PGR Visiting student policy

Informatics policy on visiting postgraduate research students.

COVID-19 Update

The Recruitment and Admissions Contingency Group agreed on 03 April 2020 that no new offers to Visiting Research Students should be made with a start date before September 2020. 

UPDATE - 31 JULY 2020. The IGS Management Group approved an extension to this timescale; no Visiting PG Research Students will be registered in Informatics before January 2021 (Approved by IGS MGT committee on 22 July 2020).

Exceptions allowing remote matriculation can only be made on a case by case basis and with the approval of the Director of IGS. 

Visitor definitions

A PGR Visiting Student is a student registered on a PG programme at their home institution, who is visiting the University of Edinburgh to undertake a non-credit bearing research visit. 

All visiting PGR students who are in attendance at the University for more than two weeks must be registered on EUCLID. This means that it is now no longer possible to host a visiting PGR student from another institution, for more than 14 days (no more than 12 months), without matriculating them with the University of Edinburgh. The School administers incoming visiting students in accordance with the University Visiting and Non-Graduating Student Policy and Procedure:

Visiting and Non-Graduating Student Policy and Procedure

Reciprocal agreements

Visiting PGR research students who are on reciprocal exchange programmes are governed by the relevant University-approved Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) or Memorandum of Agreement (MoA). These students may not be liable for fees, dependent on the terms and conditions of the relevant MoU/MoA. Further information on these fee status agreements is available from the Edinburgh Global.

Edinburgh Global

Visiting PGR tuition fees

Visiting PGR students must be recorded in the student record even when they are not undertaking any taught courses. The fee arrangements for Visiting PGR students who are on reciprocal exchange programmes are governed by the relevant University-approved MoU or MoA. These students may not be liable for fees, dependent on the terms and conditions of the relevant MoU/MoA.

Visiting PGR students whose fee status is not covered by a reciprocal exchange programme who are admitted for up to twelve weeks are not charged a fee. PGR visitors whose fee status is not covered by a reciprocal exchange programme who are admitted for more than twelve weeks are charged a flat rate fee for up to the next nine months (home, EU or international) which is standard across the University. 

Ad-hoc programmes, e.g. for summer schools or specialist international visits, are set up individually. Advice must be sought from College Office who will assist with the creation of programme codes and fee setting.

Fee Information for Visiting Students

Erasmus+ Traineeships

Visiting students on an Erasmus+ Traineeship are treated the same as all other visiting students of more than 14 days. If a student is attending UoE on an Erasmus+ Traineeship then they will receive some financial support from the Erasmus+ programme. The University of Edinburgh does not contribute financially, the University only provides liability insurance.  The Erasmus Charter dictates that as the University is a member of the Erasmus programme, tuition fees cannot be charged to Erasmus+ students whose visit is up to 12 weeks in duration.  However, if the visit is longer than 12 weeks, then tuition fees will be incurred for the additional weeks/months and funding for these will need to be paid by either the student or the sponsoring academic or hosting Institute. Please follow the normal application and admissions procedure (below) if you have an Erasmus+ student who wishes to visit the School. 

Application & admission procedures

Step 1 - Request approval of offer of admission by Director of Informatics Graduate School

All requests for admission of visiting PGR students must be considered and approved by the Director of Informatics Graduate School.  

A supervisor who wishes to host a visiting PGR student are expected to have interviewed the student and discussed the visiting arrangements before proceeding with a request for an offer of admission by the Academic Selector.

If a supervisor does wish for an offer of admission to be made to a visiting PGR student, then they should get in contact with their Institute Academic Selector and ask them to make an admission request via submission of an SD webmark form - the blank SD webmark form is available here:  

Information that needs to be provided in the SD webmark form is as follows:

  1. Name of student (NB: they won't have a UUN at this stage)
  2. Programme of study (NB: this will be Visiting PGR - X months)
  3. Interview date, names of interviewer/s
  4. Main reasons for recommendation / request for admission - this must include a statement of support confirming Edinburgh supervision arrangements and the purpose of the research visit, plus the benefits of the visit to the School.
  5. Institute hosting the visit
  6. Hosting supervisor
  7. Requested start date*/**

* Home/EU PGR visiting students must be nominated to IGS at least 4 weeks in advance on the proposed programme start date . This is to allow enough time for IGS to collate the admissions documentation and create the student record.

** Overseas PGR visiting students who need a Tier 4 visa must be nominated to IGS at least 3 months in advance of the proposed programme start date.  This is to allow enough time to create the student record, as well as allowing time for ATAS, CAS and visa processes to be completed.  

If the Director of IGS approves the offer of admission, the IGS will confirm this with the supervisor and academic selector by email. The supervisor should then provide the email address of the student, so that IGS can contact them in regard to submitting the necessary documentation for the EUCLID application record. 

Step 2 - Processing the EUCLID Application and Offer Letter

Visiting PGR students must have completed application and admissions procedures before commencing their period of visitation.

Following approval of the offer of admission by the Director of IGS, the Visiting PGR student or the supervisor will need to provide the IGS with the following information/documentation:

  • student name, gender and email address
  • student date of birth, nationality and ethnic origin
  • supervisor name and local research institute
  • name and address of home institution
  • period of study in Edinburgh
  • funding information (i.e. who will be paying the admission or tuition fee)
  • a letter confirming the students registration on a PG programme at their home institution
  • a reference from their principal supervisor at their home institution
  • proof of English language proficiency to the University-specified standard (only required for visits of more than 12 weeks)

Only once all the above information has been provided, the IGS assign the student to the appropriate visiting PG programme and start date, and contact the student via EUCLID to request that they complete the application form. 

Students will be required to upload the supporting documentation as part of their EUCLID application, and demonstrate that they meet the minimum entry criteria for the programme of study (including IELTS/TOEFL certificate where the English Language entry requirement must be met). Information relating to English language requiremernts can be found here.

The IGS will issue an offer letter to the student, via email (as the system does not automatically generate one).  If necessary, an ATAS support letter will also be provided. 

It is the responsibility of the visiting PG student to ensure they are on the correct visa, if applicable, for the duration of their visit. 

Further student systems advice on the visiting student record creation process is available at:

Desk / space provision

Visiting PGR students are not allocated a PGR desk. Please consult the School's Room Allocation policy for further information on what desk facilities visiting PGR students can use. 

Additional administrative information

Informatics Student Services staff do not administer the recruitment of visiting research staff or VUG interns (who are both classed as Visiting Researchers). These visitors can be recruited via the University's Visiting Academic or Sponsored Researcher schemes, without the need to matriculate or admit the individual via EUCLID. Please contact the appropriate Research Support Office for further information. The Research office is responsible for registering visiting researchers and UG interns on the VRS. 

Policy Approved by: Strategy Committee 25/06/2014

Last Reviewed by IGS: 31/03/2020