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International Summer School, Univ. of Sussex

- Summer

 
This guide was created to help you navigate the different aspects of travelling abroad as a UCEAP student. All important aspects of attending university in your host country are addressed here, including academic information, extension of UCEAP participation, cultural awareness, orientation, transportation, finances and much more.
 
Remember to also visit the Participants section of the UCEAP website for important information and deadlines.
 
Click a heading below to see section content.
Your UCEAP Network

Local UCEAP Support

Campus EAP Office

The Campus EAP Office coordinates recruitment, student selection, orientations, and academic advising; and serves as your primary contact during the application process.
 

UCEAP Systemwide Office

The UCEAP Systemwide Office establishes and operates programs and coordinates UCEAP administration for all UC campuses from its headquarters in Goleta, California. You will work closely with the following Systemwide Office staff:
 
Program Advisors provide academic and operational program information to you and your campus as well as administrative support for all aspects of your participation.
 
Program Specialists manage the logistics of the program. They coordinate document requirements, visa application instructions, health and safety precautions, acceptance and placement by host institutions, arrival and onsite orientation, and housing arrangements.
 
Academic Specialists advise on academic policies, review courses taken abroad for UC credit, and document your registration, grades, petitions and academic records.
 
Student Finance Accountants assist primarily with UCEAP statements, program fee collection, and financial aid disbursements (in conjunction with your campus Financial Aid Office).
 

Contact Information

Operations Specialist
Diane Lindsey
Phone: (805) 893-3246; E-mail: dlindsey@eap.ucop.edu
 
Academic Specialist
Andrea Nuernberger 
Phone: (805) 893-2810; E-mail: anuernberger@eap.ucop.edu
 
Program Advisor​
Michelle Harvancik
Phone: (805) 893-3246; E-mail: mharvancik@eap.ucop.edu
 
Student Finance Accountant
Britt Foley
Phone: (805) 893-4748; E-mail: studentfinance@eap.ucop.edu
 
UCEAP Systemwide Office
6950 Hollister Avenue, Suite 200
Goleta, CA 93117-5823
 
Phone: (805) 893-4762; Fax: (805) 893-2583
 
 

UCEAP Online

Bookmark your Participants program page. This resource lists requirements and policies you need to know before you go abroad, including your Predeparture Checklist, UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad, Program Calendar, UCEAP Student Budgets, and payment instructions.
 
Connect with us! Join our Facebook network UCEAP United Kingdom page.
 

University of Sussex

The UCEAP Study Center works with the University of Sussex International Summer School to customize an eight-week summer program for UCEAP students. The director of the Sussex International Summer School schedules classes and assigns faculty members according to the courses chosen (during the application process) by each year’s group of UCEAP students. Sussex International Summer School also handles the logistical side of the academic program, providing prearranged housing.
 
Student Mailing Address
Student Name
c/o International Summer School
Jubilee Building
University of Sussex
Falmer
Brighton BN1 9SL
UNITED KINGDOM
 

Study Center Abroad

This program is administered from a UCEAP Study Center with a UC academic liasion and program officers. Study Center locations are in London and Edinburgh. Study Center staff will advise you on academic matters and ensure that your academic program meets UC requirements. They also provide general information and help with living in the United Kingdom. The host university also has advisors who will work with you to plan your course of study.
 
The Study Center is the first point of contact for advice or assistance during the year.
 

Contact Information

London Study Center

3 Bedford Square
London WC1B 3RA, United Kingdom
 
Phone (calling from the U.S.): (011-44-207) 079-0562
 
Phone (calling from the U.K.): 0207-079-0562
 
 
 

Edinburgh Study Center

25 Buccleuch Place
Edinburgh EH8 9LN​
Scotland, United Kingdom
 
Phone (calling from the U.S.): (011-44-131) 662-8988
 
Phone (calling from the U.K.): 0131-662-8988
 
 

Phone Number Codes

U.S. international code ................ 011 (dial this to call from the U.S.)
 
United Kingdom country code ........44
London city code...........................207
Edinburgh city code.......................131
 

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Academic Information
Program Overview

University Information

The University of Sussex was founded in 1961 and has a beautiful parkland campus near the south coast city of Brighton & Hove, an area known for its cosmopolitan and relaxed atmosphere. Brighton is a great place to be a student. It is a lively, friendly, seaside city on the south coast of England, less than 10 minutes away from campus by train. There are excellent transport links to London (only 50 minutes from Brighton by train) and the major airports. On campus there are two sports complexes, a theater, shops, several bars, and a choice of self-service restaurants, including vegetarian.
 

Program Description

The program is divided into two 4-week sessions. You will enroll in one intensive course during each session, selecting from more than 80 courses spanning the humanities, sciences, and social sciences. Courses are taught by Sussex faculty members with the same styles, formats, and expectations as other Sussex courses. Active participation and attendance is mandatory for all classes during the term. There is a strict policy on absences and tardiness. You are required to take midterm and final exams, as well as complete all required course work and essays. UCEAP students must participate in both sessions.
 
Academic Culture
Be prepared to experience a different academic culture in the United Kingdom. There exists a distinct university culture, one that is different in its habits, jargon and terminology, structures, and teaching styles from what exists at UC. You will spend much time at the beginning of the program learning about the different university culture and different expectations of the British faculty.
 

Independence Expected

You are expected to be more independent than you are at UC. There is rarely any immediate accountability for the material presented in lectures; British students often demonstrate their mastery of material in exams at the end of the program. As a result, you may not know where you stand academically in some courses until completion of finals, since no regular tests and few assignments other than papers provide feedback. You will need to work more independently than you have been used to, with less direction, fewer in-term assessments, and less sense of how your performance will finally be graded.
 

Reading Texts

One of the main differences is the amount of direction you receive regarding reading texts. In a typical UC class, you receive a syllabus with detailed information and deadlines for required reading, quizzes, papers, and tests. However, in the U.K. it is much more common to receive a long reading list that constitutes the material of the whole course, and you need to find your own way through it. British lecturers may give some guidance about what will be covered in a certain class meeting, but they may also assume that you are familiar with the works on the list. This lack of specific direction can be frustrating, especially at the beginning of the term. Expect to ask questions about texts and assignments. Often, students whose final papers or exams reference only the materials directly covered in lectures will not earn the top grades that many UC students anticipate. British instructors, especially those who often teach visiting students, can help you understand what’s expected. However, they assume that students seeking the highest grades will also take responsibility for their own education, and will take full advantage of all guidance and resources.
 

Instruction

Instruction generally consists of lectures, seminars, tutorials, and labs. Seminars are larger group discussions, usually based on short papers written in advance by one or two students. In seminars, you are encouraged to compare your own views and test your opinions against those of others. Lectures, which are often used to cover the groundwork in a subject, supplement tutorials and seminars. The lectures, which may be on diverse topics, provide background material for the academic work that is assessed during tutorials.
 

Faculty

Faculty members, most often called lecturers (“professor” is a rare title held only by the head of a department or a chairperson), can be found in their offices, but they are not required to hold specific office hours. Like their UC counterparts, some are readily available and some are elusive.
 

Libraries

You may need to buy some texts; however, fewer texts are required and you will use more library resources. Unfortunately, academic libraries in Britain are rarely as user-friendly as the UC libraries. The collections typically are smaller and the hours more restricted.
 

Writing Ability

There is more emphasis on writing in Britain than at UC, and you may need to write two or three essays per term, even in the sciences or mathematics. Excellent writing ability is the norm and “marking down” for poor writing is common. Seminars and tutorial sessions often require papers and oral reports.
 
Most British students have been trained rigorously to write well. Their A-levels (exams required for entrance to English universities) are for the most part written in essay format. Significant emphasis is placed on literacy, not only for students in the humanities and social sciences, but for those in the sciences as well. It is important not only to have intelligent ideas, but to express them clearly and coherently in well-supported essays, using accurate spelling and grammar. This is as important in exams as in essays written during the term.
 
You will need to learn a different style of essay writing. British instructors often expect more outside (secondary) sources to be evident in essays than at UC. A good essay attempts to insert itself into the critical discourse on the topic, not appear simply as the writer’s personal thoughts. Research your topics thoroughly (or more thoroughly than the hectic pace of UC quarters generally allows) and use that research in your essays. Good writing that is clear, elegant, and simple is valued.
 

Exams

Exams are serious business in British universities—far more so than almost any final exam at UC, and with a far more formalized structure. British students prepare for tests in earnest, since their entire final standing may be dependent on the result. Although the final exam may not entirely determine your final grades at UC, exams are the academic area in which UC students as a rule have the most difficulty. Keep up with your reading and class attendance throughout the program to avoid unnecessary stress during final exam time.
 
Course Information
You are required to take a full-time course of study while on UCEAP and enroll in a minimum of 12 quarter/8 semester UC units. No courses may be taken P/NP.
 
Each course is worth 6 quarter/4 semester UC units and may consist of lectures, tutorials, labs, seminars, workshops, and fieldwork opportunities. Level I courses will generally appear as lower division on the UC transcript, while Level II and III courses will typically translate to upper-division UC coursework.
 
