What is an Academic Transcript & How to Get It?



Updated On 09 September 2023


Read Time 7 minutes


When it comes to your educational journey, academic transcripts play a crucial role. It is one of the most important documents to secure admission to universities abroad.


They serve as a comprehensive record of your academic achievements, reflecting the courses you've taken, grades received, and the overall progress you've made throughout your educational tenure.


Whether you're a student, a job seeker, or someone planning to pursue further studies, understanding the details of academic transcript and ways to obtain it is crucial.


So, in this blog, we’ll discuss some pivotal points and common queries relating to Academic transcripts.


What is Academic Transcripts

An official academic transcript is a document issued by an educational institution from where you have studied. It provides a detailed overview of your academic performance. An academic transcript records and summarises a student's academic performance and achievements.


It includes information such as the courses taken, subject studied, grades received, and sometimes additional details like GPA.


Official academic transcripts are commonly used for admission to further education, job applications, and other situations where a record of educational accomplishments is needed.


Other Names of Academic Transcripts

Academic transcripts are often referred to by various names depending on the region or context. Some alternative names for academic transcripts are:

Educational Records 

  • Student Records 

  • Transcripts of Records

  • Academic Records 

  • Record Achievement

  • Report Card 

  • Academic History

  • Cumulative Record 

  • Permanent Record

  • Diploma Supplement


Information Included in Academic Transcripts

The specific details included in academic transcripts may vary slightly depending on the educational institution and the level of education (e.g., high school, college, university). However, here are the common elements found in academic transcripts:

  • Student Information: This includes the student's full name, identification number, date of birth, and contact information. 

  • Institution Details: The name, address, and contact information of the educational institution. 

  • Degree and Program Information: Details about the degree or program pursued by the student, including the field of study and the major or specialisation. 

  • Course List: A comprehensive list of all the courses taken by the student, typically organised by semester or academic year. 

  • Grades: The grades or marks earned by the student in each course or subject. 

  • Grade Point Average (GPA): A calculated average of the grades obtained in all courses.

  • Degree Conferred: If applicable, information about the degree awarded to the student, including the degree type (e.g., Bachelor's, Master's) and graduation date.

  • Honours and Awards: Any academic honours, awards, scholarships, or distinctions received by the student during their academic tenure.

  • Date of Enrollment: The date when the student first enrolled in the institution.

  • Date of Completion: The date when the student completed their studies or graduated.

  • Official Seal and Signatures: Many transcripts include an official seal of the institution and the signatures of relevant authorities to verify the document's authenticity.

  • Key Information or Legend: An explanation of any symbols or codes used on the transcript, helping the reader understand the grading system and other notations.


Why Academic Transcript is an Important Document for Study Abroad?

Academic transcripts are an essential document when applying to study abroad since they provide a detailed record of your educational achievements.


This information helps foreign educational institutions evaluate your qualifications and determine your eligibility for admission in that particular course.


By reviewing your academic transcripts, institutions can assess whether you meet their entry requirements and whether your educational background aligns with the program you're applying for. 


Apart from this, academic transcripts also help the institutions to understand students' pre-requisite knowledge of the subject.


Moreover, many scholarships for international students are based on academic merit. Your transcripts provide concrete evidence of your academic performance, which can be a determining factor in receiving scholarships or financial aid.


How to Get Academic Transcript?

Academic transcripts are made available by the educational institutes where you have previously attended classes and earned a degree. It comprises certificates from schools as well as undergraduate and graduate degree certifications.


Students can obtain their official academic transcript from the college or university after it has been published. However, every educational institute follows a different system for providing academic transcripts to its students.


You may request for academic transcript from the concerned department of your previous institution.


Further, a temporary or provisional academic transcript can be obtained from the institution by students who are still enrolled in classes, and it can be sent to the university.


However, to guarantee admittance, an official transcript must eventually be produced.


Types of Transcripts You Require for Different Purposes

Here is the type of academic transcript you might require for different levels of courses:

  • If you are applying for a graduate level program abroad, you might require an academic transcript of your undergraduate education.

  • Whereas, if you are applying for undergraduate-level courses, then you need a transcript of your Secondary School Education (12th grade) or diploma (if applicable).


Difference Between Academic Transcript and Marksheet

Academic transcripts provide a comprehensive record of a student's academic journey comprising accumulated information about all the courses taken and grades received in the entire academic journey. On the other side, mark sheets provide specific information about the individual courses and performance in each year.


Both documents have their respective importance and are often required for different purposes, such as admission, employment, and further education.


Difference Between Academic Transcript and Diploma

When navigating the educational landscape, two crucial documents that hold significant value are academic transcripts and diplomas. While they both pertain to a student's educational achievements, they serve distinct purposes.


As we have already discussed, academic transcripts are comprehensive records of a student's academic performance throughout their educational tenure. On the contrary, a diploma is a formal document awarded to a student upon successful completion of a specific educational program, typically at the end of a degree or certification program.


Diplomas often include the student's name, the type of degree or certification earned (e.g., Bachelor's, Master's, Diploma), the field of study, and the date of conferral.


Difference Between Academic Transcript and Degree

Unlike a transcript, a degree represents the successful completion of a specific academic program or course of study.


It is often awarded by an educational institution upon the fulfilment of certain requirements, such as completing a set number of courses, maintaining a minimum GPA, and meeting any other specific criteria outlined by the institution.


A degree carries prestige and signifies the attainment of a particular level of education, such as an associate's, bachelor's, master's, or doctoral degree.


Difference Between Academic Transcripts and Certificate

Academic certificates and transcripts both the documents have their importance in securing admission to abroad universities. While academic transcripts show students' academic backgrounds, Certificates, on the other hand, show the successful completion of a specific educational program or course.


They signify that the recipient has fulfilled the requirements of that particular program and acquired the knowledge and skills associated with it.


Certificates are typically granted for shorter, focused courses or workshops concentrating on specific subject areas or skill sets.


Documents Required to Study Abroad Along With Academic Transcripts

Studying abroad often requires several documents, apart from the academic transcripts, to facilitate the application and admission process.


Here are some common documents that may be required:

  • Valid Passport

  • Proof of English Language Proficiency

  • University’s Application Form

  • Letters of Recommendation (LOR)

  • Statement of Purpose (SOP)

  • Resume or CV

  • Financial Documentation

  • Health and Medical Records

  • Portfolio (if required by the course you are enrolling for)

  • Certificates of extracurricular activities or work experience


In conclusion, academic transcripts are a crucial representation of your educational journey. Whether you're moving forward in your studies, entering the job market, or pursuing other opportunities, clearly understanding how to obtain and utilise your academic transcript is essential.


Connect with our team of expert counsellors at Meridean Overseas Education Consultants (MOEC) for more detailed information. If you are unable to travel to our offices, we offer online counselling services via our website. Don't hesitate to contact us at application02@meridean.org or call us at 1800-1230-00011.


blog meet

Get the best study abroad guidance

blog meet

Get the best study abroad guidance

Book Your Online Counselling Session

Meridean overseas whatsappChat