(The following information has been sourced from the British Council website).
Students take part in the Erasmus+ programme for many different reasons, for some it is a required part of their degree, for others it's an ideal opportunity to live in another city in Europe for a few exciting months. We have put together some of the main reasons that employers and students tell us are the key benefits of taking part.
Stand out in the job market
The job market nowadays is an international one, so when you graduate, not only will you be competing with UK graduates, but also with highly qualified graduates from other countries. In this multi-cultural, multi-lingual European job market, the ability to communicate in another language is highly desirable; and demonstrating that you have lived, studied and worked in another environment enables you to compete more effectively. Developing self-assurance and independence are the keys to a successful career. As less than five per cent of the student population participates in Erasmus+ - you’ll stand out and employers will notice you.
According to the Higher Education Funding Council for England's report "Attainment in higher education of Erasmus+ and placement students", Erasmus+ students get better degrees and earn higher salaries.
There is considerable current interest in the employability of graduates with language skills. Executive recruiters see competence in at least one other language in addition to English as critical for business success in Europe, Asia and Latin America. Staff who can speak more than one language will have significant competitive advantage. Staff with language skills are seen by businesses as being more flexible and adaptable, more likely to appreciate the need for intercultural communication skills and more able to build relationships with counterparts or clients in other countries.
The CBI’s 'Education and skills survey 2010’ revealed that staff who can communicate at least conversationally in another language – particularly where this is coupled with an understanding of overseas business culture – can be a great asset to employers. In this survey of almost 700 businesses, most employers (65%) are looking for conversational ability – rather than fluency – to help break the ice with customers or suppliers. Businesses looking for language skills are still seeking traditional European languages such as French (49%) and German (34%). Spanish is sought after by a third (32%) of employers looking to develop trade links not just with Spain but importantly the emerging markets of South America.
The Erasmus+ experience will enhance your personal development, your job opportunities, your confidence, and your enjoyment of life. Erasmus+ students are not tourists - you'll live and participate in the day to day life of the country you choose.
Living and studying in a new country is a challenge – you will find yourself facing new and unexpected situations. Overcoming these obstacles and learning to manage your life within another culture brings maturity, confidence and self-reliance – great life skills.
Unlike other programmes or gap years, an Erasmus+ period is an integral part of your course. Students receive formal academic recognition for their study/work period abroad and are sometimes awarded a second qualification in recognition of their Erasmus+ study; On our website you can read more about initiatives, such as the
European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) and
Europass, which have been designed to facilitate the recognition of periods of study abroad.
“Employers are increasingly looking for graduates who have a breadth of experience, particularly if that includes an international dimension. The transferable skills and competencies that students gain through the Erasmus+ programme can bring graduates the added value that employers are looking for. Plus it also happened to be the most fun year I had at university!
It helped me develop some of the key skills that employers are looking for, and it provided me with a lot of interesting anecdotes to bring up during applications and interviews in support of my competencies. Ultimately, Erasmus+ helped me win my PhD scholarship and land a job with Deloitte.”
A Different Outlook
The Erasmus+ programme offers you the chance to study your subject in different contexts, with different teachers and different class mates. You’ll be surprised by the different approach and the insights that students from other countries can bring. It also gives you the opportunity to study different subjects and options that might not be available to you in the UK. It’s both challenging and highly rewarding.
UK Erasmus+ students receive an Erasmus+ grant which contributes towards the extra costs arising from studying abroad. Erasmus+ grants in the UK are paid through the UK home institution and are paid in addition to the standard grants or loans to which you are currently entitled. This is a supplementary, non-repayable grant which is not means-tested, although students must conform to the eligibility criteria.
You do not pay any tuition fees to the university you are visiting and if you go for a full academic year you only pay Erasmus+ placement UK tuition fees for that year. However, if you study abroad for less than a year, you will have to pay the UK tuition fees, where applicable.
Not only will you acquire a broader range of skills to offer a future employer, but you’ll have fun doing it. Erasmus+ students say it is the best part of their time at university, with amazing opportunities to travel, make friends from around the world and try out new hobbies and experiences.
Studying, living or working in another European country breaks down barriers between people and enables interaction with different cultures, in a way no classroom can. It allows us to find the common ground that binds us all together and the distinctions that make each of our cultures and us, unique. Undoubtedly it is a great opportunity to explore new countries and cultures, make new friends and learn another language. Mobility also broadens our horizons in many other ways, it triggers independent thought, improves our ability to deal with difference and makes us question the established ways of seeing and doing things.
By taking that brave step into the unknown, we open ourselves up to new opportunities and endless possibilities. So, discover a different culture, make new friends from all over Europe and beyond, learn a foreign language and do something that will look great on your CV.
Experience Erasmus+ for yourself.
Countries to Visit
How to Apply
If you are interested in Erasmus+ the Student Application Form must be completed and signed by your Programme Director before your application is considered.
The approval form is to be e-mailed to
firstname.lastname@example.org or posted to Miss Rowena Kidger, International and Partnerships Office, Western Avenue, Llandaff, Cardiff, CF5 2YB. Once received by the Erasmus Officer you will need to book an appointment to discuss host university choice and to start the process.
Before returning the form it would be helpful to have a country of interest in mind. It is the role of the Erasmus Officer to complete all of the administration for your exchange, including negotiating a placement and emailing the host university.