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The SU UK: Innovative Schools in the UK Program is a 3-week, 4-credit program specially designed for Southwestern students in collaboration with AIFS. Held in London, England, this program allows students to visit a variety of traditional and innovative schools, gain classroom experience, explore the history of education in the UK and the importance of “education culture” in relation to the culture of the UK.

Students apply for this program directly through Southwestern

London, United Kingdom

SU UK 2023 Brochure


  • Dr. Michael Kamen, Professor of Education 

  • Information Sessions: 

    • Sept 28, 12:30-1:30pm, Prothro 233
    • Oct. 20, 4:00-5:00pm, Prothro 233
    • Nov 9, 12:30-1:30pm, Prothro 233

    Application Deadline: December 1, 2022

    Note: you must attend an Information Session or Advising prior to application

    Program Start Date: Sunday, May 14, 2023

    Program End Date: Sunday, June 4, 2023

    Pre-Departure Orientation Sessions: Three mandatory sessions to be scheduled during spring semester 2023. 

    Pre-Departure Class Sessions: five 2-hour class sessions to be scheduled during spring semester 2023.

    Post-Program Class Sessions: three 1.5 hour virtual class sessions to be scheduled during June 2023. 

  • The estimated program fee for this three-week program will be between $5555 and $6105, depending on enrollment.

    The program fee includes:

    • $450 non-refundable deposit
    • 4 credits of tuition
    • Shared rooms in shared apartment, centrally located in London
    • Kitchen and laundry services on-site
    • Airport pick-up and drop-off
    • Welcome dinner
    • Overnight excursion to Brighton including hotel, breakfast, transportation
    • Transportation pass London
    • Sightseeing tour of London
    • Visit London Eye and Thames River Cruise
    • Academic visits and 3-day school placement
    • Medical insurance

    The program fee does not include:

    • Most meals
    • International airfare
    • Baggage fees and travel insurance
    • Passport and visa expenses
    • Local and independent travel
    • Personal expenses: toiletries, activities, snacks, personal travel, souvenirs, etc.
    • Textbooks
    • Background check

    Cost details are subject to change

  • All students will take the following course:

    EDU 40-314: Innovative Schools in the UK (4 credits)

    The structure of class in London will include pre-visit exploration of schools, where we will learn about the theories behind each school and the implemented pedagogy.  Examples range from a strong social justice ethos to a back-to-nature mission with a “green” focus.  Some have a global focus, others adhere to a specific person’s vision.  As part of our inquiry, the class will be encouraged to evaluate a school from the perspective of its goals and mission.  At the same time, we will learn about theories about maintaining innovation and why some schools drift back to the norm while others maintain their identity.  Additional elements for this course include:

    • An overview of the history of education in the UK 
    • An overview of the centralized system of education
    • A comparison for the education systems in the US and the UK 
    • Understanding the importance of an “education culture” and its relation to the larger culture of the country
    • Intersections of innovative education in the US and the UK

    This course does not have any prerequisites and is open to all majors. Meets Education Major requirement, General Education Social Science, Design Thinking Tag.

    Please note that in addition to the 3-week program in London, there will five 2-hour evening classes on campus during the spring semester and three 1.5-hour post-trip virtual classes for debriefing and presentation of final assignments. 

  • Housing: Students will be housed in double rooms in shared apartments with other SU students. Apartments are centrally located, maximum 30-minutes travel time to the AIFS Center, with shared kitchens and living spaces within each apartment and shared laundry facilities on-site.

    Meals: A welcome dinner is included. Students are responsible for their own meals.

    Transportation: Airport pick up and drop off included. The student housing will be within walking distance of stops for London buses and the Underground or “Tube”.  Oyster card included  for unlimited travel on the underground, buses, trams and regional trains in the central zone 1 & 3 of London during the duration of the program.

  • The program will begin with an orientation, sightseeing tour of London, a ride on the London Eye and Thames River Cruise. 

    The UK is home to a proliferation of innovative schools.  Make the United Kingdom your living classroom through visits to local schools, such as a Forest Schools, a Waldorf Schools, a Montessori school and a Democratic School. Build real-world classroom experience through a 3-day placement at a school in London.

    Embark on an overnight excursion to Brighton with visits to schools and cultural activities, transportation and accommodations at a bed and breakfast.