Visiting scholars

Visiting scholars

The University of Washington School of Nursing is committed to collaborating with colleagues across the globe to translate evidence-based practice and affect health disparities and quality of care in systematic ways.

The visiting scholar program welcomes faculty colleagues whose work on evidenced-based research relates to the expertise of a faculty sponsor and can be fostered through a three to twelve-month visiting scholar appointment at the UW School of Nursing.

Visiting scholars bring new cultural and professional perspectives that enrich our mutual understanding. Through these collaborations, we look forward to working with colleagues around the world to make significant impacts on global health.

How to apply

Inquiries should be emailed to Jocelyn Maher, international programs coordinator and need to include complete application materials. These include:

  • International Programs Initial Inquiry Request form
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Statement of Purpose (outline your goals for your visit)
  • Documentation of English proficiency: The TOEFL-IBT (Test of English as a Foreign Language) with a minimum score of 92; International English Language Testing System (IELTS) minimum score of 7.0.

Applicants do not need to inquire directly with faculty prior to applying. We ask for at least six months to one year advance notice of your desired visit.

Although there may be faculty members with compatible interests, other commitments may make it impossible for a faculty member to serve as a sponsor at the requested timeframe.

We regret that the School of Nursing cannot accept all applicants to the visiting scholar program and must refuse some applications because of space limitations or unavailability of an appropriate faculty sponsor.

Requests for summer-only appointments are seldom accepted because most faculty are not available during the summer.

Eligibility and financial support

Applicants must hold a faculty appointment. Excellent English language skills are a critical factor for a visiting scholar’s ability to participate in the intellectual and social life of the school community. Proposed activities must be research focused, not course work or pedagogical in nature.

Once invited, applicants must be able to demonstrate institutional and/or external funding sufficient to cover expenses. Please review the information on the International Scholars Office site for minimum requirements of financial support necessary to meet the cost of living in Seattle.

The UW School of Nursing does not provide any funding support. The visiting scholar must sustain all expenses, such as transportation, insurance fees and personal and travel expenses.

Fulbright Program

The Fulbright Program is an excellent resource for non-U.S. citizens to come to the United States to conduct research. Please visit the Fulbright website for further information on how to apply for funding.


The visiting scholar fee is $1,000 per month, with the minimum visit of one month. Visiting scholars are also charged $213 per DS2019 document provided. This fee is non-refundable once the application is processed.

The visiting scholar fee defrays the administrative and other costs of the visiting scholar program. The visiting scholar fee is subject to change.

Please pay with check or money order, payable to the University of Washington School of Nursing. No cash is accepted.

Your experience

Research activity focus: Visiting scholars will undertake full-time pursuit of research activities, including drafting manuscripts, doing data analysis, writing grant proposals and revising publications and deliberating on methodological approaches. Because the length of stay for visiting scholars is relatively short, department chairs must approve any intent to apply for IRB approval and collect primary data; approval is rare.
Presentations: Visiting scholars are sometimes invited to make a presentation to faculty and/or students about their research or about nursing practice in their home countries.
Limited classes: The visiting scholar program is focused on research activities. The J-1 visa is intended to support research and does not allow extensive course enrollment. A visiting scholar may enroll in one course, if closely relevant to the research effort, and with approval of the faculty sponsor, without jeopardizing the visa status. Application for graduate non-matriculated student status, registration and tuition are required.
Class observation: Permission is granted at the discretion and courtesy of the instructor, with the approval of the faculty sponsor. Observers are asked not to participate in classroom discussion unless invited by the instructor. No registration is necessary. If you wish to receive a grade you may pay tuition to enroll in the class.
Clinical site observations: The School of Nursing cannot and does not arrange programs of observation at clinical agencies due to liability risk. Visiting scholars are not compliant with the numerous requirements, such as HIPAA training, criminal background checks, immunization clearance, and additional site-specific requirements.

This policy includes the University of Washington Medical Center (UWMC). While the school and the medical center are both members of the University of Washington, they are independent institutions. A brochure that provides rich detail for a self-guided tour is available in the Health Sciences Building Lobby (C301).
Housing: Visiting scholars are responsible for their own housing arrangements. Email the international programs coordinator for information about contacting the university’s visiting faculty housing service and other resources for finding housing.

The school cannot assume financial responsibility for guaranteeing a reservation for housing of any kind. University-sponsored housing is very limited and usually restricted to students.

Faculty sponsor

Visiting scholar’s faculty sponsor serves as the main contact point for the visiting scholar during their time at the UW School of Nursing. The faculty sponsor and the visiting scholar are peers as members of the faculty, with the faculty sponsor providing mentorship and guidance to the resources and networks available to the visiting scholar as part of the UW School of Nursing community.

The faculty sponsor assists the visiting scholar as an intellectual collaborator, usually meeting regularly while the visiting scholar works to shape her/his own research ideas and progress toward goals. The visiting scholar’s statement of purpose provides the framework for the activities undertaken while on campus; any adjustments to those goals must have the agreement of the faculty sponsor.

The visiting scholar program and the J-1 exchange visitor visa was created with the primary purpose of enabling cultural exchange between the United States and other nations,  building mutual understanding between Americans and people of other countries.

Cross-cultural exchange activities are an essential part of the university’s J-1 exchange visitor program and of the UW’s continued ability to sponsor exchange visitors across campus. In addition to your research and educational activities, please plan to experience the culture of the United States and the Pacific Northwest. Your faculty sponsor and your department will include you in departmental and UW activities and events, as well as some off campus social events. Please do not hesitate to ask your faculty sponsor or your UW School of Nursing colleagues for suggestions to experience American culture.

After the invitation

Once a visiting scholar has been invited, the international programs coordinator will initiate the process to provide the necessary DS2019 form for the visiting scholar to take to a U.S. Embassy or Consulate to secure the J-1 visa. An overview of the visa process is available from the International Scholars Office.

Visiting scholars must arrive before the official start date on the DS2019 and may arrive up to 30 days prior to that start date, in order to find housing and get settled. If circumstances delay arrival, promptly contact the international programs coordinator to arrange for an amended DS2019 with a corrected start date.

Visiting Scholars must depart after the end date of the DS2019 and may depart up to 30 days after that end date, to settle affairs and sight see as desired.

The international programs coordinator and the department faculty sponsor will work together to arrange the visit, with the department providing advice on all academic matters. The international programs coordinator will provide administrative support on issues such as visas and university regulations. An orientation day will be planned for the start date.

Mandatory insurance and check-in

All visiting scholars must visit Gerberding Hall to check-in with the International Scholars Office (2nd floor) so that their arrival on campus can be reported to the Department of Homeland Security as required by federal law. Also, all exchange visitors must show evidence of insurance, as required by federal law.