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Lancaster University Exchange

Fast Facts

Sessions Offered:

Fall, Spring, Academic Year

Location:

Lancaster, United Kingdom

Credit:

Transfer

Eligibility:

Sophomore, junior, or senior standing, 3.0 GPA

Application Due:

September 27 for Spring 2017

Program Cost:

Check the 'Costs' section under the Application tab.

The reciprocal exchange programs between the University of Iowa and Lancaster University in Lancaster, England, allows undergraduate students to spend a semester or academic year fully integrated with their British peers in student housing and attending regular classes.

Under the reciprocal exchange agreement, University of Iowa students pay their regular UI tuition and fees to participate in this program. Room and board is comparable to Iowa costs in the Mayflower residence hall. Added expenses include airfare, a UI administrative fee, and similar costs as described in the Costs section of our website.

Academic Program

Lancaster offers a wide variety of courses for exchange students. Depending on their level of experience, and length of time they plan to study abroad, students can choose from a huge variety of courses.

Popular areas of study include (among many other things!) Chemistry, Creative Writing, Education, Chemical, Civil, Computer, Electrical, and Mechanical Engineering, Historical Studies, Gender and Women's Studies, Law, Business and Marketing, Linguistics, Physics, and Theatre Studies.

University of Iowa students enroll in classes that are part of the regular curriculum at Lancaster University. This means participating in a system that is significantly different from the U.S. broad-based, liberal arts education, both in terms of calendar and specialization of studies. Students usually take between three and five courses each semester, earning between 12 and 18 semester hours of transfer credit for each semester.

What classes can I take?

Take a look at the course options open to study abroad students by exploring Lancaster University's online Study Abroad Course Handbook.



A Note on Grading

As a study abroad student, you are required to undertake the same form of assessment as the local students do in order to earn transfer credit at the University of Iowa. This means that if you do not take the exam or turn in a required final paper, your British academic record will report a grade of 0 and you will not receive credit for the course.

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 U.S. letter grades. While you WILL receive credit for the courses you take in the UK, you will NOT receive a typical A-F grade.

However, this does not mean that you are taking courses on a Pass/Fail basis. You will earn a final mark in the UK system, and your British academic record will always report these. 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.

Cultural Activities

The Lancaster University Students Union organizes event and excursions throughout the academic year, and is home to many clubs and societies that makes meeting British students easy.

Program Dates

The academic year at Lancaster closely follows the University of Iowa's academic calendar.

Dates for the Fall 2016 session: (Dates are subject to change)

October 1, 2016- Arrival/Program Begins
October 3 - October 8 - Orientation/Course Enrollment period
October 10 - December 16- Fall classes in session
December 16, 2016- Fall session ends

Dates for the Spring 2017 session: (Dates are subject to change)

January 10, 2017 - Arrival/Program Begins
January 10 - January 13 - Orientation/Course Enrollment period
January 16 - March 24- Spring classes in session
March 25 - April 23- Easter Break
April 23- June 30- Spring classes in session
June 30, 2017- Spring session ends

For More Information

Cory Petersen, Advisor and Program Coordinator
Study Abroad | International Programs
1111 University Capitol Centre
Iowa City, IA 52242-1802

Phone: 319-335-0353
Fax: 319-335-0343
E-mail: cory-petersen@uiowa.edu

Lancaster University

Founded in 1961, Lancaster University’s academic focus areas include natural sciences, business, humanities, social sciences, and technology. It currently enrolls over 12,000 students, and is situated on a beautiful 360 acre parkland site just three miles from the city center. Lancaster is one of only a handful of UK universities to have a 'collegiate' system for housing and social support... a bit like Hogwarts!

Lancaster University is located on the periphery of the city, and is surrounded by farms and the countryside. It is a short 15 minute bus ride into the city center. There is also a biking path to the city that many students use.

Lancaster

Lancaster, a city of 130,000 people, is located in northwest England, three miles from the ocean and short bus ride from the idyllic scenery and market towns of the Lake District. The annual Lancaster Jazz Festival, Lancaster Castle, Priory Church of St. Mary, along with dozens of theatres, music venues, museums, and the city’s unique architecture give Lancaster the feeling of a small but thriving modern city with plenty of living connections to England’s rich history. A quick train ride to Manchester, a city of over 500,000, offers even more things to do in the area.

Lancaster’s city center is small enough to explore on foot and there are regular bus services linking it with the campus. It is on a major north-south rail line making travel to other parts of English and Scotland convenient.

