if I make a new cnic ie smart card?

    And on the worst case, if I have to ammend my documents, where to start and how to go about it?

  • I sent my transcript and all other original certificate on 1st march 2017.But now when i got to know that i didn’t verify transcript from my controller of examination.What should i do now Already late ..Please Guide me..?”

  • I wanted to know if it’s possible if the information entered in the online form is wrong and it gets locked what to do.?I was told by someone to visit Islamabad centre for correction and they said it’s a really scary process it is not possible for me to go there can I get this change of information done from a regional office because it is only the university name that was wrongly entered and they verified and attested my documents too. Please reply asap. Thanks

  • does HEC attest transcript and provisional certificate without PEC registration number(for engineers) for immigration purpose?

  • What if i want to get an equivalence certificate?
    I have been trying very badly but i am unable to understand what to do?

  • Thank you Arslan Bro for this Detailed Article. Can you please tell me is it necessary to get Matric/Inter degrees attested from IBCC before we apply for Bachelor/Master degrees attestation at HEC ?? or we can apply at both sides at a time.

  • Pls I need guidance I want to go to islamabad for degree attestation ; do I need to create my profile on their given weblink or I can go straight as I’m living in Lahore so it would be difficult for me in case of rejection
    Pls guide me

    • no everything is online now ,u should create profile on their given weblink ,after that they will send u the email and then follow the procedure accordingly

  • last year(2017) I faced problem with the Missing SURNAME of my FATHER on all of my educational documents but different on CNIC, that is the only one CASE i had read all the comments, in which they handed over me a form to get it signed by my university’s controller of examination and registrar. and then they attested my degrees with the missing Surname of my father. anyone who is facing the same problem can ask them for that form

  • Please guide.
    My father’s caste is added with his name on his cnic but it’s not in my academic documents.
    Now if I go for immigration process do I need to edit my father’s name in all academic documents or it will be fine if I just update my cnic with my father’s name which is mentioned on my documents?

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