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Bristol, University of
Bristol, United Kingdom (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms: Academic Year,
Homepage: Click to visit
Program Sponsor: University of Bristol 
Program Dates &
Click here to view
Restrictions: CU applicants only
Fact Sheet:
Language of Instruction:
Core Program Attributes:
Cornell In-country Support, Direct Enrollment
Minimum GPA:
Housing Options:
Dormitory/Residence Hall
Approved by:
Open to:
Junior, Senior, Sophomore
Program Advisor: Alayne Prine
Program Description:

Bristol is a thousand years old but remains at the cutting edge; energised yet laid back; culturally rich but unpretentious; unorthodox and influential. 

The University
Bristol is renowned in the UK as being an academic heavyweight.  We are one the UK's premier universities and are proud of our worldwide reputation for academic achievement and award winning research.  University league tables consistently place Bristol in the top ten of all universities in Britain, and for UK students Bristol is one of the most difficult universities to get into. 

The University has been groundbreaking and forward thinking since gaining its Royal Charter in 1909. The University of Bristol was the first institute of higher education in the country to admit women on an equal basis with men.  Our students come from all aspects of society, which ensures a diverse and vibrant community. We believe that anyone with great potential will thrive at Bristol. We offer an opportunity to engage with intellectually challenging programmes of study, designed and taught by world leaders in research. Our supportive environment enables you to work in partnership with creative teachers.  We also offer numerous opportunities to take part in social, sporting and cultural activities.

By studying at Bristol, you will be part of a community of highly motivated and talented people.


The Wills Memorial Building part of the University of Bristol campus

The City
When you choose a university, you're also choosing the place that will be your new home, so it's worth getting it right. Our students always say how much they love the city of Bristol - from its friendly people and fantastic music scene to its vibrant harbourside, green spaces and buzzing centre.

Bristol is a fantastic place to live. You will be spoilt for choice when you sample life outside the University. Most of our university buildings are in the heart of this creative, multi-cultural city. A short stroll from the University precinct, will take you to Bristol's beautiful Harbourside. The redeveloped quayside is alive with artistic and cultural activity: theatres, concert halls, bars and restaurants, galleries, street art, and live music. Bristol's music and arts scene fires on all cylinders, with festivals championing new music and venues where you can enjoy everything from unsigned bands to chart acts.

While nightclubs, films, parties and gigs - all that a big city has to offer - are part of university life, there will be times when you just want to unwind and get some fresh air. Here, Bristol hits the mark again, with beautiful surrounding countryside that's perfect for escaping from the hustle and bustle of the city.

For more views and information about this vibrant city, please have a look at our interactive map of Bristol.


The Study Abroad Programme


Bristol is a thriving, modern city, effectively the capital of England's West Country, but it has a long history that can be traced back a thousand years or more. Indeed it was the most important city in England outside London until the early 19th century. It was a major port, trading with the United States from the very earliest days. Today Bristol is a major financial and industrial center where British Aerospace and Rolls Royce combine to form the biggest aerospace complex in Western Europe. It also has the factories and research laboratories of high technology companies such as Hewlett Packard and Du Pont. There are still many reminders of the city's glorious past, among them a host of medieval churches in the narrow streets of the old city, and fine examples of Georgian buildings and crescents in Clifton near the university, rivaling those of Bath only 13 miles away. Dockside warehouses have become homes, offices, shops, art galleries and cinemas, and the harbor is full of pleasure craft.

The arts flourish, with opera, film, ballet, music of every kind, and galleries ranging from the classical to the avant garde. There is a lively pub music scene, latest bands to traditional jazz, and the Colston Hall offers classical and rock concerts each week. If you are feeling adventurous, you can go caving in the Mendips or rock climbing in the Avon Gorge. Slightly further afield, but within an easy days excursion of less than 100 miles, are Oxford, Stratford-upon-Avon, Stonehenge and the coastline of south west England. The hourly speed trains take only 75-95 minutes to reach London itself.


Bristol is firmly established as one of the premier universities in the United Kingdom, and has a worldwide reputation for its scholarship and research. All British rating exercises place Bristol in the top ten out of nearly 100 universities in Britain, and for British students it is one of the most difficult universities to get into and one of the most sought after besides Oxford and Cambridge. It is a middle-sized institution with approximately 13,000 students working in more than 45 different academic departments, so there is a very rich intellectual life. Anybody familiar with British universities will be able to confirm Bristol's excellence and reputation.


