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Returning home

Returning is just as much a part of the exchange experience as leaving. When you plan your departure, allow enough time for administrative details, travel arrangements, farewell parties and other important tasks.

Make sure you consider the steps that you will need to take both before and after your return.

Before you return

Register for courses

If you are leaving in September and will be returning to UVic for January, you will be eligible to register for your January courses during the regular registration cycle, which is before you go overseas.

  • for example, if you're participating in a one-semester exchange that starts in the fall, you should register for the spring term classes during the regular web registration period

Year-long exchanges may require you to complete your UVic registration while you are away on exchange. If you are on exchange during the regular June registration period and you plan to return to UVic for the following fall semester, you will need to register online while you are away.

Pay tuition fees

If you are on a one-year exchange that starts in the spring, you must make arrangements to pay your UVic fall term fees by the September fee deadline, which will come up while you are away.

Gather course materials

While on exchange, you will need to collect the following information for each course:

  • detailed course description in English or French
  • contact hours for each course (e.g., total number of hours in class, tutorials and labs)
  • course syllabus/description
  • reading lists, essay topics, test questions and project assignments

Request official transcript from partner university

As soon as you finish your courses abroad, contact the exchange office at your host institution and request that your official transcript in English or French be sent to the International Centre for Students. Payment will not be required. Partner institutions are aware that they need to submit a transcript to UVic, but not all have an automatic process. Please note that if you would like an additional transcript for your own records, you will need to request that from the partner, separately.

After you return

When returning home, some students are surprised to find they experience as much, or more, culture shock as when they first began their exchange. You may find that your interests and values have changed, while your friends and family have new and different interests that are unfamiliar to you.

Culture shock is normal, and in time you'll cultivate a deep appreciation of both your exchange culture and your home environment. You can prepare for this experience by:

  • connecting with international activities on campus, including events and programs organized by the UVic Global Community and the International Student Association
  • talking to other people who have studied abroad about their experiences returning to Canada
  • understanding that your friendships and relationships may have changed as a result of your new experiences
  • exploring new opportunities and meeting people with whom you can share your international experiences, such as international clubs and courses where you can apply what you learned from your travel and academic experiences abroad

If you need further information or support to readjust to life in Canada, contact the Student Wellness Centre.

Share your experience

We're grateful for the regular monthly reports you've provided, which will serve as useful resources for prospective exchange students. You can also:

  1. Share your blog, video diary, photo collection or any other documentation of your international experience with us.
  2. Write about your experiences in our international newsletter or on our website.
  3. Participate in events such as the International Opportunities Fair, where you can can meet with other recent exchange students, prospective UVic exchange students and incoming exchange students.
  4. Submit your exchange final report on your overall experience.

There are also opportunities to volunteer as a mentor, in a leadership role or to assist in classroom presentations. If you would like to help out and share your exchange experience, please contact us to participate.