ECTS Guide


The European Community promotes interuniversity cooperation as a means of improving the quality of education for the benefit of students and higher education institutions, and student mobility is a predominant element of that interuniversity cooperation. The exchange programmes clearly demonstrate that studying abroad can be a particularly valuable experience as it is not only the best way to learn about other countries, ideas, languages and cultures; increasingly it is also an important element in academic and professional career development.

The recognition of studies and diplomas is a prerequisite for the creation of an Open European area of education and training where students and teachers can move without obstacles. That is why the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) was developed. ECTS is a project of the European Commission that is supposed to make the accreditation of academic records, received in a foreign country, easier. Each university or faculty has to decide for itself whether to participate in ECTS or not. ECTS is based on a trustful cooperation of the participating universities and therefore does not need to have many rules.

The main components of ECTS include:

I.  ECTS credits which are a numerical value allocated to course units to describe the student workload required to complete them. One credit is equivalent to a 30 hour study load, which includes everything that student has done (lectures, seminars, practical placements, individual learning). One term of fulltime-study (semester) is equivalent to 30 ECTS credits (accordingly one year is 60 ECTS credits, one trimester is 20 ECTS credits, that can be gained after attending courses successfully. No ECTS credits after unsuccessful courses.

2.  The information package, which supplies written information to students and staff on institutions, departments/faculties, the organisation and structure of studies and course units.

3.  The transcript of records, which shows students' learning achievements in a way which is comprehensive, commonly understood and easily transferable from one institution to another.

4.  The learning agreement covering the programme of study to be taken and the ECTS credits to be awarded for their satisfactory completion, committing both home and host institutions, as well as the student. Full academic recognition allows student mobility within the framework of the exchange programmes. Full academic recognition means that the study period abroad (including examinations or other forms of assessment) replaces a comparable period of study at the home university (including examinations or other forms of assessment), though the content of the agreed study programme may differ.

What are ECTS grades?

The evaluation of a course is made by the grading system of the responsible university. In order to make a conversion into the grading system of the home country easier, a describing ECTS grading system was developed, which does under no circumstances replace the national grading system.

ECTS grade definition

A         EXCELLENT - outstanding performance with only minor errors

B         VERY GOOD - above the average standard but with some errors

C         GOOD - generally sound work with a number of notable errors

D         SATISFACTORY - fair but with significant shortcomings

E          SUFFICIENT - performance meets the minimum criteria

FX       FAIL - some more work required before the credit can be awarded

F          FAIL - considerable further work is required

The ECTS grades equilibrium to Hungarian grades can be found in the table below.

ECTS grades



Hungarian grades




Outstanding performance with only minor errors

kitűnő (5)

above    95 %


Very good

above the average standard but with some errors

jeles (5)

between  85-95 %



Generally sound work with a number of notable errors

jó  (4)

between 75-85 %



Satisfactory fairs but with significant shortcomings

közepes (3)

between 65-75 %



performance meets with minimum criteria

elégséges  (2)

between 50 - 65 %



Some more work required before the credit can be awarded

elégtelen (1)

below 50 %



Considerable further work is required

elégtelen (1)

below 50 %


How does ECTS work?

Students of cooperating universities are able to take part in a study period at ECTS partner universities after prior consultation with the ECTS-coordinator. It is suggested that all students and their institutions define within the Learning Agreement which courses the student should have to attend. After student completes the courses abroad and returns home, his or her academic records will be accredited by home university, regarding his or her Transcript of Record.