Design your exchange program

Exchange or study abroad? Coursework or research? When can I go?

Exchange or study abroad

Whether you choose an exchange program or a study abroad program, you will be able to claim academic credit towards your University of Melbourne degree. However, there are a few small differences:

Exchange:

Fee-paying:

  • Your planned host institution does not need to have an exchange agreement with the University of Melbourne.
  • You can choose any destination in the world that will accept you as a short-term student.
  • You pay fees to your host institution for the duration of your overseas program.

Study abroad:

  • Your planned host institution does not need to have an exchange agreement with the University of Melbourne.
  • You can choose any destination in the world that will accept you as a short-term student.
  • You pay fees to your host institution for the duration of your overseas program.

Before you go

Whichever option you choose, there are a number of things you will need to do before you go:

  • Attend a myWorld First Steps Session run by Melbourne Global Mobility.
  • Meet the Eligibility Requirements for exchange programs.
  • Ensure that your planned institution offers appropriate subjects to ensure your continued course progress, and that this has been approved by your department.
  • Ensure that you apply via Melbourne Global Mobility to be eligible for scholarship funding and have academic credit loaded upon return.
  • Make sure you are able to cover expenses, typically including accommodation, visas, vaccinations, transport and living expenses while overseas.

Graduate coursework students

When choosing your subjects, you will need to have all subjects assessed for credit approval to make sure that you’ll meet all requirements for both your course and your professional accreditation requirements.

If you take unapproved subjects while overseas, you will not have adequate credit on your return to Melbourne. This will impact your course duration, and could mean your course completion is delayed.

Duration

Ideal credit accumulated

Short Term Program (<12 Weeks)

12.5-25 points

Semester-long Program (12-20 weeks)

37.5-50 points

Year-long program (20-40 weeks)

75-100 points

Graduate researchers

Doing a research program overseas gives you the option to personally tailor your research project. You will need to be fairly proactive in finding a supervisor, but the reward of undertaking your dream project is worth it.

To get started:

  1. Identify a project you would like to undertake.
  2. Contact the academic running the project and ask if they would be willing to supervise you and accept you into their research team. Be as specific as possible – if you are proposing dates, put those in your email.
  3. Once accepted by a supervisor at your host institution, have the project approved for credit towards your course. Get this approval in writing (email is fine), and ensure that it states the credit that you will receive, and what subject this credit will be listed as on your transcript. This step is absolutely compulsory, as the project must meet your course and professional accreditation requirements to be taken for credit.
  4. Apply for Study Abroad or Exchange via the Study Overseas website .

When to study overseas

Choosing the timing of your study abroad or exchange program is entirely up to you, but will be influenced by whether you’re a research or coursework student, and the time of the program you choose.

Many students taking a 200 or 300 point program find that the first half of their second year is the easiest time to maximise electives, but you can choose any period.

If you take your program in your final semester, this may delay your graduation date.