• This paper aims to discuss the relationship between the evaluation of graduate courses and the internationalization of Brazilian higher education. To do so, this study reviews the ranking evaluation criteria and the role of foreign language in these processes. This study is bibliographic and documental and discusses the tensions and implications that exist and underpin the evaluation of graduate courses and the internationalization of higher education. In general, this study shows that the criteria for evaluating higher education used in international rankings do not reflect the reality of Brazil and they do not evaluate our institutions favorably. Concerning the role of foreign language in higher education evaluation and internationalization, the study shows that English plays a key and decisive role in this evaluation.