Year Abroad students

Year Abroad

As an undergraduate student in the Department of Modern Languages, you will spend your third year abroad as an integral part of your degree. Students who study Modern Languages and Arabic, however, are required to spend their Year Abroad in their second year. 

The Year Abroad can be one of the most rewarding and enjoyable aspects of a modern languages degree. It is also one of the major factors that makes languages graduates attractive to employers: negotiating the challenges of a year abroad is seen by employers as proof of adaptability, independence and resourcefulness. Students usually spend 7-15 months abroad working, studying or teaching. 

The Year Abroad is an assessed year and the marks obtained count towards your final degree classification. If you are a beginner in any language and you intend to take that language in final year, we strongly recommend you spend the majority of the assessed part of your Year Abroad in the country where that language is spoken. You may arrange the year differently, subject to approval.

The Year Abroad tuition fees is currently capped at 15-20% of a student’s annual tuition fee. 



Ways to spend the Year Abroad

Study abroad 

Studying abroad offers a range of possibilities, with over 40 different partner universities worldwide available to Modern Languages students. This can provide you with the opportunity to experience a different academic environment with local and other international students. At Exeter University's partner institutions you will study courses relevant to your degree.

Work abroad

Internships are very rewarding in that they give a student a valuable experience in the work place. Exeter has a number of regular partners that usually advertise the placements via the Career Zone. However, you may also source your own placement which will need to be approved by the Global Employability team. Some of our students have spent their Year Abroad working in translation, tourism, marketing, fashion, commerce, museums and many other sectors.

British Council English Language Assistantship

Becoming an English Language Assistant with the British Council is a brilliant opportunity to explore both the world of working and, more specifically, the idea of working as a teacher. An academic year is spent teaching in a primary or secondary school in the country of the language you are studying. A school will be allocated to you by the Ministry of Education of the country to which you apply via the British Council



The options above are available for most of the languages. However, if you study Chinese or Russian, currently the only option available is studying. If you study Portuguese, the only options available are study or work abroad (not British Council assistantship). If you choose to study or work, you can even split your Year Abroad between two or more work placements, or two universities. In addition you can also study for a semester and work in the other semester. 

During your time abroad, you will still be registered as an Exeter student and you will be supported in a number of ways. You will retain your personal tutor and will be expected to keep in contact with her/him. You will also have the support of the Study Abroad and Global Employability teams for advice on any matter. 

You will need to decide how you will spend your Year Abroad during the first half of your second year. We will help you in the process. During our first year you will be invited to an introductory presentation about your Year Abroad options. In your second year, there is an extensive orientation programme to help you prepare for your Year Abroad.

Contact us

For any enquiries about Year Abroad support please contact the Humanities Study Abroad team: