Fall, Spring, Academic Year
Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
• Clear interest and commitment
• Demonstrated preparedness/maturity
• Minimum 3.0 GPA (flexible, depending on circumstances)
• Good academic and disciplinary standing
• Sophomore, junior, or senior standing at the time the program begins
• Approval by UI Study Abroad
• Acceptance by host institution
• Attendance at orientation sessions
• September 23 for Spring
• February 24 for Fall and Academic Year
Check the 'Costs' section under the Application tab.
This semester or academic year program offers undergraduates the opportunity to enroll in a wide range of courses in a variety of disciplines at the University of Edinburgh, one of the finest universities in the United Kingdom in one of Europe's most exciting cultural centers. Students are fully integrated academically and socially with their Scottish peers.
Before you get started, take a quick tour of Edinburgh, learn more about the undergraduate experience at Edinburgh, and participate in an online information session offered by Edinburgh’s Study Abroad office.
Courses are available in a huge variety of disciplines, including the following:
You can find information about the courses offered at Edinburgh, including a course catalogue, course descriptions, number of credits, and more on the Study Abroad Courses and Credits website.
Students must take 40 of the 60 Edinburgh credits they earn each semester through a single college. They can choose the remaining credits from the same college or from another college. This may limit the variety of courses you can enroll in while you study abroad.
The number of credits each course provides is different that the number of UI semester hours you will receive when your transcript from Edinburgh arrives at the University of Iowa.
Foreign universities are typically unable to provide a final course catalog for the upcoming semester until shortly before the semester begins. Students usually do not know which specific classes they can take before arriving abroad, and they usually do not register for classes until they arrive in their host country- this means that there is no way to guarantee that you will be able to enroll in your preferred courses. Your final course schedule may not be finalized until you are already abroad and attending classes.
Because of these differences, all students must meet with their academic advisor before going abroad to discuss how the differences in course availability will affect their degree progress and graduation plans. It is important to develop a back-up plan in case your preferred courses are not available when you arrive at their host university.
As a study abroad student, you are required to undertake the same form of assessment as the local students in order to earn transfer credit at the University of Iowa.
The grading system in the UK is significantly different from the US system. Grades are given as 'marks,' and a score of 60% is typically considered a high mark. UI does not convert British marks into US letter grades. While you WILL receive academic credit for the courses you take in the UK, you will NOT receive a typical A-F grade.
This does not mean that you are taking courses on a Pass/Fail basis . In order to receive credit for the course, you must receive a passing grade in the British system and, in the future, when official transcripts of your college work are requested, you will need to provide both an Iowa transcript and the British academic record – your British grades will be clear and will influence future scholarship application and graduate school admissions decisions.
Edinburgh will send Fall semester transcripts to the University of Iowa by the end of February, and Spring semester/Academic Year transcripts to the University of Iowa by the end of July. Students can expect their grades to be applied to their UI grade reports around 2-3 months after they arrive to the University of Iowa.
Unless UI Study Abroad has an approval on file for the courses you take abroad to be applied toward a specific major, minor, certificate, or general education requirement, you will receive general elective credit for your course.
If you plan to apply the credit you receive for your program course to a major, minor, certificate, or general education requirement, contact your UI study abroad advisor for details on the process.
Program dates vary from year to year, but typically follow the University of Iowa’s academic calendar.
You can find detailed semester dates for the upcoming sessions on the Academic Year Calendar website.
Students should consider these dates tentative until they receive final dates for their session abroad from the host university prior to the start of the program.
Sr. Advisor & Program Coordinator
Study Abroad | International Program
1111 University Capitol Centre
The University of Iowa
Iowa City, IA 52242
The University of Edinburgh is a venerable institution — founded in 1580 — and has forged a special position in academia. Its national and international reputation is excellent, and it has a large, diverse, and multinational student body. Edinburgh is consistently ranked as one of the top 50 universities in the world. Famous alumni include Charles Darwin, David Hume, Joseph Lister, and the writers Robert Louis Stevenson and J.K. Rowling. Courses are available in most disciplines, including Humanities , Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, and Engineering. Internships in the Scottish parliament are available.
