Studying abroad allows you to travel the world, enhance your degree at an international institution and broaden your cultural horizons. You’ll strengthen communication skills in addition to building confidence and making new friends.
Depending on the option you pursue you will also experience new international perspectives which will enhance your subject understanding or develop foreign language skills.
There are opportunities to study abroad for a year or for a summer if you do not wish to add a year to your degree. Whichever you choose, spending time in another country will demonstrate your independence and adaptability to future employers, particularly those seeking to recruit graduates with an international outlook.
Almost one quarter of our students study or work abroad at some stage during their degree, with popular destinations including Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Latin America and Asia.
A study abroad year will involve you spending the third year at one of our specially selected partner universities. It will extend the length of your degree by a year and, once successfully completed, will also be recognised in your degree title, for example, BA (Hons) Sociology (International).
There are several options for a year abroad depending on your motivations:
International perspectives on your subject
You can undertake a year abroad where you study modules from your subject in a specially selected partner institution overseas as part of an open exchange. The University has partnerships with more than 300 universities worldwide, visit the University of Leeds study abroad website to find out more about possible destinations. Studying abroad is popular so places for placement opportunities in some countries might be limited. Destinations may change each year; when you’re ready to apply our Study Abroad team is on hand to help you to research which placement is best suited to you and advise on the funding which may be available.
Language and intercultural understanding
The Horizon Exchange programme focuses on developing language learning and intercultural understanding. It’s academically rigorous but you’re not limited to taking modules in your subject area. Most modules are taught in English although you will also take beginners or intermediate level language classes relevant to your host country.
Working experience abroad
If you would prefer to spend a year gaining work experience but would like to incorporate an international element, you could spend a year working abroad.
If you study abroad for a year as part of your course, you’ll also pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see study abroad tuition fees and loans.
Summer schools are a great way of experiencing the benefits of studying abroad for a shorter period of time. You could develop skills in a new language, whilst proving your independence and adaptability to future employers.
The Study Abroad Office offers several subsidised summer school opportunities for students in addition to a number of non-subsidised options.
Carys Eaglestone BA Sociology
“I spent a year studying abroad at the University of Copenhagen. My experience was amazing, and I loved every minute. I met some great people from all over the world, developing some key skills adapting to Danish culture. The sociology course there was very interesting as it provided a Scandinavian perspective to the topics I had studied in Leeds.”View Profile