Program Eligibility

  1. The individual is coming to the United States temporarily and intends to return home.
  2. The individual has sufficient funding, either from UCSB, personal funds, their home institution or home government for their program of research or collaboration.
  3. The individual possesses sufficient proficiency in the English language to be able to participate in the program (See English Proficiency Section for more details).
  4. The J-1 visitor is required to have medical insurance for the duration of their visit, either provided by the host institution or purchased by the visitor.

Additional Eligibility Requirements for Professors and Research Scholars

  • Must not be a candidate for a tenure track position;
  • Must not have participated in and completed a professor or research scholar program within the last 24 months preceding the beginning date of their new program’s commencement;
  • Must not have participated in a J-Visa program for all or part of the 12-month period immediately preceding the start date of a professor or research scholar program unless they meet one of the following exceptions:
    • The participant is currently in a professor or research scholar program and is transferring to another institution in the U.S. to continue their current J-1 program;
    • The participant's prior physical presence in the U.S. on a J-Visa program was less than six months in duration; and
    • The prior participation was as a short-term scholar.

English Proficiency

UCSB is required to determine whether a prospective exchange visitor’s proficiency in English is sufficient to enable the visitor to participate in the sponsor’s exchange visitor program. This determination must be made using an “objective measurement of English language proficiency,” which include:

  • A recognized English language test (such as TOEFL or IELTS) AND
  • A documented interview conducted by the sponsor either in-person or by videoconferencing, or by telephone if videoconferencing is not a viable option.

The University must retain evidence of how they measured applicants’ English language proficiency so that it may be made available to the Department of State upon request.

J-1 applicants who meet the following descriptions are exempt from submitting test scores but must still participate in an interview: 

  • Those who are native speakers of English and/or from a country with English as an official language
  • Those who received an education in a country where English is an official language or the official language of instruction in higher education.