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Department of Earth Sciences


Visiting Students

A student visitor is defined as a student who is registered for a degree at another institution and who attends the University of Cambridge for a short period of study, supervised research, or a placement as part of their course. Visiting Students need to be invited by a member of the Department’s academic staff.


As a visiting student, you will be able to conduct research under the supervision of an appointed academic host. You will be able to use the facilities of the Department and join in the academic life of your designated the team.  It is often possible to attend certain lectures and seminars, although attendance would normally require the permission of the lecturer concerned.

Bench Fees

There is a charge for this service:

  • £150 between 2 weeks and 1 month
  • £500 up to 3 months
  • £1000 up to 6 months
  • £2000 up to 12 months.

All payments will be subject to an additional VAT charge of 20%.  Bench fees will be paid on or before the first day in the Department.

Fees are applied at the discretion of your host.  If payment of fees presents a problem, please state this in your application and discuss it with your academic host during the application process. 

IMPORTANT: It is the visiting student’s responsibility to deal with immigration, visas, accommodation, and family issues.  International visitors from non-English speaking countries will be asked to provide valid English language certificates or provide other additional evidence of reasonable competency in English language.

To Apply

If you would like to apply for Visiting Student Status for a period of 12 months or less, you should complete an application form (found here) including an outline of the proposed research you wish to carry out in Cambridge and return the form to, and please include evidence of meeting the English Language Requirement, if required (see next section); your application will be considered by a potential supervisor. 

You will not normally be permitted to study for more than one year without applying for a formal qualification via the central Postgraduate Admissions Office.

Language Requirements

Visiting Students are expected to meet the University's standard English language requirements.  Whether or not you have to take a language test will depend on a number of conditions, which can be checked here.  Please disregard any other information on the central webpage as it is relevant to applicants applying as 'full' students).

Applicants should provide a copy of their English test along with their application form. Tests are only valid if taken within two years of the requested start date at Cambridge. 

Immigration / visa requirements

All non-UK nationals will need to ensure they have the correct immigration permission for an approved visiting period.  If your application is approved, we will contact you regarding immigration/visa requirements, if required.  In the meantime, please refer to the following webpage for information University of Cambridge International Students Office.

College membership

Visiting PhD students to the Department will not be affiliated with a college, will not receive accommodation, and will not have undergraduate-style supervisions.


The Department is unable to provide accommodation. More information about finding accommodation in Cambridge can be found on the Accommodation Service webpages.