The School of English offers students the opportunity to spend a semester abroad during their second year. Students may have the possibility of studying at either one of our international campuses in China or Malaysia, or at one of our partner institutions in the EU, or go further afield to a University-wide institution.
It is an amazing opportunity to live and study abroad and something which I thought I might never have the chance to do again
Studied abroad in Venice
International Student Recruitment Office:
Study Abroad pages
Faculty of Arts student, Tarana Fazel, talks about studying abroad
Optional semester abroad opportunities
If you are a single honours student or joint honours student with a humanities subject, you may apply to spend a semester abroad as part of your degree. You will need an average of 60% or more in the first semester of your first year to be considered.
All semester exchanges take place in the second year of study. You will study approved modules which complement your course in Nottingham and your marks will count towards your final degree.
Inter-Campus Exchange Programme
Join our students as they take you on a tour of our China Campus, based in the city of Ningbo.
The Malaysia campus is situated near the town of Semenyih. The purpose built campus provides state of the art teaching and learning facilities, as well as accommodation, sports facilities (including an outdoor swimming pool!), and a multi-level library for around 4000 students coming from over 60 different countries.
Find out more about
spending a semester at the Malaysia campus
Join our students as they take you on a tour of our Malaysia Campus, situated approximately 30km from Kuala Lumpur.
Universitas 21 / University-Wide Partner
This worldwide partnership of universities encourages the movement of students between leading research universities all over the world. In the past, English students have studied at:
- Oregon State University, USA
- University of Arizona, USA
- University of Connecticut, USA
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA
- University of Tennessee, USA
The Erasmus programme is a European-wide initiative based on subject-specific exchange agreements between schools and departments at Nottingham and academic counterparts at partner universities across Europe.
Under this European exchange programme, in the past English students have had the opportunity to study at:
- Oslo (Only available to Viking Studies students)
- Ruhr Universitate Bochum
Compulsory year abroad
Students on our joint honours language degrees and our four-year American Studies and English course spend a full year abroad studying or working.
Find out more about the compulsory year abroad
Overseas short-term programmes and summer schools offer students the opportunity to experience another country outside of their degree programme.
Returning students provide helpful insights into their exciting experiences of studying abroad:
University of Nottingham, Ningbo Campus
Katherine Angus - BA (Hons) English
Studied at the University of Nottingham, Ningbo Campus (Spring 2013)
I wanted to do something different with my degree, and saw the opportunity of studying abroad as a great way to do that. I chose the University of Nottingham's international campus in Ningbo, China. I chose to study in China because I wanted to immerse myself in a country with a fantastic, colourful culture so unlike my own. Studying at one of Nottingham's international campuses means that many of the modules have similar outlines to that of the UK, but studying in China was an experience I am unlikely to forget. Reading poetry and prose from local and far flung cultures I would never have known or come to appreciate had I not been in Asia was an unforgettable part of my academic life at University.
Outside of the classroom, China proved to offer amazing experiences – music, food, sights and people differed from place to place and province to province more widely it seemed than from country to country in Europe. The pull of the cities such as Beijing and Shanghai fed my want to act as a tourist but everyday life in Ningbo, and the places which surround it, allowed me a glimpse of China removed from the guidebook – an experience few get to have and from which there is much to learn.
I would wholeheartedly recommend the experience of studying English in China, no matter how unlikely it may sound! It reshaped my perceptions of the relationship between literature and language, and of people and their cultures. It left me with an appreciation not only for literature outside of Western culture, but life outside of the West – an experience which has unquestionably enhanced my life in every way.
Universita Ca'Foscari, Venice
Georgia Herron - BA (Hons) English Language and Literature
Studied at Universita Ca'Foscari, Venice (Spring 2014)
The School of English offers so many options through U21 and Erasmus but eventually I came to the decision that Venice was the place for me. Italy was largely undiscovered by myself so I jumped at the chance to explore and applied to Ca'Foscari.
Studying in Venice was truly magical. The sheer novelty of catching a water bus to lectures, of studying in 15th Century Venetian palaces and walking down narrow calles with water up to my knees during high tide season, never ceased to amaze me. Venice is beautiful. Italy is beautiful. However, Italy is made even more beautiful by the Italians. Whilst Venetians have a reputation similar to Parisians, I was still fascinated by every single aspect of their personalities. When I am old and grey, I will return to live the life of a luxurious Venetian grandmother dressed in full furs and shades, coolly taking on the 409 bridges that trump most tourists. Despite its proximity to the rest of Europe, their culture is still so different and I loved immersing myself in this culture...when in Rome!
