Find out what support is available to you while you’re abroad.

Main point of contact

When you are abroad, the host university will be your main point of contact. They are there to help you and look after you.

The Sussex Abroad team are also here to support you in whatever capacity they can. If you experience issues, it's important you let us know as soon as possible.

Culture shock

It can be exhilarating, rewarding and intellectually stimulating to live in a new culture.You'll meet new people, see new places and try different things. Adapting to a new environment may come easily and naturally, but at times you may also feel overwhelmed and experience what's called culture shock.

See our advice about overcoming homesickness and culture shock.

Practical advice during emergencies

  1. If an emergency situation occurs, be guided by your host university. They will have procedures in place and will be prepared for emergencies.
  2. Listen to local news broadcasts and follow local and national government advice.
  3. Make contact with your parents/next of kin as soon as you can, to let them know that you are safe.
  4. If the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office are recommending that people leave the country or area, then students are advised to leave. Always check their foreign travel advice.
  5. Embassies will work to get their nationals out of a country. Websites of embassies and FCDO equivalent offices should give information on the services that are being provided.
  6. It is important that we have your address and telephone number so we can contact you whilst you are abroad. Update your study abroad address on Sussex Direct so in the event of an emergency situation, we can try and contact you or get someone else to check on you.

In case of a personal accident, use the support structures in place at your exchange host university. Make a note of the names and contact details of the relevant staff in the International Office (or its equivalent) where you are. They have a duty of care responsibility to you and can accommodate your local needs, whether in relation to housing, coursework or transportation. 

You should also contact the emergency services of your health insurance or travel cover provider where necessary. 

You should return home if you are concerned about your safety as a result of an event, such as an earthquake or political unrest. If you have not completed the assessment you should discuss this with the host institution or contact the Sussex Abroad team.

Coming home early

If you want to withdraw from a study abroad year that has already started, you must complete the relevant form below and notify both the Sussex Abroad team and your host institution.

If you request to withdraw before the end of week 3 of Sussex’s semester 1 of a study abroad year, you will be transferred onto the non-year abroad variant of your degree and go straight into the final/next stage of your Sussex course following your second year (subject to agreement with your school). You will not receive the suffix ‘with a study abroad year’ in your degree title and the study abroad year will not appear on your marks record or degree transcript, or contribute to classification.

If you request to withdraw after the end of week 3 of Sussex’s semester 1 of a study abroad year, you will be required to temporarily withdraw from your course and return to continue your next stage of study at Sussex the following September. The study abroad year will remain on your marks record and transcript and be recorded as a failed module. The study abroad year will not contribute to classification. You will not receive the suffix ‘with a study abroad year’ in your degree title.

See more from Studying abroad