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Apply to study abroad in Cardiff

Apply to study abroad in Cardiff for the whole academic year or a semester in the autumn (fall) or spring.

You can apply to study abroad in Cardiff if:

  • you are studying at an undergraduate level
  • you have good academic standing (3.0 GPA) and have completed one year of continuous study at your home institution before participating in the exchange

How to apply

How you make an enquiry depends whether your home university is:

  • one of our partner institutions. This means you can apply for the International Exchange programme.
  • another (non-partner) institution. This means you can apply for our Study Abroad programme.


These programmes are only available to overseas students from countries outside of the EU who would like to study at Cardiff University for either a semester or full year as part of their full degree elsewhere.

You must also meet our English language requirements.

Check if your home university has any restrictions on courses that you can study abroad. You may also find it useful to consider our semester dates.

If you’re looking to come to Cardiff as part of the Erasmus+ programme, you can find out how to apply on our Erasmus+ page.

If you're not from the EU and would like to apply to us for a full degree, please visit our international page.

International exchange

If you're interested in an exchange at Cardiff University, please get in touch with your home university's study abroad office. You will need to be formally nominated to Cardiff University by your home university before you can apply.

Once you've been nominated, we'll email you within one week inviting you to apply. In the meantime, you can start creating your programme and gathering your supporting documents.

Study abroad

To request a study abroad application, please email In your email, please confirm you have met the eligibility criteria.

We'll email you straight away to let you know whether or not study abroad is the correct route for you. If it is, we'll include an invitation to apply.

For your application, you'll also need to create your programme and gather supporting documents.

Please note that, on this programme, you will also need to pay fees for the period you're studying here.

To create your study abroad programme, take a look at the modules (also commonly called 'classes') from our online module catalogue.

Choosing modules

Our academic system is modular. This means that you will be able to choose modules from different subjects and Academic Schools. You will need to pay attention to the course level and credit value of each module.

Due to demand, some Academic Schools will only be able to offer modules to those students majoring in the discipline. These Schools currently include our School of Journalism, Media and Culture, School of Politics and School of Psychology. If you would like to take modules in our School of Psychology, you will need to take the majority of your credits from this School (40 credits per semester).

We welcome students to study science-based subjects. In most of the science-focused Academic Schools, you will have to study in the spring semester.

Course levels

The degree structure at Cardiff University may be slightly different from your home university. Typically, undergraduate students will spend three years studying a single subject that forms their course (major).

Modules will be assigned levels which will help to indicate when they are taught:

  • Level 4: credit normally acquired in the first year of undergraduate programmes
  • Level 5: credit normally acquired in the second year of undergraduate programmes
  • Level 6: credit normally acquired in the final year of undergraduate programmes

For example, Year 2 modules will typically be Level 5, and Year 3 modules will typically be Level 6. On some occasions Level 5 modules may be taught in Year 3, but this happens less frequently.

If you’re a student undertaking a four-year degree programme that requires two years of general education classes (for example in the USA and Canada), we would generally advise that a Year 1 module at Cardiff University is more equivalent to a Year 2 or 3 level at your home university.

However, we strongly advise you to consult your home university when selecting modules to ensure you're selecting modules with the appropriate content and at the correct level.

Avoid clashes

In contrast to education systems in countries like the USA, you will finalise your timetables when you complete the enrolment process when you arrive on campus. Until then, all your module choices are provisional.

To help limit the possibility of timetable clashes, we recommend that you:

  • don't select courses from across too many Academic Schools
  • take the majority of modules within one Academic School (for example 40 of 60 credits)
  • choose modules from the same level (where possible).

Options limited in certain circumstances

We aim to provide a wide range of module options wherever possible, but this may be limited in certain circumstances. Some modules require you to have already taken particular subjects, while others modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come first-served basis. Other modules have minimum student numbers required before they will run.

Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, you should select plenty of reserve module choices in case a module becomes unavailable.

When you arrive at the University, you'll have the opportunity to seek advice from Academic Schools on module option choices available to you.


All modules are assigned a number of credits towards your degree. Here are some important things to know about credits when choosing your modules:

  • As a visa requirement, you will be required to enrol on 60 credits per semester whilst studying at Cardiff University.
  • Half of the credits you enrol on must be from one Academic School.
  • You should aim to arrive with a minimum of 200 credits pre-approved by your home university, in case of any timetable clashes or module cancellations.

It's important that you discuss your provisional module choices with your home university to ensure the credits you take here will transfer back to your degree.

Most of our modules are worth 10 or 20 credits.

Example programmes

This example shows you how you can combine modules in two different Schools, ensuring that the majority of your credits are taught in one Academic School:

Module codeTitleAcademic SchoolCredits
SE2612 Criminal Shakespeare English, Communication and Philosophy 20
SE2496 Epic & Saga History, Archaeology and Religion 20
HS2124 Deep Histories: The Archaeology of Britain History, Archaeology and Religion 20
Total: 60  

This second example shows how you can combine 10 and 20 credit modules during one semester:

Module codeTitleAcademic SchoolCredits
EA3146 GlaciologyEarth and Environmental Sciences 10
CM3202 Emerging Technologies Computer Science and Informatics 20
CM2208 Scientific Computing Computer Science and Informatics 10
CM2203 Informatics Computer Science and Informatics 10
CM2207 Introduction to the Theory of Computation Computer Science and Informatics 10
Total: 60

Changing your modules

There is an add/drop period of a maximum of two weeks after the beginning of the semester to transfer modules. However, you will only be allowed to add/drop a module if absolutely necessary; for example, in the instance of a timetable clash.

You should be certain of your module choices and understand how these credits will transfer back to your degree before you arrive at the University.

If you need help

As with every step of the process, you will be fully supported by our team.

Please contact us if you need:

  • a full module syllabi
  • assistance or any suggestions to help build your programme
  • advice about any of the courses that you are interested in.

For your application, you'll need:

  • a personal statement (minimum 250 words)
  • your most recent academic transcript (an inventory of the courses you've taken and grades you've earned at your home university). This must be sent to us directly by your home university.
  • one academic reference from your home university (we'll provide you with a template)

Once you've gathered your documents and created your programme, you can then apply using the links and instructions outlined in our initial email invite.

It includes:

  • a link to our online application form (where you'll need to write or upload your personal statement)
  • a link to our online module survey so you can select your provisional module choices
  • details of how to send us your reference and transcript

Selecting provisional module choices

In the online module survey, please list your choices in order of preference. You must select a minimum of 200 credits at this stage. This is to allow for alternative options in case of any timetable clashes or module cancellations.

Please also note that, in order to study some modules, you may need to show background knowledge in that subject area. If you have a question about the suitability of your qualifications, please email us.


Applications for the Spring semester 2023/24 are now open.

These are the deadlines for studying with us in the Spring semester 2023/24.

Nomination deadline for the International Exchange Programme1 October 2023
Application deadline15 October 2023

After you apply

We'll email you to let you know the outcome of your application. We aim to provide a final decision five weeks after the application deadline.

Contact us

Global Opportunities