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University of Strathclyde Exchange

Fast Facts

Sessions Offered:

Fall, Spring, Academic Year


Glasgow, United Kingdom




Junior or senior standing, 3.0 GPA

Application Due:

3/20 for fall/academic year

Program Cost:

Click the Application tab.

Reciprocal exchange programs between the University of Iowa and Strathclyde University in Glasgow, Scotland, UK 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.

"I would say a word of advice is: Always be open minded; this is a life changing experience and before you know it, you'll find a whole new side of yourself you didn't know existed. You'll not only know how to properly read a map, or navigate your way through a foreign country, but you'll have found lifetime friends from all over the world."

--Katie Neppel, former participant, Strathclyde Exchange

Academic Program

Strathclyde University was founded in 1796 as a place of 'useful learning', and soon became Scotland's leading technological institution. Major 'departments' at Strathclyde are referred to 'Faculties'. The Faculty of Engineering is very strong, as is the Strathclyde Business School. That said the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences also offers a broad range of classes, making Strathclyde a good destination for almost any student.

University of Iowa students enroll in classes that are part of the regular curriculum at the University of Strathclyde. 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.

Upper-level course work in the sciences is often organized in concentrated 10 week classes which limits students to an all-science curriculum. Traditionally, most classes in the British system are year-long. Recent 'modularization' has resulted in splitting these into half-year classes, each assessed independently, allowing choices closer to our semester system.

Take a look at the following links for information about course options available to study abroad students.

For information about business courses, take a look at the Strathclyde Business School's website.

For information about available classes in Humanities and Social Sciences, take a a look at the website for Faculty of Humanities and Social Science.

For all other courses, browse the Class Catalogue.

A Note on Grading

Despite the fact that you are on exchange, you are required to undertake the same form of assessment as the local British students do in order to earn transfer credit at 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.

The British grading system 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. A-F 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 terms of their 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 results will be highly visible.

Cultural Activities

Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and has a bustling arts and entertainment scene. On campus, the University of Strathclyde Students Association is home to clubs & societies, a sports union, musical ensembles, and volunteer organizations.

Program Dates

The academic year begins in mid-September and runs through early June, with a short winter break and another two-week break during the Easter holiday period.

Dates for the Spring 2015 session will be available during the Fall 2014.

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

The University of Strathclyde

Strathclyde was founded over 210 years ago by a visionary professor who wanted to provide education to the working men and women of Glasgow, dubbing the University of Strathclyde 'a place of useful learning'. Although it began as a technical institution, and still boasts an excellent College of Engineering, business and the humanities are also strong at Strathclyde. The main campus is located in the city center of Glasgow, making it a truly urban educational experience.


The greater metropolitan area of Glasgow has about 2.85 million inhabitants, and is home to a vibrant arts scene, cutting-edge music, legendary nightlife, numerous green spaces and parks, an exciting collection of places to eat out, and much more. Glasgow has an international airport and it is possible to fly direct from the U.S. Access to the Scottish Highlands is good -- only about an hour away. It is also possible to visit the western islands and really get away from the world.

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

The University of Strathclyde offers accommodation in student housing. 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 single-person rooms, however variations to this style are available. Meal structure varies according to each student's preference and residence.

Travel Arrangements

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

Local Transportation

Glasgow has a good public transportation system. Buses, trains, and taxis are easily accessible, and the campus, and much of the city, is pedestrian friendly.

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.

We are no longer accepting applications for the Fall 2014 session or the Academic Year 2014-2015.


UI students should be in junior or senior standing and have a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0 (4.0 scale). Students should have a declared major and have a good understanding of requirements in their major.


The principle of reciprocal exchange is simple: students pay regular tuition and fees to their home university, and then trade places with a student overseas. All reciprocal exchanges in the UK operate on this principle. University of Iowa students pay their regular UI tuition and mandatory student fees, plus a $400 study abroad administrative fee, and then study at our partner university without further tuition payment.

Additional costs include round trip airfare (approximately $1500 from Cedar Rapids), passport (approx. $135), housing (approx. $2600), food (approx. $2100), textbooks (approx. $250), local transportation ($300+), immunizations (variable), CISI health insurance (approx. $120) or any personal expenses ($2500+). Students staying for longer than 6 months will also be responsible for visa fees totaling around $400.

Program cost sheet

A cost sheet detailing all estimated costs for the Spring 2015 session will be posted here during Fall 2014.

How to Apply

Preliminary application forms are due early in the semester prior to studying abroad. Applications are then sent to the host university for review, where final acceptance decisions are made. Applicants are notified of their acceptance status by the host university by November for the spring session, and by late March or early April for the following fall/academic year.

Students should make an appointment with Cory Petersen, the program coordinator for the University of Strathclyde exchange program, to obtain application materials.

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

Application Deadline

We are no longer accepting applications for the Fall 2014 session or the Academic Year 2014-2015.