UC Global Exchange Programme
(Outgoing Student Exchange)


Girl reading in Paris

OE with UC! Ever wondered what it would be like to study at a university in another country? The UC exchange programme may be just what you're looking for!

What is the UC Global Exchange?

The UC Global Exchange programme allows you to study for one or two semesters of course work study at a university overseas. Your tuition fees, level and other non-tuition fees applicable are paid directly to UC and you do not incur any international tuition fees while you are away. If you are eligible for a student loan or allowance at UC, you will continue to be eligible while you are on exchange, provided that you meet the requirements of Studylink. You will be responsible for all of your own living expenses, although there are scholarships available to help with costs.

You will need approval from the relevant UC Departments and Colleges for the courses you successfully complete at a partner university to be credited to your UC degree. You will still graduate with a UC degree and not with a degree from a partner university.

Search our exchange partner universities to see where in the world the Outgoing Exchange programme could take you.

Check out our NEW Global Exchange parterner universities!

German Sport University Cologne (GSU) - Bachelor of Sport Coaching

Radboud University (Faculty of Law) - Bachelor of Laws

Stockholm University – Department of Law

Why go on Exchange?

Discover the life changing experience of studying overseas with the UC Global Exchange programme. You can immerse yourself in another culture, make lifelong friends and get international experience before you graduate.

Academic benefits

  • Study at some of the most prestigious universities for teaching and research around the world
  • Learn a new language or improve your language skills
  • Diversify your degree with take courses that are not available at UC

Career benefits

  • Show to employers that you are flexible, adventurous and a self-starter
  • Develop skills to deal with change
  • Develop your cultural awareness and skills in cross-cultural communication
  • Make the most of global networking opportunities

Personal benefits

  • Develop a greater understanding of both your own and another culture
  • Meet new people and develop life-long friendships around the world
  • Grow your self-confidence and become more independent
  • Travel and see new places

Financial support

Prime Minister’s Scholarships for Asia (PMSA) and Prime Minister’s Scholarships for Latin America (PMSLA)

The Prime Minister’s Scholarships for Asia and Latin America outbound scholarship programmes funded by the New Zealand government. These scholarships are awards supporting top students hoping to undertake study, internship or other independent programmes in Asia and Latin America, subject to Education New Zealand's approval. The scholarships may cover travel, accommodation, course fees and living costs. If you are applying or have applied for other scholarships, it is your responsibility to check whether the regulations of the scholarships allow you to apply for the scholarships. Please refer to the websites of Education New Zealand above for up-to-date information about and to check on the availability of these scholarships. 

Pagnol Scholarship

This scholarship supports University of Canterbury students who are majoring in French, to participate in the University's Student Exchange Programme at one of the University's partner institutions in France. The anonymous donor's wish is that by supporting UC students to visit France they can experience the French language and culture first-hand and that this will in turn enhance their learning. Two scholarships are available annually. 

Please note that it will be your responsibility to check the regulations of the Pagnol Scholarship. For further information, please see the Pagnol Scholarship webpage for eligibility criteria, application dates and requirements. 

Partner university scholarships 2021

Scholarships may be available for exchanges to the following partner university in certain semester of 2021. Further details will be available on this website soon. (Terms and conditions apply). 

  • University of Helsinki
  • Tilburg University
  • WU (Vienna University of Economics and Business)
  • Aalto University School of Business 



UC Global Exchange in 2021

UC Global Exchange General Information Seminars

If you are interested in going on an exchange the first step is to attend a Exchange Informational
Seminar. Exchange Informational Seminars will be held on the following dates in Term 3. Note that some deadlines may change from those advertised previously and some partner universities have an early application deadline. See “Check application deadlines” below for more information.

Please note that all seminars are the same and you only need to attend one of them. If you cannot attend a seminar and need more information, please contact the International Mobility Team at ucmobility@canterbury.ac.nz. Please also check back before you attend a seminar in case of changes to the schedule.

