Observers, Trainees & Visiting Scientists (OTVS)

UTHealth welcomes visiting colleagues and students (minimum16 years old) from across the United States and around the world for research and educational collaboration, observation, and study. 

This APPLICATION process applies to visitors who are not compensated by UTHealth, and are not enrolled in UTHealth educational programs, but are granted access to university property, facilities, and/or information systems for a specific period for approved collaborative or educational purposes.  This process applies to five categories of visitors:[1]

Application Fees for Foreign[2] Observers and Professional Trainees

An application processing fee ($750.00 USD if paid by money order or $775.00 USD if paid by wire transfer) will be charged to all Foreign Observers and Foreign Professional Trainees. Please see the application for specific details.

Learn More about UTHealth's Visiting Scientist, Visiting Student and Observer ProcessObservers
Individuals who observe university operations for their own educational purposes.  Observers may not provide clinical care and may not participate in or perform research, data collection or other hands on activities. The duration of the observation period is limited to no more than two months in any one division/department.

Pre-Baccalaureate Trainees
High school or undergraduate students who seek non-clinical hands on training and experience in preparation for a health sciences education.  Pre-Baccalaureate Trainees receive specific training in research and health education, appropriate to their educational qualifications.  Pre-Baccalaureate Trainees may not perform patient care but may observe clinical practices, conduct research, perform data collection, and participate in other non-clinical hands-on activities. The duration of training is limited to no more than four months in any one division/department.

Professional Trainees
Professionals who hold an undergraduate or higher degree and seek additional non-clinical hands-on training in the health sciences.  Professional Trainees receive specific training in research and health education,  appropriate to their educational qualifications. Professional Trainees may not perform patient care but may observe clinical practices, conduct research, perform data collection, and participate in other non-clinical hands-on activities.  The duration of training is limited to no more than four months in any one division/department.

Visiting Student Trainees
Students who receive non-clinical hands on training from UTHealth faculty and staff, but are not registered and enrolled in a course at UTHealth. To be qualified for this category, the Visiting Student Trainee must be enrolled in an undergraduate, graduate or professional degree program at another institution and the training at UTHealth must fulfill an educational requirement of that program. A Visiting Student Trainee may not perform patient care but may observe clinical practices, conduct research, perform data collection, and participate in other non-clinical hands-on activities. An Agreement may be required before the visit can begin.  The duration of training is limited to no more than one year in any one department/division.

Visiting Scientists
Scientists who collaborate with UTHealth faculty and staff while being employed and paid by another academic institution or entity. The main purpose is to participate in collaborative projects, conduct collaborative research, and other non-clinical hands-on activities. The Visiting Scientist may observe clinical practices, but cannot provide patient care or have any type of direct patient contact (i.e., taking patient history, etc.). An Agreement may be required before the visit can begin. The duration is limited to no more than one year in any one department/division.
UTHealth has long recognized the benefits of collaboration in the academic, research, and clinical arenas.  The purpose of the Visiting Scientist Program is to bring to UTHealth well-established scholars who can contribute to and enrich the university’s intellectual, academic, clinical and research endeavors.  The Visiting Scientist Program at UTHealth provides a unique opportunity for visiting scholars from other institutions to collaborate and actively participate in university educational programs, cooperative agreements, or research projects of mutual interest under the supervision of a UTHealth faculty.  Visiting scholars are not employees of UTHealth, and those who have access to UTHealth research, educational or clinical facilities and resources must have prior approval from the department or division head, the dean and the Office of Academic & Research Affairs. All individuals assigned under the Visiting Scientist Program are subject to and required to observe all applicable federal, state, and local laws, including but not limited to export controls laws and regulations, and requirements of UTHealth rules and regulations, including Intellectual Property Rights and Obligations. 

Please note: this process does not apply to individuals seeking an official medical elective, Visiting Students who are enrolled through the Registrar in UTHealth educational programs, postdoctoral fellows, individuals with visiting faculty appointments or individuals employed by UTHealth.  Such individuals continue to follow procedures as established by individual schools and relevant departments.

[1] This application process does not apply for Volunteers (see “Volunteer Program Process”) or Postdoctoral Fellows (see “Office of Postdoctoral Affairs”).  [2] Foreign is defined as anyone who is not a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident.

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