Student Exchange Programme

Applications for the Student Exchange Programme are open now!

Applications for both the Bilateral and General Student Exchange Programme are open until midnight 14th December 2014.

To apply for the Bilateral SEP please download and complete the relevant application form by clicking here. To apply for the General SEP please download and complete the relevant application form by clicking here. All application forms must be returned to the Student Exchange Officer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by midnight 14th December 2014.

Further information about both the Bilateral and General Student Exchange Programme can be found below, any further queries can be answered by our Student Exchange Officer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

What is the Student Exchange Programme (SEP)?

The Student Exchange Programme (SEP) is a mobility programme that provides pharmacy students and young pharmacists the unique opportunity to undertake professional work experience and intercultural learning abroad. Currently, over 60 associations worldwide participate in SEP and over 800 international exchanges take place every year. In Great Britain, SEP is coordinated by the BPSA in association with IPSF.

The member associations of IPSF organise the exchanges by finding host sites where the participants are trained. Possible host sites include:

  • Community Pharmacies
  • Hospital Pharmacies
  • Wholesale Companies
  • Pharmaceutical Industry
  • Schools of Pharmacy
  • Government
  • Private Health Agencies

There are two types of Exchange that students can apply for:

  • Bilateral Exchange

This is like a traditional exchange, where you host a student in the UK, and they host you in their home country. Applicants are required to find a suitable placement (in community, hospital, academia, etc) and help to find accommodation for an international student. Additionally, whilst the student is staying in the UK, you will be expected to help entertain them and show them around the local area. By completing all of the above, students guarantee a placement for themselves abroad for that particular year only. Click here for the Bilateral Application form.

  • General Exchange

If a student applies for this exchange, there is no requirement for them to find a placement for an international student in the UK. There are only a limited number of places available on this type of exchange and applicants compete against each other for an opportunity to be placed based on their application forms.

All students who are members of the BPSA are eligible for entry into SEP.

SEP runs throughout the year, but the majority of the exchanges take place between May and September. The duration of SEP varies accordingly depending on the country you participate with. Typically, exchanges range from periods of as short as two weeks up to periods of twelve weeks.

There is a two stage application process in Britain. The first stage consists of a pre-application form, which is used to select candidates to be sent for exchange by the BPSA. Recruitment starts 1st of November and ends 14th of December. An electronic version of the application form is available. Click here for the General Application Form.
The second stage is the official application form, which will only occur if you are selected to participate in the programme. This includes a Curriculum Vitae (CV) and a motivational letter to be filled in. Once an official application form is completed and approved by the SEO, you will register on the IPSF SEP database electronically using the username and password provided. Please do not need to create an account on the SEP database before being told to do so by the Student Exchange Officer.

A list of all participating associations and countries with their profiles can be found here. You will be allowed to select up to three official countries to submit in your secondary application form.

Fee Structure
The cost of applying for SEP is €50.00. This fee is only payable if you are accepted into the second stage of the application process with the official application form. If you are unsuccessful in your application you will be refunded €21.00. Please note that if you are placed and then renounce your placement there is no refund.

Students are responsible for all travel expenses and insurance. The host may also provide accommodation and/or pocket money in addition to the training site in order to support the student. SEP host sites are encouraged to find accommodation for their exchange students at little or no cost. In some countries, accommodation costs are subsidised by the home association.

Financial Support
There are several ways to seek funding; These include:

  • IPSF SEP Grant
  • BPSA Travel Fund
  • Your School of Pharmacy
  • Local Practice Forums (LPFs)
  • Local Pharmacies or Pharmaceutical Companies.
  • Offering a report is a good incentive along with your request for sponsorship.

For more information or any other enquiries about SEP, kindly contact the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For further reading on SEP you may visit the IPSF website via the link below.

© British Pharmaceutical Students' Association 2013