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Student exchange programmes

An outstanding student experience

UC is a world leading university offering education and research in all study levels and in nearly all study fields. The majority of the education and research activities take place within the framework of a large network of contacts and partnerships with higher education institutions from all over the world, from Europe to Africa, North and South America, Asia, Middle East and Australia.

A Portuguese pioneer institution in developing international student exchange programmes, UC has been part of the Erasmus programme since its beginning in 1987 and its student body includes nationals from 90 different countries, creating a cosmopolitan atmosphere both on campus and around the city.

With more than 1000 Erasmus institutional agreements with several European universities and about 200 bilateral agreements with higher education institutions from other countries, UC receives around 2000 exchange students every year. It holds the StudyPortals Award for Outstanding International Student Satisfaction with a score of at least 9.5 out of 10. This result is based on thousands of student reviews submitted on - the world’s largest database of international student experiences.

How to do an exchange period of studies at UC

Higher education students, who are already enrolled in a foreign university, can spend a semester or an academic year at the University of Coimbra, within the framework of student exchange programmes or as free mover students, to follow traineeships or course units, of all study levels, within a wide variety of degree programmes and subject areas (sciences and technology, law, social sciences, arts and humanities, sport sciences, education sciences, psychology, medical and pharmaceutical sciences, etc.).

These programmes can be organised as part of cooperation agreements celebrated between the students' home university and the University of Coimbra. These agreements shall always be celebrated before the start of exchange programme.

If your university does not have an agreement with the University of Coimbra, the President of your university or the head of your school can propose the celebration of a cooperation agreement to the International Relations Unit of the University of Coimbra via email to

Usually, under these programmes, a fee waiver policy is applied.

Free mover students

Students coming from a non-partner institution can apply for an exchange period of studies at the University of Coimbra as free mover students. Applicable fees vary according to the course units selected by the applicant.

Language requirements

Since the majority of course units are conducted in Portuguese, Erasmus students are strongly advised to take the OLS preparation course available online (access is provided by the home institution). Non-Portuguese speakers can also take the “Portuguese Language Erasmus” semester course, as long as they include it in their Learning Agreement when applying for mobility. They can also attend the Intensive Language Preparation Course at the beginning of each semester, in September and February (enrolment subject to fees).

A number of course units is also offered in English and, in most cases, exchange students can make arrangements with lecturers in order to be allowed to do examinations or submit assignments in English (or other language, if both parts know it).

Modern Language studies are usually half taught in Portuguese, English, French, German, Dutch, Spanish and Italian.



  • Academic year/ 1st semester: March to July
  • 2nd semester: September to December

Application procedure

Students within the framework of the Erasmus or other Mobility Programmes have to apply online at:

All students are advised to read carefully the application guide before starting the online application.

Further information

Detailed information about what you have to do before, during and after your mobility is available at

Going abroad

Once enrolled at the University of Coimbra, full degree students will be able to participate in several exchange programmes in other countries of Europe, United States, Australia, Latin America and many others.

Learn more at: