Your options to go abroad

Going to one country for the whole of your third year (SH in French, German or Spanish, or JH with a non-language subject)?

Going to two countries in your third year (studying two languages, or Major/Major/Minor 3-language)?

Going to three countries, for the second semester of your second year and then the whole of your third year (Major/Major/Major 3-language)?

  • University placements in all three. If at all possible you should study the languages of the other two countries while in each placement.


Assistantships are paid placements in foreign schools, assisting with the teaching of English. Applications are made through your Year Abroad Coordinator (usually in November-early December), and are administered by the British Council Language Assistants programme.

If you want to apply, you must get in touch with your Year Abroad Coordinator well in advance. Your Year Abroad Coordinator will set an internal deadline before the official and final one, to make sure that your application meets the standards expected by the British Council.

University Placements

University placements are arranged by BU with partner universities under the Erasmus scheme. These European university exchanges run with the support of the Commission of the European Communities within the framework of the Lifelong Learning Programme Erasmus Programme. There are set numbers of students for each exchange. The links below to our Erasmus partners will open their sites in separate windows.







Switzerland (Erasmus shadow scheme)

Work Placements

The remaining option is to find paid work other than as an assistant. This is much less common than assistantships or study in university, and is generally only encouraged or approved where it forms an academically respectable part of a student’s development; for instance we have had students following joint courses with Banking who have been placed in banks in other countries for the year. We do not normally approve placements as an au pair.

If you have connections which you believe may lead to a reliable offer of an acceptable placement, talk to your Year Abroad Tutor at an early stage. We will need to see, in writing, a job description and a concrete offer of a placement.