United Kingdom

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. The UK Exchange program offers exchange with universities in England and Scotland. Life and culture in the UK is different from that in the US. Experiencing this rich tradition is what the UK Exchanges are all about!

Some quick general facts about the UK:

• The UK uses the British Pound as its currency.

• Communication from the UK is easy. Cell phones are relatively inexpensive, the internet is easily accessible, and post offices are plentiful.

• British food is unique! Try fish and chips, bangers 'n mash, steak pie, Indian curry,'neeps and tatties, haggis and more!

• The UK is a relatively safe environment. Police are helpful and visible. Emergency services are reliable. Pharmacies, called 'Chemists', are common and carry a wide variety of medicine and other essentials.

• The UK has a temperate climate, influenced by the ocean that surrounds it. It is never too hot in the summer nor too cold in the winter. Rain is common most of the year. Make sure to take plenty of warm clothes and waterproof shoes.

Living Arrangements

Lancaster University offers accommodation in student housing. Housing at Lancaster is organized by 'colleges', which are social units, not related to academics (think Hogwarts!). Each college is unique and there is healthy competition among them. Each college usually has its own dining hall and pub, and social events are frequent. This type of living arrangement helps a study abroad student integrate quickly and makes the transition to a new university easier.

You can find more information about the housing options at Lancaster on the university's Accomodation page.

Student housing in the UK tends to resemble the style of Mayflower Residence hall, with 4-6 students sharing a 'flat' with common kitchen and bathroom facilities and individual rooms, however variations to this style do occur. Meals can be cooked in the flat, or purchased at cafeterias.

Travel Arrangements

Students will make their own travel arrangement with support from the Study Abroad office and the International Student office at Lancaster.

Local Transportation

Lancaster features a good city bus system with frequent trips between the campus and the city center. There is also a bicycle path available.

In general, travel within the United Kingdom is very well organized. Busses, and taxis (and subway systems in larger cities) make getting around town quick and easy. Trains and busses also interconnect every city in Britain, making inter-city travel easy, fairly cheap and as quick as possible. You are never far from interesting places such as London or Ireland. Ferries and bargain airlines also allow you to reach many destinations in mainland Europe very inexpensively.

Eligibility

The Lancaster University Exchange program is open to students of all majors who fulfill the following requirements:

  • Clear interest and commitment- Students must demonstrate a clear academic or personal interest in the program’s subject matter, and a commitment to engage responsibly in coursework abroad.
  • Preparedness and Maturity- Students must demonstrate preparedness to take on the heightened responsibilities associated with international study and travel. Students must demonstrate a commitment to behave responsibility abroad while respecting cultural differences. Students are expected to obey both local laws and program directives conveyed to participants before and during the program. The University of Iowa Code of Student Life applies to aall program participants while abroad.
  • Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA- Students must have at minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA to participate in this program. This requirement can be flexible in some cases. Please contact your study abroad advisor if you are interested in this program but do not currently have a 3.0 GPA.
  • Good academic and disciplinary standing- Students must be in good academic and disciplinary standing at the University of Iowa. Students placed on either academic or disciplinary probation for any period of time overlapping with the study abroad program dates are ineligible to study abroad on a University of Iowa program. Academic and disciplinary history will also be considered when determining whether a student is prepared to represent the University of Iowa as part of this program.
  • Sophomore, junior, or senior standing required- Students must have sophomore, junior, or senior standing at the time the program begins. First year students cannot participate in this program.
  • Acceptance by host institution- Students must be accepted by their host institution as a temporary visiting student. Acceptance by the host institution is typically automatic for students that have been nominated by their study abroad advisor, but the final acceptance decision is made by the international student office and the sponsoring departments at the host institution based on their own internal requirements.
  • No language requirement- Students do not need to have any foreign language background, as courses on this program are taught in English.

Application Deadline

Applications are due on September 27 for the Spring 2017 session.

Costs

University of Iowa students pay their regular University of Iowa tuition and mandatory student fees, and then study at our partner university without further tuition payment.

International student orientation, and some cultural activities are provided by the host organization at no additional cost to University of Iowa students.

