What is a Transcript Certificate & How to Get it?

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What is a Transcript Certificate & How to Get it?

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An academic transcript certificate is a document that contains information about the subjects you studied, grades received in each subject, the degrees earned and the credit hours earned. Transcript certificates also have other important details like your name, name of the university you studied and the educational board you have studied.This is an essential document for students in order to apply for universities to study abroad. Transcript Certificate has to be attached with the application along with other relevant documents. The academic transcript will be helpful for the academic establishments and employers to evaluate your performances, qualifications and to know your level of study(UG or PG), etc.

In this article we will be explaining the importance of academic transcripts, what will it include, how to get it, how to send it to universities, and a transcript request sample.

Table of Contents

What is an academic transcript?

A academic transcript or transcript certificate or is an official document issued by your college/school or university which will have a detailed list of the subjects you have studied and the marks or grades you got in each subject. It will also contain various important information about the student. This academic transcript as proof of education is an important document to be submitted when you apply for any further studies.

What are the common names for academic transcripts in India?

The common name for an academic transcript in India is a 'mark sheet'. This means the 'mark sheet' and academic transcript are the same. There are other common names for academic transcripts used in India. They are:

Consolidated Mark Sheet
Academic Certificate
Mark Sheet
Mark List
Report Card
Grade Card
Diploma Supplement
Academic Certificates
Statement of Learning
Transcript of Records (ToR)
Cumulative Record File (CRF)
Permanent Record

This does not mean that you need all the above records to apply for further studies. This simply means that all the above is the same certificate. You just need any of these.

What Will an Academic Transcript Contain?

An academic transcript mainly will include a list of subjects and marks or grades obtained by the student in each subject. However, it will contain other useful details of the student as well, like name, date of birth, parents' name, etc.


Mainly, an academic transcript will contain:

  • The name of the institution (school/college or university)
  • The address of the institution
  • Accreditation held by the institution
  • Name of the student
  • Student's ID number
  • Date of Birth of the student
  • Name of the degree earned
  • The duration of the course
  • The date and year of completion of the course
  • List of the subjects studied by the student
  • The marks or grades scored by the students in each subject
  • Consolidated marks of the student

Why is an academic transcript or Transcript of Records(ToR) needed?

An academic transcript or transcript certificate or Transcript of Records (ToR) is an essential document to be submitted when applying for a foreign university. Let it be for a graduate course, a postgraduate course or for a PhD, an academic transcript is a must. Based on this certificate, only the universities assess your academic performance in your previous place of study.

An academic transcript is a legitimation that the student applying for a course is qualified for the post they are applying for. Also, each country has their own grading system. An academic transcript makes it flexible for the universities to grade the student's marks or grades according to their grading system.

How to get an academic transcript certificate?

Usually, all the school boards, colleges and universities issue a mark sheet which is equivalent to an academic transcript, after the completion of a course. Only your previous institution of study is authorised to issue an academic transcript or transcript certificate. The You can apply for your transcript certificate by following the below steps:

Step 1: Contact your University
As a first step, contact your previous institution to issue your transcript certificate. You will be required to visit your institution personally to accomplish this task. University’s admission office or the administration office can help you with this. Make a list of all the institutions from which you need a transcript certificate and request the transcript certification by applying for the same.

Step 2: Complete the form and submit
Fill out the form and submit the application with the necessary documents. The other documents include receipt of payment, copies of degree certificate and mark sheets, copies of photo ID and acknowledgement receipt of the application. You can also submit the form online.

Step 3: Send the Transcript Certificate to the Institutions
Once you get the transcript certificate, it's time for you to send them to the shortlisted universities. Educational transcripts are considered official only if they have the official signature, stamp or seal of the university, school or college issuing it. And you are required to send only the official documents while applying for foreign universities. 

Transcript Request Sample

Usually, your school board/university/college will issue an academic transcript after the completion of the course. However, in case you need to request an academic transcript, or an interim one, you can write the request by following this sample.


<Student name>

<Institution name and address>



<School board/University/College name and address>

Respected Sir/Madam,

I have been a student at <institution name> under <university/board name> and have attended the <university/school> since <year>. I have now <graduated/about to be graduated> and have applied for a position in <future college/university/workplace> and they have asked for a full academic transcript to be provided. 

Since I have not received an academic transcript yet, I request you to issue me <an academic transcript/interim academic transcript>. I hereby provide my student identification number <student-id> and date of birth <date-of-birth> to help you access my file quickly. Kindly send the academic transcript to my home address, <home-address> at the latest. 
Please treat this request with urgency. 

Thank you, 

Yours truly, 

<Student name>


(Please remember that this is just a sample, and you have to customise it according to your requirements.)

How to send academic transcripts to universities?

Now you have the academic transcript. Then how to send it to any foreign universities? The process can be tedious and time-consuming. There are several ways to send your academic transcripts to universities.

