We have gathered some common questions about studying abroad.
What does exchange studies mean?
Exchange studies means that if you are a student at the University of Skövde, you get the opportunity to study 1 or 2 semesters without paying any tuition fees at a partner university. The partnerships are based on agreements on the balance between incoming and outgoing students. In return, University of Skövde receives a number of foreign students from the universities we work with.
The purpose of exchange agreements is to contribute to increased international awareness and understanding for other countries and cultures. It is also a great merit to have been an exchange student, as international experience and language skills are often demanded in the labor market. If you are interested in studying abroad, University of Skövde opens up a lot of exciting opportunities for you. Please find more information about the different exchange programmes here (link)
How have other students experienced their studies abroad?
To see how students from the University of Skövde feel about their studies abroad, please contact the guidance counsellor to access some existing trip student stories. They can also assist with contact information to former outgoing students. A great way to gain insight to what it is like to be an exchange student, is to talk to former exchange students. To be inspired and see how other students have experienced their studies abroad, you can also go in and read what our former students say about their experiences.
Who can I talk to if I need support in my studies abroad?
Start by contacting the ones who work with studies abroad via email@example.com .
You can also contact your study-and career counsellor: firstname.lastname@example.org and your program coordinator.
What support can I get while studying abroad if I have a disability?
Contact the coordinator for students with disabilities: Sara Almqvist email@example.com , and she will help you.
Who can apply?
You must be registered at full-time studies (30 credits/semester) at the University of Skövde and have at least one semester of studies completed by the time you apply. You must have been registered for at least two consecutive semesters by the time you go abroad. You must have completed at least 22.5 credits/semester in average at the University of Skövde. Some universities require 30 credits/semester.
What language skills do I need if I want to go on an exchange?
You should generally have good language skills of the language used in the program at the host university, especially if the courses are not given in English. The studies abroad are mostly operated in the country’s native language or in English, which is why it is one important criterion that you have the capacity to follow the teaching and write examinations in that language that is spoken at your host university.
The type of instruction is done in in the form of group discussions and written assignments, which is why good language skills are important.
If the language of instruction is other than English, we recommend that you have completed at least 30 credits at the basic course level or studied the language at an upper-secondary level. Some partner universities require you to provide evidence of good English skills such as language tests, TOEFL or IELTS for example. Please find more information about language tests in the links to the right.
When can I go?
We have exchange agreements with several countries worldwide. The places within Europe are subject-bounded.
What does it cost to go as an exchange student?
If you go through one of the University’s agreements, you do not have to pay any tuition fee, and you have the opportunity to apply for student aid from CSN. You can also apply for an supplementary loan. You have to pay for travel costs, accommodation and living costs.
You can find more information at www.csn.se .
Can I apply for scholarships?
Except the Erasmus and Nordplus scholarship, you can also apply for other external scholarships www.his.se/scholarship (link).
How does the Erasmus and Nordplus scholarship work?
In the second information meeting that you are invited to, you will receive all the documents regarding the Erasmus and Nordplus scholarship.
In order to receive the Erasmus scholarship, you must fill in several documents: some before you go abroad and some must be filled in by the partner university as soon as you arrive. The date on the certificate has to show when you started your studies and when they end. These dates will determine the size of your scholarship. The ”arrival and departure certificate” will then be emailed back to firstname.lastname@example.org . Save the original and hand it in later.
Once you have emailed back the signed certificate to us and when we have received the money from the European Union, a payment will be made at 80% of the scholarship. You will get the other 20 % by the time you come back to Sweden and once you have written your travel story and filled out a survey.
The Nordplus scholarship is pretty much the same.
Study abroad application
How do I apply for studies abroad?
The first thing you should do is to fill in the application form in the right column below ”Documents” on the page of application and selection. There you can also find an example of a completed application. You can use the search tool ”MoveOn” to find a University that is of interest to you. You may apply for a maximum of three universities. Leave your application at Student service on the 2nd floor in the E-building or email it to email@example.com .
The application to the partner university
What do I need to consider before I send my application to the partner university?
Always check the courses offered at the partner university’s website before you apply. It is important that you find courses that suit your education. Contact your study- and career counsellor or your program coordinator.
