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Section 8: Placements and study abroad

8.Placements and study abroad

Information on placements, options to study abroad at partner institutions, and summer internships.

8.1.Undergraduate industry placements (Extra Mural Year)

8.1.1.About an EMY industry placement

An industry placement is where a student optionally spends a year working in industry between the penultimate and final year of their programme. This adds an additional one year (Extra-Mural Year, or EMY) to the overall length of their degree.

An EMY is available for specific programmes: students on the BSc Computer Science may take an EMY Placement between Years 2 and 3; students on the MEng Computer Science and MEng Mathematical Computation may take an EMY Placement between Years 2 and 3 or between Years 3 and 4.

Industry placement opportunities will be advertised as they become available. There is no guarantee that places will be available, or will be with a specific company or in a specific area. Any placement must be approved by the department and by the Faculty Teaching Committee, which will make sure that adequate, identifiable supervision and training are provided by the host company, that adequate supervision is provided by the student’s home department, and that the student’s plan of work for the year is related to the student’s core discipline and is of adequate level.


8.1.2.Advice and guidance

Students who are interested in taking an extramural year in industry should seek advice from Dr Graham Roberts (graham.roberts@ucl.ac.uk), the Internship Manager, Dr Yun Fu (yun.fu@ucl.ac.uk), or the Careers Tutor, Dr Chris Clack (c.clack@ucl.ac.uk.


8.1.3.Applying for EMY

In order for students to undertake an EMY placement, a formal arrangement must be in place between the department and the host-company, with an approved programme of work, contacts, and a periodic review process. This will be coordinated by the Careers Tutor and Intership Manager. Students who want to take an EMY should consult with these staff to find out what options are available.


8.1.4.Structure of a programme with an EMY

A typical programme structure including an EMY is as follows:

BSc BSc Y3 EMY MEng MEng Y3 EMY MEng Y4 EMY
Yr1 Yr1 Yr1 Yr1 Yr1
Yr2 Yr2 Yr2 Yr2 Yr2
Yr3 EMY Yr3 EMY Yr3
- Yr4 (Yr3 curriculum) Yr4 Yr4 (Yr3 curriculum) EMY
- - - Yr5 (Yr4 curriculum) Yr5 (Yr4 curriculum)

8.1.5.Assessment of the industry placement

The industry placement year is represented by the module Computer Science Internship (COMP3101), which is added to the student’s record for the final year of the programme. This module is valued at 1.0 course unit (30 credits.) At the end of their placement, students will be required to complete a written report as the summative assessment for this module. The report will be submitted to the host company for approval and then to the department for marking. The assessment is Pass or Fail only, so no mark is awarded.

Students who fail to submit a report on-time will be deemed to have failed and will be provided with a second deadline, which will formally count as a second attempt. There are no completion requirements for the EMY report; failure to submit at the second attempt will result in a final mark of 0 and failure of the course unit, but will not lead to the course unit being registered as “not complete”.


8.1.6.Academic requirements for programmes with an industry placement

Students taking an industry placement will have an additional 1.0 course unit (30 credits) added to their degree programme. They will therefore need to complete and pass an additional 1.0 course unit (30 credits) above the standard award requirements for their programme, however the EMY is not included in the calculation of the programme mark and award classification.

Progression and award requirements are given in Section 9: Progression and award.

Further information:


8.2.Undergraduate study at a partner institution (Study Abroad Year)

Information on programmes with study abroad options, how to apply, entry requirements and assessment.

8.2.1.About the Study Abroad Year

A Study Abroad Year is one undertaken at an approved international partner institution in Year 3 of a four-year programme. Students will follow the curriculum of the partner programme for the Study Abroad Year and then resume the standard curriculum when they return to UCL in Year 4.

Students on the MEng Computer Science and MEng Mathematical Computation can apply to transfer to the MEng (International Programme) in Year 2; BSc Computer Science students entering Year 2 can also apply to transfer to the MEng (International Programme.)


8.2.2.Advice and guidance

Students should review the UCL Study Abroad website to learn more about the ethos of the programme and whether it may be right for them. Those who may be interested in applying for the MEng (International Programme) should then seek advice from the Study Abroad Tutor, Dr Earl Barr (e.barr@ac.uk.)


8.2.3.Applying for Study Abroad

Students who wish to transfer to the MEng (International Programme) first need to have an interview with the Study Abroad Tutor, who will make a decision on whether the student can apply to transfer.

If approved, the student will transfer to the MEng (International Programme); they will then attend sessions on how to prepare for the Study Abroad Year and how to apply to the universities that they are interested in attending.

Applications will require at least one supporting reference from an academic member of staff, ideally including the student’s Personal Tutor, who should be kept informed of the progress of the application.

The application process is competitive, meaning that there is no guarantee of acceptance onto the programme or of going on a Study Abroad Year. If an application is unsuccessful, the student transfers back to their original degree programme. Those students who successfully secure a placement at a partner institution will need to satisfy the academic requirements for undertaking the Study Abroad Year, which considers their performance over Years 1 and 2 of their programme.

For partner programmes that include projects, the Projects Organiser will provide the information on how the placement scheme works. Typically, students will need to provide a CV and other information when projects are being allocated, and there may be an interview process.

The deadline for those students approved for the Study Abroad Year to transfer to the MEng (International Programme) via Portico is 25 November 2017.


8.2.4.Structure of a programme with a Study Abroad Year

The programme structure including a Study Abroad Year is as follows:

BSc MEng MEng (International Programme)
Yr1 Yr1 Yr1
Yr2 (Transfer to MEng IP (by Nov 2018) Yr2 (Transfer to MEng IP (by Nov 2018) Yr2
Yr3 Yr3 Yr3 (Study Abroad Year)
- Yr4 Yr4

8.2.5.Academic requirements for the Study Abroad Year

In order to progress into Year 3 of the MEng (International Programme), and undertake a placement Study Abroad Year, students must have completed 8.0 course units (240 credits), have passed at least 7.0 course units (210 credits), and have achieved a weighted average of at least 60% for Years 1 and 2.

Students who do not meet the academic requirements for the Year Abroad will not be permitted to progress to Year 3 of the MEng (International Programme.) They will be transferred to their original programme and will not undertake the Study Abroad Year placement.


8.2.6.Curriculum for the Study Abroad Year

The destination university will provide detailed information about the modules available on the Study Abroad Year. The student must agree a specific set of modules to be taken with the Computer Science Study Abroad Tutor. This is a binding agreement and any changes need to be discussed and agreed with the department. The set of modules selected should have the same level and similar content to the equivalent Year 3 modules at UCL, but there may well be significant variation as university programmes can differ widely, or have particular specialisations.

Students who successfully complete the Year Abroad will have a mark credited to the module Computer Science Study Abroad (COMP3100), which counts as 4.0 course units. This module does not contribute to the programme mark and award classification.

Further information:


Updated: 29-09-2017