  • 19 August 2020 (Wednesday) / 12pm - 1pm / Zoom

If you wish to attend the above Exchange Informational Seminar, please email ucmobility@canterbury.ac.nz for the Zoom meeting details.

UC Global Exchange Drop-in Sessions

Prior to coming to a drop-in session, we encourage students to attend one of the weekly information sessions (see above), as they provide lots of important information and may answer any initial questions you may have. If you have any specific enquiries or further questions, we would be happy to discuss these with you during our drop-in sessions.

You can email ucmobility@canterbury.ac.nz to set up a preferred time to discuss specific inquiries regarding your exchange. Please indicate in your email at least three available time slots and provide the following information when you email us. We will then confirm a time for your meeting with us. 

  • Student ID
  • Choices of partner university for your Global Exchange (if you have an idea of which universities you are interested in).
  • When do you wish to go on exchange, e.g. Semester 2 2021 or Semester 1 2022?

Ready for a life-changing experience?
Fill out our UC Global Exchange Online Application form now!

Step 1. Attend one of the weekly information seminars
Step 2. Choose where you want to study

The UC Global Exchange Programme has over 60 exchange partners so you’re bound to find a destination that’s right for you.

Step 3. Check you meet the entry requirements

UC look for students who will be good ambassadors of the university and have a clear sense of purpose for going on a student exchange.

To be eligible to for the UC Global Exchange programme you must have a good academic record with usually at least a B average. Students with marginally lower grades may be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Normally there is a limit to the number of students who may be selected for any particular exchange partner. Once a student has been selected for a particular exchange the student will be directed to apply to the partner university for admission as a non-degree exchange student.

First year students

Usually, the earliest you can go on exchange is Semester 2 in the second year of your degree. This is because our partner universities require UC students to have a full year of UC grades on their transcript when they assess their exchange applications. However, if you have achieved a GPA of 7.0 or above in Semester 1, the Colleges will be open to considering your application for an exchange in Semester 1 in the following year. Not all partner universities accept students with one semester of grades on their transcripts.

Please contact the International Mobility team to find out whether the universities that you want to go to accept applications with one semester of UC grades before you submit an exchange application.

Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Science students

Depending on your major, the usual time for students doing a general degree at UC is the second or third year of their degree.

Accounting students who are doing NZICA/CA ANZ have the responsibility to check with both the College of Business and Economics and NZICA/CA ANZ whether an exchange is permissible as part of this programme and whether the courses you hope to take overseas will meet your programme requirements before you submit your exchange application. You can contact the Internationalisation Team at the College of Business and Law, for advice on NZICA requirements.

Bachelor of Laws students

To be considered for full approval for your exchange, you need to have completed and passed all LAWS 200 level courses. Due to the timing of when the UC grades are released and the application deadlines of the partner universities, students who have applied with the LAWS200 courses in progress will only be considered for conditional approval, depending on where you are in your degree and subject to meeting the requirements of the Exchange programme. This means that your exchange may be deferred for one semester, provided that you meet the requirements of the conditional approval.

LAWS301 Equity & Trusts must be passed for LLB degree completion, and LAWS398 Legal Ethics must be passed for admission to practice.  Both these courses can be taken when you return from the exchange, but it is important not to overlook them in your degree planning.

To be considered for the Global Exchange Programme, you need to have maintained a B average or above; however, entry into some exchange partner universities may have additional requirements.

You are unable to select courses that are similar to those you have already taken at UC. You must take a full-time course load acceptable to UC whilst on exchange. Credits can be discussed with the international mobility team. On return from an exchange, it is also not possible to take courses at UC that are similar to those completed on exchange.

If you are an Honours student wishing to go on exchange you should discuss this further with Heather Couch (Academic Administrator & Honours Advisor, School of Law).

Bachelor of Forestry Science students

You are advised to undertake your exchange in the first semester in the third year of your degree. You are also advised to discuss your course plan for the exchange with Jeanette Allan at the School of Forestry. 

