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J-1 Initial Application Instructions

Required Documents

Required Documents

  • Online Recharge
  • Form A 
    • Completed by department
  • Form B
    • Completed by scholar
  • Form C 
    • Completed by scholar
  • Form D 
    • Completed by department
    • Required for any exchange visitor with an MD
  • Proof of Financial Funding
    • On official letterhead
    • Translated to English
    • Amount in or converted to U.S. dollar (try the XE Currency Site for an online converter)
    • Examples:
      • Scholarship letter on organization's letter head
      • Recent bank statement showing currently existing liquid funds
        • If funds are from a family member or other individual, our office will require an additional signed statement from that individual that they will be supporting the J-1 is required.
      • Not acceptable: stocks, bonds, mutual funds
  • Passport (copy of biographical page)
  • Appointment Form (approved not pending)
    • Visiting Graduate Student Appointment (Graduate Division in VGSAS)
    • Visiting Scholar or Postdoctoral Appointment (Office of Postdoctoral & Visiting Scholars Affairs in RSAS)
    • Other Academic Appointments (Offer letter or appointment letter from Dean's Office)
    • Other Salaried Appointments and Non-Salaried Appointments

Form A

Request Type


  • DS-2019 requests can be expedited from the normal 10 business day processing timeline to a 5 business day processing timeline with an additional fee. 


  • For initial request for scholars currently abroad to begin new J-1 program.

Transfer IN

  • For scholars currently in the U.S. in J-1 status at another institution wishing to transfer to UC San Diego.

Change of Status

  • For scholars currently in the U.S. in another status (i.e. F-1,etc.) wishing to change to J-1 status.

Section 2: Program Information

2. Appointment Date

  • For non-salaried positions, end date should match duration of funding available.
  • For salaried, UC San Diego appointments, you may use a projected end date if the appointment is likely to be renewed annually.
  • Do not include any dates for personal use, including travel. (J scholars are allowed to stay in the U.S. up to 30 days after the end date for personal reasons.)

3. Extension

  • Indicate if there is a possibility of extending the scholar's appointment beyond the current requested date.

4. J-1 Category

  • Research Scholar: Up to 5 years duration.
  • Professor: Up to 5 years for teaching positions only.
  • Short-Term Scholar: Up to 6 months duration. Scholars with stay less than 6 months will be given the Short-Term category unless otherwise noted or requested by the department. The 24-Month Bar will apply to the Research Scholar and Professor categories. Please contact IFSO for assistance.

5. Describe Area or Field of Research

  • Indicate the field of research or teaching subject related to their activity at UC San Diego.
  • Keep it general and short; e.g., Biology, Computer Science, Information Technology, etc.
  • This may be different than the field of their degree or the department name.

6. Activity

  • Specify whether the scholar will engage in research or teaching duties in this amended appointment period.
  • Select all that apply.

7. Tenure

  • Indicate if the current appointment is changing to a permanent tenure-track position. If so, the J-1 is not appropriate; please contact IFSO for assistance.

8. Payroll or Non-Paid Position Title

  • Do not leave blank, otherwise form will be returned to the department. Contact your department's Academic Personnel or HR offices for assistance.

For Affiliates: Indicate the title according to your organization, such as VMRF, Ludwig, etc.

All appointments or positions must be approved by the appropriate units (Graduate Division, OPVSA, Dean's Office or HR) prior to submitting the DS-2019 Initial Request to IFSO. A copy of the approved appointment letter or enrollment form is required.

9. UCSD Title Code

  • Enter the appropriate position title code corresponding to the title selected on #5. Affiliates do not need to enter title code. Leave blank if position does not have a title code (usually non-academic titles without salary).

10. Percent Effort

  • If appointment is full-time effort, indicate 100%; otherwise, indicate the % effort expected. Only required for paid titles.

11. Benefits Eligibility

  • Indicate if the scholar is eligible for UC San Diego health insurance as part of employee benefits.

