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J-1 Scholar Procedures



Any visiting international scholar for whom the university undertakes visa sponsorship must have some sort of CU-Boulder sponsorship. This does NOT mean that the visitor must be on the payroll of the university; each year we have many visitors such as Fulbright scholars who come to CU-Boulder on money from other sources.

NOTE: BEGINNING 9/10/12, departments will be charged a $100 nonrefundable fee for ISSS to process a DS2019 document for the visitor. This fee applies to new DS-2019s and extensions of current documents.  Departments can pay this fee by supplying the department's speedtype on the Department Request for DS2019 (see below). IMPORTANT NOTICE: This fee cannot be charged to a fund 30 or 31 speedtype.

The following procedures have to be initiated by the department or the inviting faculty member in order to bring in an international scholar as a J-1 exchange visitor: 

NEW DS-2019 REQUESTS ONLY (J-1 Exchange Visitors not currently at CU-Boulder):

IMPORTANT NOTICE: All DS-2019 Request Paperwork for a new J-1 visitor program must be submitted to ISSS 100% complete and error-free 2-6 months in advance of the desired start date.

The Host Department Must Complete the Following:

  1. Department Request for DS-2019  completed by the host faculty member.  Note: Departments should request the period  of time for which the visiting scholar is expected to be here and for which financial support can reasonably be expected. Please only indicate the dates that you will host the scholar; they can arrive up to 30 days before the J program start date, and must depart within 30 days of the J program end date.
  2. CU-Boulder J-1 Program Information Summary completed by the host department (pp. 1-2).
  3. If applicable, J-1 English Proficiency Interview Assessment Report.
  4. Funding Documentation (if they will be paid by CU-Boulder)

Please ensure that:

  • All pages of all forms are completed
  • Speedtype is not a Fund 30 or 31
  • Both host faculty & Department Chair have signed the form
  • Funding documentation is attached (copy of the completed, signed (by all parties), CU Boulder offer letter; funding from other sources, on letterhead; if personal funds, letter from bank indicating sufficient minimum amounts available. If the name on the bank account is different than the scholar’s name, then a letter demonstrating willingness to fund the scholar from the bank account holder must also be submitted.)
  • Documentation of J-1 Exchange Visitor's English Proficiency

The Prospective J Exchange Visitor Must Submit the Following to the Host Department:

  1. J-1 Exchange Visitor Information Form
  2. Passport biodata page
  3. If dependents will accompany you, also submit your dependent(s) passport biodata page(s)
  4. Funding Documentation (if applicable)
Please ensure that:
  • All required fields are complete, including dependent information, if applicable
  • Scholar (and dependents if applicable) passport biodata page is attached; with machine readable section clear and visible
  • Emergency contact information is complete
  • Summary of J-1 Exchange Visitor rules are signed
  • Insurance compliance form is complete (or it can be submitted upon arrival; however, insurance coverage must begin on the J-Program start date listed on the DS-2019)


We have created an 100% DocuSign form version of the DS-2019 Request Paperwork for NEW scholars. This is optional, and will be filled out 100% digitally by all parties. Additional documents will be uploaded directly into the form (such as funding documentation and passport images).

DS-2019 Request DocuSign form:

 Please ensure that:

  • All sections by the department and exchange visitor are completed.
  • The department or department administrator starts this form.
  • If being funded by CU-Boulder, that you do not start this form until you have a completed offer letter (fully signed) from HR.
  • This form voids after 30 days if it not completed by all parties.
  • All uploaded images are clear and visible in either a jpeg or pdf format

Please make sure that the information provided is complete and accurate. If it is incomplete, we will send the form back to the department for completion. If it is inaccurate, it can cause the visitor a great deal of distress, denial of a visa, delay in issuing a visa, an incorrect determination of the applicability of the two-year home residence requirement, and other complex problems, which are extremely difficult to correct. Ultimately, inaccurate information can cause the Department of State to suspend or cancel the University’s authority to issue DS-2019s and sponsor J-1 exchange visitors. We depend on the individuals who sign the worksheet to take full responsibility for the accuracy of the information on the form.

