Say I attended high score in country A, where students are given grades in the form of letters (A–F). I want to attend university in country B, where high school grades are in the form of numbers, say 1–20. I will be required to transform my grades to their equivalents in country B’s system.

What is this process called?


I almost have everything ready for my university application, I just need to proceed with the ____________ of my grades.

Words I considered

  • conversion (too broad)
  • mapping (this word is used with this meaning only in mathematics and related fields)
  • standardization (sounds best, but I do not have any evidence that this word is used like this)
  • 1
    I just need to compute my grade equivalents.
    – Jim
    Jun 24, 2021 at 19:54
  • I don't think mapping is only understood in a narrow mathematical sense. Jun 24, 2021 at 22:34
  • 2
    Have you considered readjustment?
    – user405662
    Jun 24, 2021 at 22:41
  • @GeorgeWhite en.wiktionary.org/wiki/mapping
    – hb20007
    Jun 25, 2021 at 7:38
  • 1
    Ok, then: I just need to have my grade equivalents computed.
    – Jim
    Jun 25, 2021 at 7:43

3 Answers 3


The process of taking grades from one grading scale and changing them to match another grading scale is commonly called grade conversion.

Saying you're going to convert your grades is fine and easily understood. Trying to find a more specific word might actually make it harder to understand what you mean.

I almost have everything ready for my university application, I just need to convert my grades.

If you want to be more specific you can say

...I just need to convert my high school grades to the scale used by X_University.

This is actually something that happens not just from one country to another but even within a single country for different schools. In the US there are many different grading systems in use, and converting grades from one system to those of another is a common requirement. Many schools provide formulas charts or spreadsheets to help with this, and there are online tools like this one specifically for converting between grading systems in different countries.

  • It seems that "grade conversion" and certificate or degree "equivalency" are a bit different. "Grade conversion" is simply converting the grades, perhaps using an online tool or another method. Certificate "equivalency" is the whole procedure of applying to, say, a country's Ministry of Education to get it done, and obtaining the final attested documents. So, it involves more than just the actual conversion of the grades to another system. I'm accepting this since my question did not mention certificates, and focused more on transforming the grades.
    – hb20007
    Jun 25, 2021 at 7:54
  • 1
    @hb20007 it's actually a very complex subject. One of the hard tasks in credentialing is identifying equivalencies between different programs. It involves comparing curriculum, hours of study, grading methods, quality of instruction, and more. And unfortunately, it's still highly subjective despite efforts to make algorithms. I wouild imagine with international programs it would be even more difficult, especially with language differences.
    – barbecue
    Jun 25, 2021 at 14:46

All three of your suggestions are valid, but all three would require a little more explanation ("Conversion? from what to what?"). For instance: "... I just need to proceed by converting my grades from letters to numbers."


The word I was looking for is equivalence or equivalency (they seem to be synonyms according to the American Heritage Dictionary). I found these words in several places on the internet.


On the United Arab Emirates Ministry of Education website,

Request for equivalence of grade 12 certificates for a foreign curriculum

On the Spain Ministry of Education website,

Brochure on the procedure for equivalence of qualifications and degrees


On the United Arab Emirates ministry of education website (again),

Required documents to apply for certificate equivalency

On the World Education Services website,

Degree Equivalency Tool

  • Neither equivalence nor equivalency is a verb though. To fit into the blank space in the question you would need to add a verb such as 'calculate' giving something like "...need to procede with the calculation of the equivalence of my grades."
    – BoldBen
    Jun 24, 2021 at 22:29
  • @BoldBen It seems that the word is used on its own though. For example, one of the phrases I quoted was "Required documents to apply for certificate equivalency". So it implies that "I need to proceed with certificate equivalency" would be a valid sentence.
    – hb20007
    Jun 25, 2021 at 7:37
  • @BoldBen I also realized that the word "equivalence" does not seem to be used with grades, but with qualifications or certificates.
    – hb20007
    Jun 25, 2021 at 7:58

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