SOAS University of London

International Students

Outgoing SOAS students: Erasmus Exchange


Under the Withdrawal Agreement negotiated with the EU, the UK will continue to participate fully in the current (2014-2020) Erasmus+ programme.

Unfortunately, we do not know what the UK’s participation in the scheme will be after 2020/21 so we cannot guarantee that there will be exchange opportunities available after this time.

We will keep students informed of any developments about participation in the Erasmus+ scheme as these become clearer and this page will be updated as further information is announced.

Last updated: February 2020

  • What is the Erasmus+ study exchange programme?

    Please visit the Erasmus+ website for more information.

    *Unfortunately, SOAS does not participate in the Erasmus+ traineeship (work abroad) scheme at this time

  • Can I take part in the Erasmus+ study exchange Programme?

    Eligibilty critera:

    • You must be enrolled on a full-time undergraduate degree programme
    • Undergraduate students can only participate in the Erasmus exchange in Year 2 of their three-year undergraduate degree and can only study abroad for a full academic year (not just one term)
    • You must pass all Year 1 courses (without September retake examinations) and be eligible to progress to Year 2 of the SOAS degree
    • You must have written permission from your programme convenor
    • You cannot have received a previous Erasmus grant
    • You cannot participate if you are on a four-year language degree and already spending one year studying away from SOAS
    • You must have a strong working knowledge and competency in the language of the proposed placement institution if courses there are not taught in English

    *Unfortunately, given the structure of full-time Masters degrees at SOAS, postgraduate students are not eligible to apply

  • Where can I go?
    • Please see the Downloads section to the right for the SOAS Erasmus Partner Information.
    • The School must have a formal agreement with the partner institution in one of the eligible countries, it must be in the subject area(s) of your degree and the institution must have an Erasmus Charter.
    • Your Erasmus+ placement can only be taken at one university - not at multiple institutions.
    • New agreements will not be made with partners that are not on the list.
  • What subjects can I study?
    • The Erasmus+ study placement period counts towards your degree. It is not an additional year or a year out, either in academic or funding terms.
    • Undergraduate degree students must study courses that their department(s) and their programme convenor are prepared to accept as equivalent to (but not necessarily the same as) the four courses they would have studied at SOAS during that year.
    • Where the curriculum determines that compulsory courses must be studied, equivalent courses must be studied during the placement. The Head of Department will need to be satisfied that the non-standard syllabus will permit the student to undertake Year 3 courses in the SOAS syllabus on return. 
    • The student must supply a strong academic rationale for a variation from the normal Year 2 syllabus for his or her degree.
    • The subjects must also be approved by the partner institution.
  • What are the language requirements?
    • The partner institutions may have their own language requirements, especially for courses not taught in English
    • If courses are taught in English, partner institutions may offer suplementary language courses in their country's language of instruction
    • If courses are not taught in English, you will need to demonstrate that you have a working knowledge of the language in advance to enable you to study your degree subject(s) in that language.
    • Your department(s) and programme convenor(s) will bear this in mind when considering your study proposal.
    • Some European partner institutions do teach certain subjects in English – please check the partner's webpages or contact the partner directly for more information
  • How to apply?
    • Research the partner institutions that you are interested in
    • Prepare a proposed study package which covers at least 60 ECTS points and the subjects you would have studied at SOAS.
    • You should be able to find lists of available modules on partner's website. and you can contact them directly if you need further information
    • You will need to confirm that they offer modules taught in English if you do not speak the official language of instruction.
    • Obtain support and approval from your Programme Convenor - they will need to sign the relevant part of the SOAS application form.
    • Complete the SOAS application form and personal statement detailing satisfactory academic reasons for wishing to undertake an Erasmus+ exchange at the partner university 
    • Send the completed application form to as soon as possible and no later than 20th March 2020.

    Please see the Downloads section on the right to access the Application Form. 

    *There are a limited number of Erasmus+ placements each year so early application is advised.

  • Will the Erasmus+ exchange count towards my final degree?
    • You will receive formal academic recognition for your exchange year abroad.
    • Undergraduates who successfully complete an Erasmus+ exchange will be credited with four course units to count towards their overall degree requirements (similar to the way first year study is credited).
    • However, actual marks achieved during the Erasmus+ placement will not be counted and students’ degree classification will be based on their final year marks (for further information, see your degree regulations).
  • What does it cost?
    • Undergraduate students who spend a full year in a partner institution in 2020-21 will pay a reduced Home/EU tuition fee to SOAS for that year and no tuition fees to the partner institution.
    Other costs
    • You will need to pay for residence and general living costs and entertainment. The cost of living for students varies depending on the coutntry, so please do some research and keep your finances in mind when deciding where you want to go.
    Student grants and loans
    • During your study period you will be eligible to continue to receive any student grant or loan (including from the Student Loans Company) to which you are normally entitled, from national or other sources. Please visit for more information or contact your student loan provider.
    The Erasmus Student Mobility Grant
    • You may be eligible to receive an Erasmus mobility grant which contributes towards the extra costs arising from studying abroad, however it will not cover all normal student living expenses and it is not automatic.
    • The grant is paid by SOAS, which receives an allocation from the UK National Agency (the British Council) for distribution to students. Please note that as the grant is limited, there may be situations in which you will not receive an Erasmus grant. In return for the grant, students are asked to write reports on their experience. More information will be provided if your application is successful.
    • The mobility grant will be paid in two instalments. The first payment is made once we have confirmation that you have enrolled at your receiving Erasmus Institution. The second payment will be made at the end of the placement subject to you providing the necessary documentation and completing your Erasmus report.
    • For 2020/21, the estimated grant rate is €300 – €350 a month depending on the country that you are in.
  • How are applications assessed?

    The assessment of the application will be based on:

    • the completed SOAS Outbound Erasmus application form, detailing your proposed study package to a total of 60 ECTS points
    • the personal statement and academic rationale for undertaking an Erasmus+ exchange 
    • current academic progress and Year 1 course results
    • other relevant information in the application form

    The School will wish to be satisfied that there are valid academic reasons for wishing to undertake the Erasmus+ year; that the partner university must be able to provide a year of study as close as possible in standard and content to the equivalent year of the SOAS degree; that students will be able to cope in a different learning and teaching environment and will have a reasonable chance of successfully completing the year of study; and that the completed year will permit smooth progression to the final year of the degree back at SOAS.