Which partner university should I choose?
The choice of a partner university is individually. Consider what your goal with your stay abroad is, and what you would like to achieve with it. Consider how studying abroad fits your education, future career and your personal interests. Studying abroad can be an opportunity to broaden or deepen your education. It is common that students choose a country and a city in the first place, but then they could miss out on other universities that might have been interesting options.
How do I apply to the partner university?
You can find the application documents to the partner universities in each schools website. Search in “Moveon”.
On the different schools websites, you can search for the application form that may be found under “Exchange student”, “International student application”, “and “Erasmus students” or similar. If you are unsure on if you have found the right application, contact your guidance counsellor. The application will be sent from the guidance counsellor to the partner university. The applications need to be filled in by you, sometimes online and sometimes in paper form. In cases where the partner university uses online-applications, you need to print and fill in the applications and hand them to your guidance counsellor, together with the documents that needs to be attached with the application. Read the instructions for the partner university’s application carefully, and make sure you are aware of which documents that needs to be attached with the application.
You get information about the application process to a partner university, on the first information meeting. It is only certain that you can go on your exchange when you have been accepted by the partner university.
How do I know which courses I can take at the partner university?
You can go to the partner university’s website and search for courses. You can find courses under “courses offered in English”, “Courses for international/Exchange/Erasmus students” etc. You can also contact your guidance counsellor to make sure you have found the right courses. You should have found out what courses you should look for, that is, if you want to go within your program, it is important be aware of which courses you need to have taken at home.
For example, if there are optional courses during the semester that is recommended for study abroad, then you have a greater freedom of choice to choose from various courses abroad. However, if there is a requirement that you must take certain courses that are prerequisites for other courses and your degree, then you should primarily look for similar courses. It is important to consider the level at which prices are at or that they do not overlap with the courses that you have read before.
How many courses do I need to take?
Exchange studies at the partner university requires full-time studies. As the credits system is different in different countries and schools, it is always important to check how many credits are counted as full-time studies. Usually, the credit system “ECTS” (European credit transfer system) is used in Europe. 30 ECTS credits corresponds 30 hp. In Canada, full-time studies are often counted as 12-16 credits. In the US, 12-15 credits are most common, and in Mexico 30 credits corresponds 30 hp. Sometimes, it could be a good idea to apply for more courses than the ones that corresponds 30 hp in case a certain course is cancelled or full.
How do I get the courses I choose to take at the partner university accredited, when I get home?
On the first information meeting for nominated exchange students, you will get more information about the accreditation of how foreign courses work. You start by making a plan, by filling in a planning form of the courses that you plan to take at the partner university. You should also include course descriptions. If the course descriptions are not in English but in Spanish, you need to translate it into Swedish. The planning form with the course descriptions must be handed in to your guidance counsellor who, after some processing, sends the planning on to the head of subject for assessment and approval. This should preferably be done before you go abroad. If there are any changes of your courses when you have already arrived, for instance cancelled courses, it is important that you fill in a form with the new courses added. The updated form needs to be sent to your guidance counsellor.
When you come back home from your exchange, it is necessary that you have an
official transcript from the partner university and an explanation of the grading system for the courses to be able to be credited. Only when the official transcript from the partner university has been sent from your partner university to your guidance counsellor, the assessment (Only when the grade from your Partner University has been sent, the guidance counsellor can begin with the valuation of your courses abroad. The valuations start with the guidance counsellor, who will send it to the head of subject for approval and then to the exam administrative officers for decision and reporting. Then you will receive a decision regarding you approved and reported courses abroad).
How do I get accommodation?
As for accommodation, we recommend you to go to each university’s website. It varies between what kind of accommodation alternatives and service for exchange students the partner universities offer. If you cannot find any information on the partner university’s website, you will probably receive more information regarding accommodation or instructions on where to find information while receiving the admission decision. Please keep in mind that some universities may require a deposit for accommodation. Contact a former exchange student or an ingoing exchange student for tips and advice regarding accommodation. In France, it is important to remember to apply for an accommodation grant. All students can apply and the amount of the grant is a few hundred SEK/ month. Usually, you will not get it until by the time you go home, but it is worth the trouble.