Subject areas include anthropology, art, biology, business and management, chemistry, drama, economics, education, English, film studies, gender studies, global studies, history, independent research, international relations, media and popular culture, medicine and health, philosophy, physics, psychology, and sociology.
 
Summer courses are outlined on the University of Sussex International Summer School website (select subject areas from the menu on the left side of the screen).
 
Students enrolling for Physics must take both Introductory Physics 1 and 2, even if they have previous knowledge in some of the topics covered.  
 

Registration

In addition to registering at Sussex, you must submit a MyEAP Registration Study List. If you make any changes in your Sussex registration, you are responsible for making sure that your MyEAP Study List is correct, as it determines what will appear on your UC transcript.
 

Independent Research Projects

Independent research projects for academic credit may be possible in this program. Special Study Projects must be taken for 6 UC quarter units. If you are interested in participating in an independent research project, e-mail a curriculum vitae and description of the proposed area of research to the International Summer School office (issoffice@sussex.ac.uk) before applying to the program.
 
Internships for academic credit or enrichment are not available in this program.
 

Fees

Lab Fees

If you register for science courses requiring a lab, you will be responsible for paying a materials fee directly to Sussex before departure from the U.S. as part of the registration process. Sussex will e-mail you instructions on how to register as a participant and how to pay any lab fees. If there is a fee, it will appear in the course listing on the Sussex website and in the Sussex Handbook. Lab materials fees are approximately £95 to £175, depending on the course. You will receive two or three reminders after arrival about any fees if you have not already paid them. It is your responsibility to respond to reminders and to pay your debts. Failure to pay lab fees may result in dismissal from the courses.
 

Field Trip Fees

Other non-science courses may have a field trip fee noted in the course listing on the Sussex website and in the Sussex Handbook. You are responsible to pay field trip fees directly to Sussex; fees range from approximately £20 to £120. You will receive two or three reminders after arrival about any field trip fees if you have not already paid them. It is your responsibility to respond to reminders and to pay your debts. Failure to pay field trip fees may result in dismissal from the courses.
 
Failure to pay lab or field trip fees may result in dismissal from the courses during the program itself. Further, if you complete the program with outstanding debts of any kind, either to Sussex or to UCEAP, your grades will not be sent to your UC registrar until you have paid all debts.
Grades
There are several steps involved before the grades you receive at the University of Sussex will be posted on your UC transcript. Grades must be submitted to the Study Center, reviewed by the Study Center, signed at the UCEAP Systemwide Office, transmitted to your campus, and then processed at the UC registrar.
 
Seniors should especially consider these issues to make sure they do not require grades sooner than what may be possible. No individual expediting is possible until the end of the 90-day window, regardless of graduation or graduate school deadlines.
 
Grades for this program are usually available by early October.
 
For general information about grades, see the Academic Information chapter of the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad.
 
Internships
Extending UCEAP Participation
​Extension is not possible on this program. However, you can participate in back-to-back programs by applying to both and following all predeparture processes for both. Be sure to check the program calendars first.  Also check the visa processes for both, to find out if you can obtain the second visa in the correct timeframe and from the location where you will be at that time.
 
Cultural Awareness
Educate Yourself
“Nothing gives the English more pleasure, in a quiet but determined sort of way, than to do things oddly.”
—Bill Bryson
Become as acquainted as possible with the U.K. prior to departure, and keep up with current events by reading articles in newspapers and magazines, and by watching films set in contemporary Britain. UC libraries subscribe to the main daily newspapers published in London, and weekly or monthly magazines of news and commentary are also available.
 

Guidebooks

UCEAP students recommend acquiring a guidebook or two before departure. Travel books give comprehensive accommodation, sightseeing, historical, and travel information. Suggested travel book series include Let’s Go, Rough Guide, Lonely Planet, Blue Guide, Michelin Guide, and Intelligent Traveler’s Guide. Other resources are Time Out, DK, Insight, and Footprint guidebooks.
 
Social Conduct

Living in the U.K.

Class stratification is still a part of U.K. society, and you are likely to be aware of some degree of class consciousness among your British peers. A smaller percentage of the population attends university in the U.K. than in the U.S., which means that a given university may be less representative of the population as a whole. But because students traditionally leave home to go to university just as in the U.S., the political and social character of a university cannot be predicted by its location. Be open to a variety of social and political attitudes on the part of your counterparts in Britain.
 
The United Kingdom is a multiracial society and has experienced, and continues to experience, racial tensions. But the mix of races is quite different; in addition to Africans and Afro-Caribbeans, Britain has a sizable population from the Asian subcontinent, including Indians and Pakistanis, but in relation to California, a smaller number of East Asians. Moreover, ethnic minorities represent different cultural experiences, deriving their place in contemporary Britain from the nation’s comparatively recent colonial past. British people are conscious of the need for racial awareness and sensitivity, but as ethnic groups are unevenly spread across the country (minorities typically concentrated in London and the large cities of the Midlands and North), they vary a great deal in their actual experience of racial diversity.
 
While Britain’s differences from the U.S. should not affect the degree of acceptance and friendliness extended to non-white American students, it may mean differing assumptions, even misunderstanding at times, about the backgrounds of such students. Political correctness is as much a part of discourse in Britain as in the U.S., but it also means different things and elicits a variety of attitudes.
 
You will likely hear much about culture shock in your campus UCEAP orientation meetings and during the orientation abroad. Whether you feel the term overstates the matter, or that shock is just the right term to describe adjusting to a new environment, realize that adjusting to life in a different country, even one where the language is the same and much of the popular culture is shared, can present a significant challenge. Though many returned students describe their time on UCEAP as “the best time of my life,” they admit that genuine effort is required to adjust, especially in the beginning.  
 
Drinking and Smoking

Drinking & Smoking

You will find quite different practices and attitudes toward drinking and cigarette smoking. In general, British students use pubs for socializing a great deal more than their American counterparts; a night out may be more frequent and involve the consumption of more alcohol than most American students are used to.
 
Smoking, while more controlled than a few years ago, is still common, especially among university students. Smoking in public buildings has been banned and is restricted to designated areas on university grounds. If you do not want to share accommodations with smokers (even though they are not smoking indoors), clearly note this in your housing application and every attempt will be made to accommodate the request, although it cannot be guaranteed.
 
Official Start Date & Mandatory Orientation
You will attend an on-site orientation organized by the program provider. The orientation will include information on the academic structure of the program as well as important information about health, personal safety, finances, emergency preparedness, and other practical matters.
 
You are required to appear at the program site on the Official Start Date and participate in all orientation activities; failure to do so could subject you to dismissal from UCEAP (per Student Agreement).
 

Sussex Summer

The Sussex summer orientation begins on arrival day, when Sussex provides a free minibus service from the local Falmer railway station to the Reception Office. At the office, you will receive a comprehensive Welcome Pack and room and mailbox keys; staff will direct you to your accommodation. You then have the opportunity to join a guided campus tour and an accompanied supermarket trip. Within the Welcome Pack will be a Sussex Handbook, trip and travel information, a computer logon and password, and a registration ID swipe card to access the library and gym. The swipe card is also useful for obtaining discounts for local clubs, the cinema, and travel. The next morning, the UCEAP Program Officer will come to Sussex from the London Study Center to provide an EAP-specific orientation.  Sussex will continue their own orientation with informative welcome talks from the vice chancellor, the director of the summer school, and members of staff. Also included is a tour of the library and an IT briefing. Later, there is an optional day trip to London and the Tate Modern Gallery for a small additional cost (about $7), to be paid after arrival.
 
Travel Planning
Travel to Your Host Country
The UCEAP program budget does not include funds for recreational travel abroad.
UCEAP strongly recommends purchasing changeable round trip fares, which will allow you to make changes to your return flight for a fee. Carefully research airfare rules prior to purchasing a flight. Standby and courier fares are not appropriate. Plan for this expense. Neither UCEAP nor the Financial Aid office will reserve or pay for your ticket. If you are on financial aid, you will need to purchase a plane ticket before you receive a financial aid disbursement.

Travel Tips

  • You are responsible for reserving and purchasing your tickets (even if you are on full financial aid). Your Financial Aid Office is not responsible for purchasing tickets. You are strongly urged to purchase a changeable airline ticket. Standby tickets are not appropriate for UCEAP.
     
  • You are required to arrive at the correct program site on the UCEAP Official Start Date (see your program calendar for exact dates). Failure to appear on the date and at the place UCEAP indicates may result in dismissal from the program (see Student Agreement).
     
  • Flights are routinely changed or canceled. Confirm your flight schedule with your airline about two weeks before departure.
     
  • When traveling always carry your passport, visa, ticket, prescription medications, and money. Never put valuables in your checked luggage. Leave extra credit cards at home and carry only what is necessary.
     
  • To avoid theft, never leave your luggage unattended. Do not ask others to carry any items abroad for you (laptop, camera, extra bags, etc.) and do not volunteer to do so for others. Airlines may not allow you to take them or customs abroad may charge you a very high duty. This is particularly a concern with electronic goods.
     
  • Flights from the U.S. direct to Europe arrive the day after they depart the U.S. Keep this in mind when booking your flight to arrive on the correct date for your program. When you fly directly home from the U.K. you will arrive in the U.S. the same day you departed.
     