12. Site of Activity

  • If the physical work location is not on UC San Diego Main Campus, please specify the name and address. Include all additional on- or off-campus locations, even if the sites are affiliated with UC San Diego.

Section 3: Financial Support Information

The funding support document must indicate a specific dollar (or other currency) amount; the minimum monthly financial support required for J-1 non-immigrants is as follows:

Single:  $2,400
Accompanying J-2 spouse: $800/month additional
Accompanying J-2 child: $400/month additional per child

*Exception: Postdoctoral appointment letter is sufficient proof to meet these requirements for title codes 3252, 3253, and 3254. No additional funding is required.

Proof of funding is required and a full month's funding must be accounted, even if the scholar's stay is less than one full month.

All documentation must be translated to English and the amount must be converted to U.S. dollars (try the XE Currency Site for an online converter).

  • UC San Diego-Salary
    • This includes salary paid from federal grants disbursed through UC San Diego payroll system.
  • UC San Diego-Other
    • Indicate non-salary support from UC San Diego i.e. per diem, reimbursements, etc.
  • Personal Funds
    • Attach a recent bank statement in English and converted to U.S. dollars.
  • Other
    • For example, home country's employer, institute, university, private foundation, including grants not paid directly to scholar. Please specify the name and attach proof of funding.

Section 4: Certification of English Language Proficiency

Check the appropriate box identifying how the department is certifying English proficiency.

Attach documentation as needed:

  • Test score with Exchange Visitor's (EV) name (minimums) 
    • IELTS
      • 6 (overall band score)
    • TOEFL
      • 500 (paper based)
      • 173 (computer based)
      • 61 (internet based IBT)
    • PETS
      • 5
    • NOT accepted: TOEIC and TOEFL ITP
  • Institutional statement with EV's name
    • Verifies that Exchange Visitor possesses English language proficiency high enough to function daily within the UCSD position and within the local U.S. community
    • Issued on letterhead in English within the past 6-months
    • Includes signature from school official
  • Diploma with EV's name
    • For graduates of schools that teach in the English language (e.g., schools in the UK, Australia, New Zealand, etc.)
  • Sponsor Interview Certification
    • If supervisor has had numerous discussions in English over a certain time period, please indicate in the box to the left of the interview details "numerous discussions in English over the past x months (years)" or similar, appropriate phrase demonstrating that an evaluation of English skills was able to be made.

Form B

Section 1: Scholar Information

1. Name

  • Enter name as it appears on the passport, separated by family name and given name(s).
    E-Mail: Provide contact email address. Important pre-arrival information will be sent to this email account.

2. Date of Birth

  • Enter in month, day, year (mm/dd/yyyy) format.

3. Gender

  • Select gender.

4. City of Birth

  • Do NOT enter province or state. Please provide the city of birth.

5. Country of Birth

  • Enter country where the scholar was born.

6. Country of Citizenship

  • Enter the country which the scholar holds a valid passport. If scholar holds passports from multiple countries, choose the passport country in which the scholar will use to enter the U.S.

7. Country of Legal Permanent Residence

  • Enter only the country which the scholar has legal permanent residence and has the intention of residing there permanently. Do not enter the country of temporary or current residence if it is different than the country of citizenship and the scholar does not wish to abandon their home country.

8. Email Address

  • Provide contact email address. Important pre-arrival information will be sent to this email account.

9. Current/Last Activity in Country of Citizenship and Name of Employer

  • Specify the scholar's last occupation or activity in their country of citizenship.
    • If student, please specify the level and name of institution.
      • Also provide the name of institution if you were a student.
    • If employed, specify your title and name of employer.
      • Also provide the name of last employer if you were an employee.
Example: master's or bachelor's student, research assistant, professor, engineer, medical doctor at a hospital, etc.
  • Indicate if the position is in: central government, regional (state/province) government, local (city/town) government, academic institution, or private business.
  • Do not enter current activity outside of country of citizenship.
Example: A Japanese scholar currently works in Australia. Before leaving for Australia, he was a Ph.D. student in Japan. The correct response to this question would be "Ph.D. student at Kyoto University."

