Skip to main navigation Skip to main content
The University of Southampton
Human Resources


The University hosts many academic and professional colleagues who are not employed by the University, but make a significant contribution to the University’s overall profile. Our visitors contribute towards teaching, research, enterprise and professional service activities and provide an opportunity for us to enhance our external reputation as well as introducing new ideas and capabilities to the organisation.

The appointment of a visitor can be defined as a status conferred on individuals who are 'visiting' from another higher education, research or professional environment and hold comparable status at their home institution or organisation.

Guests to the university are normally non-academic, technical, consultants and contractors.

Visit the Student and Academic Administration webpage for information on visiting students.

The visitor policy sets out four distinct categories of visitor:

Visiting Professor/ Adjunct Professor

The status of Visiting Professor is conferred upon those whose academic standing is equivalent to that of a professor; and who collaborates in a significant way with the University staff on research and/or teaching programmes to produce measurable results. The status of Adjunct Professor is conferred upon eminent leaders in business and industry who collaborate with the University. There is no automatic renewal of this status and justification will need to be provided in the event of an extension.  Retiring Professors should use the Visiting Professor category. If eligible for Emeritus status this will be updated once it has been ratified by Council.

Visiting Fellow/ Adjunct Fellow

The status of Visiting Fellow is given to senior academics who are considered in high esteem and have a considerable academic or professional standing.  They will include researchers, lecturers and professionals who are qualified to PhD level or equivalent recognised qualification, and those ratified with Emeritus Fellow status. The status of Adjunct Fellow is conferred upon leaders from business and industry.

Visiting Academic

The title of Visiting Academic is intended to be a “catch all” category for all other academics or professionals and includes early career researchers, postgraduates, research assistants (where the individual does not hold a PhD or equivalent)

Non-academic guest

This status applies to non-academic visitors to the University, who do not fit the criteria shown above (for example: contractors and professional consultants).

Access to premises and IT

Visitors will be given guest access to the University’s premises and a range of facilities defined by their sponsor. This may include:

Where an A5 license for full access to University systems is required their host should complete the A5 licence request form (note the faculty/department will be charged for this licence).

Click here for information on the differences between the A1 and A5 licences.

For more information about the University and surrounding area, please visit .

Extending access

Please note the visitor will continue to have system access for 28 days after their visitor end date. They will receive an automatic email closer to their end date which will confirm their system access expiry date.

If you wish to extend access for a visitor make sure the visitor extension request is completed before their visitor end date to avoid any issues with their system access.

Ending access

Normally visitor access is set up for a fixed period of time and the visitor's access will end on the expiry date requested. If a visitor no longer requires access you can request their visitor status ends earlier than the original expiry date by completing the Visitor Leaver Request .

Visa routes for international visitors

There are different visa options for international visitors, depending on the purpose of their visit.  These options are explained in more detail in the following guidance document:

Guidelines - Visa Routes for International Visitors

As visa/entry requirements are subject to change, any international visitors should check current visa requirements with the UKVI.  A good starting point is their visa checker tool:

Please see the HR website for information on the new requirements of the Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) and how this may affect visiting academics.

Policies and Guidance


Policy - Visitors to the University

Guidance - Visa Routes for International Visitors

Visiting Appointment Criteria

Visitor Access Request

Extend Visitor Access Request

International Sponsored Researcher (Visitor) Request

Extend International Sponsored Researcher (Visitor) Request

Visitor Leaver Request

Visitor Privacy Notice

Emeritus Professors and Fellows

Emeritus Professors and Fellows SharePoint site

Malaysia Campus Staff

USMC Visitor Registration Form

Old Visitor Forms

Registration and Extension forms (HR7 and HR7a) are available (in Word) below, but should only be used for collecting details from the visitor that are required for the online forms above:

Visitor Access Request HR7

Extend Visitor Access Request HR7a

International Sponsored Researcher (Visitor) HR7

Extend International Sponsored Researcher (Visitor) HR7a

Frequently Asked Questions

Privacy Settings