Not only did I enjoy the lifestyle, but my studies were also fascinating. I studied the likes of T. S. Eliot and Ezra Pound knowing that they too had walked the streets I walked daily. I also had the opportunity to study animals and nature in specifically American literature, as well as discovering more about Victorian Britain and its great essayists than I ever had in Britain. Not only was I studying some great texts but I revelled in knowing that I was living on the set for so many great texts, of so many great literary figures and of such divine inspiration.
During my 6 months in Venice, I had the chance to explore most of Italy, and I would recommend it to anyone. Trains, unlike in England, are extremely efficient and relatively cheap so travel is a breeze. As I struggle to come to terms with being back in Nottingham, the memories of gelato, pizza and pasta, sunny Venetian days and the friends I made keep me going.
Colette Davies - BA (Hons) English
Studies at Universita Ca'Foscari, Venice (Spring 2013)
Ciao a tutti! My name is Colette and I went to Universita Ca'Foscari, Venice for my Erasmus. I was there for 5 months from February until June and had the time of my life! (Not to sound cheesy at all...)
I decided that I wanted to go on Erasmus within my very first week at university; it is an amazing opportunity to live and study abroad and something which I thought I might never have the chance to do again. I chose to go to Venice because ... well ... it's Venice! What more can I say?! Studying and writing in one of the cultural capitals of the world, where Ruskin, Vivaldi, Shakespeare (according to one of my lecturers there...) had strolled the streets in days gone by, was an opportunity not to be missed. I had visited Venice before and loved the completely different atmosphere and culture; getting a vaporetto to university, the canals, the restaurants, the wines, gondolas, museums, art galleries and the day trips to other cities made my Erasmus the best I could have hoped for. My 5 months there flew by and, when I left, it was not a 'goodbye' but a 'see you soon'!
University of Helsinki, Finland
Peter Rylands - BA (Hons) English Language and Literature
Studies at the University of Helsinki (Spring 2014)
When looking at the School of English Erasmus programme you are faced with 3 choices: Heidelberg, Venice and Helsinki. You may well be tempted by the cheap beer of Germany or the Italian beauty of Venice but what do you think when you hear Helsinki?
I chose Helsinki mainly on the fact I would never think of going there and with vague hopes of seeing the Northern Lights (I did).
What I ended up choosing was a University 67th in the QS World Rankings (higher than Nottingham, he whispers) which knew how to stretch their students and look after them. I did 8 modules to make up the credits needed but don't be scared by that – I achieved my highest semester average to date and this was alongside the amazing opportunities I was provided.
Those opportunities are greater than you would expect too.
Finland is a beautiful country. National parks and archipelagos are in abundance and of course there is Lapland. It's also in a great position to travel to Russia, Estonia, Sweden and from there the rest of Europe. This is what I did and what you can do as well; in fact in 6 months I managed 11 countries!
The most lasting part of any exchange however are the friendships you make. Those friends will make your Erasmus unforgettable and also give you one of the best moments in your life
Kellie McCord - BA (Hons) English
Studied at the University of Helsinki, Finland
Helsinki was absolutely amazing. The snow, the food, the sauna, ice-swimming, and of course the people! Studying abroad can be daunting, but Helsinki University is extremely organised. From the moment I applied I received lots of help in choosing my modules and finding accommodation. The process was very stress free especially since they guarantee to find you a place to live.
As an international student you will have the opportunity to be part of the English Students Network and Helsinki boasts one of the biggest in Europe. Through them I got to experience skiing, Finnish dancing, visit the infamous Karl Fazer chocolate factory, and go to Lapland where I saw the Northern Lights!
University of Heidelberg, Germany
Hanna Bassa - BA (Hons) English Language and Literature
Studied at the University of Heidelberg, Germany
I studied in Heidelberg for the Summer Semester and it has been the highlight of my degree so far! It was a daunting prospect to begin with, as I was concerned about my lack of German skills. But this was not a problem ultimately; the university provided German courses that ranged from Beginner's level German to more advanced German. This gave me the opportunity to pick up another language, and luckily the locals of Heidelberg and the students there all spoke English which made life a lot easier at the start of my stay.
I chose Heidelberg because it was close enough to home but far enough to experience a different culture. I didn't expect that Germany would have so much to see and to do though! The university provides the opportunity to go on excursions (the sort of thing you'd expect from a Travel Society), and these were all incredibly inexpensive. I was fortunate enough to see some beautiful places – lots of quaint medieval towns and amazing castles. I love photography so for me this was brilliant.
My time in Heidelberg was unforgettable and I would recommend study abroad to anyone. I made close friends, grew more confident, and definitely a lot more independent. Study abroad allows you to see more of the world and to study things that maybe you wouldn't be able to study at home: perfect!