The University has approximately 33,000 students, with over 11,000 international students from more than 130 countries.
Striking medieval and Georgian districts, overlooked by the Edinburgh Castle and Arthur's Seat, an extinct volcano, Edinburgh is a handsome European capitol city famous for the arts, its architecture, and fine museums.
The city of Edinburgh is built around its famous castle which sits atop an extinct volcanic plug. The ‘Royal Mile’ is a long street that follows the backbone of the ridge that runs from the castle down to Holyrood Palace, where Queen Elizabeth and other royals stay when they visit. Many of the buildings in this section of the city are very old and stately. North of this area is ‘New Town,' so-named because it was a planned urban area created in the Georgian architectural style. New Town is where the main shopping district of Edinburgh is located. George Square, the center of the University of Edinburgh campus, is located a little south of Edinburgh Castle, below the volcanic plug. It's a 10 minute walk to the Royal Mile from there.
Edinburgh is home to 495,000 inhabitants. The economy is largely based on the service sector – centered around banking, financial services, higher education, and tourism.
Scotland is a member of the United Kingdom, which also includes England, Wales, and Northern Ireland. It features a diverse landscape, friendly people, and a rich history.
The United Kingdom (UK) refers to the four countries of England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. This is in contrast to another common name, Great Britain, which excludes Northern Ireland. Life and culture in the UK is different from that in the US. Experiencing this rich tradition is what studying in the UK is all about!
The US Department of State provides safety and security information for every country of the world to help you assess for yourself the risks of travel. Each country information page contains a Travel Advisory, Alerts, and other important details specific to that country that could affect you.
Pay close attention to the entry and exit requirements, local laws and customs, health conditions, and other details to help decide whether traveling to any given country is right for you. Non-US citizen travelers may also wish to seek guidance from the embassy of their country of citizenship. The UI International Travel Policy for Students addresses restrictions on student travel to high-risk locations and engagement in high-risk activities abroad.
Students live with local British students or international students from around the world. Students work directly with the University of Edinburgh to make their accommodation arrangements, and pay for their accommodation through Edinburgh’s billing system.
Accommodation options include university residence halls (most providing cafeterias and meal plans) or in apartments in the city (self-catering). Learn more about the range of housing options available to you on Edinburgh’s Accommodation page.
Students make their own travel arrangements with advice from UI Study Abroad- UI Study Abroad will not arrange a group flight to your study abroad destination.
Do not purchase plane tickets until:
Students will receive contact information for any other program participants several weeks prior to the start of their program so that they can coordinate travel plans with other students.
If you need advice on making travel arrangements, contact your UI study abroad advisor.
Edinburgh has an excellent public transportation system, though many students navigate the main areas of the city on foot or by bike (when the weather cooperates). Taxis are available throughout the city, but they can be expensive. Edinburgh is also well connected to the rest of the U.K and Europe by bus, train, and a major airport just outside the city.
This program is open to University of Iowa students who fulfill the following requirements:
Students will be responsible for paying many of their program costs through their University of Iowa U-Bill, while other costs will be out-of-pocket costs paid by the student directly to vendors before and after going abroad. Refer to the cost sheets below for details on the costs associated with this program.
The cost sheets outline the total estimated costs associated with participating in this program and can be used for financial aid purposes. They include fees charged on students’ U-Bill as well as out-of-pocket expenses. Actual out-of-pocket expenses will vary from individual to individual. Quoted estimates are conservatively high, yet realistic.
Costs for future sessions are usually similar to the current session, however students can expect a modest increase in overall costs each session. Final cost sheets for future sessions are typically available early in the semester before the session begins.
The following cost sheet applies to the Spring 2020, and Fall 2019 sessions.