  • The start date of the program can change due to unforeseen circumstances. You are responsible for making modifications in your travel itinerary to accommodate such changes. UCEAP is not responsible for any unrecoverable transportation charges you may incur. In order to be kept informed of any program changes, update MyEAP with any changes in your e-mail address, mailing address, or phone number.
 

Financial Aid Students

Your financial aid package is based partly on the UCEAP Program Budget for the program. The estimated round-trip airfare amount is based on the cost of a changeable student fare to your host country. If your independent travel costs are greater than the airfare estimate in the UCEAP Program Budget, notify your financial aid counselors. Neither UCEAP nor the Financial Aid Office can guarantee that the additional cost will be funded by financial aid.
 
Travel Documents
You are not required to present a birth certificate to the host university, even if requested. Your passport is sufficient identification.
 
Make photocopies of all important documents and keep the copies in a location separate from the originals. E-mail yourself a list of passport and credit card numbers and any other personal information that would need to be replaced if it were stolen or lost.
 

Entry Clearance

​U.S. Citizens:  Obtain an entry clearance called the Student Visitor Visa when you arrive in the U.K. from British immigration officers at the airport or at another port of entry. UCEAP will provide detailed information about this clearance. You need to show proper documentation of your student status and evidence of financial support for the coming term abroad. UCEAP strongly encourages U.S. citizens to obtain the Student Visitor Visa upon arrival in the U.K.
 
To work or do volunteer work in the U.K. you must obtain an entry clearance called the Tier 4 Student Visa before departure. Summer programs do not issue the CAS number that is required to apply for the Tier 4 Student Visa.
 
If you are not a U.S. citizen, check the United Kingdom Border Agency (UKBA) website to find out if you need to obtain an entry clearance while still in the U.S.
 

Entry Clearance for Back-to-Back Program Participants (subject to change)

 
Summer plus Fall: Present admission letters from both host universities plus financial proof to cover both programs, and obtain a Student Visitor Visa upon arrival in the U.K. (if both programs total six months or less).
 
Summer plus Year: If possible, obtain a Tier 4 Student Visa before departure for the year program, then obtain a Student Visitor Visa upon arrival for the summer program. This method may not be possible because you cannot apply for the Tier 4 Student Visa more than three months before the start of the year program and you may not yet have received the CAS number you need from the host university.
 

Traveling to the U.K.

You may not travel to or through the Republic of Ireland on your way to the United Kingdom. Do not book your flight on Aer Lingus, as it will make a stop in Dublin on its way to the U.K.
 
The U.K. and Ireland are part of the Common Travel Area (CTA) arrangement, which also includes Jersey, Guernsey, and the Isle of Man. The first entrance into the CTA dictates the type of entry clearance stamp or entry clearance activation you will receive. This means that if you arrive first in Ireland on your way to the U.K., you will receive an “in transit” stamp, even if you already have an entry clearance (for the U.K.) from the British consulate in your passport. So, the U.K. entry clearance you might already have will not be activated upon arrival in the U.K., and you will not receive an entry clearance for short-term study because the CTA has already been entered and an “in transit” stamp given.
 
U.K. immigration officers may not even be present where passengers deplane from flights from CTA locations into the U.K. Immigration officers elsewhere in the airport will not and cannot activate or give an entry clearance to persons who have already entered the CTA. This means you have no status in the U.K. immigration computer records—your student status in the U.K. is nonexistent and your stay is considered illegal. You must regularize your status in order to register at your host university—and you will be denied reentry if you travel.
 
If you must regularize your status, you will have to apply for the correct entry clearance after arrival at your host university. Most likely you will need to return to the U.S. to obtain the correct entry clearance. If the British Home Office allows you to apply to their London office, it will cost at least $590 to apply by mail and at least $1,000 to apply in person. Applying by mail requires you to submit your passport to the British Home Office for several weeks, so you will not be able to travel out of the country. To be on the safe side, do not travel to or through Ireland on your way to studying in the U.K.
 

History of CTA

CTA has been in existence for decades to allow ease of travel to British and Irish citizens between the two countries. The European Union has adopted and continues to refine several similar arrangements for various groups of European countries, the most well known being the Schengen Treaty and its offshoots. However, Europe compensates for ease of border crossing with more internal controls, such as identity checks and shared immigration databases. How does this affect you? The U.K. appears to be loosening internal CTA border control in the European manner, thus you would not receive the entry clearance stamp or activation you need if you arrive in the U.K. from Dublin.
 

International Student ID Cards

An international student identification card is cheaper in the U.K. than in the U.S., and some students wait to purchase one. However, cards purchased in the U.K. do not carry the supplemental travel insurance policy that is provided with cards purchased in the U.S. The UCEAP insurance plan does provide travel insurance coverage, so review your policy to see if it will meet your travel needs. 
 

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

Students who are granted DACA are strongly encouraged to consult an immigration attorney to evaluate the risks of potentially being unable to re-enter the United States and any impact that participation in UCEAP might have on any deferred action application. If you are undocumented and have not been granted DACA, we strongly encourage you not to leave the country.
 
Packing Tips
The UCEAP Program Budget does not include funds to purchase clothing abroad.
 
Identify each item of luggage on the inside and outside with your name, home address, and destination. A rolling, wheeled suitcase is a wise investment. Luggage restrictions vary by airline, though all carriers have weight restrictions.
 
Pack clothing that is washable and quick drying if possible. Objects such as scissors, pocket knives, nail clippers, etc., must be packed in checked luggage only. They will be confiscated if found in your carry-on luggage.
 

Essential 

  • Layered clothing (T-shirt, fleece vest, button and pullover sweaters)
  • Lightweight jacket
  • Warm socks
  • Flip-flops, walking shoes, casual footwear
  • One dressy outfit
  • Umbrella
  • Heavy jacket or coat
  • Rainwear

Optional

  • Bathrobe and slippers
  • Beach towel
  • Lightweight blanket
  • Seat pad (good for train and bus travel)
  • Travel-size sleeping bag
  • Empty backpack (to bring home items purchased abroad)
  • Travel alarm and flashlight
  • Small gifts for new friends (with UC Logo or California designs)
  • Family photos

Do Not Bring

  • Pharmaceuticals that are illegal in the U.K. (prescription medications are the exception;see Health chapter of the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad)
     
  • Fragile items unless they are bubble wrapped
 

Electronics

The electrical current used abroad is 50 cycles AC rather than the 60-cycle current used in the U.S., and voltage is 220–240 rather than the standard U.S. 110–120 volts for small appliances. Most electrical sockets in the U.K. have three-pin plugs. Prior to packing electronics, check the plug or the tag near the plug to verify their voltage capabilities. If an item is intended for 110-120V, it will require a converter and an adapter. Items intended for 110-240V require only an adapter. Past students who did not check their electronics have caused short circuits in their accommodations and elsewhere.
 
Travel irons, curling irons, hair dryers, electric razors, etc. can be purchased in the U.S. with either a built-in converter or multi-voltage function. These appliances will need only a plug adapter to be used abroad. U.S. clocks need to be battery-driven to operate abroad. Past UCEAP students recommend purchasing small appliances abroad, although they will be more expensive than in the U.S.
 
If you plan to take a laptop, be sure that the AC input of its power supply will accept 240 volts and 50hz (AC Input: 100V–240V; 50hz–60hz); if it does not, purchase a transformer before departure. You can purchase the correct adapter plug (for three-pronged sockets) in the U.S. or abroad. Since the cost of electricity abroad is high and improper use of appliances may damage both the electrical outlets and the appliances, ask before using the outlets. Some university accommodations will test your appliances to make sure the appliances comply.
 
Information on electrical appliances and accessories can be found on the Magellan’s and Distant Lands websites.
 
Insurance for Personal Possessions
Consider having additional protections for your property, as in spite of your best efforts, it is still possible to experience loss, theft, or accidents that will damage your belongings while traveling. Talk to your parents and analyze their family homeowners’ insurance to determine whether the items brought or bought while abroad are covered by their policy.
 
UCEAP's travel insurance policy offers limited personal property coverage.  UCEAP strongly recommends you to examine the details of the UCEAP travel insurance benefits and to purchase additional property insurance coverage, especially to protect high cost items such as laptop computers, MP3 players, and other valuables. Review the policy carefully before departure and determine if it provides adequate coverage for your possessions before you experience a loss. 
 
You may decide to purchase additional coverage, especially for high-value electronics (e.g., computer, tablets, camera, etc.). If you decide to do so, purchase supplemental coverage before departure because most theft occurs in the airport or while moving into housing. The host university does not protect student belongings—even in university accommodations.
 
You are responsible for your own personal property. You can safeguard your belongings from damage or theft by locking your room and securing money, travelers checks, jewelry, passport, and other possessions. Use logical precautions to safeguard valuables. Avoid wearing expensive clothing or jewelry and going to questionable parts of the city, especially at night or when alone. Minimize your vulnerability by staying in control of your drinking and your behavior. Do not invite casual acquaintances or strangers home.
 
