The ECTS (European Credit and Accumulation System) was established to facilitate the evaluation and recognition of qualifications and units of learning as well as student mobility. Based on student's workload to achieve educational programme goals, in terms of learning outcomes, the system facilitates the process of academic recognition of study programmes, making them easily readable and comparable The ECTS can be applied to all types of programmes, whatever their mode of delivery (school-based, work-based), the learners’ status (full-time, part-time) and to all kinds of learning (formal, non-formal and informal).

The ECTS is based on the following key features:

  • ECTS credits represent the "quantified means of expressing the volume of learning based on the workload students need in order to achieve the expected outcomes of a learning process at a specific level" Source: ECTS Users' Guide;
  • the Information Package includes all the useful information for student and staff about the Institutions, school/Departments, about educational programmes and components;
  • Learning/training Agreement describes in detail the programme of study (exams, work thesis, practical work, placement, etc.) that the student are going to attend abroad, with the corresponding ECTS credits, awarded if the educational component will be  successfully completed at the end of the period abroad;   
  • Transcript of Records/Work certifies the work completed, the credits awarded and the local grades received during the mobility period.

For a closer examination:

European Commission website

Sito del Bologna Process

ECTS Users’ Guide – 2009  

EGRACONS Project (European GRAde CONversion System), funded by the European Commission. It aims at developing a user-friendly web-based tool for grade conversion that will be made available to all European HEIs on a voluntary basis enabling a transparent interpretation of students' accomplishments.

CIMEA website to understand more about international grading scale

ECTS and the Italian University System

The ECTS system based on "credits" and on EC regulations are entirely adopted by the Italian regulations  (Ministry Decrees no. 509/99 and 270/04). The university reform, started on 1999,  introduced the Credito formativo Universitario (CFU) a tool  to weigh and appraise the volume of work (lessons, individual study, preparation for the exam, research work, etc.) required to the student for achieving expected "learning outcomes" ("statement of what a learner is expected to know, understand and be able to do after successful completion of a process of learning" - Source ECTS Users' Guide).

The Italian university system is perfectly in line with the ECTS: 1 ECTS credit corresponds to 1 Credito Formativo Universitario (CFU) that  amounts, as for the ECTS credit, to 25 hours of work allocated, at UNIBAS, as follows:

  • 8 hours  of lectures + 17 hours of self-study; 
  • 16 hours of laboratory/practical work + 9 hours of self-study; 
  • 25 hours of training activity and internship.

Credits are gained by passing end-of-course exams, independent of the marks attained. The number  of  credits awarded depends  on  the  type  and  on the  duration  of  the  chosen programme of study and on the workload (including the independent study and (if necessary internships/work placements) required to achieve expected  learning  out-comes.

An academic year of study corresponds to 60 credits, equivalent to about 1,500 hours of work among lectures, self-study, laboratory, internship, ptractical work, etc.)

According to the Italian Degree study cycles, students are required to award:

  • 180 credits to complete Laurea (equivalent to a Bachelor’s degree level)
  • 120 credits to complete Laurea Magistrale (equivalent to a Master’s degree level)
  • 300 credits to complete Laurea Magistrale a ciclo unico (single-cycle degree - 5 years).

Notice: Credits are not intended to replace examination marks, which consist of a grade awarded out of 30 points.

For detailed information about the Italian System please consult the Italian Qualifications Framework (QTI) for Higher Education

The University of Basilicata and the ECTS

The University of Basilicata uses the ECTS to transfer and accumulate credits gained abroad. Students attending the University of Basilicata within a European exchange programme or iInternational academic Cooperation Agreement can transfer ECTS credits obtained in Italy back to their home university to be counted towards their degree (1st, 2nd and 3rd cycle degree). 

Students, before arriving, have to agree a  learning  agreement, or a training agreement in case of placement,  with  the coordinators at home and host institutions detailing  the student’s proposed study programme for all the duration of the stay (i.e. individual course units and number of related ECTS credits). This agreement must be approved by all the involved parties prior the mobility.

At the end of the stay the student will receive a document called Transcript of records, or a Transcript of work in case of placement, to ensure that students have an accurate and up-to-date record of  their progress,  the educational  components  they  have  taken,  the  number  of ECTS credits they have achieved and the grades they have been awarded. The transcript of records will be issued by the University of Basilicata for each incoming student and sent to  the home institution at the end of their period of study.

In accordance with the ECTS Users' Guide and recommendations of Bologna Promoters the University of Basilicata has adopted  the statistical distribution of grades based on classes of degrees. To simplify its reading  and understanding consult the correspondence between classes of degrees and ISCED codes[1]

ECTS table 

The recognition of educational activities, carried out abroad, are regulated by the Regolamento di Ateneo per la mobilità internazionale e per il riconoscimento delle attività svolte all'estero.

The new ECTS table, based on class of degree, will be available soon.


[1] International Standard Classification of Education  (ISCED) . New ISCED F 2013