UCL Study Abroad


EU Referendum - FAQs for current and future Study Abroad Students 

What will happen to my Erasmus+ grant now that we are leaving the EU?

The European Commission has confirmed that the UK will be able to benefit from the entire range of schemes financed through Erasmus+ until we are no longer a member. This means that students going abroad under Erasmus+ will continue to benefit from a grant for the time being.

The UK’s continued participation in the Erasmus+ scheme after exit from the EU will depend on the terms of the exit deal. News on this is not expected to be published until after formal negotiations begin.

Will I need a visa to do my placement in Europe?

Until the UK ceases to be a member of the EU, your immigration status as a UK citizen in the European Union/European Economic Area will not change. Rules on free movement and immigration will be part of the exit deal negotiations.

Students who currently require a visa to study in the UK will still need to apply for a visa to study in another EU country.

I am starting a degree in September 2016 that includes a compulsory year abroad in Europe – will I be able to benefit from the Erasmus+ programme?

The Erasmus+ programme is funded and controlled by the European Commission. Currently, programme countries (permitted to participate in the full scheme) are limited to the following:

· Members of the European Union

· Members of the European Economic Area

· Certain candidate countries (including Turkey)

Being an EU member is not a pre-requisite of participation in Erasmus+, however there is an expectation that certain principles of EU/EEA membership, such as free movement, are adhered to.

I am hoping to take an optional year abroad in 2017/18 or beyond; what will my options be for studying in Europe?

As we do each year, a list of available options for Study Abroad will be published in the Autumn Term in the year before your placement is due to take place. This list will reflect any changes to our selection of partnerships that occur because of the referendum result.

Currently, the timeline for exit suggests that the UK will not leave the EU fully until spring 2019; it is therefore expected that the UK will remain part of Erasmus+ at least until this point. Therefore, we do not anticipate any major changes to your options for study abroad in Europe. However, as we cannot predict what the outcome of the exit negotiations might be, there is no way to confirm  what changes, if any, there may be to the list of exchange options available to your department.

Will I still have the option to work on my year abroad? (SELCS only)

 Work placements are currently available as a year abroad option both inside and outside the Erasmus+ programme. Should the UK cease to be a part of Erasmus+, work placements would still be available (upon approval by the department) but there would be no funding available to you.

Will the UK’s exit from the EU affect the places I can go on my year abroad?

In the event that the UK ceases to be a part of Erasmus+, there may be some changes to the range of placements in Europe on offer to Study Abroad students. This is largely because a great many partnerships currently offered via Erasmus+ would have to be renegotiated, and this may result in a slight drop in the total number of partnerships that we maintain with European institutions whilst this work is undertaken.

UCL is committed to maintaining strong and lasting partnerships with institutions in Europe, and will continue to work to ensure that our students have access to as wide and as varied a range of opportunities as possible.

What if things change while I am abroad?

Given the current projected timeframe for exit negotiations, we do not expect that there will be major unannounced changes during your placement abroad.

In the event of a major change to your immigration or eligibility for Erasmus+ funding whilst you are abroad, we will endeavour to notify you as soon as we become aware of the change. We will also seek assistance and advice from the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Home Office and the British Council in order to minimise the impact on your studies.