University of Oslo, Norway
Daniela Hackett - BA (Hons) Viking Studies
Studied at the University of Oslo, Norway (Spring 2013)
I spent one semester studying in Oslo, from January to June. There wasn't really a choice of destinations for Viking Studies students, but I was happy because I had always wanted to go to Norway. My motivation for studying abroad was a desire to challenge myself by living in a foreign country and take advantage of the opportunity to do this with the support of a university. I am so happy that I did it.
At the University of Oslo I met students from all over the world, from Germany to Australia, and by joining the university's orchestra and the student-run art gallery I met lots of welcoming Norwegians; I now feel privileged to have friends all over the world. Classes at the university gave me new ideas about topics I'd studied before and the opportunity to learn about things that I couldn't have done at Nottingham, including Norwegian language. In my spare time I enjoyed Oslo's history and culture, and made the most of the beautiful forests. Norwegians are stereotypically 'outdoorsy' no matter how thick the snow, so I followed the rest of the city and learnt to cross-country ski in the snow and went on hiking trips when the weather warmed up. I had a brilliant time and can't wait to go back.
University of Connecticut, USA
Emma Graham - BA (Joint Hons) English and History
Studied at the University of Connecticut, USA (Spring 2013)
When applying for university I had considered studying for my degree in the US on a swimming scholarship, before eventually deciding Nottingham was the best place for me. However, studying abroad as part of my degree offered the best of both worlds; I had the opportunity to experience both the British and American college experiences. As I arrived on campus at the University of Connecticut it was pitch black, -15 degrees and I got lost trying to find my building. Not the best start, but it only got better from there! In the first two months my friends and I spent several amazing weekends in New York, Boston and Philadelphia. As long as I did most of my work in the week I was free to travel with other international students at the weekends and we definitely made the most of our time away; Spring Break was spent in Jamaica (incredible!) and when term was over we rented a camper van and spent a month road-tripping around California. I cannot recommend studying abroad enough – it will be so much more than you ever expected and is a chance to make new friends and memories which will stay with you forever.
University of Auckland, New Zealand
Chami Dhillon - BA (Hons) English
Studied at the University of Auckland, New Zealand
When I started at Nottingham, I never thought I would be travelling half way round the world with an English degree, let alone that it would be one of the highlights of my degree. It also came as a huge surprise that I could afford to do so, but the International Student Recruitment Office spoke through my options with me and put my mind at rest. I chose to study abroad because I have always wanted to live abroad and I saw this as an opportunity to try it out and see how I fare - having done so I am certain I will be living abroad in the future. I met amazing people, had some phenomenal experiences and actually improved my grades by doing so. Studying English, literature especially, outside of England was fascinating. It broadened my perspectives and it changed the way I approached my studies on my return, eventually resulting in my achieving a first. It was an amazing experience for my personal and academic development and a couple hundred words simply cannot do it justice!
Rachel Webb - BA (Hons) English
Studied at the University of Auckland, New Zealand
My semester abroad was exceptional – I couldn't have had a better time! The opportunity to study abroad was one of the reasons I chose Nottingham. I didn't go on a gap year but knew I wanted to travel and experience a different culture and environment. Study abroad was the perfect opportunity to combine travelling and studying. The effort I had to put into the research and application process of study abroad was completely worth it.
Auckland itself is a great place to study. It's a city campus but all the buildings are close together so you still have a campus feel. Auckland is also a really good base to go and see lots more of New Zealand or even further afield. I went to Fiji and Samoa in my mid-semester break! The university's 'continual assessment' approach to academics meant that I worked hard during the week and usually spent the weekend on road-trips with friends. Study abroad has improved my confidence and the ability to cope assertively in unfamiliar situations. I'm now a study abroad fanatic and wholeheartedly encourage anyone to do it!
City University, Hong Kong
Melissa Pomlett - BA (Hons) English Language and Literature
Studied at City University, Hong Kong
Choosing to study in Hong Kong was undoubtedly the best decision of my entire life. Not only was I submerged in an entirely new culture: mastering the art of chopsticks and living the cosmopolitan lifestyle. With over 250 international students, City University was a buzzing, lively and exciting place to be where I met some of the most incredible people. The sheer diversity of cultures made the experience far beyond anything I could ever have imagined.
Being part of another university opened my eyes to entirely new learning styles, which for me hugely benefitted my studies. Studying English in Hong Kong was an experience I would tell everyone to do. My classmates were amazing, the friendliest and most welcoming people I have ever met. Remember, they are studying your language too, so they were entirely fascinated and enthused to have an English person in the classroom!
Honestly, words cannot describe the impact my time away had on me. Studying abroad no doubt pushes you to grow in confidence, experience entirely new things and most importantly gain incredible memories that will stick with you forever.
You can also read Study Abroad posts on our Words for Words blog:
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