End of the Brexit transition phase: “New territory in scientific exchange”

19. November 2020, 10:55

Cooperations, science policy

The transition phase after Brexit will end on December 31, 2020. With the beginning of the new year, various regulations and programs will change for students, researchers and universities. The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) has compiled the key changes and also recorded where everything will initially remain the same as before.

Bonn, 19.11.2020

“In 2021, we will break new ground in scientific exchange with the United Kingdom. Many of the previous ways of working together are unclear or no longer accessible, ”said DAAD President Prof. Dr. Joybrato Mukherjee. “But one thing is clear: Brexit is also a great loss for us Germans. We are losing a central partner country in the EU that is still home to many of Europe’s best universities. ”There will be various changes for students, researchers and universities from 2021, but some exchange programs will initially continue unchanged. “Despite all the uncertainties: The United Kingdom is extremely popular with German students and researchers, we are currently seeing strong growth in applications for DAAD scholarships,” says Mukherjee. The numbers for the 2020/2021 academic year have risen by around 40 percent.

Visa requirement for students
German students who want to study at a British university for more than six months will need a visa from 2021. It is currently unclear which visa regulations will apply to internships and volunteer work in the future. In addition, it will be more expensive for German students: From the academic year 2021/2022 they will lose their so-called “home fee status”. British universities can then charge the significantly higher fees for international students for students from the EU. Students who start studying in the UK in the current academic year 2020/2021 still pay the lower home fees, even if their courses do not start until January 2021, for example. In addition, from 2021 onwards, students will have to pay a visa fee and a payment for the National Health Service, and students from Germany will no longer be able to apply for the national student loans.

There may also be changes for students from the United Kingdom: If you are entering the EU after December 31, 2020, you should inquire about new entry requirements in advance.

Erasmus exchange possible until 2023, after that uncertain
The future participation of the UK in the Erasmus program has not yet been decided. It is already clear that the country will continue to participate in the current generation of programs. In the current projects (2019 and 2020) of the intra-European funding line “Mobility”, personnel and student exchanges are possible until March 31, 2023. As before, there are no tuition fees. The new visa regulations from January 2021 will of course also apply to the Erasmus exchange. Cooperation projects in the funding lines “Key Action 2 and 3” as well as “Erasmus Mundus” and “Jean Monnet Activities” that were approved up to and including 2020 are also eligible for funding for the entire duration of the project.

Barriers for universities
The German universities also have to be prepared for the fact that administrative hurdles for an exchange with their British partner universities will become higher, for example when sending lecturers for a longer period of time. However, short stays by students, researchers and lecturers of up to six months are still possible – under certain conditions – without a visa. In addition, it has not yet been clarified on what legal basis a data exchange with the United Kingdom will take place from 2021.

United Kingdom remains very popular with students
According to the current edition of “Wissenschaft weltoffen 2020”, the United Kingdom still ranks third on the popularity scale of German students abroad. In the last survey, almost 16,000 Germans studied in the British Isles. While the number of German students in the Netherlands and Switzerland, for example, has fallen slightly in recent years, the numbers for the United Kingdom have increased by around three percent. The country even ranks second behind Switzerland for German doctoral candidates: in the last survey, 2,000 young scientists were in the country for research stays.

Further information
The new regulations from 2021 will apply to all parts of the United Kingdom (England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland).


Scientific contact:
Ruth Krahe
Head of the DAAD branch in London
+44 7596 016739
krahe@daad.de

Agnes Schulze-von Laszewski
Head of Unit Erasmus + Key Action 1: Mobility of Individuals
+49 (228) 882-645
Erasmus-mobilitaet@daad.de


Further information:

https://ec.europa.eu/programmes/erasmus-plus/about/brexit_en FAQs on Brexit from the European Commission
https://www.bmbf.de/de/faq-was-bedeutet-der-austritt-fuer-bildung-und-forschung-10776.html FAQs on Brexit by the BMBF
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/immigration-rules/appendix-st-student Information on the Student Visa Route
https://www.daad.org.uk/en/brexit-and-higher-education Link list from the DAAD branch in London

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