Return Transportation
UCEAP strongly recommends purchasing changeable round trip fares, which will allow you to make changes to your return flight for a fee. Carefully research airfare rules prior to purchasing a flight. Standby and courier fares are not appropriate. Plan for this expense. If you do not make round-trip arrangements, be sure to book a return flight with plenty of lead time once abroad. Flights to the U.S. fill up fast and economy-fare seats are booked early.
 
Most airline tickets are good for one year only. When buying round-trip tickets, purchase a ticket that allows changes to the return date.
 
The estimated airfare amount in the UCEAP Program Budget is based on the cost of a changeable round-trip student ticket.
​​
 
Financial Information
Understanding Your Finances
It is important that you carefully read all of the information available in the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad and discuss it with the person who will assist you with your finances while you are abroad.
 
Understanding your finances before, during, and after your program is crucial to having a successful time abroad. The following list outlines just a few of the many things you will need to know before departure.
 
Detailed information on the following topics can be found in the Money Matters chapter of the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad:
  • Contact information for finance questions
  • How to estimate the cost of your program
  • Budget instructions and information
  • Who Can and How to make payments to UCEAP
  • UCEAP student account information(what fees do I pay to UCEAP and what fees do I pay out of pocket?)
  • Banking before and after arrival
  • Fees and penalties
  • Loan information
  • How financial aid works while abroad (how do I get my financial aid from my home campus and how are my fees paid?)
  • Various forms (e.g., direct deposit, etc.)
 
Your MyEAP Account & Budget
Your MyEAP Student Account is similar to your UC campus financial account. It will be available as soon as you are selected for your program in MyEAP. You can make payments through this account using e-checks or credit cards (MasterCard, Visa, American Express, or Discover). The fees that you owe UCEAP will be applied to your account after your program pre-departure withdrawal date, which is listed in MyEAP. For the amount due to UCEAP prior to fees being posted on your account, refer to the UCEAP Program Budget and Payment Schedule located on the second page of your UCEAP Program Budget. Program fees are subject to change.
 
Carefully review your UCEAP Program Budget.
 
Your UCEAP Program Budget lists the fees you will pay to UCEAP and an estimate of the personal expenses you will need to plan for. It does not include the cost of recreational travel or personal entertainment. Review your UCEAP Program Budget frequently. The Payment Schedule is on the second page of the UCEAP Program Budget.
 

Instructions

  • Download and print your UCEAP Program Budget and Payment Schedule.
  • Note the deadlines on the Payment Schedule.
  • Give the UCEAP Program Budget and Payment Schedule to the person responsible for paying your UCEAP bills. Sign this person up for Third Party Authorization on MyEAP so they can make payments online.
For further information see the Money Matters chapter of the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad and the Money Matters tab of your Participants Portal. If you will be receiving financial aid, see also the UCEAP Financial Assistance web page.

 

​​

Refund of Credit balances and Financial Aid Disbursements:

 
If you are signed up for Direct Deposit on your UC campus, it is not linked to your MyEAP account. You must sign up for eRefund with UCEAP to receive direct deposits from your MyEAP account. For more information, see the UCEAP eRefund Instructions.
 
Handling Money Abroad

Initial Expenses

While abroad be cautious about carrying and displaying money. You will need a minimum of $200 initially for textbooks and basic supplies. Budget additional funds for clothing and travel.
 
Before leaving the U.S., exchange $200 into British pounds. The funds will be useful upon arrival for snacks, transportation, tips, and unexpected purchases. Some U.S. banks will purchase the foreign currency for you; the process may take a week or more. Dollars can also be exchanged for foreign currency at airports.
 

ATM Withdrawal

Take a bank card that enables access to funds in a U.S. bank account from an ATM. The bank card must have a four-digit PIN. Although most U.S. banks will charge currency exchange fees when money is withdrawn from an ATM abroad, ATM withdrawal is the best way to access your money.
 

Travelers Checks

You can also take travelers checks issued in British pounds for immediate use after arrival. However, note that travelers checks are not as widely accepted abroad at retail venues as they are in the U.S. You will first need to cash your travelers checks at a bank. Not all banks provide this service, and some banks will charge a commission. You will need to show your passport as ID when cashing travelers checks.
 
Do not expect to open a bank account due to time constraints.
 
Communications Abroad

Study Center Contact

It is important to keep in contact with the UCEAP Study Center, especially when responding to requests for information from Study Center staff. See Your UCEAP Network in this guide for contact information.
 
Study Center office hours are generally 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. The office may be closed for lunch. You may contact the Study Center at any time and leave a voicemail message. You may also contact the Study Center Director or Program Officer outside office hours in an emergency by using the personal phone numbers you will receive after arrival.
 
Internet Access
E-mail is available, but facilities and resources are not the same as at UC and you will likely have to wait for access to computers.
 
Some computers may be too old to have ports for downloading and saving images from digital cameras. Also, some computer labs will not allow images to be loaded on the computers and e-mailed. If you plan to use a digital camera, you are encouraged to bring a laptop.
 
Phones
Approximate time difference: add 8 hours
There are two types of public phones in the United Kingdom, pay phones that take coins (of 20 pence and over) and card phones. Calling cards are the most convenient method for making calls from public telephones. Cards in denominations of £2, £4, £10, or £20 are available from the post office, travel centers, some news agents, machines on underground platforms, and anywhere there are Phone Card signs. Many BT pay phones take major credit cards and charge cards. Unfortunately, phone card telephones may not be available in your residence hall, and you may have to walk to one elsewhere on campus, or even off campus.

Collect Calls

In the U.K., collect calls (made by dialing 100) are expensive. Do not phone the Study Center this way unless there is an emergency.

Directory Assistance

Information in the U.K. is reached by dialing a provider of Directory Service Information. All providers have six-digit numbers beginning with 118 and all charge for the service, even from public phones. First try other means to find a phone number (the Internet, a phone book, etc.) because the charge can be expensive. More information will be distributed at the on-site orientation.

International Phone Calls

International calls are best made using phone cards, though at least a £10 card is needed for calling the U.S. The direct dialing code to the U.S. is 001 + area code + number. You can call the U.S. collect through the operator by dialing 155 (the International Operator). Calls made between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. are the most expensive, those made in the afternoon are slightly less expensive, and rates go down considerably after 8 p.m. An excellent time to phone California is 7 a.m. because the rates are still low and because at that time it is 11 p.m. (the previous day) in California.

Calling the U.S. from Abroad

Many U.S.-based long-distance phone companies, including AT&T and Sprint, provide special services that make it easy to phone home from abroad. In addition, you can purchase a wide range of commercial phone cards in the U.K. in various denominations specifically for international calls.

Skype

Many students use Skype for long-distance calls. Family and friends in the U.S. can call you, at low rates, using Skype from their computers. You can Skype family and friends from any computer with Internet access. Computer-to­-computer Skype calls are free. You will need a headset and a microphone.

Cell (Mobile) Phones

Cell phones are called mobiles in the U.K. A pay-as-you-go plan is best, as it offers flexibility and good rates. Often, UCEAP students purchase an inexpensive handset that will last the term or the year, and install a SIM card with their chosen plan combining free texts or free minutes. You will be advised on cell phones during the UCEAP orientation, and will have free time to purchase a cell phone.
 
You may consider unlocking your U.S. smartphone, but be aware that this can void warranties and potentially prevent you from downloading future software updates for your phone. Check with your provider about your phone's international capabilities. Some students suggest that it is convenient to bring your U.S. smartphone if only for wi-fi and other non-phone applications.
 
Mail & Shipments

Mail

The British mail service is usually fast. Letters mailed in the evening before the last mail collection at any of the British universities are delivered in London the next day or two and vice versa. Airmail to or from California usually takes from six to ten days; however, delivery times can vary widely and if you are being sent a package that must arrive by a certain date, have the package sent by an express courier service.
 
See Your UCEAP Network in this guide for the correct mailing address at your host university.

Shipping

Packages sent from the U.S. generally take six to eight weeks to arrive by surface mail. Do not have packages sent. The Study Center will not collect luggage that has been shipped in advance and staff will not pick up any luggage that must be claimed at a customs office or dock.
 
Housing & Meals
Housing Q & A

Q: What kind of housing is available?

 
A: You are required to live in a university dormitory for the eight-week summer program. All dorms are co-ed and self-catering, with shared kitchen and co-ed bathroom facilities. Sussex will provide a duvet, duvet cover, pillow, pillowcase, flat sheet, and towel. On-campus housing consists mainly of single study bedrooms, but there are some shared rooms.
 
All rooms have phones, but UCEAP participants report serious problems with the phone system. Sussex Summer School is aware of this problem and is working with the system provider. Inform the Summer School office if the phone in your room is not functioning properly.
 
Your UCEAP fees cover the cost of the pre-arranged housing. All students will be assigned to the Northfield and/or Lewes Court 2 dorms. Some website maps are not yet showing the Northfield dorms, but they are beside the Lewes Court 2 dorms.
 

Q: What about meals?

 
A: Dorms are self-catering, which means you are expected to purchase and prepare your own food. UCEAP participants recommend learning to cook if necessary and bringing some dry, packaged foods with you (such as Ramen noodles) so you will have food immediately available. You can purchase groceries and prepared foods on campus, but note that most on-campus stores close at 4:30 p.m. and going into the city requires a long bus ride. Self-catering is the most inexpensive and healthy way to eat, but it can present some challenges, especially if you are not accustomed to cooking.
 