10. Highest Academic Degree

  • Indicate the highest degree the scholar already received. 
    • Do not enter current degree pursuing or pending approval. 
  • The degree must be equivalent to a U.S. degree.
  • Enter the date the degree was awarded.

11. Medical Degree

  • Indicate if you currently hold a medical degree such as M.D., O.D., MBBS or MBBCh.

Section 2: Dependent Information

J-2 status is available for legal spouse and children (under 21 years old), who are not U.S. citizens:

  • Passport pages are required for all requested dependents.
  • Do not request a DS-2019 form for dependents who are already sponsored in J-2 or have their own independent statuses.
  • Family members are allowed to enter the U.S. in other statuses, such as B-1/B-2 or WT/WB.

12. J-2 Entry Into the U.S.

  • Indicate if J-2 dependent(s) will accompany J-1 scholar to the U.S. at the same time.
  • If the J-2 dependent(s) will travel separately at a later time, indicate when.

Section 3: U.S. Visa History

13. Labor Certification

  • Indicate if the scholar has ever received an approval for a labor certification for permanent residence. This is the first step to a U.S. permanent residence application based on employment. If yes, a copy of the receipt or approval notice must be attached.

14. Immigrant Petition

  • Indicate if an I-140 (immigrant petition) or I-130 (through marriage/family) has ever been filed for permanent residence in the U.S. If yes, a copy of the receipt or approval notice must be attached.

15a. Currently in the U.S.

  • Indicate if the scholar is currently inside the U.S.
  • If YES, indicate scholar's current immigration status in the U.S. (i.e. F-1, B-1, B-2, etc.), prepare the immigration documents that should be attached (see below), and answer question 15(b).
  • Immigration Documents
    • Copy of the I-94 card (front and back) including dependents
    • Copy of passport biographical page for scholar and dependents
    • If applicable:
      • Copy of I-20 for F-1 students and any accompanying dependents
      • Copy of EAD card
      • Copy of I-797 approval notice

15b.  If YES, select how the scholar will change or continue their status to J-1.

    • Indicate if there are any travel plans prior to the start date of the program/employment at UC San Diego.
    • If the scholar is in J-1 status at another US institution and is transferring to UC San Diego, include the following:
      • Copy of I-94 for scholar and dependents
      • Copy of ALL previous DS-2019 documents for scholar and dependents
      • Copy of passport biographical pages for scholar and dependents
Change of Status
    • The scholar will file a Change of Status (I-539) application with immigration services (USCIS).
    • The scholar should make an appointment or speak with an IFSO advisor to discuss the process as soon as the department is aware that a scholar will need to change status.

16. Previous J Status

  • If the scholar has been in J status within the last 2 years or is currently at another institution, please specify the exact dates and status.
    Attach a copy of the last DS-2019, J visa stamp, and I-94 card (if applicable).

17. Subject to 212(e)

  • Indicate if the scholar was subject to the Two Year Home Residence requirement (212e) requirement from the previous program.

18. Applied for 212(e) Waiver

  • Indicate if the scholar has applied for the 212(e) waiver.
  • If so, attach a copy of the Department of State recommendation letter or approval notice from United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Form C

Form C Guidelines

Form C must be signed by the prospective scholar.

The completed Form C should be sent directly to the sponsoring department. IFSO will not forward the form to the department.

This form certifies that the scholar understands the insurance requirements.
  • Indicate what type of insurance coverage the scholar will have during their stay in the U.S.

Form D

Form D Guidelines

Form D: Attachment to J-1 Application for Alien Physicians (if applicable)

  • To be completed by the department
1. Supervisor and department chair must sign Section I or II
2. Then, re-route the form to the School of Medicine Dean's Office for approval.
3. Once approved, forward to IFSO along with the completed application package.
  • Must be completed if the scholar holds a foreign medical degree
  • Defines whether the J-1 scholar's program will involve incidental patient contact
  • If Section II is selected on Form D, the department must include the Five-Point Statement.