Summer Academic Experience Courses

Applications for the Summer Academic Expereince Courses are now closed.

The Summer Academic Experience Courses (SAEC) offer pupils from around the world the unique opportunity to experience courses taught in the Scottish academic tradition by current academic staff. Students will get to study an academic subject of their choice, whilst also developing their academic research and writing skills. Students on these courses must have a good level of English.

Students will receive a student ID card and will have free access to our world-class facilities, including the library and newly redeveloped sports centre.

Course dates

Start date: Saturday 6 July 2024
End date: Saturday 27 July 2024

Course fee

The course fee for 2024 entry is £6,000. This is an all-inclusive fee.

A deposit of £500 must be paid within two weeks of you receiving your conditional offer for the course, or by Monday 1 April 2024, whichever is sooner.


International Education Institute SAEC applicants on the Scottish Studies or Sustainable Development courses can apply to The Worldwide Scholarship.

Apply now

All of the courses on offer feature teaching from current academic staff from the University and offer students the opportunity to experience academic life in one of the UK’s oldest and highest-ranking institutions.

Find out more about each course and apply:

Courses available may be subject to change for 2024 entry.

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[intro music]

Hi, my name is Marisol, I'm from the United States and I participated in the medical program.

Hi my name is Oskar Thompson, I am doing the management, entrepreneurialship and economics course.

Hi my name is Ella Prieto, I'm going to be a senior and I was studying the social sciences and Humanities course.

I found this summer program to be incredibly fulfilling in so many different aspects. My lectures have always been incredibly interesting. One of my favorite lectures was one that I was not expecting - it was called Art and communication in Healthcare and I'm forever grateful that I went into that lecture with an open mind because it turned out to be one of the most intriguing lectures that I've ever attended, and I ended up talking to our lecturer after for about an hour and a half.

All the professors are very well knowledged on the topic that they teach, they're very engaging with the class, for what they teach. I feel like myself and everybody in my classes have really enjoyed it.

I have loved the summer school. I've never been away from home for more than 6 days so I was quite intimidated about coming but it's honestly been one of the best experiences of my entire life. Firstly I figured out that I want to come here, that this is my number one school, but also it's helped me, you know, rethink what I want to do as my career choice and what my Majors will be. I was dead set on international relations, but coming here I found such an interest in Divinity and psychology and English and so I'm very excited about it, and I just had a wonderful time.

Over the past few weeks I've learned a lot about personal finances, the stock market and economics and how that ties in with each other.

Well, one of my very favorite classes that I took here was Scottish literature throughout the ages. I didn't know what to expect coming into it but there's just so much history here in Scotland, and especially just in St Andrews, and you know, I really learned how to examine history through poetry and literature, and how to do tutorials, how to ask questions, how to work together to solve the questions that they ask, and so I think that being able to have, you know, just a glimpse of what a college life is like is going to be very helpful for my future.

Being here for the past three weeks has given me a great sense of what it's like to do, like, college on a day-to-day basis. Wake up, go to breakfast, go to class. Have your afternoons free for the most part. They give us a little bit of work that you get to do on your own time with some friends, with the people in your class.

Firstly, just living in the dorms, being able to to feel like a college student was very helpful to me. You know, I've never ever been away for more than 6 days besides summer camp, so living in a dorm setting was really cool. Learning to share your spaces, learning to take care of yourself, that was very helpful - but also learning how to be independent. You know, learning how to walk through the town, and to find your classes and to be on time was very helpful.

We had an admissions lecture along with, specifically, a lecture for international students applying to the UK - not just St Andrews but other UK schools - and I think learning about how some of these programmes work, the difference between Scottish universities and English universities, has very much helped prepare me to be an international student, and to feel confident in my ability to apply and to attend University overseas.

So the professors in our courses have done a great job of setting realistic expectations of what they expect in their classes. They give it to you a little bit realer on the academic side. They're not cushioning anything. It's very, very honest. You'll really feel it's an authentic college course here.

I am so immensely grateful for all the connections that I've made. Most of what I will take away are just the experiences that I had - coming to a new country and getting to learn and meet people and explore has been incredibly fulfilling.

I went here with a couple of good buddies of mine from back home, but for the most part we've met so, so many great people - a lot of different people that you would otherwise never meet back home. I come from a very small town in the middle of nowhere in Georgia, but we've met some incredible people that are very different from us, and it's awesome. It's probably the best thing about being here. We have a group chat with allmour friends at St Andrews and we'll just text in it saying "Hey, football tonight?" ...or soccer in the US... Then we'll just go on to the pitch and play for like an hour or two and just mess around and have fun, or somebody will say "Hey, Beach tonight?" and then everybody will go down to the beach and it'll just be a great time.

The beach has been, surprisingly, one of my favorite parts. I have been going every single day to the beach, actually.

I loved the ceilidh! You know I'm not really a dancer, but learning how to do all the traditional Scottish dances with each other was just so much fun, and the live band was wonderful. We all dressed up and had such a great time. It was definitely a little difficult, but being being surrounded by all your friends and laughing and giggling about "Oh you can't remember the next move" and, just, the music and the energy surrounding it all was so much fun.

I really loved getting to explore, not just this beautiful quaint little seaside town, but also a very good portion of the country. Our day trips to Glasgow and Edinburgh, along with Stirling Castle.

Definitely the trip to Glasgow. I just had such a fun time walking around and seeing all the beautiful architecture, just exploring the different historical parts of Scotland was just very fun, but also I loved surfing! Surfing was really fun and I was a bit nervous because I thought I'd be cold, but they took great care of us and we had such a fun time learning how to surf.

My favorite part would probably be the water park, that was just my favorite thing. It was a lot of fun, just tackling our friends off the the float or whatever.

Coming to this program has been completely lifechanging for me. I really had just no idea how much I would love St Andrews, and being able to actually see the town and live in it for 3 weeks has just completely changed the image of what I thought this University would be, and how much I would love it.

I would recommend this programme to anyone. I mean, I was just blown away by how much fun I had, how much I learned, and how much I just adore this town. I really hope I can come back someday soon.

Oh I'll say definitely do it. This is possibly the most fun I've ever had in the summer. Yeah, it's great, you'll meet some fantastic people, you'll laugh a lot, eat some good food, yeah it's great, you have to do it.

You will be amazed by how fast 3 weeks flies by.

[Can you sum up the SAEC in 5 words?]

I'm going to have to go with:





Um... exciting, and...



Beautiful, like beautiful scenery.



It's awesome, don't want to leave.

[That's six? Yeah, fine...]