Q: How do I report complaints?

 
A: It is important to report complaints immediately. You may contact either the Sussex staff that will on be on site when you move into the dormitory, RAs, or the 24-hour security personnel, depending on the issue and timing. All students need to contribute their fair share towards keeping the dorm environment pleasant for everyone.
  • Report dirty or broken items immediately upon moving in (there is only a 24-hour turnaround between students moving out and summer students moving in).
     
  • Attend the “Kitchen Meeting” held by RAs for all students.
     
  • Agree with your dorm-mates on basic rules for living together and keeping your shared rooms in good condition.
     
  • Clean up after yourself; especially wash your own dishes after each use. 
     
  • Report any damage done by your dorm-mates immediately.
     
  • Keep doors locked. Report any thefts to RAs or security personnel.
     
  • Window screens are not in common use abroad. There are no screens on the dorm windows so be prepared for some insects to enter if windows are kept open for a long period of time.
     
  • Use the correct adapters for electric/electronic items to avoid tripped breakers or blown fuses.
     
  • Report unacceptably loud nighttime noise to security personnel, which includes a night porter.

Q: Are there computer facilities?

 
A: Sussex has three computing facilities that are open 24/7. Although York House is the facility nearest to your housing, there are newer and better computer facilities in the School of Biology and in the Physics Building.
 
Withdrawal Policy
The application fee of £150 is not refundable at any time after you apply to Sussex. Sussex Summer School must establish a firm and final list of participants in order to plan courses and arrange for classrooms and faculty. If you intend to withdraw, you must e-mail your intent to withdraw to summer@sussex.ac.uk, your Campus EAP Office, and mbobro@eap.ucop.edu.

Sussex will also charge one week’s housing fee for a withdrawal for any reason after June 1. Sussex will not refund any prorated amount (per four-week session) if you withdraw for any reason after the session has begun. Please review your UCEAP Program Budget for a schedule of the third party withdrawal fees, which includes the housing withdrawal fees.
 
Accommodation for Students with Disabilities
Inform your host university of any needs so accommodation in services or housing can be made if at all possible. You must provide a letter from your UC campus Disabled Students Office requesting specific services. Accessible housing is available but needs to be reserved early. Professors will give extra time on exams if required. Note-takers are not available. You will need to borrow notes from your classmates or record the lectures (each professor’s permission must be obtained to record his or her lectures).
Daily Life Abroad
Local Transportation
The UCEAP program budget does not include funds for recreational travel abroad.
 
There is excellent bus and train service for easy access to surrounding areas, the city of Brighton, and London. You will receive further information during the Sussex Summer on-site orientation.
 
Extracurricular Activities
Participating in extracurricular cultural and social activities while on UCEAP is an excellent way to meet people and integrate more fully into the community. Join clubs, sports, music/theater/arts groups; attend lectures and receptions held in academic and community circles, and get the most out of your time abroad.
 
It is sometimes difficult for UCEAP summer students to find and participate in activities, but it can be done. You do not live with, or attend class with, British students. You will receive information after arrival on options available, but you also need to make an effort to locate other options and participate in as many activities as possible. Interaction in the community is the only way to get to know British people, and UCEAP students who have joined clubs, played sports, attended religious services, and participated in local events have tremendously increased their enjoyment of the program.
 
Visa regulations prohibit students from any kind of work, including volunteer work, unless the Tier 4 Student Visa is obtained before departure for the U.K. Summer programs will not issue the CAS number required to apply for this visa, so do not plan to work or do volunteer work while in the U.K.
 
There are optional trips offered nearly every weekend. The trips are highly praised by UCEAP participants as an excellent value and a great way to meet other students. You must sign up and pay Sussex directly for each trip.
 

University of Sussex Facilities

Do not expect the kind of access you have at UC libraries because the Sussex library has shorter hours of operation. Also, summer maintenance may cause some sports facilities, such as the gym or weight room, to be unavailable at times during the eight-week program.
 
Students with Disabilities
Inform your host university of any needs so accommodation in services or housing can be made if at all possible. You must provide a letter from your UC campus Disabled Students Office requesting specific services. Accessible housing is available but needs to be reserved early. Professors will give extra time on exams if required. Note-takers are not available. You will need to borrow notes from your classmates or record the lectures (each professor’s permission must be obtained to record his or her lectures).
 
U.K. law mandates access to buildings for persons with disabilities, and the government effectively enforces this requirement. The law requires that all public service providers (except in the transportation sector) make “reasonable adjustments” to ensure their services are available to persons with disabilities. Getting around in U.K. cities may be difficult at times, since many sidewalks are narrow and uneven. Although the London Underground and the U.K.’s National Rail System are very efficient methods for traveling throughout central London and the U.K., most stations are not readily accessible for people with mobility disabilities. Very few stations have elevators, and most have stairways and long corridors for changing trains or exiting to the street. Buses are equipped with lowering platforms for people with mobility, sight or hearing disabilities. Taxis are also a good means of transportation.
 
The Transport for London and National Rail websites provide information for passengers with disabilities. There are many other resources available on the internet for persons with disabilities traveling to or living in the U.K. Contact your Operations Specialist well in advance of departure.

Plan Ahead

  • Be realistic about your condition and its impact, on your worst and best days.
     
  • Have a plan for what to do to do during flare ups, along with a list of signs indicative of not being able to cope. Work a realistic daily schedule and list of needs.
     
  • Regardless of how you have managed your disability on your campus, you may have to address the tension between the program structure and the need for flexibility demanded by the typical, sometimes daily, fluctuations of different activities.
 
The International Summer School at Sussex wants you to have the best experience possible and will work hard to meet requests for services or other accommodation.  Sussex needs to receive a letter from your campus office for students with disabilities no later than three weeks before the first academic exam if it is an academic accommodation, but much earlier is preferable. Sussex states:
 
“Students applying for Reasonable Adjustments:  Students with a disability or diagnosed long-term condition may have reasonable adjustments (sometimes called accommodations) in place at their home institution. For any ISS student any reasonable adjustment request will need to be made three weeks prior to the assessment concerned. For the Physics modules, assessments start in week two of the first module and reasonable adjustments requests should be submitted by Friday 5 June 2015. Since three weeks’ notice is required for reasonable adjustment requests, students are advised to contact the Student Support Unit with any questions about student support in advance of the deadline of Friday 5 June. Also, do contact the SSU if you have a long-term condition, which may be exacerbated by an intensive period of studying in a new environment. Please contact the SSU at studentsupport@sussex.ac.uk.
Confidential advice can be found at: http://www.sussex.ac.uk/studentsupport/index. Deadline for requests is Friday 5 June 2015 in order to cover the start of the assessments.”
 
For more information:
 
Travel Sign-out Form

Leaving your host city for more than 24 hours?

You are required to complete the online sign out through your MyEAP account.

Click on Travel Signout and complete all required fields. During an emergency (abroad or in the U.S.), it is important for UCEAP officials to know how to reach you so we can help you.

The UCEAP program budget does not include funds for recreational travel abroad.
 
Working Abroad
UCEAP discourages working abroad for academic reasons.  UK Summer students cannot work abroad.  The host university wll not issue the CAS number needed​ for the Tier 4 Student Visa.  Uk Summer students must obtain the Student Visitor Visa AKA Short-Stay Student Visa, Visitor Visa, or similar title (the title is in transition)..
LGBTIQ Students
LGBTIQ Students
​For more information,
Travel Within the United Kingdom
Eurail passes must be purchased in the U.S. (either before departure or by someone in the U.S. once you are abroad).
 

Storage

Numerous options are available for storing luggage during breaks or while traveling after the end of the program. Two storage companies are Big Yellow Self Storage and Excess Baggage Company. Storage sites are usually at airports, underground stations, and train stations. Prices and hours will vary, so confirm details in advance. Most companies can also arrange to ship luggage.
 
Insurance
UCEAP Insurance
Since you will be studying in the U.K. for a period of less than six months, you will not be covered by the National Health Service (NHS). If you are sick or injured, you will be charged for any scheduled and medically-necessary treatment you receive and will be expected to pay up front and submit a claim for a refund consideration from the UCEAP insurance company.
 
For UCEAP travel insurance benefit information, email claims@acitpa.com or refer to UCEAP Travel Insurance policy brochure.
 

Know Before you Go

 
While abroad you are automatically covered by the UCEAP Travel Insurance Policy.  Coverage begins 14 days before the official start date of your UCEAP program term. Coverage ends 31 days after the official end of the UCEAP program term. Your UCEAP travel insurance does not include coverage for preventative care, checkups, and vaccinations.
 
The UCEAP travel insurance policy is not the same as your campus or private insurance and it is does not meet ACA requirements for domestic coverage as required by U.S. law.  Read details in Benefits at a Glance. Familiarize yourself with the coverage, exclusions, and eligibility criteria. Your travel insurance policy number is ADDN 04834823.  It is underwritten by ACE American Insurance Company.
 
