There are some grants and financial assistance packages which are provided to help students participate in Erasmus or bilateral exchange programmes.
The European Commission awards Erasmus students a monthly assistance package which is administered by the National Erasmus Agency and issued by the Department of International Relations of the UIC. This assistance package normally amounts to an average monthly sum of approximately €120, which is dispatched in three separate bank transfers over the course of the academic year.
The Ministry of Education and Science also offers assistance packages to Erasmus students who meet all necessary requirements. The Department of International Relations of the UIC issues these funds to eligible participants once they have returned from abroad. The total amount offered to each student is lower than the package provided by the European Commission, although students are not made aware of exactly how much they will receive until they have completed the academic programme.
The Autonomous Government of Catalunya also offers an assistance package of €200 per month (maximum available €1200) for students studying overseas. This financial assistance is aimed at students participating in bilateral exchange and Erasmus programmes. Although the Department of International Relations helps students prepare their applications for the grant, it is the students themselves who must assume responsibility for sending their applications to the Agència de Geastió d'Ajuts Universitaris i de Recerca (AGAUR).
Things to do prior to departure and enrolment at the overseas university
After accepting the offer and before leaving for their destination, each outgoing Erasmus student must sign and return a mobility contract which specifies their duties and obligations, regardless of whether or not they qualify for financial assistance from the European Commission.
Outgoing Erasmus students must also collect copies of the certificate of stay and the student report or questionnaire for the purpose of obtaining signatures and official stamps from the relevant representatives of their respective institutions. These three documents can be obtained from the Department of International Relations, which normally distributes them during information sessions held in June.
It is the outgoing student’s responsibility to sign and submit their mobility contract before their departure. On their return to Barcelona, they must submit the certificate of stay, together with the completed, signed and stamped student’s report. If this is not done, students may be refused participation and/or financing of the programme.
Once students have received the letter of acceptance from their respective universities, they may begin organising other important aspects of their exchange programme, such as travel, accommodation and intensive language courses.
It is very important to remember that, prior to their departure, outgoing UIC students must enrol at this University for the following year, and that on their return they must provide their respective academic department with the transcripts of the marks attained in all the courses studied abroad as early as possible. Both the enrolment form and the transcript of marks attained must reflect the subjects that each student committed to study in the Learning Agreement.
All outgoing students must fulfil enrolment procedures at the host university, ensuring they comply with the economic conditions stipulated in the partnership agreement. All students participating in the Erasmus programme are exempt from paying tuition fees, provided they have already paid them at the UIC. In addition, each student must enquire about their host university’s procedures and deadlines for making alterations to their study programme (e.g. to register for or withdraw from a course).
If at any moment during their stay abroad the student wishes to change any aspect of their Learning Agreement, they must complete the Changes to Originally Approved Learning Agreement Form and obtain approval for it from both the UIC and their host university. For this reason it is essential that they keep in contact with both the Department of International Relations and their academic coordinator at this University. These students need to refer to the internal procedures of their host university whenever they consider making any alterations to their study programme.
In addition, all Erasmus students must also ask the international office of their host university to complete, sign and stamp a certificate confirming the dates of their stay.
While Erasmus students are overseas, the Department of International Relations tells them when the European Commission is due to pay their grant instalments. (Students are also informed of the scheduled payment dates for the grants from the Ministry of Education and Science, although these are normally issued on the student’s completion of the programme).
Before returning to the UIC
Outgoing students are advised to prepare any documentation required on their return to the UIC in advance as some of these documents must be collected in person from their host university
Both the enrolment form and the transcript of marks attained at the overseas university must reflect the subjects and transferred credits which featured in the original Learning Agreement (or the Changes to Originally Approved Learning Agreement form, if there have been any alterations to the study programme).
On completion of their Erasmus programme, returning UIC students must – as they are advised prior to their trip - take all relevant documentation with them. These documents are essential for completing the validation process of their studies abroad and justifying all the financial aid that the student has received.
Annex I, definitive version of the Learning Agreement (after all modifications have been made), signed and stamped by both universities (if there have not been any alterations made to the initial learning agreement, then this must also be signed and stamped).
Annex II, or a certificate of the dates of the stay.
Annex III, or the student’s report on their experience abroad.
Official transcript of the marks attained, issued by the student’s host university (a photocopy will suffice if the faculty claims the original copy).
It is the responsibility of each student participating in the Erasmus programme to present these documents before the deadline stipulated in the mobility contract. If this is not done, the student must provide the UIC with a full refund of all the financial assistance they received for participating in the programme.
In order to be able to validate their studies abroad, students who have participated in a bilateral exchange must bring a copy of the transcript of the marks they attained and the definitive version of the Learning Agreement.