At Warwick, we view the year abroad as an important and integral part of your degree programme, one which is both personally and academically enriching, and is highly valued by employers for the specific skills that it brings with it.
Students can tailor their experience in a way that best supports their learning and their career plans. You could spend the whole year in one country or split it between two countries. Students on three-language degrees can spend time in a third country over the summer. You can choose to study, work, or combine the two.
Students on degree courses involving Hispanic Studies are strongly recommended to spend their second or third year of their degree in Spain or Latin America.
These are the pathways you could follow:
- You could work as a language assistant in a School (British Council)
- You could study at a Spanish or Latin American university
- You could complete a work placement
A language assistantship involves teaching spoken English in a primary or secondary school in Spain or Latin America. The British Council currently handles all the administrative details for these posts and per their requirement, it can only be taken during your third year. This is currently a popular option amongst Warwick students, since the posts are reasonably well paid and enable you to become integrated into a Spanish-speaking community fairly quickly. For eligibility criteria and other information relating to the scheme, see the British Council Language Assistantship programme website.
We have partnerships with a range of diverse and prestigious universities, where you can spend a single semester or a full academic year. Our portfolio of partners is frequently revised and renewed, and we currently have exchanges with the following universities:
* University of Cádiz
* University of Málaga
* University of Oviedo
* University of Salamanca
* University of Sevilla: Pablo de Olavide
* University of Valencia
* University of Valladolid
* University of Vigo
* University of Zaragoza
* Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
* Universidad Diego Portales (Chile)
* Universidad Javeriana de Colombia
* Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú
* Universidad de Puerto Rico
An increasing number of our students choose to search for their own work placements during the year abroad. These placements are subject to approval by SMLC and we can help you to navigate this process: from guiding you to the appropriate job portals to linking you up with our connections and supporting you as you write your applications. Whilst the impetus for finding a placement lies with you, we help and advise you in negotiating a contract and living allowance with your employer and ensuring that you are truly immersed in a Spanish-speaking environment. In recent years, we have had students who have worked in Spain and Latin America doing a wide range of jobs – from working in marketing or translation to a finance internship in Buenos Aires or an NGO placement in Panama City.
During the year abroad
Whichever option you choose, during the year abroad you will continue to have a Personal Tutor at Warwick and receive support from the Year Abroad Team. You will also submit academic work, which is designed to prepare you for your final-year studies in spoken and written Spanish language.
In addition to the year abroad, all students are encouraged to spend further time abroad during vacations. The School is able to offer advice about the ways in which this can be done (paid work, voluntary work, language courses, etc.). Students usually find vacation residence to be a particularly rewarding way of 'trying out' living in a foreign country as it allows them to be immersed in the culture and the way of life, while gaining extra confidence in the language.
If you are an international student, you may not be eligible for the assistantship scheme: see the British Council’s eligibility criteria linked above. You will, however, be able to study at a Spanish or Latin American university of your choice or find work. Please contact the School if you have any queries about this.
Thinking of going to Spain on your Year Abroad? By our student Joel Foster-Finn.