There is no deductible or co-insurance but the travel insurance works on a reimbursement basis.  You can submit a claim for a refund of covered expenses to the UCEAP insurance carrier.
 
Do not assume that if you seek medical care abroad for a covered illness or injury that the local hospital will bill your insurance.  Generally, hospitals around the world, including the US, do not bill insurance companies (unless there is a special arrangement with a local hospital in your UCEAP country).  It is the patient's responsibility to inquire with the hospital, at the time of service, and make arrangements to pay any outstanding bills. Payment for medical services abroad is ultimately your responsibility.
 
For more information refer to your Pre-Departure Checklist, Insurance tab, or the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad, Insurance chapter.
 

For Questions about Coverage, Benefits and Claims

ACI at claims@acitpa.com.

 
Staying Healthy
Local Medical Facilities
I​f you need private medical care, or simply want a second opinion, there is a private hospital near Sussex, in Woodingdean (an eastern suburb in Brighton), the Brighton Nuffield Hospital. T 01273 624488. They should have a referral from the campus practice, but they have proved flexible about this in the past.
 
Usually the best option is to go first to the University Health Center. Although the Brighton Nuffield Hospital is not far away, the bus service is limited, and especially if you are sick so we would recommend a taxi. Note, however, that this hospital does not run an accident and emergency service. Alternatively you could contact the Sussex Medical Chambers in Hove. T 01273 430022 / E info@sussexmedicalcentre.co.uk/ They offer a wide range of services and some local GPs practice there privately.
 

​A high level of medical care comparable to that in other industrialized countries is available throughout the country. Hospital treatment is free to people who ordinarily live in the United Kingdom. If you do not normally live in the UK for more than six months, you may be required to pay for any treatment you might need. 

You are covered by UCEAP travel insurance.  It is not the same as your U.S. or UC campus insurance.  You will be expected to pay for any kind of medical service.  If you are sick or injured, you pay up front and submit a claim to the insurance company.  You will need to budget for this. The average medical consult charge could be 207 BP an hour. For more information about medical professional fees, access the British Medical Association page. If you need a written report extracted from your records, it could cost 51.50 BP. For more information about UCEAP travel insurance, refer to the UCEAP website, Participants page, Insurance tab.

 
Before departure, review the U.S. CDC Travelers’ Health information website for specific health information for all your travel destinations.
 
Generally, you will need to see a GP (a General Practitioner) at a local office (or “surgery”). GPs are qualified doctors who can diagnose and treat a range of illnesses. They can also send patients to specialists who are trained to treat specific illnesses or conditions. Once you’re registered with a GP, you can make appointments to see them at the surgery. If a GP determines that you need medication, he/she will write a prescription, which you can have filled at a pharmacy (or “chemist”). The Study Center can recommend a clinic to visit, provide advice about the necessary UCEAP medical insurance claim process, and help if extended absences are expected.
 

Private Medical Care

You may choose where to obtain medical treatment as you have UCEAP medical insurance coverage.
 
Do not delay private medical care due to lack of funds, contact the UCEAP medical/emergency assistance provider, Europ Assistance/USA so they can refer you to a doctor and make arrangement for direct payment, if possible, through their local agents.
 
Wherever you go to receive care, you will be expected to pay up front and submit a claim for eligible services through the UCEAP travel insurance. The claim process is easy and can be done through email. Contact the local UCEAP staff for instructions and forms. If you have questions about your UCEAP travel insurance benefits, contact ACI at claims@visit-aci.com.
 

UK Glossary of Medical Terms

 
General Practitioner (GP): The GP is the gatekeeper to the health care system. GPs typically treat routine conditions then refer patients to the hospital (usually the district hospital).
 
Consultant: Consultant is the title of a senior physician who has completed all of his or her specialist training and been placed on the specialist register in their chosen specialty. Consultants accept ultimate responsibility for the care of all the patients referred to them. Patients must be referred to them by GPs.
 
Surgery or Doctor’s Surgery: In England, “surgery” is essentially the doctor’s office, a place where you can ask advice from, or receive treatment from, a doctor or dentist.
 
A&E: Accident and Emergency department (ERs in the U.S.) for life-threatening illnesses or injuries. Generally, you should visit A&E or call 999 for life-threatening emergencies, such as, loss of consciousness; acute confused state and fits (convulsions) that are not stopping; persistent, severe chest pain; breathing difficulties; severe bleeding that cannot be stopped  
 
Chemists: Pharmacists are also known as dispensing chemists.
 
Plaster cast or Elastoplast:  Band-Aid
 
Surgical spirit: Rubbing alcohol
 
Jab (flu jab):  Shot (flu shot)
 
999:  In the UK it is the free hot-line to call whenever someone’s life is in danger.  The equivalent of 911 in the U.S.
Physical Health
 
Arriving in a new country is a very busy time and there are a lot of changes to go through. There are differences in food, weather and customs to cope with. In this type of situation, with all its stresses, you may find yourself paying less attention than usual to your health.
 
Existing health problems can also be made worse by the effects of adjusting to unfamiliar food, a different climate and the emotional strains of being away from home. It can be easy to concentrate on your studies and forget about taking care of yourself. Travel health is about prevention and common sense: Being aware of health issues that may arise and taking the appropriate measures to prevent illnesses and injuries when you are travelling not only for your own well-being, but for the people and communities you encounter during your trip.
 

Know Before you Go

Inform yourself before you travel.  Just as language and currency vary around the world, so does medical care.  Know what to do if you get sick.
 
Read the Health chapter of the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad and your Program Guide for important information to plan for a healthy stay abroad.
 
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Traveler's Health web page has important information about health risks present in the country where you will be studying.
 
Prescription Medications
Prescription Medications
 
​Continue with your prescription medication, as indicated by your doctor, especially while abroad. Cultural, environmental, and academic differences may create triggers.

Before Departure

  • Talk to your doctor to discuss whether he/she can prescribe an adequate supply of your prescription to last throughout your trip and whether your prescription contains controlled substances. If your medication contains controlled substances, you must get a license to enter the UK for more than 3 months.  To check if your prescription is on the controlled drugs list, visit this website, https://www.gov.uk/travelling-controlled-drugs.
     
  • Ask for a letter (on letterhead) indicating your name, treatment, diagnosis and medication regimen, including the generic name, so a physician in the UK can conduct an examination and confirm the diagnosis before issuing a prescription. Note, a private doctor’s visit for a prescription can cost around 470£.  Your UCEAP insurance may cover this appointment provided it is not for preventive care.  
Your US prescription (and/or the refill label on your prescription container) will not be honored abroad.  It is illegal for pharmacists to supply medicines based on prescriptions issued outside the UK, the European Economic Area, or Switzerland.
 
Carry your medication in your carry-on provided that it is non-perishable and legal in your destination. Keep all medication in the original container clearly showing your name, the prescribing doctor’s name, and the prescription number. Have a letter from your doctor, on letterhead, indicating your name, treatment, diagnosis, and medication regime. This confirms your legal authority to possess, for personal use, the prescription medication.  This will facilitate clearance through customs at your destination. Read the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad ‘Medications & Supplies’ for additional information.

Mailing Medications

It is against the law to send prescribed and over-the-counter medication(s) through the mail. It will likely be stopped at UK customs. Many students, and their parents, have found out the hard way that their medication is stopped by customs officials. The U.S. Post Office also restricts using the U.S. postal system to mail medications. Prescription medications can only be mailed by Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registered entities. Similar regulations may apply to some over-the-counter medications.

Medications that can be Problematic upon Arrival in the UK

Two classes of medicines – narcotics and psych​otropics – are under the purview of international law. This covers any medicine that can have an effect on the Central Nervous System (CNS) and the potential to be abused. The narcotic class mostly relates to analgesic opioids and their derivatives (e.g. morphine and codeine, including synthetic drugs, such as methadone and pethidine, and cannabis and coca leaf), which tend to be highly regulated. Psychotropics are used to treat mental disorders such as anxiety, depression, and psychotic conditions. See below section on Adderall. 
 
UK customs restricts the amount of controlled drugs you may bring into the country. You must get a license if you’re entering the UK for 3 months or more with medication containing a controlled drug. For most* controlled drugs, a 3‐month supply is permitted, but it must be accompanied by a letter from your doctor on letterhead indicating your name, diagnosis, treatment, and prescription regimen.
 ​
*Drugs including cannabis and derivatives, cocaine, synthetic ‘designer drugs,’ and hallucinogens are defined as ‘Schedule 1’ drugs and cannot be brought into the UK in any quantity.

To Find Out Whether your Prescription Medication has Restrictions

 

Adderall is NOT licensed in the UK

 
If you take Adderall, read the following carefully:
  1. Adderall is “unlicensed” in the United Kingdom. This means no UK licensed health practitioner can write a prescription for Adderall.
     
  2. Students on summer programs can bring enough Adderall with them to cover their time in the UK, provided the U.S. doctor will issue the prescription for the length of the program.
     
  3. Students on non-summer programs can bring no more than a three-month supply of Adderall. It is illegal to mail controlled drugs through the mail.
     
  4. Non-summer students should work with their US doctor before departure to change their medication to one that can be obtained in the UK.
     
