Study Abroad for Sussex Students

Erasmus+ Programme

Brexit update (updated 1st May 2019)

With the UK due to leave the EU at the end of March 2019, many students will have questions around how this will affect their planned study abroad placements in Europe. The UK’s continued participation in Erasmus beyond March 2019 is one of the things being discussed in the Brexit negotiations.

If the UK parliament passes the Withdrawal Agreement before the UK leaves, we hope to be able to offer an Erasmus+ grant to students planning to study abroad in another European country in 2019/20. However, if the UK leaves the EU without an agreement in place, it is very unlikely that UK universities will be able to offer Erasmus+ funding to outgoing students due to study abroad in 2019/20. While a 'no deal' scenario could mean that UK universities would no longer be eligible to be part of the Erasmus+ programme, we are working closely with colleagues at our partner universities to ensure that we would still be able to exchange students and staff members.

The UK will also be legally required to participate in the European Parliamentary elections if the Withdrawal Agreement has not been ratified by the 22nd May 2019. In the scenario the UK chooses not to participate, withdrawal from the EU will take place on 1st June 2019 with no deal in place. If 2019 projects have not been assessed and ratified by the National Agency and European Commission by this time, they will neither receive Erasmus+ funding not will be eligible for the UK government underwrite guarantee.

The Sussex Abroad team has put together this set of FAQs for students who are due to study abroad at another European partner university in 2019/20.

Despite this uncertainty, the National Agency for the Erasmus+ programme in the UK, the British Council, is encouraging UK universities to apply for 2019/20 funding in the usual way. Please click here for updates on Brexit on the Erasmus+ website.

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Erasmus+ is the European Union's flagship educational exchange programme for Higher Education students, staff and institutions. It was introduced with the aim of increasing student mobility within Europe. Erasmus+ brings together seven existing EU programmes in the fields of Education, Training, and Youth (2014-2020).

It encourages student and staff mobility for work and study, and promotes trans-national co-operation projects among universities across Europe.

Over 2 million students in Europe have participated in the programme since its inception in 1987, receiving funding to enable them to spend a period studying abroad. For more information, visit the British Council's website.

The Sussex Abroad office administers the programme for Sussex students and staff, reporting to the UK Erasmus national agency (the British Council) and distributing funding to participants. All of the European links that Sussex maintains are managed through the Erasmus+ programme. Bilateral agreements of cooperation are exchanged with partner institutions. These stipulate the number of students and staff members to be exchanged each year. However, they also ensure that exchange procedures conform to the rules of Erasmus; receiving and sending institutions will have transparency in credit weighting of courses and will issue transcripts upon completion of the Study Abroad programme; nominated co-ordinators will aid and assist Erasmus students while at the host institution; welcome and orientation programmes will be provided.

If you wish to study for between three months and an academic year at one of our European partner institutions, you will be able to participate in the Erasmus+ programme. If you wish to do a work placement or be a language assistant for your mandatory year abroad in an EU, EEA or candidate country, you may also be able to participate in the Erasmus Programme.

Eligible Countries

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey.

Erasmus grant and tuition fees

Students are eligible if they are registered at a UK institution of higher education and spending an approved study period abroad or carrying out an approved work placement (including a language assistantship) of between three and twelve months in one of the eligible countries. Students should not have received an Erasmus grant for the same type of placement (study, work or postgraduate) in the same study cycle e.g. during their undergraduate degree.

The Erasmus grant is intended to be a contribution towards the extra costs of studying abroad. Students still need to have their normal adequate funds for daily living, including travel and accommodation. The cost of living varies considerably across Europe and students are advised to find out how much their year abroad is likely to cost them before they leave.

Receipt of the Erasmus grant does not affect a student’s entitlement to their normal student loan for the period of their stay abroad.

Erasmus procedures for Sussex students

Eligible Sussex students will automatically be included in the programme. Before they depart on the year abroad, the Sussex Abroad Office will ask them to hand in the following documents:

  • Signed Erasmus contract;
  • A Learning/Training Agreement (as appropriate);
  • Confirmation that bank details on Sussex Direct are up-to-date.

While abroad, students must confirm the dates of their stay by sending back:

  • Certificate of Arrival (beginning of year);
  • Certificate of Attendance (end of year).

Erasmus students are also required:

  • To complete an Erasmus report upon completion, giving feedback on their experience;
  • To sign a receipt for the grant funding received;
  • To complete assessments related to the Online Linguistic Support (OLS), where this language is offered;
  • To complete a Debriefing Report at the end of their time abroad, which is used to inform future students about the experience at that host university.

Erasmus+ International Credit Mobility (ICM)

UK Higher Education institutions can now apply for funding to exchange students and staff with universities in Partner Countries (i.e. countries outside of the EU). 

Sussex has successfully received funding to support students studying abroad in the USA and Morocco for 2016/2017. The following partner universities are part of the first International Credit Mobility project. There are a small number of Erasmus grants, covering travel and subsistence, available for outward student mobility to:

  • University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas
  • Arizona State University, Phoenix, Arizona
  • Beloit College, Beloit, Wisconsin
  • College of Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina
  • Ecole de Gouvernance et d'Economie (EGE), Rabat, Morocco

Opportunities for teaching and administrative staff

Staff and teaching mobility:

Sussex staff from academic and administrative units, may benefit from Erasmus grants to undertake teaching abroad, or training and work shadowing at Erasmus partner institutions. For more information, refer to Opportunities for staff.