You will be fully integrated into the university scene, attending the same lectures, going to the same seminars, and sitting the same examinations as your British counterparts. At the beginning of the academic year students are assigned to one of the program's academic advisers, all of whom are well versed in non-British systems, especially the American ones. Each department also has a teaching member of staff who is the Study Abroad Contact, specifically responsible for the progress of study abroad students within that department. For each of the units undertaken by a student, the relevant department will assign a tutor whose responsibility is to set essays, mark and comment upon them, and generally oversee academic well-being for that particular unit.

Departments: (Departments with an asterisk "*" received either a 4 or 5 out of 5 in the Research Assessment Exercise conducted in 2001 by the Higher Education Funding Council for England. Departments with "**" received a 5*. )

Sciences: **Anatomy, ** Biochemistry, *Biological Sciences, *Mathematics, **Chemistry, *Physics, *Computer Science, **Psychology (lab-based classes are full-year only), **Earth Sciences, Pathology & Microbiology, *Pharmacology, *Physiology, **Geography
Engineering: *Aerospace, *Electrical & Electronic, **Civil, *Mechanical, Engineering Economics
Social Sciences: *Economics & Accounting, *Social Policy & Administration, *Politics, **Social Work, Sociology
Arts: *Archaeology, History of Art, *Classics & Ancient History, Modern Languages, **Drama, *Music, *Education, *Philosophy, *English, *Hispanic Studies, *French, *German, *Italian, Deaf Studies, Law, *Theology & Religious Studies, *History

Information about course selection is available on the Bristol website:


Units are normally taught through a mixture of lectures, tutorial or seminar classes (which vary in size from perhaps two to a dozen students and require active participation) and practical laboratory work (where appropriate). Attendance at classes is of course regularly monitored for credit earning purposes. Assessment is normally by written work, project or laboratory work (where relevant) and examination. These usually come at the end of the year in May and June. Cornell Abroad participants must maintain a full course load during their period of study abroad. Units are weighted differently so it is the responsibility of prospective participants to arrange with their major advisor at Cornell before departure and through communication at the time of course selection that an appropriate amount of Cornell credit will be awarded as equivalent to the work done at Bristol.


As on all Cornell Abroad programs, grades are recorded on the Cornell transcript but are not calculated in the cumulative grade point average. Bristol number grades are reported and are converted to Cornell grades according to the following Bristol recommended equivalencies: 65 and higher = A, 60-64 = A-, 57-59 = B+, 54-56 = B, 50-53 = B-, 45-49 = C+, 40-44 = C, Below 40 = C-/F.


Fall Semester: late September? - early December
Spring Semester: early January? - mid-March
Summer Semester: mid-April? - mid-June


The University of Bristol guarantees accommodation for all October entrants. January entrants, though not formally guaranteed accommodation, almost always receive housing. Participants must be willing to live under local conditions for students. There are self-catering student houses in Clifton (near the University) as well as large catering and self-catering halls of residence the majority of them at Stoke Bishop, near the university's sports ground, a convenient bus ride or 35-minute walk across open park land to the University. There is a wide variation in the amenities provided in halls of residence and students are advised that it is unlikely that all of the services to which they are accustomed at Cornell will be available (i.e. phones in rooms, ethernet connections).


There is a wide range of student-organized clubs and societies (over 150), covering cultural, academic, political, religious and recreational interests, and ranging alphabetically from amateur radio to Welsh. The Student Union houses a swimming pool, a supermarket, ATM machines, three bars, a cafe, a travel bureau, two theaters, a games room, a launderette, a hairdresser, music practice rooms, a second-hand book shop, a video and record library, study rooms and meeting rooms. Over forty sports are also represented with excellent practice facilities. The university's boathouses are at Saltford on the River Avon, and the sailing club operates at Axbridge and in the Baltic Wharf Marina near the city center. Courses are organized for beginners in many sports.


Immunization for group C meningococcus and for mumps is recommended by UK health authorities.

Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Approx. Start Approx. End
Spring 2016 10/01/2015
Rolling Admission TBA TBA
Fall 2016 03/01/2016 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA
Academic Year 2016-2017 03/01/2016 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Programs may fill long before their final deadline. * Recommendation--For SPRING: APPLY in MAY to study abroad the following spring. For FALL/YEAR: APPLY in DECEMBER. Later applications are always welcome, but colleges may need time to process your approval.

Indicates that deadline has passed. See CUAbroad.