Visiting Scholar Program

The Visiting Scholars program is offered to Doctorate in Law candidates, practicing lawyers, law school faculty and other legal professionals. 


  • Appropriate book storage space and book-borrowing privileges
  • Access to the Internet and Lexis-Nexis and Westlaw research databases
  • University e-mail address
  • Participation in appropriate faculty colloquia and presentations
  • Office space is based on availability
  • Educational programming to grow research skills and build global connections

The Law School does not provide the following:

  • Personal computer, printer and office supplies
  • Secretarial support
  • Parking
  • Housing (see below)
  • Medical benefits/insurance (see below)

Application Process
Potential candidates should email a curriculum vitae, statement of their research plan (including why Northwestern Pritzker School of Law would be an ideal site in which to conduct their research), and one or two letters of recommendation to Applicants for this program whose native language is not English should indicate their degree of fluency in English.  Requirements for English proficiency documentation can be found here. Applicants in the process of completing a degree must provide a letter from their institution detailing the applicant's affiliation with the university and anticipated graduation date.

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.  Please wait 6 to 8 weeks to receive a decision.  We recommend applying at least 4 months before your anticipated start date. 

The Law School does not assist participants in obtaining housing. However, we will provide a list of local short-term housing providers. Participants are not eligible for University housing.

Medical Benefits/Insurance
Participants in this program are not employees of the University and are not eligible for benefits. Once they are accepted into the program they will be required to purchase health insurance through Northwestern University's Office of Risk Management.

The Law School will assist accepted applicants in completing paperwork to obtain a J-1 visa. The current visa processing fee is $250. The scholar is required to submit proof of financial support in the form of a notarized financial document. All J-1 applicants must provide proof of funding for themselves for the duration of their stay at a rate of: $1,765/month or $21,180/year. J-2 Dependent: $525/month for spouse of J-1 and $442/month for each child of J-1. Once an applicant is admitted to the program a complete visa packet will be e-mailed to the scholar from Northwestern University's International Office.

Faculty Supervision
Applicants are required to have a faculty supervisor. Please visit our faculty profiles section to learn more about the expertise and specialties of our faculty members.  Applicants are encouraged to identify ideal supervisors in their research proposal.  The law school will put forth effort to match applicants with a faculty supervisor if the applicant is not directly recommended by a Northwestern Law faculty member.

The fee for this program is $3,000 for each academic semester and $3,000 for the summer.  Terms shorter than 8 weeks are considered half-semesters and the fee is reduced to $1,500.