Fulbright Specialist Programme


Applications for the 2016-17 academic year are now closed.

Applications for AY 2017-18 competition will open in August 2017.

The Fulbright Specialist Programme (FSP) brings US academic faculty and professionals to the UK to collaborate with British counterparts on curriculum, faculty development and institutional planning, lecture and/or engage in a variety of other activities. The length of a Fulbright Specialist project must be for a minimum of 14 days and a maximum of 42 days, including travel days and weekends.

Up to three Specialists may be supported in the 2016-17 academic year.

There are two deadlines for submission of host institutions project applications to the US-UK Fulbright Commission:

14 September 2016 for visits starting the earliest end of November 2016 to beginning of January (and only if the Specialist requested is already enrolled in the Specialists Roster)

31 October 2016 for visits starting from mid-January 2017 on to the end of the academic year.

The awards are tenable at any UK higher education institution.The host institution must be a degree-granting, post-secondary academic institution, comparable to a U.S. college or university in order to promote an important program goal of fostering linkages between U.S. and non-U.S. academic institutions of higher education. Additionally, institutions that provide an educational focus to their programming will also be considered. Such hosts may include Government-related Institutions, Cultural institutions, Medical institutions and Research organizations/Think tanks.

In calculating your preferred arrival time/proposed start date please allow enough time to complete all the necessary steps we need to take to review and process your request. We ask for a minimum of two months if you are requesting a scholar already approved for the roster and a minimum of three months, depending on the roster review schedule, for a scholar not already approved for the roster. More time is appreaciated if we take into account the time needed to process a UK visa application.



Grant benefits include international economy fare travel and approved, related expenses, plus a per day honorarium, payable upon completion of the grant and submission of online final and travel expense reports.

Costs for a Fulbright Specialist grant are shared by the host institution and the U.S. Department of State. Host institutions normally cover in-country per diem costs for lodging, meals and transportation and the US State Department funds the international economy fare travel and approved, related expenses, plus the a pre-established per day honorarium.

The Commission is unable to provide any funding for Specialist visits.

For more information on grant benefits and the Fulbright Specialist Programme, please visit our US website for the proramme.


Selection Criteria


Minimum eligibility to become a Fulbright Specialist:


  • US citizen at the time of application. Permanent resident status is not sufficient. If a naturalised citizen, applicant must provide the actual date of naturalisation,
  • Fulbright specialists must be residing in the United States at the time they are approved for a grant and intend to return to their U.S. institution after the grant's completion,
  • Qualified scholar and/or professional in one or more of the approved disciplines.
  • For academics, a PhD or equivalent professional/terminal degree plus a minimum of five years of post-doctoral teaching or professional experience,
  • For professionals and artists outside academia, recognised professional standing and substantial professional accomplishments plus a minimum of five years of professional experience.

The intended Specialist must be on the Fulbright Specialist Roster at the time of their visit. Inclusion on the roster is through a separate application process and is open to qualified US scholars and professionals in the approved disciplines. Applicants to the roster must be approved by a specialist peer review committee and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board (FSB).


Apply to join the Specialists Roster here.





UK-based host institutions are responsible for submitting FSP project proposals. If the host institution(s) have a specific Specialist in mind, she/he may be named in the project proposal. Named Specialists must be on the Fulbright Specialist  Roster at the time of proposal submission. 

The host institution requesting a Fulbright Specialist must complete an application form and return it to the Fulbright Commission by the relevant application deadline. 

Please email Ana Guerra Peraira, Programme Manager, at ana@fulbright.org.uk for an application and any questions you might have about the Fulbright Specialists Programme.

Project Details

All Fulbright Specialist Projects must consist of activities that directly benefit the potential host institution, such as:

  • Conducting needs assessments, surveys, institutional or programmatic research
  • Taking part in specialized academic programs and conferences
  • Consulting with administrators and instructors of post-secondary, degree granting academic institutions on faculty development
  • Presenting lectures at graduate and undergraduate levels
  • Participating in or lead seminars or workshops at overseas academic institutions
  • Developing and/or assess academic curricula or educational materials
  • Conducting teacher-training programs at the degree granting level

The project request can be most effective if:

  • Careful attention is given to the Project Description, Project Purpose, Project Impact and Project Potential to ensure adequate detail in describing the scope of work. Please ensure you do not exceeed the stated character count for each section.
  • Adequate lead-time is given for recruitment of Specialists who best fit the program request.
  • Flexibility in the time frame of the proposed project is allowed in order to accommodate the various schedules of potential Fulbright Specialists candidates.


According to UK Visas and Immigration regulations anyone entering the UK for any reason other than tourism requires a visa. As such a Specialist will require a visa to enter the UK under Tier 5 Temporary workers - Government Authorised Exchange. The Fulbright Commission is responsible for applying and issuing of your visa Certificate of Sponsorship and is able to provide some guidance about the Tier 5 visa process. However, please note that it is the Specialists' reponsibility to apply for the visa and the US-UK Fulbright Commission cannot arrange visas on a Specialists' behalf and has no say in UKVI regulations and policies for issuing visas.

The Specialist will need to apply to the appropriate British Consulate for clearance to enter the UK. The cost of the visa application will be reimbursed to the Specialist directly by UKVI services.


Project proposals and applications to the Fulbright Specialist Roster are evaluated eight times a year. It should be noted that once our allotment has been filled we cannot support any further applications for that financial year.

The US-UK Fulbright Commission may support up to 3 project applications per year. Project proposal applications submitted by UK institutions must be received in-full by the Commission by the deadline before the proposed grant period is scheduled to begin. This is due to the lengthy Project Review Steps detailed below:

  1. A potential host institution downloads the Fulbright Specialist Project Request Form
  2. The potential host institution completes the form. The Commission can provide guidance and support to the institution as they prepare the proposal. Note: A potential host may at this point include the name of a preferred candidate on the proposal form.
  3. Once the form is complete, it is submitted to the Fulbright Commission for approval.
  4. The Commission approves the project and submits it online to the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) at the U.S. Department of State for final approval.
  5. ECA reviews the project and may contact the Commission for clarification or revision. ECA either approves or rejects the project. Approved projects are forwarded to World Learning for grants administration. This process can take between 4-6 weeks
  6. World Learning processes approved requests by contacting potential Specialists Roster candidates to ascertain their availability and interest. For projects submitted with a requested scholar, the named scholar is contacted first by World Learning to ascertain his or her availability. In such cases the named request is the priority candidate but is not guaranteed selection as the final grantee.
  7. All candidates are informed of their status. At this point the project moves into grants administration.
  8. ALL Specialists coming to the UK will need to apply for a UK Tier 5 Visa. The visa application can only begin once the project has been approved. This process can take between 4-6 weeks.

Additional Information