Visiting PhD students from abroad

Visiting PhD students are foreign or Italian doctoral students enrolled at foreign universities invited to UniBo’s university departments to carry out a mobility period, outside international cooperation agreements or projects the University of Bologna takes part in. The following information does not apply to PhD students enrolled at the University of Bologna or to mobility students under cotutelle agreements or within international agreements or projects (i.e. Erasmus+).

Support for entry into Italy

If your destination is Bologna, contact the International Desk for help with incoming procedures. For other destinations, contact the International Relations Office of the relative campusCesenaForlìRavennaRimini.

Visa issuing procedures take a long time and you should start the procedure well in advance (at least 3 months).

Before arriving in Italy

Visiting PhD students from the European Union

You must:

  • check that your identity document is valid for the entire duration of your stay in Italy;
  • have appropriate health care coverage valid in Italy (TEAM card and/or private insurance).

Visiting PhD students from outside the European Union

You must:

  • check if you need a visa and the required documents on Visa for Italy by selecting “Study – Exchange and mobility programme” as the reason for your stay;
  • pre-enrol online via the Universitaly portal. In the application you must indicate:

“Specify the reason for the visa application”: I want to spend a mobility period for study/traineeship (e.g. Erasmus);

“Course information”: Institution: Università di Bologna, Course type: Corso/i singolo/i – Single course(s), Course name: in the text field you must describe your position at the University of Bologna, e.g.: Visiting Phd (and your reference teacher at Unibo).

Contact the relevant Italian Embassy well in advance to check the specific documents required for a visa for study purposes. Usually you need to submit:

  • a letter of invitation from the department at the University of Bologna hosting you;
  • the summary of your pre-enrolment application validated by the University of Bologna;
  • demonstration of suitable means of financial support;
  • demonstration of accommodation (hotel booking, declaration of hosting signed by an EU citizen or other foreign national with an Italian residence permit);
  • an insurance policy for medical care and hospital treatment, if you are not entitled to health care in Italy by virtue of agreements in force with your home country. When you apply for the visa, have your medical insurance policy stamped by the Embassy, otherwise you will not be able to use it to apply for your residence permit. Read more on Medical Assistance for Foreign Students.

Visitors with a study visa may apply for a residence permit. While your residence permit for study purposes is valid, you may work for up to 20 hours a week. These hours are cumulative over fifty-two weeks, with a maximum limit of 1,040 hours.

Tax ID

For any reimbursement of expenses, the stipulation of rental contracts or other purposes, you must have an Italian tax code (codice fiscale). Read the information on how to request the Italian tax code.

Username, password and online services

In the “Confirmation of registration” message, you will receive your username and password (university credentials) both as a student ( and as university personnel ( These credentials are needed to access the University of Bologna’s online services which will be enabled according to your status.

At your first log-in, the system will ask you to change your password. Pay attention when entering your password (PIN/PUK) as it is made up of numbers and upper- and lower-case letters, and it is very easy to make a mistake.

If you forget your password you can reset it to its default value (PUK) .

Once you arrive in Italy


Upon arrival, you will need to check-in at your hosting department. Bring an ID with you: your passport or, only if you are a EU citizen, your Identity Card. Each department has different procedures, so be sure to ask your academic contact for information about how to register. Your registration will be done through a “Visiting” application. In order to check-in, your mobility period must already be registered by your academic contact and approved by the Department Director. Upon approval you will receive a confirmation message.

At check-in you will get your Arrival Statement, which you will then use to apply for your residence permit (see below).

Residing in Italy

Visiting PhD students from the European Union

If you plan to stay in Italy for more than 3 months, you must register with the Registry Office (Iscrizione Anagrafica) in the city where you will live.
Find out how to register (iscrizione anagrafica) in the Municipality of Bologna.

Visiting PhD students from outside the European Union: residence permit (permesso di soggiorno)
If you have a visa for study purposes and intend to stay in Italy for more than 90 days, within 8 working days of your arrival in Italy, you must apply for a residence permit.

Read the information about how to apply for a residence permit for exchange students.

Important: in contrast to what is described, as a visiting PhD student you will check-in at your host department instead of at the International Relations Office. If you need support, please send an email to


If you need a badge, after the Check-in at the your hosting Department, you must:

  • upload your passport-size photo on your AlmaRM homepage
  • request your badge by writing an e-mail to and attaching a copy of your identity document.

You will be sent an e-mail with a QR CODE that you will have to use to print your badge at one of the self-service machines at the University.

Accident insurance

As an exchange student, after check-in, you are insured against accidents that may occur on the university premises or any other place in which studies and research activities authorized by the University are performed.

For more information read about the insurance service of the University of Bologna.

At the end of the mobility period


Before leaving, don’t forget to check out at the same office where you checked in. You will get a Certificate of Departure, confirming the start and end dates of your mobility period.  

Detailed certifications for the activities carried out may be issued by your academic contact.


Contacts for exchange students at Unibo
Instructions and contact info for the various offices to contact according to your needs.