Please make sure you are sending all the above required documents to our office securely in one complete packet.

Professors and Research Scholars: For exchange visitors in the professor or research scholar category, there is a two-year bar to repeat participation in these categories (J research scholar or J professor) once they have completed a J program as a professor or research scholar. For more information, please see our Q&A Handout.

Upon receipt of a properly completed, signed and documented request form, ISSS will prepare a DS-2019 and a covering memorandum of instructions. These papers will be sent to the DEPARTMENT to be FORWARDED to the prospective exchange visitor. We do this because it is important for the University to speak with one voice in order to eliminate confusion. Although this may seem like an additional burden for the department, it is a service to the visitor. In any given year, our office does paperwork for approximately 800 visiting scholars. We have no budget for mailing expenses.

The scholar takes the DS-2019 and passport and the passports of dependents to the U.S. consulate nearest his/her place of residence and requests that a J visa be placed in the passport(s). That visa, along with the DS-2019, will allow the scholar (and dependents) to enter the United States in J status.

Scholars may refer to the Visa and Arrival Procedures here.

EXTENSION OF J-1 PROGRAM ONLY (for J-1 Exchange Visitors currently at CU-Boulder):

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Extension Request Paperwork must be submitted to ISSS 100% complete and error-free 3-4 weeks in advance of the program end date indicated on the current DS-2019.

The Host Department Must Complete the Following:

  1. Department: DS-2019 Extension Request Form
  2. Addendums to offer letters (if applicable)
  3. English Proficiency Documentation (if last extension or original request occured before January 1, 2015)

Please ensure that:

  • All pages of all forms are completed
  • Speedtype is not a Fund 30 or 31
  • Both host faculty & Department Chair have signed the form

The J Exchange Visitor Must Submit the Following to the Host Department:

  1. J-1 Scholar: DS-2019 Extension Request Form
  2. Additional funding documentation to cover the extension period (if appliable)
  3. Copies of updated passport biodata pages ONLY if they have been renewed

Please ensure that:

  • All required fields are complete, including dependent information, if applicable
  • Insurance section of the form is complete


  • Please make sure you are sending all the above required documents to our office securely in one complete packet.
  • Please note that our office does not track the expiration of J status. It is the responsibility of the visiting scholar and the hosting department to track the expiration of status.

On Arrival of Scholar

THE SCHOLAR MUST ATTEND A CHECK-IN SESSION so that we can verify the scholar’s immigration status and record required information in our files. These check-in sessions occur every Tuesday at 10:00 am. Scholars, please make sure you register for a check in session using our Eventbrite registration.  Regulations require the university to maintain these records as part of our exchange visitor program. We have 30 days to validate the visitor's arrival in the United States. If the J-1 visitor does not check in with ISSS within 30 days of the program start date on the DS-2019 form, the immigration documents will be canceled.

  • The J-1 Scholar must upload their immigration documents once s/he has arrive in the U.S. through our DocuSign J-1 Scholar Immigration Check in Form, but s/he will still need to register for a check in session (see above) and attend in order for us to validate their arrival.
  • If the J-1 Scholar cannot access/upload their immigration documents through DocuSign, the scholar MUST BRING the following items to check-in:
    1. Passport (for dependents as well)
    2. DS-2019 (for dependents as well)
    3. I-94 (for dependents as well); can be aquired online at the I-94 website.
    4. Insurance Compliance Form (If it was not submitted with the request)
    5. Local Boulder address and Emergency Contact Sheet

On Completion/Departure of J-Program

  • Report to ISSS when the scholar terminates work here, giving us the date of departure from the university if known. This report of termination is especially important in view of the extended stays that can be authorized for exchange visitors.
  • J-1 Scholar and CU-Boulder Faculty Sponsor need to complete the DocuSign J-1 Scholar Program: Completion, Early Completion or Transfer Form and return it to ISSS before departure from CU-Boulder.
    • If the DocuSign version is inaccessable, please use our PDF version instead.