Universidad de Málaga

Málaga is a port city on southern Spain’s Costa del Sol, known for its high-rise hotels and resorts jutting up from yellow-sand beaches.

Located on the Mediterranean coast, Málaga is home to over a half-million residents, and with a history that reaches back nearly 3000 years, is also one of the oldest cities in the world. Founded in 1973 in the Costa del Sol (Coast of the Sun) region of Southern Spain, the Universidad de Málaga is blessed with excellent weather and a pleasantly warm climate (with over 300 days of sun).

The University is located on two campuses, El Ejido and Teatinos Campus, in the city of Málaga, and currently has a population of 40,000 students. Málaga, birthplace of Pablo Picasso and Antonio Banderas, continues to attract attention - it was nominated for the 2016 European Capital of Culture, and continues to attract over 6 million visitors a year with various festivals and events including "the Holy Week of Málaga" (which has been running for 5 centuries). 

Key Information


Málaga, Spain


English, Spanish


Academic Year, Fall, Winter

Program Type


Application Information

Application Status



20/21 deadline

First come, first considered for remaining spaces until full or:

Mar. 15 (Fall, full year)

Oct. 15 (Winter)

University Specific Additional Requirements

One academic reference required - see the Eligibility section below.

21/22 applications

Open Nov. 1, 2020

Program Details

Málaga offers programs in Archaeology, Art History, Biology, Business, Chemistry, Communication, Computer Science, Economics, Engineering (Chemical, Electrical, Industrial, Mechanical, Software), Environmental Science, Fine Arts, Geography, Health Science, History, Math, Philosophy, Psychology, Social Work and more, including unique programs such as Journalism, and Translation studies. All courses are taught in Spanish, and Masters-level courses are not open to exchange students.

See http://www.uma.es/oferta-de-grado/ to see a list of degree programs. After selecting a program, you can click on "Study Plan" for a list of courses offered in that program.

Malaga also offers some courses in English

1 UofC half course equivalent = 6 ECTS credits, and students typically take 18-30 ECTS per semester. 

The Transfer Credit Database (see "useful links" at bottom right) contains information on previous courses which have been transferred from this institution, however students are not limited to these courses. For specific transfer credit information contact your Academic Advisor.

Student Tips: "The classroom interactions between students and professors was different than what I am used to back in Canada. Here the environment was much more interactive and student participation was expected. Professors are incredibly friendly and helpful, many of them taking a personal interest in students. Many of [my] classes had a case study approach which was a much better learning tool than sitting in a class and taking notes. There was also the opportunity to interact with teachers and receive real world insights into different areas based on their work experience in international organizations, governments, businesses, start-ups, and NGO’s."

The academic year is divided into semesters. The Autumn Semester runs from mid September to mid February and the Spring Semester runs from mid February to early July. It is generally not possible for students to finish the Autumn Semester in December.

  1. Costs

    Málaga cost comparison vs. Calgary: Click Here

  2. Funding

    Students studying in Spain may be eligible for the Julio Peris Award, valued up to $1250 per student. 

    Our office administers the International Study Travel Grant for students travelling on approved UCalgary study programs that are credit bearing. The amount changes year to year as the money is split evenly between qualified applicants. Students may only receive the study travel grant once. Please see the exchange funding page for more information.

    Did you know that you can take your UCalgary funding with you on exchange? 
    Since you remain a degree seeking student at UCalgary while on exchange you remain eligible for any awards and scholarships you are eligible to receive from the university as well as student loans.

Accommodation at Málaga is self-arranged but they can provide support. UMA offers an Accommodation Service that can help students find housing. The Housing Office at Málaga cannot book accommodation for you, but will advise you on your housing options, which include university residences, living with a host family or finding private rental accommodation.

  • On-campus residence is approximately €600 per month including meals.
  • Off campus apartments cost approximately €600 per month, although it's possible to find shared off-campus accommodation for €200-€400 per month (average €250 p.m.)

This exchange is open to regular, full-time students in any faculty at the U of C, who have completed at least 1 full year (10 courses) at the post-secondary level, with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.7 (B-).

Most courses at UMA are taught in Spanish - as such, applicants must have a command of Spanish at the B1 level according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Language (CEFR) at a minimum, or have completed at least two 300-level or above courses in Spanish. Students do have the opportunity to take Spanish language courses during their stay (see FAQs for more information).

What options are available for improving my Spanish at Málaga?

Málaga offers Spanish courses prior to the start of each semester for 3-4 weeks (starts first week Sept, first week Feb) to improve and consolidate your Spanish skills. This is run by the CIE (Centro Internacional de Español). The course runs for 70 hours, but only has space for 20 - 25 students, and is worth 7 ECTS Credits. Cost is €200, and students that attend 80% of the classes and pass the final exam will earn a certificate.