When I come back to Sweden
What happens when I get home, if I missed an exam or assignment abroad?
In some cases, you may have the possibility to retake an exam at a distance. This is not something that the University of Skövde can guarantee but you have to talk to the teacher responsible for the course that you want to retake the exam on. Read more on the page Exam at another location.
Does the partner university send the grades to the University of Skövde or to me?
Some universities send the grades to the University of Skövde, and in that case, we will send the original to you. In case the grades are sent to you, you should send a certified copy to your guidance counsellor as soon as possible. After you have sent the copy, the guidance counsellor will get started with the valuation process of your international courses.
I would like to become a buddy for an exchange student from ”my” university when i get home from my exchange semester. How do I become a buddy?
Contact International Committee and ask to become a buddy for a student from ”your” university.
How can i register for courses for the next semester?
You can get registered via www.universityadmission.com if you apply for freestanding courses. The registration for programme courses has to go through the programme coordinator, so please contact this person in advance. NOTE! Check the application deadline.
How do i write a travel report?
You write one or two A4-pages about how you experienced your exchange semester. Describe the partner university, your accommodation, the city and the courses that you have taken, spare-time opportunities, anything that could be good to know for another student. Then send the report to your guidance counsellor.
Other questions about studying abroad
Can i take language courses during my exchange?
You can take language courses as extra courses during your exchange. Most partner universities offer courses in the language of the country. Note! You cannot get the language courses accredited if the corresponding language courses are not given by the University of Skövde. English language courses can sometimes be accredited.
What do I have to do if I would like to extend my exchange?
There may be an opportunity to extend your exchange within Europe. If you study through an Erasmus agreement, it is not always certain that you can get your scholarship extended. Students who study outside Europe, can only study one semester at the partner university.
The first thing you should do if you would like to extend your exchange is to contact your guidance counsellor to get an admission of further studies abroad. You can then contact your partner university. You must also obtain the approval of new courses for the second semester, meaning that you need to hand in a new planning form of the courses to your guidance counsellor and have it approved. You should also keep in mind that you need to renew your insurance, and possibly extend your visa and inform CSN.
Which one is the best option: To go on an exchange for a whole year, or only for one semester?
The most common is students who go for one semester. Some think that one semester is too short to really get to know the new country, and that one year is the better alternative. It all comes down to how you would like it or how well study abroad fits into your education.
What do i do if i would like to cancel my studies abroad?
Contact your guidance counsellor immediately if you would like to cancel your studies abroad. You should also inform the partner university if you have already sent your application to them. Do not forget to contact CSN if you have applied for student aid.
Is it possible to go more than once as an exchange student?
Yes, it is possible. Note that you can only receive the Nordplus scholarship for exchange studies once. You can go through Erasmus, internship and/or studies, 12 months at a bachelor level, 12 months at advanced level and 12 months at third cycle.
What can I do if I would like to study at a university that the University of Skövde do not have as a partner?
You have the opportunity to go on your own and get the courses that you will study abroad accredited, the exact same way as if you go through an exchange. The biggest difference to go on your own compered to go as an exchange student is that you often need to pay tuition feed and possibly other study feed. Check carefully what the studies will cost you.
Of course, you have more freedom if you choose to go on your own, but that also means more responsibility from you. You need to find all the information that is required for the studies to correspond your studies in Sweden. You need to check which language skills that are required at the school you have chosen and see if you are qualified. The university must be state-approved in order to apply for student aid from CSN. Also, you need to translate your grades from upper-secondary school and get a certificate that shows that you are a university student in Sweden.
When all the necessary documents are translated and you have chosen a partner university, you need to contact the university to get access to the application documents. The application form vary from country to country but a tip is to always be precise.
There is also one opportunity to apply for studies abroad via different agencies. The agencies work as a link between you and the university and sometimes they can help you to write an application or to find a university that suits you. Please find more information at www.allastudier.se
If you go within the frame of your education at the University of Skövde, you need to get your planning form of your studies abroad approved, by yourself. Turn to your guidance counsellor. You have to make a planning form for the courses that you would like to study abroad and get it approved, just as all the other outgoing students.
What should I do if I would like to rent out my apartment when I am gone?
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to rent out your apartment while you study abroad.