Students are responsible for paying for all of the following items in addition to their normal University of Iowa tuition and fees:

  • Study Abroad Administrative Fee ($400)
  • Application fee ($50)
  • Round trip airfare (approximately $1600 from Cedar Rapids)
  • Housing (approx. $2,600 per semester, but is variable depending on the specific housing arrangements)
  • Food (approximately $2,100 per semester)
  • Passport (approx. $135)
  • Textbooks (approx. $400 per semester)
  • Local transportation ($300+ per semester)
  • Medical Exam/Immunizations (approx. $50)
  • CISI health insurance (approx. $150 per semester)
  • Visa fees (approx. $180 for the semester, or $525 for the academic year)
  • UK Police Registration Fee ($55)
  • Immigration Health Surcharge ($100 for the semester, or $250 for the academic year)
  • Personal expenses ($3,000+ per semester)

Study Abroad Administrative Fees

University of Iowa study abroad administrative fees are included for all participants. They are based on tuition set by the Iowa Board of Regents. Please check the Costs of Study Abroad page for more information on these administrative fees.

Program cost sheet

A cost sheet detailing all estimated costs for the Spring 2017 session will be posted here during late fall 2016.

The cost sheet captures the best possible estimate for all costs a participant on this program will be responsible for, including fees paid to UI as well as out-of-pocket costs and personal expenses, although actual spending amounts may vary. This information will be provided to the Office of Student Financial Aid to help determine your eligibility for aid for this program.

How to Apply

Interested students should make an appointment with Cory Petersen, the program coordinator for the Lancaster University exchange, to determine whether this program is a good fit, and discuss the application process.

The application process consists of three steps:

  • Step One - Students must request nomination to Lancaster University by submitting an online application to UI Study Abroad. Your study abroad advisor will send you this application by email.
  • Step Two - The UI Study Abroad application is reviewed and, if the student meets the requirements for the program, the study abroad advisor nominates them to study at Lancaster.
  • Step Three - Once nominated, the student completes the visiting student application for Lancaster University. This application is reviewed by Lancaster where the final acceptance decision is made.

Applicants are notified of their official acceptance status by Lancaster University by late October/early November for the Spring session, and by late March/early April for the following Fall/Academic Year.

Please call the Study Abroad office (1111 University Capitol Centre) at 319-335-0353 to set up an appointment, or email Cory with any questions at cory-petersen@uiowa.edu.


Withdrawal Policy

Notice of withdrawal must be made in writing to the Study Abroad office at the University of Iowa. The date on which the letter or e-mail message is received is the date by which your costs will be calculated. If for any reason you withdraw after the confirmation deadline and before or during the course of the program, the amount shown in the following chart represents what you will be required to pay to the University of Iowa (amounts based on Spring 2016 fees- fees may be adjusted for future sessions).

Date of Withdrawal Student Financial Responsibility
Between confirmation and 45 days before program start date $500
Between 44 and 30 days before the program start date $1,000
Between 29 and 15 days before the program start date $2,000
Less than 14 days before the program start date 1) 100% of Study Abroad Course Fees ($400), 100% of UI Tuition and Fees

Financial Aid & Scholarships

In general, financial aid (scholarships, grants, and loans) received to attend the University of Iowa may be applied toward the cost of studying abroad as long as the student is making satisfactory progress toward his/her degree. In most cases the Office of Student Financial Aid can adjust financial aid to cover additional costs incurred by study abroad. Moreover, students are encouraged to apply for scholarships based on need, merit and/or diversity that are awarded by Study Abroad. Complete information is available on the Funding Your Study Abroad Experience page.

Before applying for any scholarship, please take a look at the Suggestions for Scholarship Applications page.

The Study Abroad office offers several scholarships and grants. Take a look at the following links for Semester or Academic Year scholarships offered through our office:

1- Need-Based grants (For students in good academic standing, and who current year FAFSA has been processed by UI Office of Student Financial Aid)

2- International Student Study Abroad Scholarship (See web page for details)

3- Diversity Ambassador Scholarship (see web page for details)

4- Iowa Abroad Scholarship(For students who began studying at the University of Iowa in Fall 2015 or later- see web page for details)


Other UI-affiliated awards

5- Stanley Undergraduate Awards for International Research (see web page for details)

6- Bijou Horizons - FilmScene (see web page for details)


Awards from organizations outside of the University of Iowa

(Note that when searching for financial aid from organizations outside of the University of Iowa, it's always best to be safe. Be sure to take a look at these tips to avoid scams before you apply!)

7- External Awards

8- NAFSA’s US Study Abroad Scholarships and Grants List

9- IIE Passport's Study Abroad Funding page

10- US Department of Labor's scholarship page

11- Fastweb.com

12- Or try a Google search for 'study abroad scholarships'!


Finally, if you’re having trouble writing scholarship essays, you may want to contact the UI Writing Center for a helping hand!


