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Research Appointment Categories

Categories of Research Appointments at SEAS


Associates are unpaid appointees engaged in well-defined research for specific institutional objectives. Generally employed full-time elsewhere at a public or private company, or hold a non-ladder faculty appointment at another university.


Fellows are paid or unpaid appointees performing research under the sponsorship of a principal investigator; often non-SEAS graduate students; a bachelor's degree is required. 

Postdoctoral Fellow

Postdoctoral Fellows are paid appointees post-PhD performing research under the general supervision of a principal investigator.  A doctoral degree is required.

Research Associate

Research Associates are paid appointees supporting research projects under the direction of a principal investigator and who generally have at least three years of postdoctoral experience.  A doctoral degree is required.

Senior Research Fellow

Senior Research Fellows are independent researchers operating at the level of tenured faculty related to research necessary to the programs of several faculty members.

Visiting Scholar

Visiting scholars are paid or unpaid visitors who carry out their own work in association with a Harvard faculty member or members; ordinarily tenured or tenure-track faculty member on leave from a scholarly post elsewhere.

Visiting Undergraduate Research Intern

Visiting Undergraduate Research Interns (VURIs) are current undergraduate students performing research under the sponsorship of a principal investigator; a Bachelor's degree is not required.