Obtain valuable real-world experience with a Development Work Placement or a Placement Year.

Undergraduate degree programmes in the School of Global Development* offer students two work placement opportunities to supplement the knowledge and skills learnt in other modules. The first is Development Work Placement for two to three months and the second, a Placement Year for nine to twelve months. Many postgraduate degree programmes offer students a Development Work Placement instead of a dissertation.

These placement opportunities help to ensure students leave with transferable and professional skills that prepare them for graduate life. We provide a range of resources to assist students to find and secure a placement including guidance of where and how to search for opportunities, access to details of previous placement projects and workshops provided by the placements team in CareerCentral. We also work with placement providers to offer dedicated placements for students in the School of Global Development.

Students can carry out their placement in the UK or overseas. In recent years, our students have travelled to diverse countries including Uganda, Peru, Thailand, Ghana, Cambodia, Belgium, Tanzania, Japan and Cyprus. Every year is different! Students can access some funding from the department, which can help towards the cost of their placement. UK Government Turing funding is also sometimes available, for those travelling overseas.

Undergraduate students can apply for one our our named degrees 'with Overseas Placement' or 'with a Placement Year' but it is also possible to enrol on a placement programme once you have started studying with us. Postgraduate students on a course that includes the Development Work Placement as an option make their choice to enrol on this module once they have embarked on their studies.

World is Your Oyster brochure


Hear more from our recent undergraduate placement students below:

  • Rebecca Elliott
    Rebecca, Peru
    For my placement, I worked with Otra Cosa Network (OCN) who are based in Huanchaco, Peru, a small surfers town in the north of the country. OCN is dedicated to providing educational projects within and around Huanchaco in informal settlements. During my time there, my role was to plan and teach the literacy curriculum. I learnt so much from this role and it boosted my confidence and improved my Spanish language skills. The opportunity to immerse myself in Peruvian culture was incredible. Having the weekends off, I was able to travel with other volunteers to explore cities and hike in the beautiful Andes! My DWP was one of the best experiences of my life. As well as gaining valuable life skills, it has inspired me to follow a career in education and development
  • Eleanor Sutton
    Eleanor, Uganda
    For my placement I worked with Public Health Ambassadors Uganda (PHAU) in Kampala, Uganda’s capital. PHAU is a youth centred public health NGO whose thematic areas include sexual and reproductive health, HIV/AIDS, youth economic empowerment, and WASH. As a Programmes and Communications Intern, I worked with two core teams of the NGO, travelling and working in the field on current projects and following that up with writing blog posts and updating PHAU’s social media accounts. This experience was a great opportunity to apply what I had learnt about international development and the developing world. In addition, this experience showed me what I found important and has helped me to construct an idea of what I want to do as a career moving forward. I would recommend the Development Work Placement to everyone as it provides hands on experience in the development sector that would otherwise be difficult to do.
  • Kyra Thompson
    Kyra, Belgium
    During the summer, I went to Brussels, Belgium to work as a Fundraising and Communications Intern at Oasis Belgium, a non-profit organisation that supports victims of sex trafficking and gender-based violence. This involved assisting the director with daily tasks including contacting survivor support initiatives, visiting massage parlours, and project managing a fundraising cookbook. It was rewarding to hear positive outcomes of cases that I assisted with and I am grateful for the survivors for sharing their stories. This experience taught me valuable skills and knowledge that I will take with me to my next endeavours. I learned the importance of accurately representing the voices of survivors of torture, and understanding how including survivors in research and policy changes can contribute to their empowerment and address gaps in policy.

*As part of the celebration of our 50th anniversary in 2023, we have changed our name from the School of International Development to the School of Global Development.