University of Edinburgh Chemistry Exchange Program

Edinburgh skyline

Program Term:

Autumn Summer

Language Requirement:



 Eric Benjaminson

Application Deadline:


The College’s Chemistry Exchange Program at the University of Edinburgh builds on historic strong ties between University of Chicago and University of Edinburgh Chemistry faculty. This program affords qualified Chicago Chemistry students beginning their third or fourth years an opportunity to complete a summer research project and autumn semester coursework toward the Chemistry major at Scotland’s preeminent university.

    The University of Edinburgh, founded in 1583, is one of the largest universities in Great Britain, with a student body of 20,000 (approximately one-fifth of which are graduate students). The city of Edinburgh, with a population of about a half million, was established as the capital of Scotland in the eleventh century.

    Participants will travel to Edinburgh in mid-June to begin their three-month research project, and then stay on to take three upper-level Chemistry courses during Edinburgh’s autumn semester. The summer research project may be in any area of chemistry, subject to the availability of appropriate supervision, and will be supervised by a member of the Edinburgh academic staff. Students are required to review the background of the research and to carry out appropriate analytical or experimental work before writing a report and making an oral presentation of the research before a small audience. The aim is to acquire the necessary skills to perform chemical research in a professional environment. In the autumn semester, which begins in mid-September and concludes with exams in December, students will take a selection of three courses. Participants will be guided in their course selection by the Faculty Director of the program.

    Participants in the Edinburgh Chemistry Exchange Program will have the opportunity to apply for student housing on the University of Edinburgh campus.

    Summer research

    The summer research project is a noncredit, non-tuition-bearing component of the program. Applicants are strongly encouraged to apply for funding through the College’s Summer International Travel Grant program, specifically the Third Year International Travel Grant. One of these grants has been designated for a student participating in the Edinburgh Chemistry Exchange Program. Beyond this designated award, additional grants may be awarded on a competitive basis.

    Autumn coursework

    Participants in the Edinburgh Chemistry Exchange Program remain registered as full-time students in the College during Chicago’s autumn quarter. They receive three credits for their Chemistry coursework during the Edinburgh autumn semester. Course titles, units of credit, and grades are placed on the College transcript.

    Students also have the option of applying for either the summer research portion or the autumn quarter, but preference will be given to applicants applying for both the summer and autumn.

    Program participants do not pay tuition for the noncredit summer research component of the program. Students pay regular College tuition during the autumn quarter and a nonrefundable study abroad administrative fee. The tuition is paid in conformity with the home campus payment schedule, and the nonrefundable study abroad administrative fee is submitted when accepting a place in a program. Students pay living expenses, including housing, food, books, travel, and incidentals while in Edinburgh. Precise figures for the Edinburgh Chemistry Exchange Program for the 2024–2025 year are listed below:

    Autumn quarter tuition: as set by the Bursar’s Office

    Study abroad administrative fee: $675

    Out-of-pocket expenses include:

    • round-trip airfare to and from the program site
    • transportation on site
    • accommodation
    • meals
    • course materials
    • personal entertainment and travel
    • communications (most students bring or buy a cell phone)
    • health insurance and upfront payments for care
    • other miscellaneous expenses

    Study abroad students retain their financial aid eligibility. For more information about financial aid resources, please see our Tuition, Fees, and Funding section.

    The Edinburgh Chemistry Exchange Program is open to University of Chicago undergraduate students only.

    The program is designed for a small number of select undergraduate Chemistry majors in good academic and disciplinary standing who are going into their third or fourth year in the College. Students are also expected to have a solid overall academic record, excellent grades in their Chemistry courses, and the endorsement of the Chemistry Department.

    In order to apply to this program you must first meet with Eric Benjaminson to discuss program options. Then, you must complete Chicago’s study abroad profile via the online application. Once you have completed this profile you will then select “Edinburgh Chemistry Exchange Program” under the program list for program applications and click “apply.” Here you will be able to submit your intent to apply and will be given explicit instructions for completing the Edinburgh Chemistry Exchange Program Application.

    To discuss the Edinburgh Chemistry Exchange Program program and the possibility of participating, please contact Eric Benjaminson.