University of São Paulo - Brazil

Exchange Programme for Undergraduate Students

In this page you will obtain all the information you will need about how to apply to any Exchange Programme offered by Universidade de São Paulo (USP) for undergraduates.

Universidade de São Paulo (USP) offers a number of exchange places for students from partner universities from all around the globe. You can apply for the international exchange programme from your second year of studies onwards at a university that has an international exchange agreement with USP.

Before proceeding, please be sure to read the information below:

Content of this page:

  1. Before you apply
  2. Deadline for nominations
  3. Deadline for applications
  4. How to apply
  5. Language requirements
  6. Search and selection of courses
  7. Special requirements and course restrictions
  8. Your Parent School at USP
  9. How many Credits you will need to be enrolled on
  10. Supporting documents
  11. After you apply
  12. Further important information
Before you apply

The instructions that follow are valid for applications submitted via USP International Cooperation Office (Aucani). If you are applying via a subject specific agreement, please contact one of the International Relations Commissions (Local International Offices operating at the faculty level).

You will need to contact your home university Student Exchange Coordinator for application information. To be eligible for an exchange place you will need to be nominated by your home university.

Free Movers are not eligible for exchange and cannot apply through USP International Cooperation Office. Students considering applying as Free Movers should contact directly the Local International Office of the School/Institute of their interest to check the eligibility criteria and the application procedures.

USP may consider applications of students nominated by Study Abroad Advisors/Exchange Coordinators of non-partner universities. In this case, admission of students will be subject to the availability of places. Please contact your Study Abroad Advisor/Exchange Coordinator of your home university to discuss the application process.

You will find further information for (non-)partner universities and applicants on our Nomination/Application Platform Mundus.

Deadline for nominations
  • Exchange in the 1st semester (February – June): online nomination from August 1st until October 5th.
  • Exchange in the 2nd semester (August – December): online nomination from March 1st  until May 5th.
Deadline for applications
  • Exchange in the 1st semester (February – June): online application from August 1st until October 15th.
  • Exchange in the 2nd semester (August – December): online application from March 1st until May 15th.
How to apply

Once you have been nominated, you will be emailed a link and instructions to complete your application. You must upload all supporting documents as part of your online application. 

The applications submitted will then be analyzed by the Central International Cooperation Office and forwarded to the School(s) of interest in the days following the deadline.

Language Requirements

Portuguese is the main language of instruction at USP. USP does not ask for any result from official language tests. However we strongly recommend that students nominated for exchange studies at USP have a good command of Portuguese in order to attend classes (at least B1 level according to the CEFR).

The School of Education (FEUSP) accepts students with a basic knowledge of Portuguese (A1 level).

For information on the availability of study options possibly taught in English, please refer to the Local International Offices operating at the faculty level.

Search and selection of courses

When choosing the courses you wish to attend, take into account the number of credits that you are expected to accumulate in a given semester. Before filling out your Learning Agreement, please read carefully the sections related to the Credit System at USP and Credit Transfer Guidelines and Grade Equivalency. Please note that there are differences between the undergraduate and the postgraduate level. More or less credits may be accumulated each semester, provided that the Learning Agreement is approved by the home university.

Many courses at USP have curriculum requirements that need to be considered. Therefore, the requests will be analyzed taking into account the student’s Transcripts of Records and the Learning Agreement.

A full list of courses can be found in the Undergraduate Course Catalogue on our Nomination/Application platform Mundus (on the left menu bar).

When designing your Learning Agreement, please keep in mind that the preliminary course choices during the application period are intended to provide you with an understanding of the potentially available study options. They also help your prospective host school(s) prepare for incoming students and define your home school at USP based on your major field of study, interests, and course preferences.

However, please be aware that the course list available during the application period may not necessarily match the actual course offerings when the enrollment period begins, which occurs later upon your arrival. As a result, you may need to make adjustments to your original Learning Agreement during the add/drop period, based on the most current course offerings and your timetable.

Special requirements and course restrictions
  • The School of Engineering (Escola Politécnica) requires exchange students to enroll in a number of subjects that corresponds to at least 12 credits;
  • Ribeirão Preto School of Economics, Administration, and Accounting (Faculdade de Economia e Administração de Ribeirão Preto – FEARP) requires applicants to enroll in a number of subjects that corresponds to at least 16 credits;
  • The School of Architecture and Urbanism (Faculdade de Arquitetura e Urbanismo – FAU) and the School of Economics, Business and Accountancy (Faculdade de Economia, Administração e Contabilidade – FEA) receive each semester a large number of applications and have limited capacity to admit all exchange students. Please refer to their Local International Offices before nominating students/applying. It’s highly recommended that students intending to apply for the above-mentioned schools consider the possibility of applying for other schools as well.
Your Parent School at USP

You are able to take courses from across different subjects and teaching schools at USP, regardless of your major and of which school is your parent school at USP. You will be allocated a parent school that will be responsible for the administration of your studies at USP.

If you apply directly through one of our Local International Offices operating at the faculty level, you will be allocated that school as your parent school. It will not be possible to change parent school whilst you are studying at USP.

If you apply via USP International Cooperation Office, you will be allocated the most appropriate parent school based on your Learning Agreement, i.e., based on the school that offers the majority of the courses you take, preferably and sometimes necessarily the one that offers the same major you study at your home university or the one that is more closely related to it.

How many Credits you will need to be enrolled on

At USP you do not have to take a certain number of courses. Instead, you must take a certain number of credits. As the credit system at USP is curriculum-centered, the number of credits that you will have to take per semester depends on the subject of your choice. The number of credits that corresponds to a full-time workload greatly depends on the subject and varies considerably across subjects.

The suggested minimum of credits that you should take per semester is 12, independently of the subject area (at FEARP it is 16 credits. See the requirements above). In order to find out how many credits students take on average per semester within each single subject, please contact the Local International Office of your probable prospective parent school. It is common and fine to deviate more or less from the average values and still be regarded as a full-time student.

Supporting documents

You will need to upload copies of the supporting documents:

  1. Transcript of records: versions in English, Spanish and Portuguese are accepted. Documents issued in other languages must be sent along with a simple translation into Portuguese, English or Spanish;
  2. Learning Agreement: (download the template) it needs to be signed and stamped by an academic who has the authority to approve the mobility programme of outbound students (Learning Agreements), to exceptionally amend them when necessary, as well as to guarantee full recognition of such programmes on behalf of the responsible academic body;
  3. Passport: bio-data page. It must be valid for the period of exchange at USP;
  4. Photo: in .jpeg format. It will be used for your Student ID;
  5. Letter of Recommendation (optional): a one or two-page letter of recommendation from an academic authority at the home university (in Portuguese, English or Spanish) for participation in the relevant exchange program at USP.
After you apply

The applications submitted will be analyzed by the Central International Cooperation Office and forwarded to the School/Institute of interest in the days following the deadline. The applications will then be subject to assessment on an individual basis.

Since USP operates on a strongly decentralized basis, once the application is accepted, your parent school itself (not the Central International Office) will send the acceptance letter directly to the address informed by the Study Abroad Advisor/Exchange Coordinator, who will also receive a copy of the letter by email.

Further important information