Prospective Scholars: Program Fees

If you have any additional questions about the program that are not covered on this site, please contact the Visiting Scholar Program Administrator at the email address below:

Skye VanValkenburgh


1+510.643.6322 (office)

Please submit all required application materials to

Please note: Applications sent elsewhere will not be reviewed. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed. Additional supplementary materials that are not listed as part of the application requirements will not be reviewed.

Important Notes:

  • The Center for Chinese Studies' program fees are not prorated – no refunds or discounts will be allowed if the scholar chooses to terminate their affiliation early while at UC Berkeley.
  • The Center for Chinese Studies is unable to provide financial support to aid any aspect of the scholars stay while at Berkeley. 

Type of Fees


Visiting Scholar


Visiting Student



(stays of less than three months)


*BIO Initial J-1 Visa
Processing Fee 







VSPA Service-Fee - 1st Year
Pre-Arrival $750 $1,000

$750 VS

$1,000 VSR

**CCS Service & Processing Fee


Pre-Arrival $500 $500 $500 $500
CCS Program Fee

(Refundable if visa is denied)

Pre-Arrival $3,000 $2,500 $400 $4,500
***Total (International Scholars)



$2,300 VS

2,550 VSR


Total (U.S. Permanent Residents & Citizens) $4,250 $4,000

$1,650 VS

$1,900 VSR


*Not required for U.S. Permanent Residents and Citizens.  

** Add an additional $200 for a J-2 spouse and each J-2 child. 

***Please keep in mind that in order to obtain a J-1 visa, International Scholars must show proof that they have sufficient funding to cover the duration of their J Program for themselves and any J-2 dependents. The minimum monthly funding requirements are: $1800 for the J-1 scholar + $500 for a J-2 spouse + $300 for each J-2 child. To read more about this please visit the J-1 Visa Requirements page of the application procedures. U.S. Permanent Residents & Citizens are not required to show proof of sufficient funding. 

Affiliation Categories

Visiting Scholar

Applicants must:

  • Have a Ph.D. conferred more than five years ago and hold a teaching position at a university. If you are in traditional academia and have not held a Ph.D. for at least five years, please contact to discuss eligibility

  • Apply with the intent to conduct independent research at UC Berkeley

Visiting Student Researcher

Applicants must: 


  • Researchers outside of traditional academia who do not meet the prerequisites above may be approved on a case by case basis contingent upon the strength of the overall research proposal and the ability of the library resources on the Berkeley campus to meet the applicant’s research needs.

  • If you are one of such scholars, please email to discuss your eligibility. 

Additional Requirements:

If the applicant is not a U.S. Permanent Resident or Citizen, they must also meet all U.S. Department of State J-1 Visa Immigration Requirements for International Visiting Scholars. These documents are required for the processing of your DS-2019 form which the applicant will use to secure a J-1 Research Visa to enter the U.S. Although these documents are not required to be turned in until after the applicant receives their application results, it is the applicant's responsibility to make sure that they have the means to secure the required documentation before deciding to apply to the program. Failure to provide the required information in a timely manner will result in the scholar being disqualified from participation in the program. 

Explanation of Fees

BIO Initial J-1 Visa Processing Fee:

The Berkeley International Office (BIO) charges $600 for the processing of an International Scholar's DS-2019: a form which is required when you go to the U.S. Embassy to apply for your J-1 visa. The $600 processing fee must be paid through the hosting department (CCS) and is thus required to be submitted before arrival during the Post-Acceptance stage of affiliation. U.S. Permanent Residents & Citizens are not required to pay the J-1 Visa Processing Fee. 

VSPA University Service Fee:

The Visiting Scholar and Post-Doc Affairs Office (VSPA) charges a service fee for the processing of your on-campus affiliation. All visiting scholars and visiting student researchers must pay the University Services Fee in order to be in compliance with VSPA affiliation requirements and to gain access to university services such as library access, ID card, and a Berkeley email account. The University Services Fee is a one-time fee and is not prorated. The fee must be paid within 3 days of the appointment start date. 

CCS Non-Refundable Service & Processing Fee:

The Center for Chinese Studies charges a $500 processing fee for the administrative work required to prepare your campus affiliation materials. We charge an additional $200 for the J-2 spouse and each J-2 child. This fee is non-refundable and is not prorated. 

CCS Program Fee: 

The Center for Chinese Studies charges a one-time program fee for the administrative costs of your appointment as a visiting scholar after arrival and entitles you to certain privileges and services at CCS for the duration of your affiliation, including but not limited to use of the Center's office space, printer and copier privileges, and free admissions to most of our visiting scholar activities.

Additional Fees

The following fees are not payable to the Center for Chinese Studies but are required in order to gain or maintain Visiting Scholar/Visiting Student Researcher Affiliation:

Health Insurance:

International Visiting Scholars on the UC Berkeley campus are required to have health insurance for themselves and all accompanying dependents. Visiting Scholars are eligible to enroll in the UC Berkeley Visiting Scholar Benefit Plan (UCBVSBP), which is managed by Garnett-Powers & Associates (GPA). For detailed information and enrollment instructions, visit the VSPA University Health Services site.

Visiting Scholars who would like to arrive with their own insurance plan must have coverage that meets the minimum levels required by the US Department of State and UC Berkeley:

The minimum levels of coverage that must be offered through your own insurance are:

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

For instructions on how to enroll or waive out of UCBVSBP, please visit the GPA enrollment and waiver website

U.S. citizens and U.S. permanent residents are not subject to these health insurance requirements and do not need to provide Garnett-Powers & Associates proof of health insurance coverage.

I-901 SEVIS Fee: 

After receipt of the DS-2019 and related materials, International Scholars are required to pay a one-time U.S. government Homeland Security processing fee of $220. The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that the I-901 SEVIS fee for J-1 Exchange Visitors will increase from $180 to $220 effective 6/24/2019. Instructions on how to pay this fee will be sent with the DS-2019. For more information about this fee, please visit the Department of Homeland Security website.  U.S. Permanent Residents and citizens are not required to pay the I-901 SEVIS Fee. 

Estimated Cost of Living:

Personal expenses such as transportation, housing, food, entertainment, and other miscellaneous expenses are expected indirect costs. You control these costs, so amounts will vary depending on the individuals budget. The UC Berkeley Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships provides estimated Student Cost of Attendance information for the current academic year. Scholars may use these estimates as a guideline for planning their personal budgets. Please note that the minimum monthly funding requirement for J-1 Research scholars is $2000 for the J-1; $600 for a J-2 spouse; and $400 for each J-2 child; however depending on the individual's monthly budget, actual expenses may be higher or lower than the required minimum. It is the individual's responsibility to budget accordingly for the duration of their program. The Center for Chinese Studies is not responsible for any funding discrepancies due to negligence on the part of the scholar/applicant.