In limited instances, it is to the benefit of Stanford faculty to permit persons who have not yet obtained a Ph.D. (or its foreign equivalent) or who are not recognized experts in their fields to engage in research on the Stanford campus using Stanford research facilities. Such instances include students at other universities who are engaged in graduate-level research in a field of interest to the faculty member, a person doing a laboratory rotation as part of a larger research study or grant, or employees of companies who are conducting research which requires specialized equipment available only at Stanford.
In these instances, they may be eligible to apply to register as nonmatriculated graduate students in the visiting researcher category for one year. Invited persons must be qualified to conduct research at a level comparable to that of other Stanford graduate students, and the research must be of benefit to Stanford as well as to the visitor. Application for Admission forms for visiting researchers are submitted to Graduate Admissions, Office of the University Registrar by the department issuing the invitation.
Visiting researchers pay the Permit for Services Only (PSO) rate and may waive the University's student medical insurance plan only if they have comparable coverage with another carrier and submit proof of the comparable coverage prior to the term start date. They are not permitted to enroll in or audit any courses, but in quarters they are registered as visiting researchers they are eligible for the usual student benefits of nonmatriculated student status. However, in a few instances, visiting researchers may be invited to apply for nonmatriculated graduate non-degree student status. Once non-degree student status is granted, they must pay the regular tuition rate and will be eligible to enroll in courses. It is important to note, however, that permission to enroll in any specific class is not guaranteed in the non-degree approval process. Information on nonmatriculated non-degree student eligibility requirements and application forms can be obtained from Graduate Admissions, Office of the University Registrar.
Visiting researchers may apply for housing, but have a low priority for assignments. No Stanford fellowships, assistantships, or Stanford loans are available for visiting researchers. Stanford cannot certify visiting researchers for deferment of U.S. educational loans. Citizens of other countries who enter the United States to be visiting researchers at Stanford must have a DS-2019 Certificate (to apply for a J-1 visa) issued by the Bechtel International Center and must register each quarter, including Summer Quarter, to maintain their visa status.
See also the Research Policy Handbook, Procedures for Registering Visiting Researchers (RPH 9.7) at http://rph.stanford.edu/9-7.html.