There are six levels of this course which correspond to the Common European Framework of Reference (A1, A2, B1, B2, C1 and C2). These courses are offered providing the minimum number of students required is reached after the completion of the level placement test. On the first day of the course, students will take a level placement test. On the last day of the course, students will take an exam of the level studied - so students with advanced Spanish skills can still improve their Spanish.

What supports or services are available at Málaga?

Once you receive your Málaga student ID on arrival, you will have access to campus libraries, sport centre, and cultural events. For incoming exchange students, they offer a highly recommended Buddy Program where incoming students can be supported by and make friendships with local Málaga student volunteers. For more information, see the brochure attached in the link above, or visit their site

For information on accessibility of campuses across Europe, ESN has created "MappEd!" which allows you to check the accessibility of universities and cities across Europe. For city-specific services and places in Europe, the Jaccede interactive platform (website and/or smartphone app - both Android and iOS) also provides a searchable user-built database to identify important accessibility information of public places and locations.

What's special about Málaga and the university?

Málaga, the capital of the Málaga province, is the 5th most populated city in Spain due in part to its mild temperatures thanks to the warm winds from the sea and the Málaga Mountains behind the city, which act as a shield from the cold. It is the most Southern of all the large cities in Europe, making it a great stepping off point for adventures to Northern Africa, only 80 miles from its coast. The birthplace of Pablo Picasso and Antonio Banderas, this city also garners attention from its consistently sunny skies (over 300 days of sunshine each year) and the warmest winters in all of Europe (average temps 17 degree). 

Dating back more than 3000 years, Málaga makes an excellent base for exploring history from the Phoenicians to the Romans, or to jet off on trips to Morocco, Grenada, or Gibraltar. 

Student Tips: "They have all kinds of facilities throughout the UMA campus. The only difference is the university is distributed differently than at the U of C where everything is in one same campus. Here, you have different campuses depending on your faculty and each of them have their own facilities, libraries, labs, vendors, etc. 
Get to know Malaga as much as you can. It is an incredible city with so much to offer. Head to El Palo in Malaga where the nicest beaches/seafood restaurants and small town Spanish living is. Also, take advantage of group traveling organized by organizations affiliated to the university or ones that you can trust. Attend the first week of orientation to meet all the exchange students who are in the same situation as you. You can meet the people you will hang out with for the rest of the semester."

Have questions?

Study Abroad 101

Please watch this YouTube playlist before reaching out or booking an appointment.

Watch Study Abroad 101

Academic Advising

Before applying to study abroad, you should ask your academic advisor how an exchange might align with your degree (e.g. best time to go, what courses you need).

After you are accepted, you should ask your academic advisor more specific questions about courses/transfer credits. It’s also recommended to follow up with your advisor again once you return to Calgary.

Find your academic advisor

Study Abroad Advising

If you have questions about this exchange program, you can meet with the specific advisor for this program by booking an appointment through the link below. Appointments are currently on zoom.

1. Select “Book an Appointment”
2. Select “Study Abroad Appointments”
3. Select “Book by Appointment Type”
4. Read through the list of appointment types to select the most appropriate type and view available times.

Book an appointment

The exchange advisor for this program is: Saskia Schaelicke

How to Apply

Download the application guide

This PDF contains information on how to complete your application and what to do after you have applied.

Application guide

Identify three programs of interest

We recommend applying for your top three programs for the priority application deadline, as placement may be competitive. We will assess your applications in ranked order.

Check requirements and deadlines

These may vary by program, so check the individual program pages and make sure that you are aware of any different application deadlines or eligibility requirements.

Start your application

Once you have gathered everything you need, you can begin your application!

Please note: Applications will not be considered complete until all required documents are submitted in full.


International travel presents challenges that may not be found when attending classes on campus. There may be a lack of resources, emergency services, hospitals, accessibility issues and/or demands on the physical and the mental self, all of which can challenge individuals when away from their usual support systems and structures. Adequate preparation is essential.

For this reason, it is imperative that you evaluate all aspects of your own physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual condition against the rigors of the particular study abroad program you are selecting. If you are unsure of whether or not this program is a good fit for you and/or if you have any circumstances that could impede your enjoyment of the program, please contact us. Our Study Abroad Team will be happy to assist in finding the best options for you and arrange any supports or accommodations necessary to ensure your success.

Please note if you have or are seeking a certificate from Student Accessibility Services, you should provide this early to your Study Abroad Advisor to ensure that the option that you are seeking can support your needs.