The Erasmus programme (European Region Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students) is an EU funded programme that organises student exchanges.

Each exchange is designed to enable the student to gain valuable international experience, either by studying part of their degree abroad, or undertaking a work placement (traineeship). The exchanges usually take place in the second or third year of a course, and can last up to twelve months. Universities that participate in this programme have a number of partner providers across Europe that offer student exchange placements.

To be eligible, you have to be registered at a higher education provider that is part of the programme, and enrolled on a course leading to a recognised degree or tertiary-level qualification. Your period of study abroad must be relevant for your degree, your personal development needs, and be part of the study programme you’re following. Erasmus exchange students don’t have to pay fees for their overseas studies, and there are some grants available to help with living costs, as well as funding support for students with physical, mental, or health-related conditions. You will need to apply for this programme through your university’s Erasmus or international office.

If you want to have the opportunity to do an Erasmus exchange as part of your higher education course, check to see if the unis you’re considering applying to are part of the Erasmus programme. You can find this information either on the universities’ websites or on the Erasmus Charter holders’ list.

For more detailed information, see Erasmus info for students and the list of European partner countries.

The UK Government has confirmed that the UK is committed to continuing full participation in the Erasmus+ programme until the end of this EU budget period in 2020. This only applies to Erasmus+ funded opportunities. Universities and colleges may be making alternative arrangements to ensure continuity of study abroad opportunities – contact them directly for more information.