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Tier 5

What is the Sponsored Researcher Scheme?

The Tier 5 (Sponsored Researcher) Government Authorised Exchange (GAE) scheme enables researchers, including academics, researchers, scientists, research engineers or other skilled research technology specialists, to come to the UK on a temporary basis, where they are hosted at a UK higher education institution (HEI).

The work or activities undertaken must never amount to what the Home Office terms ‘a genuine vacancy’. In accordance with the Home Office rules, the role must be over and above the University's normal staffing requirements, and the role would not be automatically refilled once the post holder leaves.

The researcher may be funded by their host, their overseas employer, or an independent UK or non-UK funding body. The researcher cannot be self-funded and must be in receipt of funding in line with, or above, the National Minimum Wage.  Visitors under this scheme can come to the UK for a maximum of two years and will require a Certificate of sponsorship.

Who can use the scheme?

As an A-rated sponsor, Queen Mary University of London is able to sponsor individuals to undertake the following activities:

  • A formal research project or collaboration
  • A period of work-based training/work experience/internship/placement
  • Skill development/knowledge transfer
  • A series of lectures, which doesn’t amount to a formal teaching post
  • External examinations

How does my visitor obtain sponsorship

In order to apply for a Tier 5 (GAE) visa the individual will require a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS). This is an electronic document issued by the Home Office.  It is the responsibility of the host department, not the individual, to request a Certificate of Sponsorship from Human Resources.

Each CoS request will be assessed by HR to ensure it meets the terms of the sponsored researcher scheme.  To enable HR to process a request for a Tier 5 CoS the individual and department will need to provide additional supporting documents describing the purpose and length of the visit, information regarding the funding of the visit, and the individual’s personal information.

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