9.6 Four-year language schemes with a year abroad

1. This section provides a framework for four-year language degree schemes which include a year away from Aberystwyth so that students gain linguistic proficiency and experience. It does not cover exchange programmes as part of three-year schemes, and other arrangements for study abroad.

2. The Year Abroad will consist of a period working or studying abroad. A cascade weighting of 0.25 will be applied to the Year Abroad and will be taken into account in order to determine the final degree classification, in accordance with Examination Conventions.

3. The Year Abroad is an integral and compulsory element of all four-year language schemes. Exemptions on the basis of prior learning or experience are only allowed in exceptional circumstances where a recommendation is submitted for approval by the Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellor, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.

4. Students on four-year language schemes are not permitted to go on exchange placements during the year prior to the Year Abroad. This ensures that they are not away from Aberystwyth for more than one year, and that they receive appropriate preparation for the Year Abroad.

5. There is no requirement to pass a minimum number of credits at the end of the Year Abroad.

6.  Students who fail to progress at the end of Year 2 (or equivalent year prior to the year abroad) will be required to complete and pass August resits or repeat the year before embarking on the Year Abroad.

7.  Students are expected to be in employment, voluntary work or studying abroad for a minimum of 30 weeks. In some cases students will undertake a combination of work and academic study. In exceptional cases Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellors or their nominees may approve shorter periods. Students must comply with Institute requirements for maintaining contact with tutors during this period. Schemes which are accredited by Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies may also include additional requirements. Students who fail to make satisfactory academic progress during the Year Abroad will be reported to the Institute Director or nominee under the Academic Regulation on Academic Progress.

8. The Year Abroad will consist of 120 credits. Assessments may include a log book or diary, interim reports, and a final reflective report. For new students starting from September 2018, the marks for the Year Abroad will be based on assessments which are set and assessed at Aberystwyth. Credits from academic study will be accepted as an alternative to evidence of paid/voluntary work, but will not contribute to the final mark for the Year Abroad.

9. The final module mark(s) for the Year Abroad will be confirmed during the final year at the Semester One meeting of Senate Examination Board.

10. Special Circumstances may apply in the case of illness or other circumstances beyond the student’s control. These should be reported to the department as early as possibly by submitting the Special Circumstances form with appropriate evidence, for consideration by examination boards. Where students are unable to continue with the Year Abroad, they should take temporary withdrawal from their studies.