Bachelor of Engineering students

The usual time for Engineering students to go on exchange is during the 2nd Professional Year. It is not possible to go on exchange during the 1st Professional Year. Engineering students must look carefully at courses offered at the partner university to ensure they meet UC requirements and must discuss their proposed programme of exchange courses in detail with the relevant Professional Year coordinator of at UC before applying.

If you intend to undertake an exchange in 2nd Professional Year or 3rd Professional year, you may undertake an exchange for one semester, subject to approval from your department and the College of Engineering. Full-year exchange is only available for students undertaking an exchange in 2nd Professional Year, provided that your department and the College of Engineering allow it. 

Engineering applications will not be considered unless an Engineering course plan has been agreed to by the relevant UC Engineering department is included. You must also submit your Engineering course plan form and course descriptions of the courses you want to take at the partner university on exchange. Download the course ‌UC Exchange Engineering course plan.

Civil and Natural Resources Engineering students - the above information does not apply to you. But you must follow the instructions provided on the "UC Global Exchange Programme" Learn site to apply to go on exchange and get your courses approved. You are permitted to travel on exchange in the first semester of your 3rd Professional year only. You may contact Dr. Reagan Chandramohan, at the Department of Civil and Natural Resources Engineering, for additional details.

Mechanical Engineering students are only allowed to undertake an exchange in 2nd Professional Year, subject to your department and College approving your study plan for your exchange and your exchange application. 

Note: Engineering students are not advised to study at an institution overseas outside the UC Student Exchange programme. 

Engineering, Law and other students undertaking Honours programmes

You should contact your department to find out how your grades achieved on an exchange may be included in the calculation for determining the class of Honours if you are eligible for it.

Bachelor of Education (Physical Education) and Bachelor of Teaching and Learning students

Due to the requirements of the degree programmes and the New Zealand Teacher’s Council, it is not possible for students undertaking a Bachelor of Education (Physical Education) or a Bachelor of Teaching and Learning to go on exchange.

Bachelor of Sports Coaching and Bachelor of Health Sciences students

You should contact your Programme Co-ordinator in the first instance to find out whether it is feasible to undertake an exchange as part of your degree. You should also discuss the possibility of undertaking an exchange and what you need to be aware of such as compulsory course requirements, the timing of the exchange, etc. with Sarah Petersen, Academic Manager at the College of Education, Health & Human Development.

New Zealand Permanent Residents (or Residents) / Australian Citizens or Permanent Residents

If you are a New Zealand Permanent Resident or Resident, Australian Citizen or Permanent Resident, you are required to meet all of the following criteria to be eligible for the UC Global Exchange Programme. If you don’t meet any of the criteria, you will need to select a different country for your Global Exchange application.

  •  In the last 5 years before the date on which the overseas study for your exchange begins, you spent a total of less than 6 months in the country for your exchange. (If you have made multiple trips to your exchange country in the past 5 years, the sum of all the days you have spent in that country on these trips must add up to less than 6 months)
  • You are at both of the following times, ordinarily resident of New Zealand
    • immediately before you begin studying overseas; and
    • while you will be or are studying overseas.
  • You are ordinarily a resident of New Zealand and you normally and lawfully live in New Zealand, intend to stay here and consider New Zealand to be home. You cannot be ordinarily resident in two countries at the same time.
  • You will undertake a face-to-face study on the campus at the Exchange Partner University and you will not undertake any study by distance.

International Students

International Students can participate in the UC Global Exchange programme if you meet the requirements. However, you are not allowed to return to your home country for your exchange. 

You are not advised to go on exchange in the final semester of your degree. If you intend to complete your degree on an exchange, you may not be eligible for the Post-study work visa. Please contact Immigration New Zealand for further details. 

If you wish to undertake an exchange in Japan, you should check with the Consular Office of Japan in Christchurch to find out whether you will be able to apply for a visa at the Embassy of Japan in New Zealand and whether you will be required to return to your home country for the visa application. 

