Apply for the Student Exchange programme
The first stage in planning your exchange is to spend time researching prospective host institutions using the websites of Waikato's partner universities. You should then make an appointment with the Exchange Adviser (located in the Communications and External Relations office, Level 1, Student Union Building) who will be able to answer your questions and instruct you on the application process.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org stating your name, student ID number, and if known, where and when you are interested in going on exchange.
The Waikato's Credit Office has prepared a fact sheet on each exchange partner university which provides a guide to their academic credit system, the paper (course) numbering system, and links to online paper (course) catalogues. These fact sheets are only available from the Exchange Adviser who at the time of your first meeting will also give you the relevant paperwork to complete the credit transfer process.
As many Waikato degrees contain a number of prerequisite or compulsory papers, particularly in the final year of the qualification, going on exchange earlier rather than later in your degree should make the credit transfer process easier to manage.
You are able to transfer a maximum of 60 Waikato points (the standard semester workload) towards your degree for each semester spent on exchange.
Most partner universities follow the northern hemisphere academic year, the first semester of which runs from September - December (the fall or autumn semester), and the second semester from January - May (the spring semester). Therefore, going on exchange in the fall semester will replace Waikato's B semester, while exchanges in the spring semester will replace Waikato's A semester. In most cases, you will need to start the application process at least eight months prior to the start of your exchange.
A Semester Exchange: 15 July of the previous year prior to intended exchange (i.e. 15 July 2012 for A Semester of 2013).
B Semester Exchange: 15 January of the same year of intended exchange (i.e. 15 January 2013 for B Semester of 2013).
You are eligible to receive your regular StudyLink loan/allowance entitlement while on exchange, however you should note that you will receive loan/allowance payments for the dates of your exchange, not the corresponding Waikato semester.
For the vast majority of destinations you will need access to at least $1500 per month for accommodation, food, entertainment and other expenses. You will usually need to supply evidence of having access to this amount of money when applying for a student visa. Please note that this amount does not include provision for in-country travel.
In addition to this you will need to budget on a further $150 per month for insurance, $200-300 for visa costs, and the costs of your airfare and regular Waikato tuition fees.
Insurance and Visas
You must obtain appropriate overseas medical and travel insurance for the duration of your exchange, in some cases your host institution will have a compulsory policy which you will be obliged to purchase.
On acceptance from your host institution you will likewise need to obtain a student visa for your host country. Although the Exchange Adviser may be able to give you advice and support, obtaining a student visa remains your responsibility.
Past experience has shown that international students, particularly those from mainland China, may face significant obstacles in obtaining American and other student visas. The University of Waikato cannot intervene should you be denied a visa by the relevant embassy or consulate.