A cost sheet for the Spring 2021 session will be available by mid-fall 2020.
A cost sheet for the Fall 2021 session will be available by mid-spring 2021.
The cost sheets are based on the fees described below:
Cost sheets do not include the following optional costs:
Costs for personal travel are not included in the cost estimates provided on the cost sheet. If you plan to travel outside of your host city or country during or after your study abroad program, you will need to budget for additional funds to cover the cost of your personal travel.
The cost of personal travel depends entirely on each student’s individual travel plans and spending habits. Estimates for personal travel costs provided by past students on this program vary significantly from $1,500 to as much as $9,000 or more per session.
If you are accepted to your program, you will be asked to commit to participating in your program by submitting the University of Iowa Confirmation of Participation form, as well as completing requirements for your host university.
After you have formally confirmed your plans to participate, you will work both with UI Study Abroad and your host university. Follow instructions from both. Later in the semester, your UI study abroad advisor will contact you regarding orientation sessions, registration, and other required UI procedures and documentation.
Applications for the Fall 2021 and Academic Year 2021-2022 sessions are due on February 24, 2021.
Applications for the Spring 2022 session are due on September 23, 2021.
Applications for Spring 2022 will be available by early Fall 2021.
After you have received an email from UI Study Abroad indicating that you have been formally accepted to the program, have reviewed the estimated costs, and you are ready to commit to participating in this program, you will need to complete the following steps:
Thoroughly review the following sections of text:
You can find information about options for funding your study abroad experience, including financial aid, scholarships, grants, etc, on UI Study Abroad’s Funding Website.
All program participants are required to complete immigration requirements to enter and study in your host country. UI Study Abroad and your program provider/host institution abroad will provide you with immigration instructions prior to departure.
Note that permission to enter and study in your host country is provided exclusively by the host country’s government based on that country's immigration requirements. Your host country’s immigration requirements may include considerations related to specific national origin, national heritage, criminal background status, and similar issues that can make it impossible to receive permission to enter the country in some cases. Contact your UI study abroad advisor for more information.
It is essential that you thoroughly review all of your immigration materials before you leave for your host country to ensure that they are absolutely complete and accurate. It is entirely your responsibility to ensure that all of your immigration materials are in order and fully accurate before you leave for your host country. If any of your immigration materials contain inaccurate information of any kind, contact your UI study abroad advisor immediately to discuss your options.
Do not take steps to complete your host country’s immigration requirements until you receive more information from UI Study Abroad.
Review the UI Study Abroad Travel Documentation website for further guidance on the immigration/visa process.
In order to prepare for your time abroad, you are required by the University of Iowa to complete two orientations. These may be in addition to orientations provided by your on-site provider. See below for more information.
You are required to complete the International Programs ICON course "Education Abroad Pre-Departure Orientation" prior to departure. This orientation is mandatory for all students going abroad under the auspices of the University of Iowa. It covers many practical matters about living overseas, such as health and safety, communication, money, goals, and much more. You will be enrolled in this course by International Programs and an email will be sent to you once enrolled. If you have any questions, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This orientation will be facilitated by your study abroad advisor and will cover content specific to your program and host country. It could be conducted in a group setting or one-on-one depending on your type of planned activity abroad. Your study abroad advisor will send you more information about this mandatory in-person session.
All students need a valid passport to participate in this program. You can find details about applying for a passport on the UI Study Abroad Travel Documentation website.
UI Study Abroad offers a variety of general predeparture resources. Review the following materials, and feel free to pass them along to your family or other loved ones to help them understand more about your upcoming program.
These materials may be periodically updated to reflect new program information prior to departure- contact your study abroad advisor for more information.
Please note that your program provider and host institution may provide you with additional predeparture materials specific to your study abroad program. Also review those materials, share them with your family, and refer back to them if you have any questions.
1111 University Capitol Centre
The University of Iowa
Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1802
Phone: (319) 335-0353
Fax: (319) 335-0343