  5. At least two weeks before your supply is gone, visit the host university student health service or a General Practitioner (GP).
     
  6.  The student health service or GP most likely will refer you to a specialist, usually a psychiatrist.
     
  7. The specialist will conduct an evaluation before prescribing medication.

UCEAP Insurance and Prescription Medication 

Coverage is effective beginning 14 days before the official start date of the program so you can fill and pay for prescription medication, prescribed by a licensed physician, within 14 days before the program begins and submit a claim form for a refund. The claim form can be found here: http://eap.ucop.edu/Documents/Insurance/accident_sickness_insurance_claim_form.pdf
 
Complete the ‘COMPLETE THIS SECTION FOR SICKNESS CLAIM’, cross out ‘Date of sickness’, and write in “prescription medication”. The claim form and the pharmacy receipt, (see details below) can be scanned and attached to an email addressed to . The pharmacy receipt must include the fill date, Rx number, medication name, strength, dosage, quantity, days’ supply, amount paid, prescriber name, and patient name. Keep copies of all documentation submitted.
 
For questions about your UCEAP travel insurance benefits, read the UCEAP insurance brochure, or contact ACI at claims@acitpa.com.
 
Mental Health
Your mental health is important to us all. Managing your mental health while studying abroad – whether or not you have a history of anxiety, depression, or other mental health conditions – is something every person must think about when going abroad. Being away from usual stress at home can sometimes be a relief when abroad; experiencing new adventures can be a useful distraction. You will also have times when you feel confused, uncomfortable, annoyed, and many of the same emotions that you manage in your daily life at home. Read the Mobility International tips, Ups and Downs of International Travel.
 
Cultural adjustment and homesickness are normal. They are usually transitory—lasting a couple of weeks—and do not imply mental illness or an inability to cope. Most students who experience culture adjustment function reasonably well under the stress and are able to keep up with the responsibilities of school and everyday life.
 
If you are currently in treatment in the U.S., it is extremely important to discuss your study abroad plans and program details with your doctor. If you are taking a prescription medication, talk with your prescribing physician well in advance about getting the supply you need for going abroad.  For information about traveling with medications, refer to the Prescription Medications section in this guide.
 
The UCEAP travel insurance policy covers outpatient visits as any other illness up to $500,000; there is no co-pay or deductible, and you can make an appointment with any doctor. Budget for this expense as you must pay up front and submit a claim to the insurance company for a refund consideration.  Doctors, hospitals, and clinics will require you to pay bills at the time of treatment. You must then submit a completed claim form and paid receipts to the UCEAP insurance company. If you have questions about your UCEAP travel insurance benefits contact ACI at claims@acitpa.com.  For information about the claims process, access Insurance Claims Process.
 
Health Risks
Group B meningococcus (Nm B) is the most important cause of endemic meningitis in industrialized countries, accounting for 30% to 40% of the cases in North America and for up to 80% in some European countries.  It is the major cause of meningococcal disease in the UK, causing about 2,000 cases per year. Babies, children under 5 years, young people aged 14-24 and the elderly are most at risk. The bacteria is carried by approximately one third of adults in their intestines and for most people it doesn't usually cause problems. Classic symptoms: a headache, stiff neck, dislike of bright light.  Other symptoms include, fever, vomiting and diarrhea, confusion and drowsiness. It is important to trust your instincts. If you suspect something is wrong, seek medical help immediately. The vaccine widely available to most people and given throughout colleges and universities in the U.S. and EU does NOT protect against this particular serogroup. For more information, Meningitis UK.
 
Food Allergies
​Students with severe food allergies should take precautions while in the UK and while traveling.
 
Some precautions to take include, include:
  • Discuss the risks with your doctor 6-8 weeks before departure to discuss a treatment plan while abroad.
     
  • Carry the medications you need to prevent an adverse reaction like antihistamines or epinephrine injectors with refills. Pack it in your carry-on, not your checked luggage. Your medication must be in its original packaging, with your name.
     
  • Have a letter from your physician to present to airport security that states your need to have the epinephrine auto injector with you at all times.
     
  • Wear a medical alert bracelet or tag with instructions for assistance.
  •  
  • Tell others about your food allergy.
For more information, read the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad, Health chapter, Allergies section.
Air Quality
​Students with severe food allergies should take precautions while in the UK and while traveling.
 
Some precautions to take include, include:
  • Discuss the risks with your doctor 6-8 weeks before departure to discuss a treatment plan while abroad.
     
  • Carry the medications you need to prevent an adverse reaction like antihistamines or epinephrine injectors with refills. Pack it in your carry-on, not your checked luggage. Your medication must be in its original packaging, with your name.
     
  • Have a letter from your physician to present to airport security that states your need to have the epinephrine auto injector with you at all times.
     
  • Wear a medical alert bracelet or tag with instructions for assistance.
  •  
  • Tell others about your food allergy.
For more information, read the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad, Health chapter, Allergies section.
Staying Safe
Minimize Risk

 You play an active role in protecting your personal health, safety, and well-being. 

 
​Staying safe in another country is similar to staying safe in a large U.S. city. Understand the potential threats, know which neighborhoods to avoid, and remain vigilant (pay attention to your surroundings; do not walk around while talking on the phone or while listening to music).
 
If you will be traveling, think about how you are getting to your destination and/or any travel inside a country.  Plan your itinerary carefully, let your friends and relatives know where you will be, and research the safest way to travel.  Be proactive about your safety. Be prepared.
 
The University of California Education Abroad Program (UCEAP) has established policies and procedures and contracted with emergency service and security providers, to help you minimize your risk exposure and enhance your safety. 
 
Steps to manage or minimize risk and avoid being a victim of a crime:
  • Assess your surroundings.
     
  • Remain aware at all times. Do not walk around talking on the phone or listening to music on your headphones. 
     
  • Be attentive to what is unusual or threatening. Trust your "gut feelings"; if you feel threatened, leave the area immediately and find somewhere more secure.
     
  • Research potential risks you can encounter while traveling. 
     
  • Increase your safety and reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim of crime by staying on top of your drinking.
     
  • Practice the buddy system, which promotes safety.  This system helps ensure that you, and a partner, will look out for each other.  Choose your buddy wisely.  The ideal buddy should feel that the buddy system is very important. If you are having a problem, your buddy can help to alert others and get you to safety.
     
  • Have a communication plan. Who will you call on site if you are facing an emergency? Do your friends and relatives know how to reach you when you are traveling?
 

Know what to do in a possible risk scenario

Locate the nearest emergency exits. If evacuated in a group, remain in the center of the group with as many people around you as possible. Don’t take the lead or straggle behind.
 
Register online with the U.S. embassy through the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP), a free service provided by the U.S. Government to U.S. citizens who are traveling to, or living in, a foreign country.
 
Read the UCEAP the Guide to Study Abroad, Safety Chapter  for more information on how to prepare to have a safe experience and access the U.S. Department of State Students Abroad website for updated travel information.
 
 
With the right information - and by thinking ahead - everyone can play a part in preventing crime. There are steps you can take to manage or minimize risk and avoid being a victim of a crime. Inform yourself of risks you can encounter while traveling. Talk to returnees and learn firsthand the things to avoid. Stay alert. If you will be traveling, think about how you are getting to your destination and/or any travel inside a country. Plan your itinerary carefully, let your friends and relatives know where you will be, and research the safest way to tavel. 
 
In addition to the UCEAP information, do some reasearch.  Detailed information on the country, its cultural, and political and security situation can easily be found on the Internet, through the U.S. Department of State.  Keep your eyes and ears open at all times. Be conscious of what is unusual or threatening. 
  • When entering larger venues, always decide on a meeting place with those you are with just in case you get separated.
     
  • Never leave your bags or other valuable items unattended.
     
  • Always keep your wallet and phone in a front pocket that you can zip or button up if possible. Don't make your mobile phone a moving target. The longer the phone call, the more likely you are to be spotted by a thief.
     
  • Never leave your drink unattended or accept drinks from strangers.
     
  • Know your limits. Consuming too much alcohol can land you in trouble and potentially leave you very vulnerable.
     
  • Have a communication plan. Who will you call if you are facing an emergency? Do your friends and relatives know how to reach you when you are traveling? 
  • Make sure you tell someone where you are and who you are with, especially if you are with someone you don't know well.
     
  • Always try to make prior arrangements as to how you will get home.
 
Crime & Prevention
Cities in the U.K. are, by all relevant measures, relatively safer than comparable metropolitan areas in the U.S.
 
In general, the centers of cities, the parts that visitors and tourists are likely to frequent, can be considered safe. Most central-city parks present few risks in daylight hours. But larger open areas, the commons and heaths in and adjacent to major cities, should be treated with caution. In all cases, inquire into and accept the advice of local university officials, police, and others with experience in the communities.
 
Most crime in the U.K., as in Europe generally, is directed against property. Pick-pocketing, mugging, and snatch-and-run thefts remain common criminal incidents, especially in airports, restaurants, public transportation hubs, and crowded streets. Take precautions. 
 
