Collegio Ghislieri, Pavia University Exchange

Programme Details

  • Undergraduate & Research students.
  • There is no restriction as to subject provided the subject is offered at the University of Pavia.
  • The successful candidate(s) will be expected to have some knowledge of Italian.


Costs covered
  • Travel expenses.
  • Accommodation and meals are provided free of charge by the Collegio Ghislieri.
  • The students are not liable for tuition fees at the University of Pavia


Useful notes
  • Most students who are nominated to go to Collegio Ghislieri before their graduation will have to intermit their studies for one academic year. Students who intermit need to ensure that they have researched any effects on their funding (i.e. with SLC or their funding body).
  • In some cases, the year at Collegio Ghislieri counts towards the students' studies (eg Year Abroad for MML students or graduate students who don't intermit). In these cases, students will still be liable for their fees at St John's College.
  • The Italian academic year runs from September until July.
  • Most courses are taught in Italian. The University of Pavia has been increasing the number of courses taught in English in different disciplines - the list can be found here
  • All exchange students are required to participate in the exchange activities organised by Collegio Ghislieri, unless it is clearly stated that participation is optional.


Since 1982, there has been an exchange scheme between St John's College and the Collegio Ghislieri, Pavia University in Italy. The exchange scheme allows an undergraduate or research student to spend the Italian academic year at the Collegio Ghislieri in Pavia and study at the University of Pavia.

Application Procedure

Application Procedure

The Pavia Exchange is usually advertised to students in November with a deadline in December. The exact dates will be posted on this webpage closer to the date and a relevant announcement will be made by Student Services.

Students who wish to apply will be asked to also attach: (i) a basic CV, and (ii) a personal statement with their ideas concerning the type of course or research that might be pursued in Pavia and how they believe that this exchange would benefit their studies and their personal development. The statement should be no more than one A4 page long.

Student Services would be happy to respond to informal enquiries and requests for information.

The successful candidates will be notified at the end of January.



‘The year I spent in Pavia was definitely the best year of my life so far - not only did I broaden my subject knowledge and get the chance to see Classics from a different perspective than the one offered at Cambridge, but I also learnt a vast amount about the Italian language, education system, culture, and people - who, despite my complete inability to speak even a sentence of Italian when I arrived, gave me a warm welcome and have now become some of my closest friends. The year is an unmissable experience and I would strongly encourage all students to apply, whatever your motivations may be - whether Pavia has a strong faculty for your subject, or you want the time and freedom to delve into the research areas which most interest you, or you want to improve your Italian’

Jenny, Classics, Academic Year 2017-18