The University of Birmingham is one of our Universitas 21 exchange partners and a member of the prestigious Russell Group of Universities in the United Kingdom. Founded in 1900, it was the first British university to gain official royal charter in the 20th century. Located right outside the city center, the beautiful green campus covers 250 acres and has been ranked as one of the top three campus enivronments in the country. Birmingham itself is a major European city located in the midlands of England, boasting first-class cultural, social and sporting facilities and superb restaurants. With its international airport and convenient rail connections, Birmingham is an ideal place from which to explore the rest of the UK and continental Europe.
The University of Birmingham, like many of its counterparts in the UK, operates on a tri-semester plan that includes an Autumn term (October - December) and a combined Spring-Summer term (mid-January until the end of June). The university prefers that exchange students plan to study for the entire academic year as the majority of courses run for the whole year. Some departments in the university will consider applications for one semester and these include the following: Archeology (fall only), Bioscience (spring only), Computer Science (spring only), Center for West African Studies (both fall or spring), Chemistry (spring only), Economics (both fall or spring), English (both fall or spring), Business (both fall or spring), Engineering (spring only), French (fall only), Geography (both fall or spring), History (both fall or spring), Physics (spring only), Political Science (both fall or spring), Psychology (spring only).
The University of Birmingham welcomes scholars and academics from across the globe to study in a broad range of disciplines. The university is especially renowned for its academic offerings in Psychology, Music, Physics, Computer Science, Mechanical Engineering, Sport and Exercise Science (#1 in the UK), and European Studies. The European Research Institute (ERI) is the center for the study of European politics, economics, history, law, culture and society.
UConn students who attend the University of Birmingham as part of this exchange may earn 12 credits for the fall term, 16 credits for the spring and summer terms, and a total of 32 credits if they attend the full year program. Please take time to look at the undergraduate course offerings and then meet with your academic advisor and a study abroad advisor to discuss your academic needs and plans.
In order to earn credit at UConn for courses completed on this program, individual courses must be approved by a designated UConn course evaluator and assigned a UConn course number. Please go to Getting Academic Credit on our website for more information. See also England-Birmingham, University of Birmingham Course Equivalents.
British university education differs somewhat from the U.S. pattern and you are given more independence than you are used to here. Attendance at seminars and lectures is required, but you will also be expected to learn on your own. Instead of course syllabi that direct you to specific readings, you will have reading lists from which it is up to you to choose a certain number of books and articles to read each week. Class meetings may be less frequent than here, but you will be expected to devote the available time to reading and preparing essays. Credit is earned both by submitting essays and by taking end of year examinations. UConn students are normally required to take four courses (officially called modules).
All students who study in the UK must get a visa. Click on UK Visa Information for information about the Student Visitor Visa (for students who study in the UK for less than six months and who don't plan to work) and the Tier 4 General Student Visa (for students who plan to stay in the UK for more than six months or who want to work or do an internship).
The University of Birmingham offers a wide range of accommodations on or near campus, ranging from halls of residence where meals are provided to self-catered flats where small groups of students live together and cook for themselves. Go to the Accommodation for International Students webpage for more information and take a virtual tour of the housing possibilities.
The main Edgbaston campus provides a safe, friendly environment with all the amenities of a small town. You'll find shops, a hair salon, concert hall, art gallery. museum, two major banks, and a railway station, just two stops from Birmingham New Street. The University's Guild of Students is the very active Birmingham student union where you can get involved in over 190 student groups and societies that reflect every taste and interest. For a more indepth view of student life in Birmingham, view some videos and podcasts on the university's website.
Birmingham's location at the center of England makes it an ideal base to explore other parts of the UK, including London (one and a half hours away by rail), The English Cotswolds, the Lake District, the mountains of Wales, Shakespeare's birthplace Stratford-upon-Avon, and Oxford. Air travel is also accessible and inexpensive making Amsterdam, Paris, Brussels, Frankfurt, Dublin, and other continental European destinations just an hour away by plane.