Tim Killeen spent a year abroad as part of his medical education. He is now back home and gives some practical advice on setting up your own Erasmus exchange
Since its inception in 1987, more than a million students in 32 countries have taken advantage of the European Union's Erasmus exchange programme and have lived and studied at universities in other member states (box).1 Named after and inspired by the 16th century Dutch theologian and humanist who travelled and studied all over Renaissance Europe, the European Union funded scheme is designed to encourage the mobility of European citizens within the union.
British medical schools are slowly realising the value of time spent abroad as an undergraduate, and several offer short, Erasmus funded opportunities in Europe, usually as a student selected component at an established European partner university.2–4 For most medical students, however, the typical year abroad available to students in other faculties is simply not on offer, due in part to the inflexible and highly structured nature of medical courses in the United Kingdom. That said, accounts of such