Study and Work Away Service

About our study exchanges

Learn about the exchanges offered at the University of Edinburgh.

What is a study exchange?

A study exchange allows you to spend a year or semester at a partner institution abroad as an integral component of your undergraduate degree programme. Most of our exchanges are for a full academic year - please see the information about university-wide and subject-specific exchanges below for more details.

Usually, you apply during your second year, study abroad during your third year and return to Edinburgh for your fourth year. Some students on five-year degree programmes may be permitted to go on exchange in their fourth year - please check with your School for details. While abroad, you will study courses which are relevant and at an appropriate level to your Edinburgh degree programme.

If your undergraduate degree includes a compulsory period of study abroad, you will usually be required to spend some or all of your 3rd year abroad.  But optional exchanges are also available to students on degrees programmes with no compulsory study abroad component.

Exchange students do not pay tuition fees at their host university and may also be eligible to have their Edinburgh fees reduced.

Our exchange programmes are competitive. No applicant is guaranteed a place.

University-wide or subject-specific?

The University of Edinburgh offers two application types - University-wide exchanges and subject-specific exchanges. 

Both the University-wide and subject-specific routes include destinations in Europe and worldwide.  You can apply through both the University-wide and subject-specific routes, but you can only accept one place!

Find out more about each option below.