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Going on exchange at Master's level

During their Master’s degree at Sciences Po, students have a unique opportunity to enrich their academic and professional pathway by going on exchange. There are two main options: a compulsory off-campus semester or an optional gap year. During either of these, students can choose to spend a semester studying at one of our partner universities.

Section #plan

Plan your study abroad

To help plan your study abroad, you can make an appointment with your academic advisor

Only students who are enrolled in the first year of a Master’s programme or in a gap year can apply to go on exchange during the following year. Each student must receive written approval from their Master’s academic advisor before applying. 

When allocating study abroad placements, Sciences Po gives priority to undergraduate students preparing to go on exchange in their third year. However a certain number of exchange places are reserved for Master’s students. 

Students going on exchange to a partner university as part of a gap year are considered to be regular Sciences Po students, and must pay their tuition fees in full. 

Section #choice

Choose a country and University

Section #submit

Submit your application

Applications must be completed and submitted via Sciences Po’s online selection platform for outgoing exchanges between 3 and 7 February 2025 at 4pm (Paris time)Consult the Outgoing user manual (FR) (PDF, 426.81 KB).

You can select up to three choices of university.

Documents to include with your application:

  • Approval from your Master’s coordinator
  • A CV
  • A cover letter
  • Academic transcripts for the three years of study following your Baccalauréat or equivalent final-year examination
  • Any language tests required by the universities you are applying for
Section #langues

Pass a language test, if applicable

Make sure to check the language requirements for each university that interests you. You may need to provide language tests. It’s important to plan ahead as it may take several weeks to sit the test and receive the results.

If you need to take an English language test, please contact the Sciences Po Language Centre for more information. 

Please note that most universities require English tests taken within the last two years (24 months).

Section #placement

Receive a placement offer

Placement offers are determined by a number of criteria: academic and/or language results, an assessment of your study plans, and your personal background. These criteria are factored into an overall evaluation aimed at enabling each student to study abroad in a way that is consistent with their personal goals, and ensuring maximum overall student satisfaction.

You will be personally informed of your placement during March 2025.

Section #documents

Gather the documents requested by your host university

Once you have been informed of your placement, you need to gather the documents requested by your host university. These can vary from one university to another, and you will receive further details on these requirements at the appropriate time from the International Affairs Department. Please note that you will need the final acceptance letter from your host university to apply for a visa, if one is needed.  We strongly advise you to wait for confirmation from the partner university before incurring any costs (for your visa, plane tickets, etc.)

Section #prepare

Prepare for your exchange

Regional information sessions will be organised by the International Affairs Department and open to all students from the month of March 2024

If this affects you, please read the advice for students leaving on exchange, as well as the recordings and presentations from each of the preparation sessions for the region where you will study. 

Find out more about funding options for your exchange abroad.

Section #validation

Get your exchange approved

Your Sciences Po Master’s degree will only be awarded if your international exchange is approved as an off-campus semester.  To be approved, you will need to obtain 30 ECTS credits during the semester. 

Please note that the equivalent of 30 ECTS credits can vary from one country to another (or even from one university to another, in the case of the United States). It is your responsibility to contact your host university for more information before registering for your courses. You can seek advice if necessary from the relevant regional manager within the International Affairs Department.

You can also contact your academic advisor for more information on how to get your semester abroad approved as an off-campus semester at Master’s level.

Section #contact

Stay in touch with Sciences Po

  • When you arrive in your host country, and throughout the year, stay in touch with Sciences Po especially via our social media (LinkedInXFacebook and Instagram). 
  • Inform the International Affairs Department once you have arrived, and update your contact details (new address and contact telephone number while on exchange) via your Sciences Po student account.
  • Check your @sciencespo.fr emails regularly, as you’ll be sent information throughout the year (academic requirements, and other info).
  • If needed, you can directly contact the relevant regional or country director in the International Affairs Department for specific support.