Skip to main
University-wide Navigation

Each semester the University of Kentucky welcomes non-degree seeking exchange students from our many international partner institutions.

The first step if you are interested in attending UK on exchange is to speak with the education abroad or international office at your home institution.

You must be officially nominated by your home institution and approved by UK before you can start the UK exchange application process. UK cannot accept applications from students not officially nominated by their home institution, or from institutions with whom UK does not have an active exchange agreement in place.

students in paris

Cost of Attendance

Proof of funds required for study at the University of Kentucky for academic year 2023-2024.

Tuition and Fees Included in Exchange Benefits
Accommodation, Meal Plan, Books & Supplies $15,000
Health Insurance $2,654 ($1,008 for fall term, $1,646 for spring term)
TOTAL $17,654 (approximately $8,827 per semester)

Note: Amounts are subject to change at any time without notice


All non-native English speaking exchange applicants must provide a valid certificate from one of these providers demonstrating proof of English language proficiency.

ALL test results must be less be than two years old at time of application to the UK exchange program.

Undergraduate TOEFL® 527 (197 CBT, 71 iBT*) / IELTS 6.0 / Duolingo test with a minimum score of 105
Undergraduate students in College of Business and Economics     TOEFL® 550 (213 CBT, 79 iBT*) / IELTS 6.5 / Duolingo test with a minimum score of 105
Graduate TOEFL® 550 (213 CBT, 79 iBT*) / IELTS 6.5 / Duolingo test with a minimum score of 115 
(Official scores required for all language proficiency tests)

UK also accepts these confirmations of English language proficiency for Undergraduate ONLY:

  • TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition (same minimum score as listed above)
  • My Best Score for TOEFL-iBT format
  • Cambridge English First Certificate, or Cambridge English Advanced Test with  a minimum score of 173.
  • Cambridge English Proficiency Test with a minimum score of 180

Application Deadlines

April 15 Fall semester & academic year
(begins in mid-August)

September 15 Spring semester
(begins in early January)

Application Process

Step 1: Nomination

The first step in the admissions process is for you to be officially nominated by your home institution using the online UK Exchange Student Nomination form.

Exchange Nomination Form

Step 2: Complete Application with UK

Once nominated, you will receive preliminary approval from the UK Exchanges Coordinator for acceptance into the exchange program. You will be instructed to complete the online UK EA exchange application. You must provide the following documentation as part of your application: 

  • Proof of English proficiency (unless English is your native language)
  • High quality color scan of your passport photograph/identification page 
  • Official transcript from your home institution (with English translation if necessary)
  • List of UK courses you want to take while on exchange
  • Completed Exchange Student Application form

IMPORTANT! This is the only application an undergraduate exchange applicant is required to submit to UK. Do not submit any other applications to UK.

Graduate exchange applicants will be informed by the UK Exchanges Coordinator if you are required to complete an additional application to the UK Graduate School.

Step 3: Admissions Processing

The UK Exchanges Coordinator will review your completed application packet and submit it to UK Admissions for processing.

  1. UK Admissions will send you a welcome email with a link to the page on the UK Admissions website where you can ‘Check Your Status’.
  2. The email will also state:  “Please be aware that you must pay your application fee before your application can be reviewed.” IGNORE THIS. Incoming international exchange students are not required to pay the UK application fee.
  3. The email will also instruct you to “Please complete your Federal Application for Student Financial Aid (FAFSA).” IGNORE THIS. Only students who are US citizens can complete a FAFSA.

Step 4: Acceptance

Once UK Admissions completes the processing of the application you will receive an email informing you there is an update to your status and instructing you to sign-in to your ‘Check Your Status’ account.

Here, you can download your official acceptance (decision) letter and detailed instructions on next steps in the pre-arrival process (activate UK linkblue and email accounts, apply for accommodation, register for orientation etc).

UK does not mail out a hard copy of the official acceptance letter.

You will also receive a separate email from UK International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS) office with the subject line ‘ISSS Student Application & Determining I-20/DS-2019 Eligibility.’

This email will instruct you to use your LinkBlue credentials (provided in your acceptance/decision letter) to sign-in to iCAT. This is where you submit your Proof of Funds documents and request the DS-2019 form required for your US student visa application.

Once your proof of funds documents are approved your DS-2019 will be emailed to you by ISSS.

Blue Line

Health Insurance

The US State Department requires international exchange students to have health insurance which meets all requirements of the Affordable Care Act.

To ensure this, you are automatically enrolled in the University of Kentucky Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) when you enroll in classes. You do not need to complete any forms to enroll in SHIP.

For the academic year the cost of SHIP is $2,654 ($1,008 fall semester, $1,646 for spring semester). These amounts are subject to change.

Information about the policy and its requirements is available on the ISSS website here

Health Insurance Waiver

In certain circumstances, an exchange student who believes their own health insurance policy complies with the Affordable Care Act can submit a Health Insurance Waiver Request after arrival at UK. If the waiver request is approved you will not be required to purchase the UK SHIP.

If the waiver request is denied you will be required to purchase the UK SHIP. Information on the waiver requirements and process are available here -

You are recommended to review the requirements of the US Affordable Care Act very carefully before purchasing a health insurance policy in your own country. In most cases these policies DO NOT meet Affordable Care Act requirements.

Travel plans will not be accepted as proof of adequate health insurance.

Deadline for Fall Waiver Applications: September 15th
Deadline for Spring/Summer Waiver Applications: February 22nd