Visiting Scholars

Collaboration and connections with a wide range of scholars from across the globe and nation are vital to advancing the research and education missions of the University. Visiting scholars may come to Florida State University for set periods of time at the invitation of an FSU faculty or staff member working in their field. These policies and procedures do not apply to full-time paid Postdoctoral Scholar, full-time paid Professional Research Assistant, full-time paid  Visiting Faculty, or full-time paid temporary subject area specialists. Please see the Temporary Scholar Employees page for information on those positions.

Visiting scholars work collaboratively with the faculty or staff member in areas of research and creative activity. These activities should be of mutual benefit to the scholar and to FSU. These activities help keep the faculty current with a wide range of innovations from around the world, build linkages for further research collaboration, enhance the reach and recognition of our university and its programs, and allow FSU students to learn about other cultures and different approaches to common challenges.

If you are an FSU faculty member or staff who would like to host a Visiting Scholar to engage in collaborative research for a limited time please follow the steps outlined below.

The hosts of all international short-term guests (visits 14 days or less) must register these visits with the Office of Research Compliance Programs (ORCP), subject to the exceptions noted in the Short-Term International Visitor Registration Policy. The registration process for short-term international visitors is found under the "Visitors" module at the RAMP Export Control Portal.

Visiting Scholars are invited to Florida State University by a faculty member with a common research interest. There is no application process to become a Visiting Scholar. The invitation process is initiated by the FSU host.

Inviting a Visiting Scholar/Researcher

Following the FSU Visiting Scholar/Researcher Policy FSU Policy 3-100 all visiting scholars/researchers, whether foreign national or U.S. persons, may only be invited to campus for more than 14 consecutive days with prior approval of department chair/director, dean, and Director of Research Compliance Programs in the Office of Research.

Time Limits

Visiting Scholar Category Maximum Time for Visiting Program
Researcher/Professor/Specialist 2 years (1 year for VS using personal funding/private sponsorship)
Graduate Student (not enrolled at FSU) 12 months
Undergraduate Student (not enrolled at FSU) 6 months






Bench Fees

Bench fee payments from visiting scholar/researcher courtesy appointees are not required at FSU. Some visiting scholars to FSU may have bench fee funds available to help offset the costs of hosting them at FSU and the costs of their specific research activities and may offer bench fees. Host units may also decide to require bench fees from visiting scholars. 
Details on the requirements for requesting bench fees are available in the Bench Fees Visiting Scholar Policy Excerpt.  

Eligibility and Next Steps

The process for inviting a domestic or international Visiting Scholar involves three different FSU departments:

The Office of Research houses the RAMP portal for the initial export control review.

The FSU Center for Global Engagement provides the immigration documents needed for a visiting scholar to apply for a J-1 visa. The CGE also provides orientation for visiting scholars, and immigration advising and support throughout their stay.

The Office of Human Resources processes courtesy appointments required for all unpaid visiting scholars/researchers to access facilities and resources on campus. An OPS or other paid appointment is required for visiting scholars receiving payment from FSU. Visiting scholars/researchers may not begin program activity until on or after the start date on the appointment entered into OMNI or remain longer than the end date of the appointment.

To determine if your invitee is a Visiting Scholar and how you should proceed, choose the answer below that fits your invitee’s details:

Is the Visiting  Scholar…? Is the Visiting  Scholar…? Is the Visiting  Scholar…?

• Arriving at the invitation of a faculty or staff member for temporary collaborative activity, and

• Not a U.S. citizen or U.S. Permanent Resident, nor a non-US citizen with USCIS approved Employment Authorization Document (EAD) and

• Receiving a paid appointment for half time or less (≤ .5 FTE)  from FSU, and

• Not identified through a search committee, not filling a permanent FSU position, and

• Not enrolled in a degree program at FSU

• Arriving at the invitation of a faculty or staff member for temporary collaborative activity, and

• Domestic or International, and

• Financially supported by personal, or private sponsor funds or another institution, and

• Not enrolled in a degree program at FSU

• Arriving at the invitation of a faculty or staff member for temporary collaborative activity, and

• Not a U.S. citizen or U.S. Permanent Resident, nor a non-US citizen with USCIS approved Employment Authorization Document (EAD) and

• Receiving a paid appointment for more than half time (≥ .75 FTE) from FSU, and

• Not filling a permanent, salaried FSU position, not a local domestic hire, and

• Holds at least a bachelor’s degree, and

• Not enrolled in a degree program at FSU

They are an International Paid Visiting Scholar!
Go to the page for International  Visiting Scholars with a paid appointment to FSU
They are an Unpaid Visiting Scholar!
Go to the page for Domestic and International Visiting Scholars not paid FSU
They are a Temporary Scholar Employee!
This scholar does not fall under the Visiting Scholar policy. Go to the page for Temporary Scholar Employees


*If the department is hiring a permanent full-time international employee needing sponsorship for a work visa, please contact Leslie Crosdale for more information.

Faculty hosts should contact for additional information and with questions about the required steps.

Extension Requests for Visiting Scholars

The Visiting Scholar/ Researcher program supports limited-duration collaborations and visits. The time periods for different types of visiting scholars are outlined in the Visiting Scholar/Researcher Policy. Extensions are generally not permitted.

Contacts for Policy and Procedures

Export Control Forms, Scholar/Researcher Agreement: Mary Sechrist at 

J-1 Visa or English Proficiency Requirements: Samantha Buckley at

Courtesy Appointment: Amy Walker at

Visiting Scholar/Researcher Policy, Exception Requests: Steve McDowell at or Cindy Green at 

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