Knowing what a difficult and long process getting a visa can be, we provide here some key notions for ACN students travelling across the Atlantic.
We have divided the important information according to the countries of destination, as the process varies from one to the other. We first provided a link to the local Foreign Office (or a similar entity) that lists the requirements and documents you will need to apply for a visa. A short text with additional information follows.
The University of Leipzig provides a certificate of confirmation attesting that the ACN scholarship has been awarded to the student. We also recommend to the students to ask for a letter of invitation from the University you are going to spend your time abroad and/or your supervisor there.

For Germany:
All non-EU nationals require visas for stays of more than three months. US and Canadian citizens may obtain any residence permit that may be required after entering Germany. The forms are available online to print and fill out.
For France:
In addition to the decision whether a visa is needed (i.e., stays shorter or longer than 90 days), the student needs a "convention d'acceuil" – this is a form that has to be filled in by the University and the French local prefecture. It is a formality that has to be done via the University. [Here enclosed an empty form as an example.] Its purpose seems to be linked mainly to have the local authorities informed about the student's presence and for insurance issues at the work place.

For UK:
If you are a US or a Canadian citizen and you want to study in the UK for more than 6 months, and/or you want to work while you are here, you must obtain a visa before you travel to the UK. You must apply for a visa under Tier 4 of the points-based system (more here:

For Finland:
It is advisable that the grant holder plans to start the research visit a couple of months after they have been awarded the grant. Those months are needed for the visa application to be handled by the Finnish Embassy in the US only after the grant contract and proof of medical insurance are taken care of.
For US:
For European PhD and postdocs, the best possibility might be to apply to an exchange visitor visa (Visa Category J). Applicants must demonstrate that they properly meet requirements, including the following:
    * That they plan to remain in the U.S. for a temporary, specific, limited period;
    * Evidence of funds to cover expenses in the U.S.;
    * Evidence of compelling social and economic ties abroad; and other binding ties which will insure their return abroad at the end of the visit.
For Canada:
For Master / PhD students: "Visiting Research Student": Whether coming for less or more than 6 months, students have to request a Student Visa to the Canadian Embassy. They have to register at UdeM as "Visiting Research Student." As such, none of the courses they would take at UdeM would be credited. (
For postdocs: Postdocs must request a work’s permit to enter Canada as a postdoc fellow. They normally don’t need a CAQ (Certificat d’acceptation du Quebec) to be a postdoc in Province of Quebec. (More here:
Postdoctoral Fellows will have to go to Regie d'assurance Maladie du Québec to get a health insurance card and also to Services Canada to request a SIN (Social Insurance Number) when they arrive in Canada.