Visiting Scholars Admissions & Application

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The law school receives many more applications than there are places available. Most successful applicants are current law faculty, public legal officials or experienced attorneys who already hold an LLM or PhD in law. Applicants who are enrolled in a graduate degree program outside the U.S. are not eligible for the Visiting Scholars program.

Admission to the visiting scholars program is highly competitive. An appointment as a visiting scholar requires formal faculty approval and is not automatic.

Application Requirements

Admission to the Visiting Scholars Program is highly competitive. An appointment as a Visiting Scholar requires a formal director approval and is not automatic.

  1. Fill out an online application and pay a non-refundable application fee ($200).
    Please note that we will not be able to process your application without this payment.
  2. Send the following documents to uwvs@uw.edu
    • Curriculum Vitae (CV)
    • Research Proposal
      The research proposal should be between 3-5 pages long and outline the area on which you intend to focus your research during the Program. The proposal should include the following sections – Working Title, Background, Project Statement and Plan, and Bibliography.
    • Two Letters of Recommendation
      Two (2) letters of recommendation are required. They should come from law faculty or other professionals in law who can best evaluate your capacity for research in the United States. You may have the letters mailed/e-mailed directly by the referee or send them with your supporting documents.
    • Visiting Scholars Program Intake Form
    • Letter of Financial Support From Your Sponsor
      Required for all non-U.S. applicants to process visa requests. Funding sources could include a U.S. government agency, an international organization, the Visitor’s government, the Visitor’s employer or other organization, or any combination of these. Personal funds may supplement but not substitute for institutional, governmental or employer funding. UW does not provide visa sponsorship to Visitors funded solely by personal or family funds. Combined sources of funding should be sufficient to cover expenses. The letter of financial support should guarantee at least $2100 per month for one person or $3000-$3600 with dependents (for the visa processing). Also, the letter of financial support should state the proposed dates of the research period (we cannot extend your stay beyond what your sponsor supports).
    • Photocopy of Highest Academic Degree
      A proof of highest degree is required to process visa requests.
    • Photocopy of Passport Page For You And Any Accompanying Family Members
    • Proof of English Language Proficiency
      Effective Jan. 5, 2015, visa regulations require that J-1 exchange scholars provide one of the following measurements of English language proficiency: (1) A recognized English language test; (2) Signed documentation from an academic institution or English language school

Deadlines

Although we have an open enrollment policy, we strongly encourage scholars to start the program in fall (August - September) or winter (January).

In light of prolonged U.S. immigration procedures, all Visiting Scholar applicants are strongly encouraged to submit the application at least 5-6 months prior to the applicant’s anticipated arrival in the United States.

Assessment of applications takes about 4 weeks from the date of receipt, and may take longer if the application is incomplete. Upon approval and issuance of an invitation to the Visiting Scholar, UW processing time of immigration documents may take between 4-6 weeks from the receipt of the J-1/DS-2019 request and supporting documents.

Fees

  • Non-Refundable Application Fee $200
    This fee payment will be applied toward your scholars program fee.
  • Deposit $800
    Once you are accepted by the program, $800 deposit must be paid to secure your slot in the program. This deposit payment will be applied toward your scholars program fee. We will not be able to process DS2019 document(s) to obtain a J1 visa without this deposit payment.
  • Visiting Scholars Program Fee $1000 a month (or $10,000 for one calendar year)
    This fee will cover the costs of their visit, access to Law School and library facilities and resources, and other Visiting Scholars Program scholarly and social activities.
    We accept and prefer payment by credit card. If you wish to pay by money order (exact amount) or personal check, please coordinate in advance of your orientation. We do not accept cash.
  • UW DS2019 Form Fee $235 (per person)
    Additional separate fee applies to process J-1/DS-2019 visa documents through the UW International Scholars Office (ISO). The current ISO DS-2019 processing fee is $235 per person, and a $50 fee to reissue DS-2019 (for date changes etc.).
  • SEVIS Database Fee (Approximately $200)
    Once you receive your DS2019 certificate, you must go to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement web site and pay the SEVIS fee. This is required by federal law, prior to your visit to the U.S. consulate/embassy for the visa interview. The payment instruction will be provided to you by the UW International Scholars Office (ISO).
  • VISA Fee (Approximately $160)
    To obtain a J1 visa, you must pay approximately $160 US dollars to apply for a J1 visa.