  • You can upload the soft copy of your academic transcript during the online application process.
  • You can mail a digital copy of your academic transcript to the admissions office of the university you’re applying to.
  • You can request your university to send a copy of the academic transcript  certificate directly to the institution by mail. You need to ensure that the envelope is sealed and contains the official stamp of your university.
  • You can use transcript delivery services to deliver your academic transcript to universities abroad for a fee. There are quite a few popular services such as National Student Clearinghouse, Credentials Solutions, World Education Services, Transcript Research, Etc.

The method of delivering the academic transcript depends on the location and university you’re applying to.

What documents are needed along with an academic transcript?

When applying for foreign universities, they have several documents that need to be sent along with the application form. An academic transcript is just one of the many documents that needs to be sent. The documents that need to be sent, along with the academic transcript, include:

  • Completed application form and application fee
  • Academic Transcription (Or mark sheet)
  • Entrance test scores such as SAT/ ACT/ GRE/ GMAT
  • Backlog certificate
  • Internship certificate (if required)
  • English language proficiency test scores
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • CV
  • Personal essay
  • Copy of passport
  • Financial documents

What is the difference between a degree, a diploma and an academic transcript certificate?

An academic transcript or transcript certificate is not the same as a degree certificate or diploma certificate. A degree/diploma certificate indeed shows that you have passed a course. However, the fundamental difference is that a degree/diploma certificate does not contain a detailed list of the subjects you have studied and the marks you have got.

A degree/diploma certificate simply states that you have passed a certain course offered by a certain college or university and does not contain any further information. However, an academic transcript must contain a detailed list of subjects you have studied and marks or grades you have got in each subject.

Now that you have known in detail about the transcript certificate, you can apply and send to the universities of your choice to study abroad. For all your queries related to study abroad, Kanan International is just a phone call away!


1. What is the difference between a mark sheet and an academic transcript certificate?

There is no difference between a mark sheet and an academic transcript certificate. In India, a mark sheet or a mark list is the same as an academic transcript. An academic transcript is supposed to contain a detailed list of the subjects a student has studied and the marks or grades they have scored in each of the subjects. This is what a mark sheet essentially is.

 2. Can a final-year student get an academic transcript?

Usually, all the school boards, colleges and universities issue a mark sheet which is equivalent to an academic transcript, after the completion of a course.

If you are in the final year of a course, have not got your final mark sheet (academic transcript certificate) yet, and still want to apply to a university for further studies, you can request your current institution to issue a provisional academic transcript or an interim one. Or you can submit any document which is a proof of your academic performance like a Letter of Recommendation (LoR), previous years' mark sheets, etc.

3. What to do if my transcript is not in the English language?

You are required to submit the transcripts in English or their native language when you apply to foreign universities. If your transcripts are in your native language, remember to translate it to English. Ensure you send both the original and the translated copy sealed and signed by the university and official translators to the foreign university. 

4. How long does it take to receive my academic transcript after requesting?

Usually it takes 1-4 weeks of your request to deliver. It varies depending on the institution. Keeping the time in mind, it is advisable to apply for transcripts beforehands in order for your application process to be smooth.

5. What are official and unofficial academic transcripts?

Academic Transcripts are of two types. One is Official Transcripts, and the other is unofficial Transcripts. Official academic transcripts are the proof of education that your educational institution issues which contain the details about the courses the student has studied, and the marks obtained by them. Unofficial academic transcripts are the ones that are issued on a provisional basis. After the period of validity of the unofficial transcript expires, you need to get an official academic transcript.

6. Is an academic transcript the same as a degree certificate?

No. An academic transcript is not the same as a degree certificate. A degree/diploma certificate simply states that you have passed a certain course offered by a certain college or university and does not contain any further information. However, an academic transcript must contain a detailed list of subjects you have studied and marks or grades you have obtained in each subject. The most simple way for an Indian to understand is that an academic transcript is a 'mark sheet' or 'mark list’.

7. What is a consolidated Mark Sheets?

Once you have completed your course, the university will provide a consolidated marksheet. This contains the academic grades/scores that you have obtained in the semesters. 

8. Do I need an academic transcript if I am applying for a university after 12th?

Yes. You need an academic transcript to apply for any foreign university after the 12th class. Here, you will need the detailed mark sheet or mark list of your 12th board exam to be submitted. This mark list will be your academic transcript.

About Author Prabu Rajasekaran

Prabu is a highly experienced content writer with expertise in English proficiency tests such as IELTS, GRE, TOEFL, and PTE. He develops a range of materials, including practice tests, mock exams, guides, and checklists to help students enhance their performance. Prabu is a meticulous researcher who collaborates with domain experts and counsellors to provide accurate guidance on study abroad consultancy, education loans, SOP, and admission processes in top colleges in Canada, USA, Ireland, Australia, and the UK.

Kanan International is an IRCC-certified study abroad consultancy that offers reliable services, products, and solutions for students and education institutions. We support students throughout their study abroad journey, ensuring a hassle-free experience. Our expertise and commitment to excellence make us the go-to partner for expanding global horizons. The company provides coaching for IELTS, GRE, TOEFL, and SAT exams and services like visa consultation, accommodation, scholarship assistance, and education loans.

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