Exchange programme application process
- Autumn semester - March 1
- Spring semester - September 15
Step 1 – Choosing a school
The preparation phase for going on an exchange programme is one of the most important parts of the process, questions that arise during this phase and the decisions taken can focus students to what direction they will take upon graduation. Choosing the right school is difficult, and you need to consider what relevant studies each school offers, and whether it is suitable for your learning programme. It is important to choose carefully and it is advisable to choose two schools, one first choice and one alternate. Make sure to look for courses that are offered for exchange students.
To be sure that the agreement with the school in question is valid, you will need to get confirmation from the International Exchange Office. It is also very important to attend the presentations on study abroad that are offered by the International Exchange Office, seek information at the International Day and have an interview with one of our staff at the International Exchange Office.
Step 2 – Submit an application to RU
Once you have made a decision about the school you would like to attend, you will need to submit an electronic application to RU. You can apply here or through MySchool, under the “exchange tab”. At this stage you are not required to list your course selection for your exchange studies. However, it is very important to ensure the courses you would like to take are available at the host institution well before submitting your electronic application to RU.
After the application deadline has passed, your completed application will be sent to your school department to assess whether you can leave RU for exchange studies. It takes approximately one week for students to receive a mail, confirming whether they have be authorized to take an exchange semester.
If there is a positive outcome from the department, then students are nominated to their choice school, once this has been done you should receive confirmation from the host school and instructions on their application process. It may take from one day to three weeks to get a response from the relevant host school. Partner Schools reserve the right to choose or reject the nominations, and a nomination is not confirmation that the student will be accepted to the school. When a student has started the application process, with the host school, it can be presumed that you will be accepted, providing that all requested documents are sent on time, and that your grade for English language test is sufficient, if requested.
Step 3 – Submitting an application to the host school
All prospective exchange students must submit an application to the host school. Instructions on the application process will be sent to you directly, from the host school, once they have received your nomination. It is extremely important to send all the requested information and documents, and read carefully through all instructions sent by the host institution. It is also important to carefully examine the website of the school you intend to join, which contains important information about practical issues concerning exchange programmes, housing, important dates, etc.
Step 4 - Learning Agreement
To ensure that studies at the guest institution are in line with your studies at RU, you must have an approved Learning Agreement.
The learning agreement acts as a guarantee for students that their exchange studies will be accredited for at RU. The agreement needs to be signed by your project manager at RU, the student and a representative of the host school, before the student enters the exchange program.
Courses at the host school must be selected in accordance with your current studies. Students generally take a mix of mandatory and elective courses. You need to remember to check your credits well for the courses, that you meet any perquisites, and that the course are available for exchange students!
Once you have made your course selection you must send the names and descriptions of the courses to the project coordinator at RU for approval. You must also be clear which courses being taken on the exchange can be treated as substitutes for mandatory courses that you must take at RU during the semester.
Once the department project coordinator has approved the course selection, the learning agreement must be filled in, printed and returned signed (by the RU project manager, the student and the host school) to the International Exchange Office.
Please note, it often takes a long time to complete the learning agreement, often due to a lack of information from the host school. Please also keep in mind that the RU departments need time to review the course selection.
Sometimes you may need to change the learning agreement when the exchange starts, it is extremely important to stay in touch with the department and the International Exchange Office at RU to ensure that your learning agreement is up to date and relevant to your studies.
Students applying for exchange studies in the United States or Canada are required, in most cases, to take the TOEFL placement tests to assess their English language skills.
Cancelling your exchange studies application
If, for any reason, you decide to cancel your exchange studies application, it is very important that you inform the International Exchange Office immediately. There is a considerable amount of administration and paper work attached to an exchange application and there could be a waiting list for the spot at the school you have chosen.