Credit Transfer in Italian Universities

Credit Transfer in Italian Universities

Posted on 09 Jun 2014 Views ( 1536 )

Under Ministerial Decree 509/99 in the university sector and in the non-university sector under decree 508/99, the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) entered into the legal framework in 1999. It is known as credito formativo universitaro and has been adopted as the national system. It is based on student workload and used as an accumulation system. One credit is 25 hours of work. One year full-time study consists of 60 ECTS and therefore is equal to 1500 hours. The variation in the number of hours can be 20 percent if reasoned properly. Being the minimum passing grade as 18, grades are expressed in terms of a grading scale of 0-30.

ECTS is being used as a transfer system by most institutions for international exchanges. University sector started implementing this on a full-pledged basis in academic year 2001/02. The non-university sector started implementing in 2002/03.

Numerous Universities have placed ECTS grade equivalencies on their Web sites program wise. These grading scales only give the students a view of how ECTS and Italian grading system might compare. They also reveal that different faculties and institutions consider the ECTS grading scale quite differently:


In July 2003, a law has founded “fund to support the mobility of student” with a goal of nurturing foreign student mobility. This will include supplementary funds for Erasmus grants and the ministry will give the monetary support which will be distributed to universities. Keeping the same aim in mind, the law offers for the setting up of the National Register of Graduates and Students. The register will facilitate procedures related to the recognition of credits.

As per Italian law 509, Universities are allowed to award joint degrees with other Italian or International Universities.

There have a rise in the incoming and outgoing students, as per Erasmus student and teacher mobility figures.

Quality Assurance

In 1999, the Comitato Nazionale per la Valutazione Del Sistema Universitario (CNVSU) was being established in Italy, through which the nation participates in the European Network for Quality Assurance in Higher Education. CNVSU is accountable for:

  • Developing an annual program of external evaluations,
  • Fostering experimentation including the dispersal of evaluation methodologies, and
  • Determining the general criteria for university evaluation.

The body also defines criteria and the set of principles and procedures required for the harmonization of the internal-evaluation carried out by the individual universities.

The committee also defines parameters, standards, and technical regulations and performs evaluations, preliminary inquiries, and advisory tasks.

Italian University Rectors Conference (CRUI) has initiated a model called Campus One Project. Universities voluntarily have adopted this basis in order to evaluate degree courses.

The project’s objective is to develop teaching quality and to endorse the quality culture among higher education institutes. It takes both external and internal evaluation into the count. Over a period of three years, the government has funded for the project.

The project mainly focuses on areas: Links with stakeholders, foreign language and computer skills certification, program management evaluation, information and computer technology, and quality evaluation.

The Italian University Rectors Conference (CRUI) and the Comitato Nazionale per la Valutazione Del Sistema Universitario (CNVSU) projects have one thing in common that both works with an ultimate goal of accreditation at the national level and to launch a system of evaluation.