Student exchanges

Am I eligible to go on exchange?

Our exchange progammes are open to most students in the Colleges of Arts, Humanities and Social Science, and Science and Engineering. There are various eligibility conditions, such as your subject and linguistic requirements.

Students must have completed 120 credits in their first year. The application process for some exchange places and programmes may be extremely competitive and no student is guaranteed a place.

Subjects with limitations

Students on the MBcHB (Medicine) are not be able to participate in exchanges, though other international opportunities or electives may be available - please contact the College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine for more details. 

Biomedical Sciences students on the following programmes are eligible to participate in exchanges:

  • Pharmacology
  • Neuroscience
  • Physiology
  • Infectious Disease
  • Biomedical Sciences
  • Reproductive Biology

Students taking degrees in Social Work, Primary Teaching or Architecture should consult their Personal Tutor or School to check whether they might participate.

Students of languages are able to participate, but must ensure that they study in a country relevant to their degree.

Linguistic requirements

Students can study in English at the majority of our non-European partner universities but for study at most European institutions, competence in the native language will be required.

For more information about linguistic requirements and how to gain or improve your language skills, click on the link below.

Direct entry students

If you entered directly into second year it may still be possible for you to apply for an exchange.

Selection for Subject-specific exchanges is a School level decision, and it would be at the discretion of the relevant School Exchange Coordinator as to whether a direct entry student would qualify for a place.

For General Exchange, this is a College decision:

College of Arts, Humanities and Social Science

The College of Arts, Humanities and Social Science will consider applications from students who transferred to Edinburgh having completed a full academic year at another UK university and who can provide a transcript to indicate their marks from that first year.

Unfortunately students who have entered directly into second year from secondary school cannot be considered for General Exchanges.

College of Science and Engineering

The College of Science and Engineering will consider applications from direct entry students. Applicants will be required to provide a full transcript from their previous education establishment and any offer will be conditional on successful passes in the December exam diet.

Joint honours students

Students taking joint honours can normally apply for exchanges - for clarification of any academic requirements or caveats, please double check with your School.

Students must check, before submitting an application via their main subject area, that the institution(s) they plan to apply to offer(s) courses in both of their degree subjects and that Exchange Coordinators in both their subject areas would support their application.

Due to the nature of Subject-specific agreements, we cannot guarantee access to courses at the host institution outside the agreement discipline, though most of our partner institutions are fairly flexible in this regard. It is your responsibility to research the course options at prospective host universities to ensure that you can satisfy your academic requirements for both subject areas.

General exchanges may offer the most flexible option as these exchanges have been set up at institutional level, rather than School or departmental level.

Students with disabilities

Students with disabilities are encouraged to apply to study abroad.

Some destinations are more suitable than others so it would be useful to investigate options at an early stage with your Personal Tutor, the Disability Office and/or Edinburgh Global.

Please note that we cannot guarantee the same type or level of support offered at Edinburgh will be available at our partner institutions.