If you have any questions about funding for this program, please contact Cory Petersen at cory-petersen@uiowa.edu or call the Study Abroad office at 319-335-0353 for an appointment.

Acceptance and Confirmation Materials

Acceptance materials for the Spring 2017 session will be added here by early October, 2016.

Vaccinations and Health/Safety

We will address many issues related to health and safety during the orientation sessions, but until then our general advice is that before you go abroad it is best to check with your doctor about any health concerns you have. Take a look at the Centers for Disease Control web site for UK-specific health information and visit either your doctor or the Travel Clinic at UI Student Health & Wellness for any vaccinations you might need.

Safety, too, is vital to your study abroad experience. While the UK is generally a very safe place, unfortunately safety cannot be guaranteed anywhere. Take a look at the Health and Safety section of the Study Abroad website for some tips on staying safe abroad.

OCAS - UK: Information from the U.S. Department of State on safety and security abroad. Anyone can subscribe for the free OSAC newsletter to receive international safety news and updates via email.

Passport

US Citizens

If you do not have a passport, please apply for one soon to ensure you receive it before the program begins. Students who are U.S. citizens can find more information about how to apply for or renew a passport on the U.S. Department of State’s web site.

Important notice for students without a valid passport, or whose passport will expire within the next 12 months:

Those without valid passports should apply for a new passport or a passport renewal as early as possible.

Those with valid passports should check the expiration date. Passports must be valid for at least 6 months AFTER the anticipated return to the U.S. from studying abroad. If your passport is not valid through this time then you will need to renew your passport before applying the visa you will need to enter the UK.

Expedited processing service is available for U.S. passports (although this still takes several weeks and is at an additional cost). Study Abroad encourages students to ask the passport agency at the time of application whether expedited service is recommended.

Non-US Citizens

Students who are not U.S. citizens should contact Cory Petersen cory-petersen@uiowa.edu for information on how to ensure that their passport is valid for the duration of their time abroad.

Visa

Program participants are required to have a visa to enter the UK. Please contact your study abroad advisor for more information about acquiring the visa you need to enter the country.

Please note that visas are issued by the British government based on that country's immigration requirements. Currently, the UK’s immigration requirements include considerations related to specific national origin, national heritage, criminal background status, and similar issues that can make it impossible to acquire a visa prior to the start of the program in some cases. Please contact Cory Petersen at cory-petersen@uiowa.edu for more information.

Financial Aid & Scholarships

You can find more information about funding options by clicking on the Application tab above and scrolling to the Financial Aid & Scholarships section toward the bottom of the page.

If you have any questions about funding for this program, please contact Cory Petersen at cory-petersen@uiowa.edu or call the Study Abroad office at 319-335-0353 for an appointment (Monday - Friday, 8:00am - 5:00pm).

Applying credit toward a UI degree

Unless Study Abroad has an approval on file before your departure 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 are hoping to apply the credit you receive for your program course to a major, minor, certificate, or general education requirement, please contact Cory Petersen at cory-petersen@uiowa.edu for details on the process. 

Health Insurance and Continuation of Care

As part of the this program, you will be enrolled in health insurance through Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI).  For more information about CISI, please visit our Health Insurance Information page.

If you have any current health issues that you might want to receive treatment for while you’re abroad, CISI can help refer you to doctors and develop a continuation of care plan.  If you would like to make arrangements for care while you’re abroad, please contact CISI using the contact information on the site above, or contact Cory Petersen at cory-petersen@uiowa.edu.

Flights

Students will need to make their own travel arrangements to get to their program site- Study Abroad will not be arranging a group flight to your study abroad destination.

Do not purchase plane tickets until

  • 1) You have received an official offer of acceptance by your host university.
  • 2) You have finalized your housing arrangements abroad.
  • 3) You are aware of the semester start date and move-in date for your accommodations.

Students will receive contact information for any other program participants about six weeks prior to the start of their program so that they can coordinate travel plans.

If you need advice on making travel arrangements, please contact Cory Petersen at cory-petersen@uiowa.edu.

Orientation

In-person orientation sessions will be scheduled late in the semester prior to the start of your program in the UK, usually in mid-November for the spring semester, and late-April for the Fall semester. Your study abroad advisor will be in touch with you about the specific dates shortly after you have been accepted into the program.

Registration

You will need to register for this program on MyUI prior to your departure for the UK. You will receive more information on the registration process from your Study Abroad advisor.

Information about England, the city of Lancaster, and Lancaster University