University of Exeter Handbook (Physics) Questions/Comments Department (Physics)

Staff Visits to Study Abroad Host Institutions

The University guidelines for Student Study Abroad require regular visits by an academic representative of the Department to institutions hosting 'with Study Abroad' students. To facilitate this, all academic staff planning to make visit to Australia, North America, New Zealand should inform the appropriate Study Abroad Co-ordinator who has a budget to cover the associated addtional travel costs. On their return the Department's representative must supply (to the appropriate Study Abroad Co-ordinator who will notify Education Committee that it has been received) a written report of their visit.

Before You Leave

The appropriate Overseas Study Co-ordinator will brief you on any issues that require particular attention and help arrange an itinerary for your visit. If you are visiting North America obtain a copy of the current Study Abroad Brochure from the International Office to give to the Study Abroad Office at the host.

Read the information about Stage 3 of Programmes with Study Abroad and note the academic level expected of students going abroad referred to there. Take copies of the relevant module descriptors, and the agenda below, for reference during your visit.

During your visit please address as many of the issues on the following agenda as possible, and add others you consider necessary. If you are unable to meet someone from their Study Abroad Office, try to discover the information from other sources.

Visits - Suggested Agenda and Checklist

1. Meeting with the Physics Department Contact

1.1 About the Department
Details / Notes
Name, email, etc., of contact at host responsible for Exeter students 
How many physics students graduate each year? 
What are the main areas of physics research in the Department? 
Who is responsible for health and safety in the Department? 
Is there a 'buddy scheme', i.e. students willing to give pre-arrival advice by email and/or act as mentors for Exeter students? 
1.2 Meet physics course instructors

Try to establish number of hours of work (including homework) that the course will involve for the student and whether the level of their courses higher (H), lower (L) or similar (S) to the following Exeter equivalents:

Exeter ModuleHost Module Code(s)H/S/LHoursNotes
PHY3214 Electromagnetism II 
PHY3215 Nuclear and High-Energy Particle Physics 
PHYM211 Advanced Statistical Physics 
PHYM212 Advanced Quantum Mechanics 
PHYM213 Advanced Solid State Physics 

Important: To comply with their programme requirements Exeter students will need to take courses the cover the sylabus and learning outcomes of at least three of the above modules.

Please also note if:

Note: The recommended texts are a good guide to the level of a module.

1.3 Student workload
Details / Notes
What are the host's nomenclature for (a) 'credit' and (b) 'level' of modules? 
How many 'credits', and at what level, would a full-time local physics student take? 
What is the normal balance between physics and other subjects? 
For how many hours per week is a typical physics student expected to work? 
How many contact hours per week of lectures, etc. are associated with a module? 
How long are lectures and at what time of day? 
Further comments, e.g. are there any local conventions regarding office hours, questions, lecture notes, etc.? 
1.4 Assessment conventions
Details / Notes
Is it normal for topics not mentioned in class be examined (e.g. set reading)? 
What arrangements, if any, are made for referred assessments (e.g. resit examinations)? 
What arrangements, if any, are made mitigating circumstances? 
Discuss and confirm the applicability of the grade conversion table in the Exeter Physics Handbook. 
1.5 Facilities Visit
Details / Notes
Laboratories (if applicable) 
Lecture rooms 
Computing and IT 
Access to email and the WWW 

2. Meeting with the Study Abroad Office

2.1 Dates
Details / Notes
Is there an orientation week for international students, when is it and what does it comprise? 
Dates of Semesters/Terms and Vacations? 
2.2 Typical costs in local currency
Details / Notes
Is a bicycle/automobile required? 
How much is an automobile likely to cost to buy and insure? 
Will students be expected to buy text books? Is there a second-hand market? 
What is the annual loan required by a typical student? 
2.3 Accommodation
Details / Notes
What accommodation is available, and where is it? 
Is it furnished? 
Are rooms shared? 
Is a deposit required on arrival, and how much is it? 
Food provision? 
Available during vacations? 
2.4 Legal and Insurance
Details / Notes
Does the institution have regulations/guidelines regarding health insurance for international students? 
Are exchange students required to purchase the institution's health insurance? 
Does the institution provide information and services to international students on health and safety and legal issues? 
Is the campus alcohol-free? What is the state law regarding drinking age? 
2.5 Miscellaneous
Details / Notes
Who organises visas? 
What workload and assessment is associated with typical non-physics courses taken that might be taken as options? 
Is it possible for students to undertake paid work? 
Information about Fraternities/Sorrorities? 

University of Exeter Handbook (Physics) Questions/Comments Department (Physics)