I just graduated in Greece and applying for a job in UK. The exact title of my degree is Diploma of Electric and Computer Engineering (4.5 years of study plus one semester for a thesis).

I fear that it might be perceived as a lower degree (or don't pass some keyword check); should I include a note stating that's equivalent to M.Eng. or that it's a 5-year degree or something like that in my resume?

  • 4
    This isn't really too localized, the word Diploma (or various forms of) is used in the titles of university degrees from various European countries, while in others it's used for lower level degrees. It's a common enough situation. – yannis Oct 14 '12 at 7:03
  • First of all, congratulations on your graduation! The EU has developed a system called Europass which allows higher education degrees to be "understood" throughout the EU. It tries to help with exactly those problems you are faced with. Take a look at it here: europass.cedefop.europa.eu/en/home – Darstek Oct 14 '12 at 11:23
  • You could also contact the theiet.org which i think is the body for Electricals in the UK which might might have some guidance on the issue. – Neuro Jan 16 '13 at 20:48

First of all congrats, a Diploma from NTUA is no small achievement!

A careless recruiter (or a not so bright keyword matching software) might confuse your degree for a lesser one, so you should make the years of study abundantly clear. However keep in mind that Diploma (or various forms of) shouldn't really confuse the average recruiter, several other countries' universities use it as the title of their degrees.

Most resumes I review are the other way around (degrees from non Greek universities), and the more common way I've seen them clarify degree equivalence is:

Years of study: 5 - Equivalent to a M.Eng

And since NTUA's website offers most of its content in English, it wouldn't hurt if you included a link to your school's courses page. A link to the specific flow you followed, noting perhaps that this is the part of your degree that's (roughly) equivalent to a M.Sci would be advisable as well.

A possible structure of your resume could be something like:

2006-2012 - Diploma of Electric and Computer Engineering

Degree equivalence: M.Eng in Software Engineering (minimum years of study: 5)
Flow: Signals, Automatic Control and Robotics1

As Drareg mentions in a comment, you should look at Europass and you should ask your school to give you a Diploma Supplement:

A document describing the knowledge and skills acquired by holders of higher education degrees. Examples

It provides additional information to that included in the official degrees / diplomas and/or transcript, making it more easily understood, especially by employers or institutions outside the issuing country.

Another thing you should probably avoid is calling your school a Polytechnic, we may call all our engineering schools Polytechnics, but in the UK it means something else:

A polytechnic was a type of tertiary education teaching institution in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland offering degree and post graduate education that was governed and administered at the national level. After the passage of the Further and Higher Education Act 1992 they became independent universities which meant they could award their own degrees.

UK polytechnics might be considered universities today, but back when I was in the UK they carried a stigma for being lesser schools and using the word might raise some eyebrows.

1 Picked the one with the coolest title, as an example ;)

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  • ...and if your job hunting brings you in or close to Cambridge, have a pint for me at The Eagle. – yannis Oct 14 '12 at 7:05
  • thanks! I was planning to list my specialization as just Major: Software Engineering and provide the additional details on the cover letter (I had 4 rows). Also, I graduated in 6 years; should I include both years of study: 5 and 2006-2012 or just the latter? – kemming Oct 14 '12 at 20:57
  • @thanosQR Years of study in the sense I've used it is the minimum years of study necessary for the degree. What you could do is have something like "2006-2012 - Diploma of Electric and Computer Engineering" as the title of the section, and a field called "Degree equivalence: M.Eng in Software Engineering (minimum years of study: 5)". – yannis Oct 15 '12 at 6:06
  • @Yannis: just FYI: Germany changed from "Diplom" to ba/ma system some years ago. Some universities may still offer it, but the number is very low and slowly approaching zero. (But of course everyone will still know the word) – Flo Oct 15 '12 at 7:30
  • @Flo Good to know, thanks. Did some (minimal) research on this and removed the mention to Germany from my answer. – yannis Oct 15 '12 at 9:21

The Wikipedia page you quote states:

Diplomas are considered equivalent to master's degrees

So assuming that it's correct, yes you should include a note.

Most, if not all, British recruiters and HR people won't know this without looking it up and few, if any, will check. They see so many CVs that they can't check everything they are unfamiliar with and so are probably more likely to discard CVs that don't match their keywords.

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  • 4
    assuming that it's correct It is. – yannis Oct 14 '12 at 7:07

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