International Visiting Scholar Program

Edwards Campus academics class

About the program

The University of Kansas School of Education and Human Sciences regularly serves as host to visiting scholars from outside the United States. The KU SOEHS International Visiting Scholar program is designed to provide opportunities for faculty from universities in other countries to engage with the SOEHS academic community on our campus. The program is intended to facilitate mutually beneficial interaction and collaboration between KU faculty and international scholars. This program is administered by the SOEHS Global Education Academy (GEA).

Services provided to International Visiting Scholars


International Visiting Scholars will be provided with:

  • Regular interaction with a faculty mentor/partner: with meetings scheduled at least monthly.
  • Access to KU Library resources and orientation on the use of those resources
  • With permission from the KU faculty member teaching the course, opportunities to audit relevant classes in SOEHS.
  • When appropriate, opportunities to interact with other faculty members and graduate students relevant to the Scholar’s research focus.

The GEA office will serve as a base for International Visiting Scholars, with assistance to help scholars adjust comfortably to life in Kansas, including help with:

  • Locating housing and communicating with landlords, utility providers, and other aspects of housing.
  • Enrolling children in local public schools and understanding the school system.
  • Orientation to daily life in Kansas, including guidance on shopping, safety, transportation, local social/cultural practices.
  • Other aspects of life in the United States.
  • Opportunities to visit cultural sites in the region and participate in cultural events.
  • Opportunities to interact with local residents both within and outside the academic community.
  • Opportunities to attend KU sporting events and other experiences of traditional campus culture.
  • Office space and facilities: access to shared office space and computers, with wifi and limited access to printing and other services.
  • Orientation to the use of library resources and other resources on campus.

(beyond focused interaction with Faculty mentor/partner)

  • Regularly scheduled gatherings for sharing information on current research or on aspects of the relevant academic field in the home countries of the International Visiting Scholars, with faculty and students at KU.
  • Opportunities to attend presentations and other events where faculty and students share information on current relevant research.

Additional campus services

English courses

Visiting Scholars may enroll in one Applied English Center course for no charge. Visiting Scholars may also enroll in additional Applied English Center courses for a fee.

Bus and Parking

As university affiliates, International Visiting Scholars will be issued KU ID cards that will allow free use of the bus system that serves campus and the city of Lawrence. Some International Visiting Scholars may also choose to purchase vehicles. KU does not provide free parking, but International Visiting Scholars who wish to park on campus will have the opportunity to purchase parking passes.

KU International Affairs

International Support Services--Visiting Scholars will also be invited to participate in social and cultural events organized by KUIA-ISS for international scholars and students

Selection and Expectations

To be eligible for an invitation to come to KU SOEHS as an International Visiting Scholar, a scholar should meet these criteria:

  1. A prospective International Visiting Scholar must be a faculty member at an institution of higher education or a research institute. It is assumed that the International Visiting Scholar will be a foreign citizen but may be an American citizen working abroad.
  2. A prospective International Visiting Scholar must have a defined research project to work on while in residence.
  3. A prospective International Visiting Scholar must be sufficiently proficient in English to engage in the planned research project and function on a day-to-day basis. In accordance with federal regulation, the University must verify English language proficiency through one of the following options: 1) a recognized English test, 2) signed documentation from an academic institution or English language school, or 3) a video conference interview with KU’s Applied English Center. Additional information regarding these verification options, including recognized tests and test scores, is available through the KU International Support Services office. Visiting Scholars are also allowed to enroll in one free Applied English Center course.
  4. The research scholar applicant should have credentials and experience consistent with the research project proposed.

Faculty Partner

The faculty member and the International Visiting Scholar must agree that the faculty member will serve as the Scholar’s Faculty Partner while the Scholar is in residence.

If a prospective International Visiting Scholar has not identified an appropriate faculty member at KU, the prospective Scholar may send a resume and a research program description to Global Education Academy (the KU SOEHS office administering this program) and request introduction to a potential faculty partner. SOEHS Global Education Academy cannot guarantee that a faculty member will agree to serve as faculty partner but may be able to make suggestions.

Status at KU

The Visiting Scholar will have affiliate status at the University of Kansas and, as such, will have access to library services, free bus service on campus, and other services offered to affiliates. The Visiting Scholar will not have an academic or professional title, other than Visiting Scholar, at the University of Kansas.


While in residence, a Visiting Scholar is expected to

  1. Engage in research and scholarly pursuits on a full-time basis at the University of Kansas, spending at least 80 percent of the visiting research period in residence at the main campus in Lawrence. (The research scholar should report to SOEHS any travel plans outside of Kansas.)
  2. Submit a brief monthly update on the progress of his or her research project.
  3. If appropriate, make a presentation on his or her research project to a KU class, informal research discussion group, or public forum.

Duration of Program

It is expected the duration will not be less than one month, nor will it exceed one academic year plus the preceding or succeeding summer. In exceptional cases, extensions may be considered.

Travel and Accommodations

A prospective International Visiting Scholar must arrange his or her travel to Kansas. If traveling by air, Scholars should purchase tickets to Kansas City International airport (MCI). The GEA will arrange for airport pickup to Lawrence. The International Visiting Scholar must arrange for lodging, including temporary lodging upon arrival if necessary. The GEA will assist Scholars in finding information about both short-term temporary lodging and longer-term housing. On-campus housing for International Visiting Scholars is limited. Lawrence does have a wide selection of rental units.


After a prospective International Visiting Scholar has been issued an invitation by the School of Education and Human Sciences and the Visiting Scholar has accepted that invitation, the SOEHS will initiate the J-1 Application Process through KU’s International Support Services. The prospective Visiting Scholar will then receive further instructions regarding the submission of several online forms. The prospective International Visiting Scholar is responsible for completing all forms and providing all documentation necessary for KU to review, analyze, and issue a Form DS2019. Upon receipt of the DS2019, the prospective Visiting Scholar may then pay the required SEVIS fee and apply for a J-1 visa at a US embassy or consulate and schedule a visa interview. The University of Kansas cannot guarantee that a visa will be issued.


A fee is charged to Visiting Scholars to cover some of the costs associated with this program. The fee is $2,500 for (any part of) a Fall or Spring semester and $1,250 for the Summer term. (Under most circumstances, this fee cannot be waived. If extreme circumstances warrant, applicants may apply to SOEHS for assistance.)

In addition to the above fee, the KU International Affairs (KUIA) office charges separate fees for non-immigrant visa services. The relevant fees are $207 for initial J-1 processing and support and $103 for a J-1 program extension.

The University of Kansas fees outlined above do not include the SEVIS fee or any other fees to be paid to the U.S. government related to visa application or issuance.

SOEHS Fees Waived for Graduate Alums

Prospective International Visiting Scholars who have completed graduate degrees in SOEHS will not be charged the SOEHS International Visiting Scholar Fee. KUIA visa processing fees still apply. Other requirements for visiting scholar status (see above) also still apply. It is assumed that graduate alums will not require most of the types of services offered through this program.


Prospective International Visiting Scholars must arrange their own funding. The School of Education and Human Sciences does not currently have funding to cover the expenses of Visiting Scholars or to provide stipends. To qualify for a J-1 Visiting Researcher visa, applicants must provide documentation to show adequate funds available to cover living expenses in Lawrence and the purchase of health insurance with coverage that meets the requirements for holders of J-1 visas. Details on these requirements will be provided by International Support Services as part of the visa application process.

Application Process

Please complete the SOEHS International Visiting Scholars Program form to begin the process.