University College London Year Abroad

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University College London Year Abroad

University College London Year Abroad

The Year Abroad

The Year Abroad is an integral, compulsory element of our four-year degree programmes, which enables students to:

  • Learn substantial new academic and, in some cases, professional skills
  • Develop spoken and written language skills to a near-native level of proficiency
  • Gain in-depth knowledge of the culture they are studying
  • Become independent and travel more widely
  • Get ready for an international workplace
  • Make new friends and contacts while learning

Studying abroad is a highly rewarding, though often challenging experience, and one that will remain with you for the rest of your life.  The experiences and skills developed while abroad further academic and personal development, cultural and social awareness, provide a foundation for further study and enhance career prospects (The GuardianThe Telegraph).

Year Abroad Options

You can spend your Year Abroad studying at a partner university, teaching English in a school abroad via British Council, or organise a work placement for yourself:

  1. University Exchanges
  2. English Language Assistantship (British Council)
  3. Work Placements


Main Programme Requirements

  • Students studying one language spend the whole year abroad in a country where the language is spoken.
  • Students studying two languages split the year abroad between two countries where their target languages are spoken.
  • Language and Culture BA and Comparative Literature BA students spend the full year at a university where the main language they are studying is spoken or they can apply for a British Council placement.
  • ‘One language – one placement’ rule: students studying one language cannot split their year between two institutions.
  • Students splitting their Year Abroad between two countries must check and ensure the dates of the two placements do not overlap.
  • Students are required to complete the full term of their allocated university placement, language assistantship or work placement.

Students from other departments (e.g., ESPS, SSEES, Hebrew & Jewish Studies, SOAS) should consult their programme tutors and administrators about their Year Abroad arrangements.

Fees and Funding for Year Abroad

  • UK/EU fee payers undertaking a study abroad for a full academic year (whether at a university or work placement, Erasmus or otherwise) will pay only 15% of the normal fee amount to UCL.
  • International students (or their sponsors) will pay 50% of their normal fee amount to UCL.

The central UCL Study Abroad Team will advise students on all aspects of fees and funding for their Year Abroad. Please refer to their Finance webpage for more information.

Students undertaking study, teaching or work placements within the EU, will benefit from an Erasmus grant.


Some students may have visa requirements for some placements. The central UCL Study Abroad Team will provide guidance on this.


Assessment is by submission of an academic transcript of marks from the host university (grades do not transfer) or an Evaluation Form completed by the employer.

Year Abroad modules are pass/fail only, therefore, they do not contribute to the calculation of the degree classification.

Current Students

Year 2 students and students currently abroad should refer to the ‘Year Abroad’ chapter of the ‘SELCS UG Student Handbook’ on Moodle and to guidance on the central UCL Study Abroad Team website for more information and support.

University College London 
Gower Street
London  WC1E 6BT
Tel: +44 (0)20 7679 2000