Co-Curricular Learning Certificate

England and Wales Co-Curricular Learning Certificate

The Co-Curricular Learning Certificate is a record of the student’s non-academic co-curricular and extra-curricular learning experiences. The CLC is a self-directed opportunity organized under a series of themes explained at orientation. Students spend a prescribed amount of hours engaged in activities that contribute to the completion of a reflective piece. The work is assessed by The College of Global Studies and the certificate is awarded to students meeting the criteria.  

For more information on the Scotland Co-Curricular Learning Certificate, please visit this page.

One of the most important and potentially challenging aspects of the study-abroad experience is a meaningful engagement with the host culture. Arcadia’s Co-Curricular Learning Certificate offers students a formalized way in which to participate in British life beyond the classroom!

In addition to gaining an enhanced understanding of British history and culture, students who enroll in the CLC program receive formal certification of their intellectual curiosity and enthusiasm for new experiences. These traits are extremely attractive to potential employers, but are often difficult to quantify. The CLC is therefore an excellent asset in the building of a strong resume or cv.

Students will typically choose from one of seven themes, but they may also pitch their own theme to the CLC coordinator for approval. Each theme has three required activities, which comprise a mix of institutional learning (e.g. relevant museums) and self-directed research. Once they have a solid understanding of their theme from the three required components, students will choose the fourth ‘wildcard’ activity themselves, with the coordinator providing additional guidance where necessary.

All participants must complete a minimum of four hours of community engagement relevant to their chosen theme. Community of engagement is defined as the student or group of students interacting with people from the local culture, whether through community service or taking part in clubs or activities held by the local community. The CLC program will offer students guidance and organizational support on how this engagement is best to be achieved.

The CLC includes a mandatory final project, which will be negotiated with the program coordinator. The project will be a 2500-word written piece that records and reflects on the activities undertaken and details the learning outcomes achieved. Equivalent projects such as video diaries and art works, or some combination of these elements in tandem with a shorter written piece, may be approved. This project will be submitted at the end of the semester.

The CLC coordinator will meet with each enrolled student once at the beginning of the semester, with a mandatory mid-term check-in typically occurring in the sixth or seventh week. During the check-in, students will be given the opportunity to seek advice on selecting their wildcard activity, as well as tips on how to structure their final report.

In London

The seven CLC themes and their associated activities are:

The Green City

Exploring London’s pastoral spaces and participating in some of the capital’s ongoing environmental initiatives.


  • Visit to Chelsea Physic Garden
  • Volunteer day with the British Wildlife Trust
  • Kew Gardens

Metropolis & Medicine

A tour of some of the major outbreaks and medical breakthroughs in London’s history.


  • Royal College of Surgeons Hunterian Museum
  • The John Snow Pub
  • The Freud Museum

Thames Life

Understanding the importance of the Thames River, from London’s founding to its contemporary cultural life.


  • Day trip to the river’s source (Thames Head, Gloucestershire)
  • Museum of London Docklands
  • London Thames Walk with free downloadable audio guide from

Crime & Punishment

Charting the evolution of criminality and discipline in the capital.


  • ‘Adult Learning Event’ at The Tower of London
  • Recreate the infamous last journey from Newgate prison to the Tyburn gallows
  • Attend public trial at the Old Bailey

The Belly of London

Discovering the past and future of how London feeds itself.


  • Smithfield Meat Market & Borough Market
  • Volunteer day with The London Orchard Project
  • Visit to Imperial College’s food for the homeless initiative

London at War

Learning how World War II shaped and disfigured the modern capital.


  • The Cabinet War Rooms
  • The Jewish Museum Holocaust Exhibit
  • Blitz London: St. Paul’s and the Barbican

Good Sports

A cultural history of England’s contribution to global sporting life.


  • World Rugby Museum, Twickenham
  • Marylebone Cricket Club
  • Attend a professional Rugby or Cricket match


Outside London

The program can also be pursued at any of the regional study-abroad programs throughout the UK. Initial induction and the subsequent check-in meeting will take place via Skype.

The criteria described above for the London program also apply to regional students: participation in four discreet activities and composition of a final 2500-word report. However, the themes suggested for students studying throughout the UK are more flexible, allowing students to structure a learning experience according to both their interests and the special features and strengths of their respective locations.

The Imagined City

Consider four artistic interpretations of your study-abroad home and its environs. For example, who has written about it, sung about it, or painted it? How does that cultural history affect our current ideas about this region? How are places always to some extent constructions of the imagination?

British Food & Culture

Explore how your corner of Britain feeds itself. What is its relationship to agricultural industry? Was it historically associated with a market town? Is it now locally sustained or supplied primarily by chain supermarkets? Activities include visits and research into the history of market culture and farming in your area.

Sacred Symbols

Create your own tour of hallowed places in your environs. You can choose traditional venues of worship such as churches, cathedrals, synagogues, and mosques, as well as considering other iconic sites or symbols that hold spiritual meaning, whether religious or secular.

Community Engagement

Choose a community-focused organization in your area that accepts volunteer workers and participate in their initiatives at least four times throughout the term.

Environmental Exploration

Learn about the natural environment beyond the campus. Your engagement may be filtered through relevant outdoor activities, visits to conservation areas, or independent exploration of striking features in the local landscape.

The Multicultural Map

Whether being invaded and conquered, or representing the seat of British Imperialism, this island has never been isolated. Consider the multicultural influences that have shaped and continue to impact your local community. What is the history of ethnic diversity in your area? Were the Romans or the Vikings there? Did indentured peoples pass through on their way elsewhere? Which formerly colonized nations continue to have cultural presence in the life of your town or city?