How to apply               

Your College / School

Participating in the Programme

The procedure for participating in the Erasmus Programme varies slightly from one College or School to another.

  • In the College of Arts, Social Sciences & Celtic Studies, most students who go abroad on Erasmus do so after completing their second year, transferring from the standard three-year B.A. degree programme to a separate four year "B.A. International" degree. After spending their Erasmus year abroad, they return to complete their fourth and final year in NUI Galway. However, the study abroad option is also open to non-language students, because some of our partner universities offer courses through the medium of English. The number of such study places is limited, though. This opportunity is normally advertised in February, and a competitive selection process applies. The non-language students who are to be nominated must have approval from the College of Arts, Social Sciences & Celtic Studies and from each of the NUI Galway academic departments in which they are studying. 
  • In the School of Business & Economics, most students who go abroad are on the four-year degree programme "B.Comm. International". After successfully completing second year here, each student on this programme spends the next academic year at one of our partner universities in the country whose language s/he is studying. Students then return to complete their fourth year in NUI Galway.
  • The School of Law also offers students the opportunity to study abroad. Places are available to both undergraduate and postgraduate students. Students can study abroad for the full academic year or for one semester, depending on the university involved and the individual student’s study programme.
  • In the College of Science and the College of Engineering & Informatics, a number of departments offer places abroad. Please refer to the individual College entries under "Erasmus links" and consult the staff members involved. Science students who wish to study in Europe must also have approval from the Faculty of Science.
  • In the College of Medicine, Nursing & Health Sciences, students who study abroad do so for a period of 3-4 months.

To take part in Erasmus, you have to be a registered NUI Galway student, in the appropriate year, and be selected by your department coordinator for one of the places that are available in your subject. You can find the name of the departmental coordinator for each exchange by clicking "Contact Erasmus Coordinators" on the side navigation of this page. Our Erasmus Programme is extensive, but please note that in this programme we exchange students only with the universities listed on this site and in the subjects listed.

Home University = National University of Ireland, Galway
Host University = The university where you study while abroad

Making an Application to Study Abroad

How to apply

If you are interested in investigating the possibilities under the Erasmus programme, look at the list of places available under the subject(s) that you are currently studying. Then contact the relevant departmental coordinator to get further details and to find out about the application procedure. The departmental coordinator will help you to determine if the university you are interested in is suited to your own studies. There is often competition for places and the coordinator's decision on applications is always final. Students normally study abroad for one of the following periods: one full academic year, semester 1, semester 2 or three/four months.

Depending on your current degree programme, only one of the above durations may suit you. Again the departmental coordinator can advise you. 

Once you have been allocated a place, you will need to:

  • complete an Erasmus Grant Application form for NUI Galway (see below);
  • have this form signed by your NUI Galway academic coordinator and return it to the International Affairs Office by the deadline;
  • follow the necessary application procedure for the host university (your academic coordinator will advise);
  • complete a Learning Agreement;
  • take an online language test if you will be studying through French, German, Italian or Spanish;
  • complete the Erasmus grant agreement in duplicate, return a copy to the International Office and keep a copy for yourself (before you leave to go on Erasmus, the International Office will send you this and other documents in an information package); 

You will find the Erasmus Grant Application Form on our Latest News page - just click on the relevant year. Please observe the deadline, as it is a strict one and late applications cannot be considered under any circumstances. We would prefer you to complete the form by typing your answers. If you are unable to do this, please use very clear handwriting. Please keep the form on one page and present it to your coordinator for signature; it should then be handed in to the International Affairs Office at 7 Distillery Road by 5pm on the day of the deadline.

It should be understood that, while every effort will be made to facilitate as many students as possible in terms of Erasmus grant funding, there is no guarantee that funding will be available to award grants to all students nominated to take part in Erasmus by their academic department or by the International Office. In a case where the number of nominated students exceeds the number of grants available, students will have the option of participating in the programme on an zero-grant basis. This would mean that a student enjoys all the benefits of the Erasmus programme as regards paying no tuition fees to the host university, having their study period offically recognised, etc, but without the mobility grant.

Plan ahead, talk things through with your departmental coordinator and ask him/her to put you in touch with former Erasmus students and with students from partner universities who are currently studying here in NUI Galway. Former Erasmus students can sometimes give the best practical advice in relation to host universities. Be prepared to do a little research and it will pay off. Ask your departmental coordinator if s/he has any reports completed by former Erasmus students while they were abroad.

Benefits of Participating

A period of study abroad can be a very rewarding experience and of immense value for an individual's personal and academic development. You will learn how to adapt to the culture of a foreign country, improve your language skills and benefit from the different approaches taken to your subjects in another educational system.

"I felt that my year abroad opened my eyes to different cultures and ways of life other than those found in Ireland."

The first few weeks are generally regarded as being the hardest. Things may seem strange and confusing at first, but by the end of your stay you will have gained a great deal of experience and self-confidence.

"I had the chance to immerse myself within a foreign language to the point where it becomes totally natural to speak in this other language."

"It is my first time away from home and the experience has made me more independent."

You will also have widened your knowledge of your particular subjects and perhaps experienced different teaching methods. Sometimes lectures last from 3 to 4 hours, very different from the Irish system.

"It was interesting to see academic procedures and exam systems in a different country and the various methods of teaching."

"I enjoyed experiencing a different education system."

Proof of your ability to live and work in a foreign environment can also be a valuable asset for graduate work and future employment.