Visitors should be aware of "distraction crimes." Strangers will attempt to engage victims inconversation, or otherwise distract their attention, so that their accomplices may more easilysnatch bags or parcels or pick the victims’ pockets. Avoiding such distractions andmaintaining situational awareness will help to deter such crimes.
 
Burglary is on the increase in the student residences. Keep your room door locked and store valuable items in locked drawers or closets, if available. If you take valuable items such as a laptop or an expensive camera, the UCEAP travel insurance policy provides limited coverage for personal property benefits (in addition to health coverage). Read the plan, make sure it is adequate, and consider purchasing additional coverage before departure from the U.S. See more detailed information about insurance for personal possessions in the UCEAP Insurance Plan brochure.

Tips for Staying Safe

  • Exercise common sense about your personal safety and belongings and do not be lulled into a false sense of security. Do not carry large amounts of cash and, unless traveling, leave your passport in a safe place in your room.
     
  • Asian-American students report a significant amount of stereotyping by local citizens (e.g., students are assumed to be Japanese tourists and locals speak a few words of Japanese to them). All Asian-American students report this unexpected behavior.
     
  • If you choose to drink, do so responsibly. Criminals are known to target vulnerable individuals whose judgment is impaired by intoxication.
     
    • Always watch your beverage. Instances of drink spiking have been reported.
       
    • Do not leave drinks unattended in bars and nightclubs. Drugs can easily be mixed into drinks when unattended. These drugs can disorient you, dramatically impair your judgment, or cause you to lose consciousness. Once you lose sight of your drink, do not continue drinking.
       
  • Watch your personal belongings, particularly in busy locales. Do not leave them unattended.  Thieves use snatch-and-grab techniques to steal smartphones, laptops, purses, and other valuables. In restaurants, bars, theaters, and other public places, keep bags within reach; do not place possessions on the floor or hang them on a chair.
 
Civil Unrest
Civil Unrest
Public rallies and demonstrations, common in bigger cities, are usually peaceful and rarely end in violent confrontations. In case of bigger gatherings, there is a possibility of sporadic confrontations and violent escalation. Strikes occasionally occur in the transportation sector and could have an impact on commuters. Given the diversity of its population, political events that take place around the globe can often precipitate demonstrations and protests in the U.K., particularly in London.
 
Police and protest organizers engage in dialogue before the event, and, as a consequence, protests take place with little or no violence. Still, certain political situations may spawn larger demonstrations that entail a commensurate increase in the risk of violence. Students in the U.K. should maintain good personal security practices, stay current with media coverage of local events, avoid large demonstrations, and exercise caution should they happen upon demonstrations.
 
Do not participate in demonstrations, and remain vigilant when in the vicinity of any demonstrations; if violence erupts seek shelter.
 
Terrorism
Terrorism can occur anywhere in the world. Islamist extremists continue to view the U.K. as a legitimate, high priority target. Radical Islamist groups and their surrogates have demonstrated their intent and capability to operate on U.K. soil. This threat is enhanced by the possibility of violence perpetrated by radicalized lone actors, as well as individuals returning from fighting in Syria and elsewhere.

The large scale terror attacks in France have put all of Western Europe at an increased level of vigilance. Following the Paris attacks in 2015, the government has been increasingly vigilant against radical Islamist groups who have demonstrated their intent and capability to operate on U.K. soil. This threat is enhanced by the possibility of violence by radicalized lone actors. 
 
The U.K. government assesses the current threat of international terrorism in the U.K. as “severe,” meaning that an attack is “highly likely.” Threats against specific American targets in the U.K. are assessed as “substantial” level, meaning that there is a “strong possibility” of attack. Throughout the year, U.K. authorities have made various terror-related arrests with an emphasis on U.K. citizens attempting to travel to Syria to be “foreign fighters.”
 
 
Traffic & Transportation Safety
Public transport in the U.K. is excellent and extensive. Information on disruptions to London transportation services can be found on the Transport for London website.
Information about the status of National Rail Services can be found on the National Rail Enquiries website.

Pedestrian Safety

Pedestrians do not have the right of way. Cars are only required to stop for pedestrians on black and white “zebra” crosswalks with flashing yellow globe lights on the sidewalk.
 
Be extremely careful when crossing the street.  Oncoming traffic approaches from the opposite direction. There are helpful reminders painted on the sidewalk curbs to look right.
  • Look both directions while crossing streets, follow the pedestrian indicator lights.  Always cross with caution; never in front of a car.
     
  • As a pedestrian, having a green traffic light facing you does not mean you should proceed into the street.
     
  •  
  • Be predictable; follow the rules of the road and obey signs and signals.
     
  • Walk on sidewalks whenever they are available.
     
  • If there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic and as far from traffic as possible.
     
  • Avoid alcohol and drugs; they impair your abilities and judgment.
  •  
  • Do not cross the street while wearing headphones or talking on the phone.
Cell-phone related injuries are most common among youths. Activities such as emailing, talking on the phone, texting, or listening to music have contributed to some people falling off walkways or bridges and walking in front of moving traffic. If a text message, call, or email cannot wait, step aside, let others go by, and respond before proceeding.
 
Hitchhiking is not considered safe anywhere in the world.
 
Emergency Service Response
The police services, fire brigades, medical response, and other emergency services in the U.K. are excellent. Police services in the U.K. rank among the world’s best, but they face daunting challenges and strongly encourage the participation of the public in ensuring their own safety.
 
UCEAP Contingency Planning
If a local situation requires increased caution or a program suspension and evacuation of participants, UCEAP will activate contingency plans. For security reasons, contingency plans are not public and cannot be shared with anyone except UCEAP officials.

Program Suspension Policy

If the U.S. Department of State or CDC issues a Travel Warning after the start date of the program term, UCEAP may suspend the program. If time and local security conditions permit, UCEAP will consult with the UC Study Center Director, U.S. Embassy, U.S. Department of State regional and security analysts, other organizations that offer programs in the same country, and area experts to determine the appropriate timeframe for suspending the program and/or for the evacuation of the students from the host country.

Security Evacuation

The UCEAP required security evacuation will override any host institution, or local US Embassy voluntary departure on U.S. government-arranged flights, that require U.S. citizens to sign a promissory note with the government. The safe evacuation of UCEAP students, managed by UCEAP, is covered by UCEAP insurance. UC students are required to follow UC safety directives in the event of an evacuation.
 
Fire Safety
The U.K. Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Act requires businesses and educational institutions to carry out a fire safety risk assessment and implement and maintain a fire management plan. Students have a responsibility to comply with the Fire Safety Policy of the host institution.  Become familiar with your host institution's Fire Safety Procedures, Arrangements and Responsibilities. Fire wardens are appointed by the host institution's Deans, Directors and Heads of Unit. There should be sufficient numbers of fire wardens to cover all areas occupied by Schools, Units and Divisions.
 
Know where the fire exits and alarms are located and have a fire escape plan.
 

In an emergency dial 999.

 
Follow these general fire safety tips. Most college-related fires in the U.S. are due to a general lack of knowledge about fire safety and prevention. Educate yourself about fire safety standards in your UCEAP country. Fire safety standards differ drastically around the world.
  • Know where emergency exists are located and check whether exits are passable.
     
  • Know how to call the local fire department.
     
  • Do not stay in housing above the sixth floor so you are within range of most fire department rescue ladders.
     
  • Print and take with you the UCEAP brochure, Fire Safety 101 for Students.
     
  • Purchase and use a smoke detector. Before departure contact the Fire Safety Foundation. Choose from a variety of battery-powered smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms, including models with sealed, 10-year batteries. Once purchased, the alarms and a multilingual installation manual – written in English and the host country’s native language - will be shipped to the address where you are residing.
     
  • Have an escape plan and practice it.
     
  • Treat every smoke alarm activation as a likely fire and react quickly and safely to the alarm.
     
  • Check for fire hazards. Make sure exit routes are not blocked.
     
  • If you have a disability, alert others of the type of assistance you need to leave the building.
     
  • Refer to the UCEAP Guide to Study Abroad, Fire Safety section for life-saving information.
 
UCEAP Contingency Planning
In An Emergency

What Is an Emergency?

An emergency is a serious, unexpected, and often dangerous situation requiring immediate action. The following are considered emergencies:
  • Any life/death situation
  • A traumatic event requiring immediate assistance
  • An arrest
  • Civil unrest or natural disaster in the host country

In an Emergency

Contact local emergency services first and then contact the following:
 

If you are in the U.S.

  • During office hours (8 a.m.–5 p.m. Pacific Time): Contact your Program Specialist at the UCEAP Systemwide Office at (805) 893-4762.
     
  • After office hours: Call the 24-hour emergency phone numbers at (805) 893-4762 or (805) 882-2086.
 
 

If you are abroad

Carry the local emergency contact information at all times.
  • If you need immediate emergency assistance, call 999 for Police, Ambulance, or Fire Department.
 
 

U.S. Embassy in London

 
If necessary, call the emergency number of the U.S. Embassy in London: (011-44-207) 499-9000.
 
Physical Address (GPS & Google maps)
24 Grosvenor Square
London, W1A 2LQ
United Kingdom
 
Mailing Address
24 Grosvenor Square
London, W1A 1AE
United Kingdom
 
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