Some countries may require you to submit your visa application or have an interview in person at the Embassy of the country. You should check with the Embassy of the relevant country where you intend to undertake your exchange and the countries that you intend to visa for personal travels to find out what visa regulations may apply to you and what the visa application process or timeframe is. Some countries may not have an Embassy in New Zealand and you may need another visa to travel to the country where the Embassy is located to apply for a visa for your exchange. It is important that you check this before you submit your Student Exchange application as it may determine whether your exchange will be feasible or not. 

Postgraduate exchange

Postgraduate exchange programmes are only considered on a case-by-case basis. Some partner universities do not accept postgraduate exchange students or have restrictions on postgraduate courses. Please note that the UC Global Exchange programme is for course work only and it is not possible to undertake research as part of your degree on exchange. Please contact the International Mobility team at the International Relationships Office before you submit an exchange application for postgraduate course-work study to us. 

Arts students

For non-language subjects in Arts, students are only allowed to undertake an exchange at undergraduate level. 

Business Taught Masters students

Due to the structure and nature of the Business Taught Masters programmes listed below, it is unfortunately not possible to undertake an exchange as part of these programmes: 

  • Master of Business Management
  • Master of Business Information Systems
  • Master of Financial Management
  • Master of Professional Accounting
  • PG Dip in Business
  • PG Dip in Business Information Systems
  • PG Cert in Business.

Partner institution entry requirements

Once you have found an institution you like you should also check that you meet their entry requirements. These vary between partner institutions. Many of the programmes are open to most faculties and to both undergraduate and postgraduate students. Some programmes are limited to undergraduate study, a particular faculty or a department, and some programmes may require knowledge of a language other than English.

See the partner institution details and visit the website of the partner universities to find out if the subject or course options for your specific degree match those available to exchange students at the universities.

Step 4. Plan your study

It is your responsibility to ensure that the partner university you are applying for will be a viable exchange for you in terms of the courses and credit you need for your UC degree. Please ensure that you familiarise yourself with your remaining UC degree requirements. Please note that the UC Global Exchange programme is for course work only and it is not possible to undertake research as part of your degree on exchange. Student Advisors in the relevant Colleges here at UC can assist you with a degree plan showing your remaining UC degree requirements. It is also your responsibility to ensure you have checked the partner university webpage for any required pre-requisites, course restrictions or limitations in your area of study.

Some subjects may be closed or limited for exchange students and this will vary between universities. Usually this information can be found on the webpages specifically dedicated to exchange students on the partner university website. If you are going on exchange to a university which has limitations on courses in your subject area, you do need to be prepared that you may not be able to take the courses you hope to and may have to return to UC after your exchange for a longer period to complete your degree.

UC or the partner university cannot guarantee the availability of specific courses at the exchange partner university and that you need to plan to be as flexible as possible with course selection on exchange. You are strongly recommended to take the compulsory courses for your degree at UC. If you are doing a UC degree which requires you to take compulsory courses and you plan to take any compulsory courses on exchange, it’s particularly important that you are aware of the possible implications of this for your degree. You also can’t usually take more than a standard course load on exchange (equivalent of 60 UC points per semester).

You should do careful research on potential courses at the partner university and discussed these with the relevant departments or College here at UC (see further information below), to ensure that the courses you hope to take are likely to be creditable here at UC at the levels you need (course listings for the year of your exchange may not always be available yet so you will need to use the current listings as a guide, bearing in mind that course offerings may change every year).

Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science

The International Relationships Office (IRO) can provide you with the names of the right academic staff you can discuss your courses with at various departments. You are advised to research on the courses offered by the partner universities first and provide the departments with the a shortlist of courses. (You should not expect the departments to go through the whole course catalogue for you.)

Bachelor of Commerce

You should discuss your options of partner universities for your exchange and courses with Tracy Zhai, International Business Development Coordinator at the UC Business School.

