Student exchange programs

Exchange programs are a great way for students to learn about different cultures and languages.

The Alberta government offers language and culture exchanges to:

  • Germany
  • Japan
  • Mexico
  • Quebec
  • Spain

How to apply

The deadline to apply for 2020-21 exchanges has passed.

After you apply

We will notify students and liaison teachers when we get their application and provide more information about next steps.

Applicants must submit a Vulnerable Sector Police Information Check to the Student Exchange Program for everyone 18 years of age or older who lives at home while the exchange student is in Alberta.

We match students in April or May, depending on the program. Students and families can review the proposed match and decide if they want to accept it.


The following brochures provide an overview of our student exchange program. A poster is also available for schools to use to promote the programs.

Liaison teachers

Liaison teachers play an important role in the success of our student exchange programs.

Liaison teachers help:

  • promote the programs
  • screen applicants and their families
  • support Alberta students studying in other countries
  • support exchange students studying in Alberta

Find out more about this professional development opportunity by reading the Liaison Teacher Guidelines (PDF, 202 KB).

Other reciprocal exchanges

Students can participate in an organized reciprocal student exchange program similar to what government offers. They can arrange these exchanges privately through an organization or on their own through an agreement with friends or family.

A one-to-one reciprocal student exchange involves 2 students who either:

  • switch places and study at one another’s schools, or
  • study together in an Alberta school district and then in the exchange school for equal periods of time

Students participating in a one-year exchange program not provided by Alberta Education must complete a Reciprocal Student Exchange Approval Form (PDF, 44 KB) before they leave for their exchange.

Find other exchange programs for youth in Canada.

Educator exchange programs

The Alberta Government and the Alberta Teachers’ Association (ATA) offer professional development opportunities for teachers and school administrators under educator exchange programs. These programs give Alberta educators the opportunity to work abroad while learning about new cultures, education systems and teaching practices.


Exchange programs can help give participants:

  • a better understanding of other cultures
  • enhanced language skills
  • exposure to different education systems and assessment methods
  • an opportunity to build an international network
  • new teaching ideas

Types of educator exchange programs

Short-term exchanges

Short-term exchanges give teachers and administrators 1 to 2 weeks of job shadow experience.

They are available in:

  • Australia
  • Iceland (administrators only)
  • South Korea (pilot for special education teachers)
  • Canada (Alberta)
  • Germany
  • Spain
  • United Kingdom

Learn more in the Short-term exchanges brochure (PDF, 985 KB) or by visiting the Alberta Teachers’ Association website.

Long-term exchanges

Long-term exchanges give teachers a full year to work in another county or province outside Alberta.

Opportunities are available for full calendar (January to January) or school (July to July) years.

They are available in:

  • Australia
  • Germany
  • United Kingdom
  • Canada (provinces other than Alberta)

Learn more in the Year-long exchanges brochure (PDF, 603 KB) or by visiting the Alberta Teachers’ Association website.

How to apply

Visit the Alberta Teachers’ Association website to apply.


Student Exchange Programs

Connect with the Student Exchange Programs:

Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Phone: 780-644-4470
Email: [email protected]

International Education Services – Student Exchange Programs
Main Floor, 44 Capital Boulevard
10044 108 Street
Edmonton, Alberta  T5J 5E6

Educator Exchange Programs

Connect with the Educator Exchange Programs:

Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)
Phone: 780-447-9400
Toll free: 1-800-232-7208
Email: [email protected]

Educator Exchange Programs
Barnett House
11010 142 Street
Edmonton, Alberta  T5N 2R1

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