Visiting Scholars


CKS visiting scholars are self-supporting, either by their personal funds or through financial support by their home institutions or other grants. Affiliation as a visiting scholar requires payment of several fees to CKS and various other University departments (for details see Application Information).

The Center provides library privileges, shared computer facilities with Korean language software and internet connections, modest research assistance, administrative support, and meeting space. Office space is shared with approximately 3 to 5 scholars per room.

The main contact for questions about visiting scholar applications is Dianne-Enpa Cho (cks-vs@berkeley.edu). Please do not contact her until you have read this entire website, which explains the process in detail. Please also note that the entire application process may take as long as four months to complete.

2019-2020 Applications

The visiting scholar program has reached capacity for Fall 2019. Visiting scholars can apply for Spring 2020. Please apply as early as possible since spaces fill up quickly. The final application deadline for Spring 2020 is October 15, 2019. If our program has reached capacity before that date, we will note this on our website.

*Important Update*: Due to limited space and high demand, the university no longer offers family housing to visiting scholars. Housing in the San Francisco Bay Area takes considerable time and resources to acquire, and CKS is not responsible for visiting scholars' housing search. Please take this into consideration when applying to the visiting scholar program.

Resources for Visiting Scholars

A complete explanation of the CKS visiting scholar application process is available on this website under Application Information. If you need further information about visiting scholar programs at UC Berkeley, you may consult two websites for up-to-date information. These websites are:

  1. Visiting Scholar and Postdoc Affairs (VSPA). The website contains complete information on the VSPA program.
  2. Berkeley International Office. This website contains information on such matters as the issuing of visa documents, immigration advising as well as advising services in other areas, including cultural adjustment, financial needs, work permission, family matters, general advising, liaising with other campus offices, and navigating our large university and the community around us. In particular, see the section on J-1 Exchange Visitors.

Research Affiliation

The CKS accepts applications under the following categories:

Visiting Research Scholar — Visiting research scholars should have a Ph.D. conferred more than five years ago and hold a teaching position at a university. If you have not conferred a Ph.D. more than five years ago, please contact cks-vs@berkeley.edu to discuss eligibility.

Visiting Student Researcher — Visiting student researchers must possess a bachelor's degree or foreign equivalent, and must be currently working on a degree goal. The proposed visit should be to conduct research for the purpose of meeting degree requirements for another university.

We also accept journalists, researchers from government or private institutes, and (in limited cases) government officials.

The period of affiliation is usually one year. Extensions of up to one additional year will be made on a case by case basis. To request an extension, please do so by submitting a one page description to cks-vs@berkeley.edu (in English) on the current status of your research and a justification for why the extra time is needed. The fees for extending can be found under the fees section on this site. Please note that extensions on housing agreements, whether university housing or private housing, is not automatically guaranteed, and therefore scholars should secure housing before making the decision to accept an extension, if an extension is granted.

Visiting scholars are expected to remain in residence during their entire affiliation period and take part in CKS colloquia, conferences, and other events.

Funding Requirements and Family Members

The rules for funding and bringing family members with you are set by the U.S. government. CKS and UC Berkeley have no control over this policy.

The US government requires that you show that you have $1,800 per month available for yourself, plus $500 per month if you are accompanied by your spouse, plus $300 per month per accompanying child. (For example, if you are bringing a spouse and two children, you would need at least $2,900 per month, or $34,800 per year.) See Application Information for more details about proof of funding.

Here is another link that leads to a Korean explanation.

Visiting scholars receive a J-1 visa and their dependents receive J-2 visas. The only family members who can receive J-2 visas as your dependents are your spouse and children under 21 years of age. Any other family members who wish to come with you must get their own visas (such as tourism or student visas), and CKS unfortunately cannot help you with this process.

Required Health Insurance

All domestic and international scholars are required to show proof of medical coverage that meets specified minimum levels of coverage.

As of August 1, 2016, the minimum level requirements are:

  1. 1. $100,000 USD per accident and illness in medical coverage.
  2. Deductible cannot exceed $500 per accident or illness.
  3. Coinsurance cannot exceed 25%.
  4. Medical evacuation coverage must be at least $50,000 USD.
  5. Repatriation coverage must be at least $25,000 USD.
  6. Pre-existing conditions must be a covered benefit. The waiting period for benefit coverage cannot exceed 12 months.
  7. Carrier must be at least A- rated or backed by the full faith and credit of the Exchange Visitor's government.

If you are an international visiting scholar and have dependents accompanying you to the U.S. (i.e. spouse, domestic partner, child(ren), you must purchase insurance that meets the U.S. State Department requirements for your dependents.

If you have insurance from your home country or purchased insurance that meets the above requirements, you may submit a waiver request to opt out of the UCB Visiting Scholar Benefit Plan.

How to Waive: