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International Visiting Scholars

This program is intended for researchers and/or scholars from international locations who are either post-PhD faculty or PhD students who serve as faculty at international institutions and who wish to work with a specific faculty member within the Department of Educational Policy Studies (EPS). It is intended to support the advancement of a visiting scholar’s research and scholarship and/or to enable collaboration with an EPS faculty member.

Visiting scholars may engage in various activities while in residence.* Activities may include: making use of library holdings and other scholarly resources; attending on- and off-campus meetings and events; and attending classes. We offer a workshop on “Advanced Education Research in the Disciplines” especially for our international visiting scholars (see below for more information). Please contact the Global Engagement Office at to apply to participate in our workshop and join our department as an international visiting scholar.

*Visiting-scholar status does not entail approval from the University of Wisconsin–Madison Institutional Review Board (IRB) to conduct any sort of human-subjects research (formal surveys, personal interviews, site observations). IRB approval is not available for international visiting scholars in EPS. There are no exceptions to this policy.

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Application Process

To help applicants with the application process, we have summarized the following key dates:

Before February 1 send the following:

  1. Your curriculum vita (CV),
  2. Research statement,
  3. Commitment to enroll in our workshop (“Advanced Education Research in the Disciplines”), ​with your planned dates of arrival and departure. 
    1. Download and complete the UW EPS Advanced Education Research in the Disciplines Form. (After clicking the link, click the download button in upper right corner to open or save a fillable form).

PLEASE NOTE: Visiting scholars in our department must arrive on or after August 15 and must depart within one year, before the 14th day of the month you leave (for health insurance reasons). (example 1: arrive Dec. 15 2018, and leave Dec. 14 2019.  example 2: ​arrive Aug 15 2018, and leave August 14 2019). You must send firm dates of arrival and departure; your dates cannot be changed. We do not grant extensions.

February 15: Invitation letters will be sent to accepted applicants.

May 31: This is the final deadline to send your completed DS-2019 application to MJ Gessler in the Department of Educational Policy Studies. We strongly recommend submitting your DS-2019 before this date. This deadline is firm – no exceptions.  ​We do not grant extensions. Incomplete applications will go no further in the process. Please allow up to 3 months for DS-2019 processing. 

Completed DS-2019 applications require the following five (5) items:

  1. A copy of your passport identity page (with your photo)
  2. A copy of your current curriculum vita (CV)
  3. English translations of either (a) a diploma or (b) transcripts or a letter from the registrar’s office will be acceptable in lieu of the diploma.
  4. An official copy of your proof of English Proficiency (TOEFL and IELTS only); no Skype interviews will be provided.
  5. The completed DS-2019 application form.

Once the Department of Educational Policy Studies receives your completed DS-2019 application, we will submit it to the Office of International Faculty and Student Service (IFSS). 


  1. You must review this website for necessary financial information:
    1. DS-2019 Application Form
  2. Please allow up to 3 months for DS-2019 processing​.
  3. Your DS-2019 financial information must show funds to cover the fee for the workshop “Advanced Educational Research in the Disciplines,” which is $4,000 (see below for registration and payment information).

Please consult this website (under General Information/J-1 Scholar and J-2 Dependent Expenses) to see how much money you must document for your DS-2019 application to be approved.

Application Example

Consider the example of a visiting scholar from China who hopes to visit the University of Wisconsin–Madison for 12 months and has a child coming with her. To meet the minimum financial requirement of the DS-2019, this scholar needs enough funding to cover (a) insurance costs for herself and her child, (b) living expenses for herself and her child, and (c) the EPS workshop fee for herself. If she is 27 years old and has a child as a dependent, according to the chart on the website listed above, she needs to show evidence of having (a) $​482 for insurance costs, (b) $2,730/month for living expenses, and $4,000 for the workshop fee. Her total funding for her entire visit is therefore: ($482 + $2,730)*12 + $4,000 = $​42,544

If this scholar receives a scholarship from the Chinese Scholarship Council and the official documentation from CSC says the scholarship will pay a range of $1,300-1,700/month, the University of Wisconsin–Madison can only consider the lowest amount ($1,300 in her case). That means this scholar only has funding of $15,600 ($1,300*12) from CSC. For her DS-2019 to be approved, she must provide documentation of an additional $26,944 ($​42,544 – $15,600). To do so, she must provide evidence of a personal bank balance of $2​6,944 (this documentation must be provided by the bank in English).

If this scholar does not provide official evidence of funding that totals $​42,544, including both (a) CSC funding (calculated at $1,300/month * 12 = $15,600) and (b) a bank balance of at least $26,944, her DS-2019 application will be rejected.

All DS-2019 applications must be complete and accurate at the time of submission to the Department of Educational Policy Studies (deadline = ​May 31). The department will not seek revised documents for applications that are rejected.

PLEASE NOTE: The Department of Educational Policy Studies does not provide financial support to international visiting scholars.

If your DS-2019 is approved by IFSS, it will be mailed to you via secure mail (e.g. FedEx). Please make sure your mailing address is correct on all your documents; we will not re-send DS-2019s.

Advanced Education Research in the Disciplines Workshop

All international visiting scholars in the Department of Educational Policy Studies take part in our workshop, “Advanced Education Research in the Disciplines.” The workshop is a 10-week, graduate-level ​experience designed specifically for international visiting scholars. Each week, members of the faculty in the Department of Educational Policy Studies will meet with international visiting scholars to share their expertise in advanced research methodologies. Disciplines covered in the workshop include anthropology, sociology, history, policy, and comparative/ international education; topics include both qualitative and quantitative methods as well as historical research and research ethics. With a focus on research theory and practice, this program is ideally suited for visiting professors as well as MA and PhD students who have finished their coursework and are pursuing advanced education research in the disciplines. It is also suited for future university and school leaders and other education professionals who are seek to internationalize their research perspectives.

In addition to our workshop in “Advanced Education Research in the Disciplines,” all international visiting scholars in the Department of Educational Policy Studies will receive a university ID card as well as university library privileges, and like other visiting scholars, they may request permission to attend other courses in our department. The cost of the workshop for 2018 is $4,000 (please note that a separate School of Education administrative fee of $300 is included in the $4,000 cost). You can pay this fee online with a credit card. 

  1. Click on “Register” and enter info on next page.
  2. You must select the workshop fee radio button and answer all info in the “Additional Info” box

If you have questions about this payment process, please contact Jenni Hart at or 608-263-5140. 

Once the workshop fee has been paid, the Department of Educational Policy Studies offers the following services to international visiting scholars:

  1. A staff identification card, access to university libraries and other facilities.
  2. An opportunity to request permission from UW–Madison faculty to attend courses. International visiting scholars must ask the faculty member teaching each course for permission to observe (no more than 1-3 classes per semester).
  3. A letter to indicate the visiting scholars’ completion of the workshop and the stay in our department.

While studying in the Department of Educational Policy Studies, international visiting scholars will be asked to contribute to the intellectual life of the department by, for example, making a course presentation, presenting a public lecture or informal talk to faculty/students, interacting with student organizations, and/or attending department gatherings and seminars. At the end of the appointment, each international visiting scholar must submit a short summary report to the department chair detailing the results of his or her research.

We welcome your application to join our department as an international visiting scholar.