Other degrees

You should see the information on the previous tab "Step 3. Check entry requirements" on how to seek advice on courses you wish to take on exchange.


Step 5. Check the application deadlines

Application deadlines may change from those advertised in previous years and some partner universities have an early application deadline. Check here regularly to get the most up to date information about deadlines.

Exchanges in 2021

Information Seminars for students interested in going on exchange in 2021 are held throughout Semester 1 2020 as indicated above. Note that some deadlines may change from those advertised previously. 

Important: some partner universities have early application deadlines. See below for further details. 

UC Global Exchange applications can now be submitted using our new Online Form! We no longer accept application forms sent to us as Word or PDF files via email or hard copies. 

You are welcome to submit your application before the closing date, but applications will not be processed until after application closing date.

The deadlines for applying are:

  • Exchanges in Semester 1 2021 – 31 May 2020
  • Exchanges in Semester 2 2021 – 1 September 2020 

Early application deadlines apply to the following partner universities:

  • University of Washington – there is one application round only. Please apply before 31 May 2020 for an exchange in Semester 1 or Semester 2 2021. You are required to make an appointment and discuss your plan with the International Mobility team (ucmobility@canterbury.ac.nz) before you submit your exchange application.
  • Waseda University, Bunkyo University and Kwansei Gakuin University (KGU) - there is one application round only. Please apply before 31 May 2020 for an exchange in Semester 1 or Semester 2 2021. Students can only commence their exchange at Waseda University or Bunkyo University in Semester 1 (April intake at Waseda / Bunkyo).
  • University of British Columbia (UBC) – the application deadline for an exchange to UBC in Semester 1 2021 (UBC's Term 2, January intake) is 1 February 2020.  If you wish to go to UBC in Semester 2 2021, you must apply before 1 September 2020.
  • Queen's University (Arts and Science) - the application deadline for an Arts and Science exchange to Queen's University in Semester 1 2021 is 1 February 2020.  Applications for the Engineering exchange programme at Queen's for Semester 1 and Semester 2 2021 close on 31 May 2020 and 1 September 2020 respectively.
  • University of Nottingham - if you wish to go to Nottingham in Semester 1 2021 (January intake at Nottingham), you should apply before 1 February 2020. If you wish to go to Nottingham in Semester 2 2021, you must apply before 1 September 2020.
  • University of Adelaide - closed for 2020. Availability of places for 2021 will be confirmed in 2020. 

Step 6. Complete your UC Global Exchange application

To apply for the UC Global Exchange programme, you will need to submit your application to the International Relationships Office at UC by the closing date, including the relevant documentation and information as outlined on the online form.

UC Global Exchange Online Application form

Submit your application

You must submit your application using the online form. You cannot apply to the partner university without first being selected by UC. If you are a postgraduate student you should check with the International Mobility team about closing dates and the availability of postgraduate exchanges at any given university before you start your application.

Every effort will be made to accommodate your choice of university, but we cannot guarantee that we will be able to nominate you for your first choice university. At least two back-up options are needed for this reason. Some location or partner universities are in high demand; therefore you need to be prepared that you may be allocated to a different university where places are available. The availability of exchange destinations may change from year to year and UC reserves the right to amend the list of partner universities or deadlines at any time. Please check this page for updates.

Medical and travel insurance

If you are a successful applicant you must also get appropriate and current travel and health insurance for the time you are overseas, regardless of whether you are a domestic or international student. The insurance must meet the University of Canterbury's minimum requirements and be valid for the entire period overseas.

Please read ensure you have familiarised yourself with all insurance requirements.

Insurance for outgoing exchange students.

Insurance for studying outside New Zealand

All domestic students and international students in New Zealand who are travelling off-shore as part of their study programme require appropriate and current medical and travel insurance. The insurance must meet the University of Canterbury's minimum requirements and be valid for the entire period off-shore.

Please ensure you have familiarised yourself with all insurance requirements.

Insurance for outgoing exchange students


For more information please contact us.