A J1 visa for Research Scholars is a temporary exchange visitor visa that permits research scholars to conduct research, observe or consult with a research project at an accredited academic institution, research facility, museum, library or similar institution in the US.

J1 Visa Requirements for Research Scholars

To qualify for a J1 visa as a research scholar in the US, the applicant must be accepted to participate in a certified research scholar exchange program in the US.

To participate in a research scholar exchange program, the applicant must be a research scholar in a foreign country, be engaged in research in a specific area that they have made significant contributions to and meet the sponsoring organization’s specific requirements.

Furthermore, the applicant must not be a candidate for a tenure track position or have completed a research scholar exchange program in the 24 months preceding the start of the new program. Applicants who have held a J1 visa during the 12 month period preceding the start of the research scholar exchange program may not be eligible; however there are some exceptions to this requirement.

J1 visa applicants may be required to meet certain health and character requirements.

J1 Visa Entitlements for Research Scholars

A J1 visa entitles the holder to participate in a Research Scholar exchange program with a US sponsoring organization. A J1 visa for a Research Scholar exchange is usually granted for a maximum of 3 years and extensions may be granted to complete a specific project or research activity.

Spouse and unmarried children under 21 years of age may apply for the applicable derivative visa (J2 visa) to join their spouse or parent in the US. Accompanying spouses and children are entitled to study in the United States and may undertake employment with an approved employment authorization.