The University of Stirling was the first genuinely new University in Scotland for over 400 years when it was founded by Royal Charter in 1967. We retain our pioneering spirit and a passion for innovation and excellence in all we do. Set in the shadow of the Ochil Hills, the magnificent 310-acre campus encompasses a loch, a golf course and the 18th-century Airthrey Castle. It is undoubtedly one of the most attractive campuses in Europe, so a visit is strongly recommended.
Visit the University of Stirling YouTube channel
for videos about the university and to experience student life! There are many great reasons
to visit Stirling, from a stunning environment, a friendly atmosphere, and superb sport!
The University is located just two miles from the centre of Stirling. Take a virtual campus tour
to learn more.
Stirling is at the geographic heart of Scotland – dramatically positioned at the point where Lowland and Highland Scotland meet. A fascinating mix of old and new, the city of Stirling has a reputation as one of the most attractive places to live in the UK. The city is a thriving, compact and welcoming community and boasts a wide range of commercial and cultural facilities. Stirling has excellent direct rail and road links to the rest of Scotland and the UK, while London and the other great capitals of Europe are a short hop by air from either Edinburgh or Glasgow airports, both of which are within easy reach of the University.
The University makes available the whole range of its introductory, intermediate and advanced courses to visiting students with appropriate backgrounds. SDSU students can apply to take any course modules (classes) for which they have the appropriate pre-requisites. The pre-reqs are clearly noted in the Stirling course catalogue. Students are taught by a combination of large lectures and smaller tutorial or seminar groups. The method of teaching will depend on the level of the course a student is taking. The Stirling Study Abroad Office registers students for their chosen modules prior to arrival, subject to space availability on modules.
Note on impacted subjects: Limited availability on Film and Media production modules, but students should still apply with alternates. Nursing students can be considered as the department is very flexible and will attempt to accommodate exchange students. Education after intro modules not available for exchange students because of placements. Social Work not available for exchange students.
All courses are taught in English with the exception of any foreign language courses.
Semester 1: Early September to Mid December
Semester 2: Mid January to Early May
Hints for Researching Program and Available Courses
Access the Course Catalogue
for incoming study abroad students. Courses at Stirling refer to both degree programs (majors) and indivdual modules (or classes). Look closely at when each module is offered, autumn (fall) versus spring.
One Stirling module is equivalent to 20 Stirling SCQF credits or 5 SDSU semester units. Three Stirling modules (60 SCQF credits) is a full semester load and 6 modules (120 SCQF credits) is a full academic year load.
Each module is assigned an SCQF (Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework) level ranging from 8-10. Level 8 courses are generally first year courses, level 9 are normally second year courses which require some background knowledge, and level 10 courses are usually third and fourth year courses which are at an advanced level and require considerable background in this subject area. Please note that students who are not first year students at their home university will not be permitted to register for more than one level 8 module because of limited availability of spaces on first year modules.
All students should discuss module descriptions with their SDSU academic advisors. Be aware prerequisites for modules/classes in the UK are taken very seriously and students mostly enroll in Year 2 or 3 modules in Scotland if they need upper-division credit.
Note: At University of Stirling, SDSU considers SCQF 8+ level courses as upper divison.
Housing and Meals
University housing is guaranteed for all study abroad and exchange students. This may be in on or off campus housing, depending on availability. On campus housing cannot be guaranteed, but off campus housing is only a short bus ride away. All of Stirling housing options are self-catered, but there are dining areas on campus and students can purchase ‘flexi-meals' packages if they do not wish to do all their own cooking.
Other practical information for exchange students is available on the Stirling Study Abroad Office
All SDSU students will be automatically enrolled in the appropriate international health insurance for their study abroad term. The insurance charge will appear on your student account services billing shortly before departure. Students will receive more detailed instructions regarding insurance before departure.
All U.S. citizens studying in the United Kingdom for one semester (less than six months)
required to apply for a visa; they receive a Short-Term Student Route visa stamp upon arrival. However, students going for a full academic year (more than six months)
are required to apply for a Tier 4 Student visa, which also allows U.S. citizens to legally work. Please see the UK Border Agency
website for more details and instructions.
For more information about entry/exit requirements for your host country, visit the U.S. Department of State