The Erasmus (European Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students) programme forms part of the European Commission’s Lifelong Learning Programme and provides students with the opportunity to take part in study exchange visits at partner institutions throughout Europe. Funded by the European Commission, the programme has been running for more than 20 years and aims to provide students with experience of studying, working and living in a foreign country.
Most universities in Europe offer opportunities to study abroad under the scheme.
Students receive full academic credit for study undertaken during their exchange and will also benefit greatly from increased cultural awareness and improved language skills. The inclusion of an Erasmus exchange on a CV can improve employment prospects with future employers. Students taking part receive a grant towards the additional costs of living whilst studying abroad.
Length of exchange
Erasmus placements can last anywhere from three months to a full academic year. For undergraduates, the most common placement opportunity is for a full academic year. This can either replace an academic year of your course, or it can add to your course duration, depending on when you take your Erasmus year. Postgraduate placements are usually for a shorter period of time.
Each faculty has contacts with different partner institutions based on the subject areas taught. These are managed by your ERASMUS Faculty Coordinator, who will be your main point of contact. Your choice of institution will be governed by many factors such as the course you study, the level of course completed and suitable study options being available at the partner institution.
The agreement with each partner institution is for the exchanges of a limited number of students, so if you are interested, you must contact your Erasmus Faculty Coordinator and apply as soon as possible!
What if my subject has no Erasmus links?
If there are no Erasmus links in your subject area, it may not be possible for you to go on an Erasmus exchange.
All applications must be discussed and completed in consultation with your Erasmus Faculty Coordinator.
European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS) credits
An ERASMUS period of study abroad is intended to count directly towards your studies at the University. You will be expected to register for and successfully complete an agreed amount of credit when you are abroad. The average workload for students is 120 credits (60 ECTS credits) per year, or 60 credits (30 ECTS credits) per semester, so ERASMUS exchange students should expect to take a similar workload on the exchange.
ECTS credits exist to ensure that all academic credits accrued whilst studying abroad are transferred in their entirety to the student’s academic achievements at their home institution. A Learning Agreement will clearly show how many ECTS credits you will accrue through your study abroad and this should be sufficient to allow a seamless progression to final / next year of your study on the return to the University.
Erasmus Faculty Coordinators
|FCI||Mary Traynorfirstname.lastname@example.org||01443 668520|
|CES||Professor Andrew J Ware (Computing)||email@example.com||01443 482650|
|Giuliano C Premier (Engineering)||firstname.lastname@example.org||01443 482333|
|FBS||Julie Gouldemail@example.com||01443 482323|
|Robert (Bob) Morgan (Business)||firstname.lastname@example.org||01443 482315|
|Brian Dowrick (Law)||email@example.com||01443 654624|
|Jane Finucane (Humanities and Social Sciences)||firstname.lastname@example.org||01443 483238|
|LSE||Dr. Ryszard Babecki (Applied Sciences)
Please note: The School of Applied Sciences isn’t actively seeking any Erasmus collaboration at present. There are no opportunities for students to go on Erasmus placements in this school.
|Moira Davies (Life Sciences)||email@example.com||01443 483128|
|Dr Janet Pitman (Psychology)||firstname.lastname@example.org||01443 654075|
Whilst speaking a foreign language is encouraged it is, in most cases, no longer a requirement. The partner institutions usually offer courses through the medium of English, and you can pass all your modules and sit relevant exams without being fluent in a foreign language. However it is considered an important part of any Erasmus exchange to develop your language skills.
You will almost certainly pick up language skills simply by living abroad. That is part of what cultural exchanges are all about, and it’ll be a great experience to have.
Already speaking the language of the country you intend to study in is an advantage, of course. If you are already fluent in the language used at the partner university of your choice, you needn’t necessarily study through the medium of English when you go on a placement.
You will receive a grant to help cover the additional cost you incur as a result of studying and working abroad. The Erasmus Grant, which does not have to be repaid (on the understanding you fulfill all elements of your placement), is not there to cover your full living expenses, but as a supplement to your usual funds.
However, during your Erasmus study, you continue to receive any student grant or loan to which you are entitled.
Most students keep their UK accounts whilst on exchange and withdraw funds from there. Some choose to open a bank account in their host country. Be aware that you may be charged for withdrawals from your UK account, which can be expensive over the course of a year. You should check whether and how much your bank will charge for banking abroad.
The amount of the grant may vary from year to year – it is set by the British Council (manager of the programme). Please visit the British Council Erasmus website to find out more detailed information about the programme.
Health and insurance
European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)
The European Health Insurance Card allows you to access state-provided healthcare in all European Economic Area (EEA) countries and Switzerland at a reduced cost or sometimes free of charge.
Everyone who is resident in the UK should have one and carry it with them when travelling abroad. Remember to check your EHIC is still valid before you travel.
Your EHIC will allow you access to the same state-provided healthcare as a resident of the country you are visiting. However, many countries expect the patient to pay towards their treatment and, even with an EHIC, you might be expected to do the same. You may be able to seek reimbursement for this cost when you are back in the UK if you are not able to do so in the other country.
For more information please check:
- NHS website
- EHIC Application Service website.
- European Health Insurance Card App – I-Tunes version or Android version – A useful guide on how to use the European Health Insurance Card in the 27 EU countries.
It is advised that all ERASMUS exchange students arrange travel insurance that will cover them for the entire period you are abroad.
Most of our partner institutions have some university accommodation for visiting students or will offer guidance on how to find accommodation. Usually they will send you details about this with your acceptance information pack. The arrangement of accommodation is your individual responsibility and it is essential that you meet any deadlines published by the partner institution as they may only have limited accommodation available.
The information on this page is relevant to any student taking part in the Erasmus scheme. If you want more information about the exchange programmes, you should get in touch with your Erasmus Faculty Coordinator. Please be aware that the application process can be lengthy, and you will need to prepare adequately for the exchange if you decide to take part.