Mobility and Exchange Outgoing

Application and Deadlines

From your application to your exchange, you will go through the following steps:

Registration at UniBE International: You register on Mobility-online for an ISEP-exchange stay and you list your desired universities according to your priority. The test results of the language test (TOEFL, IELTS) do not have to be available at the time of this registration. You will then receive an email from the ISEP-coordinator at UniBE International with all the necessary information to set up an ISEP account and to start your online ISEP-application on the ISEP-portal.
Online ISEP-application: Submit your completed online application with all required documents electronically and pay directly the processing fee of USD 100 to ISEP Global. Afterwards the ISEP-coordinator of the University of Bern will review your application and she will forward it to ISEP Global.

Please note the two different application deadlines for the UniBE International registration and the online ISEP application!

Allocation of exchange place: After the application deadline has passed, ISEP Global evaluates the applications received and allocates the host university to you. The evaluation takes approximately two weeks.

Confirmation of acceptance: You will then be asked to create a course list on the ISEP portal. After reviewing this list, the host university will confirm your acceptance. You will pay ISEP Global the placement fee of USD 425.

Organizing your stay: With the confirmation of your exchange, you will receive further information on how to plan your stay (visa application, local accommodation options, course registration, etc.). You will receive an invoice from the University of Bern for the amount of CHF 6'000. If you are doing an exchange in the USA, you will receive the document DS-2019, which you need for the visa application at the US Embassy.

After your stay: The ISEP-coordinator at the University of Bern receives your transcript of records/marksheet from ISEP Global/host university and forwards it to you. You submit the transcript, the Learning Agreement and additional documents, if required by your institute (consult your institute's website under "Mobility"), to the subject coordinator of your field of study for credit transfer to your degree programme.

Are you interested in an ISEP exchange stay? Please clarify the following points/topics before you apply:

Research ISEP Universities

Get an initial overview of the available exchange opportunities on the ISEP-Portal. Select the appropriate filters in the ISEP search portal (semester, year, region, subject, language) and under "more filters" the study level abroad (undergraduate=bachelor, graduate=master) as well as ISEP Exchange program. Now click on those universities that interest you. You will first be taken to a page with general information about the university and campus. At the bottom of this page, click on "ISEP Exchange-Learn More". This will open an overview of the following topics: housing, meals, course description (with a link to the course catalogue), university location, academic information, and semester dates.

Under "Academics", select the level of study you will be in during the exchange semester. Click on the arrow to the right of your study level. This will take you to the fields of study offered at this university. You can study your major and/or minor field of study. Check here to see if your study field is offered and then look at the course catalogue to see the courses offered. The courses of your intended exchange semester are most likely not yet published. Nevertheless, you will get a first impression of the courses offered in your subject.

Language test registration

Below the listed subjects you can see the academic requirements (recognized language tests incl. required score). Take the language test that is valid for all your selected universities. The relevant links to information, preparation material, test centers in Switzerland and data on TOEFL and IELTS can be found under "Requirements and Costs" on this website. For the TOEFL test, select TOEFL-academic. Register early for a test. Upload the certificate with test results in your ISEP-online application.

Students majoring or minoring in English who do not have a TOEFL or IELTS certificate may apply to universities that accept ISEP's Language Proficiency Report (LPR). In the ISEP search maschine, click on "more filters" and under "Academic Requirements," on "Accept Alternative Language Evaluation". The requested English Department faculty member will evaluate your language proficiency using the LPR form that is automatically sent to him/her when you enter his/her e-mail address on the ISEP-online application. The completed form is automatically uploaded to your online application.

Chances of Placement

Look at the "Semesters & Prices" section to see your chances of placement for your selected semester. Carefully read the «Chances of Placement» information sheet and prioritize your list of universities in descending order according to the chances of placement. The list should contain an average of five (USA 7) universities. You can only select one most competitive university and it must be at the top of your list. List at least two universities with good or excellent placement chances so that you have a real chance of being placed for the selected semester. Putting only one most competitive or limited universities on your university list is undesirable. It is therefore important that you show some flexibility in the selection of your universities. Please note that the level of your study grades has no influence on your placement. Places are allocated by means of an algorithm.

Letter of Recommendation

You will need a letter of recommendation from a faculty member of the University of Bern in your field of study for the ISEP application. Inquire early. In your ISEP-online application, you can enter the e-mail address of this person under the heading "academic reference", who will then receive an online form to fill in.

Departmental exchange coordinator

It is important to involve early the subject coordinator in your study field in the planning of your stay. They can give you information about which time is suitable for an exchange and what the situation is in general with regard to credit transfer from abroad. Since you list several universities in your ISEP application and do not have to compile a provisional course list until after you have been placed at a university, you can only discuss more precisely the credit transfer at this time with your subject coordinator. You record the selected courses in the "Learning Agreement". The purpose of the learning agreement is to enable transparent preparation for your study and to ensure that the courses successfully completed abroad are recognised as part of the degree programme.



UniBE International Counselling

Do you still have questions about the ISEP exchange program or the application procedure? UniBE International will be happy to advise you.

To make an appointment, please contact the ISEP-coordinator Cornelia Stuber:

Upload the following documents in your online ISEP application:

  • Language test/language proficiency certificate: Official copy of language test results (TOEFL, IELTS) or LPR Language Proficiency Report. The Language Profiency Report LPR completed online by the faculty member of the University of Bern will be automatically saved in your online application.
  • Current Transcript of Records in English: Request your Transcript of Records (study sheet in English dated/signed and stamped) at the Dean's Office of your faculty.
  • List of planned courses for the semester before your exchange: Create a list of courses translated in English that you plan to take at the University of Bern during the semester before your exchange stay.
  • Letter of recommendation from a lecturer in your field of study: The letter of recommendation completed online by the lecturer will be automatically saved in your online application.
  • Copy of passport
  • Recommendation: General letter of motivation in the language of the target country: The letter (approximately one page) should be written in general terms and should not refer to a specific university. It contains the following points: Academic suitability for study at a foreign university, personal suitability for an exchange stay, language preparation, other factors that you believe will contribute to a successful participation in the ISEP program. Upload the letter under the "additional documents" section.

For students of the University of Bern, the application deadlines below (and not the official ISEP-Global application deadline) apply.

Applying for an ISEP exchange is a two-step process: First, register on Mobility-Online with UniBE International. The registration window opens at the beginning of October for the following fall semester/academic year and at the beginning of April for the following spring semester. Second, start your online application on the ISEP-website.

  Fall semester/academic year Spring semester
1. Deadline for registration at Mobility-Online UniBE 15 January 31 July
2. Deadline for application on ISEP-website 15 February 31 August


1. Link to online registration at Mobility-online

Complete the registration form and list your universities by priority ("ISEP exchange"). The ISEP-coordinator of UniBE International will then check your registration. If the conditions for an exchange are met, you will receive further information so that you can start the online ISEP application (step 2).

2. Link to the application on the ISEP-website

In your online application on the ISEP website, you can list your preferred universities by priority and upload the required documents. Submit the complete online application and pay directly the invoice (processing fee) of USD 100 to ISEP Global. Afterwards the ISEP-coordinator of the University of Bern will review your application file for completeness and forward it to ISEP Global before the official ISEP application deadline: Fall semester/academic year: March 1 / Spring semester: September 15.

UniBE International has no influence on the placement at a specific university. A well-founded application can increase your chances of getting a place at the university of your choice. However, there is no guarantee.

Would you like to develop and improve your intercultural learning and competence?

MILSA outbound is the University of Bern’s intercultural learning and mentoring program for its outbound exchange students.

Further information