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Tech Nation Visa for Computer Scientists (and not only)

Margaret Hamilton and Global Talent Visa in Science... or Tech Nation Visa

Tech Nation Visa for Computer Scientists is something between the UK Global Talent Visa in Digital Technologies and Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa in Science (or Engineering). But I understand how difficult is to make the right choice within three of them in your own unique situation.

Moreover, one of my readers asked me about the details, which I promised to explain earlier. Hence, today is the best day to answer the questions like can you get Tech Nation Visa without PhD? Or, instead, can you get Tech Nation Visa with PhD?

If you know Russian and English, then you can fluently read this text. Otherwise, read my brief translation below.

Good afternoon, Andrey,

My name is The Exceptionally Talented Reader. I am from Russia and plan to apply for the Global Talent Visa.

As of now, I am on the final stage of my PhD in the UK. My question is related to your post below:

“At this moment, I will tell you the truth – I planned also to write here a list of documents for Talent Visa in Digital Technologies (Science) as well. In other words, when people have completed a PhD in Computer Science and other related areas and want to stay in the United Kingdom. But since my blog post, today is extremely long, I will have a break and consider science applicants in a separate article. So 15 more documents are on the way to my next post :).  “

However, I didn’t find a recommendation about this either on your website or in your app, which I purchased.

I plan to apply exactly for Global Talent Visa in Digital Technology (previously known as Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa).

Also, I am not eligible for a new track for scientists since yet I do not work at the research project, funded by the authorised UK organisations.

I would like to ask you about the advice for people who have a PhD in Computer Science (actually, this is my case). Please, write in Russian or English – whichever is convenient for you.

Exceptionally Talented Reader

The Difference Between Three Exceptional Visas

First of all, I must say that if you have a PhD in Computer Science, you automatically have a choice. On one hand, you may apply for:

  1. Global Talent Visa (Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa) in Engineering
  2. Global Talent Visa (Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa) in Science
  3. Tech Nation Visa (Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa in Digital Technologies)

On the other hand, you can’t apply for three of them simultaneously. Hence, you must choose. In brief, there are obvious (or not so easy to understand) differences between these visas. Let’s consider them.

Global Talent Visa for Computer Scientists means that you have a choice between three types of visas. Photo credit: Kvistholt Photography
Global Talent Visa for Computer Scientists means that you have a choice between three types of visas. Photo credit: Kvistholt Photography

Global Talent Visa (Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa) in Engineering

  • To apply for this visa you must be an expert in Computing and Communications. Or focus on Special (including emerging or multidisciplinary areas of engineering);
  • In particular, your work has to focus on Imaging, Informatics, Algorithms, Web and data science, Software engineering, Signal processing, H-CI/C-HI, Computer vision, Image processing, Artificial intelligence, Data Science or Telecommunications. Also, this visa route may be relevant for you if you have a scientific career in Quantum computing, Machine learning, Neurotechnology and Robotics.
  • Since this is an academical route, you must have a PhD or be a PhD candidate. Otherwise, you need to prove your exceptional ability in the field by making academic contributions through research.
  • You will be endorsed by the Royal Academy of Engineering.

Global Talent Visa in Science

  • To apply for this visa you must be an expert in Computer Science;
  • In particular, your work has to focus on Systems, including networking, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Vision, Databases, Programming Languages and Verification, Numerical Computing, Human-computing interaction, New computational paradigms (quantum, biological) or Security and privacy.
  • This is also an academical route. Hence, you must have a PhD or be a PhD candidate. Otherwise, you need to prove your exceptional ability in the field by making academic contributions through research.
  • You will be endorsed by the Royal Society. By the way, the link is the same as for the Royal Academy of Engineering.

Tech Nation Visa (Global Talent Visa in Digital Technologies)

  • You must be an expert in Computer Science or Digital Technologies.
  • You must have practical experience of work in Digital Technologies or its Business part.
  • This is the non-academical route. As a result, you do not need to have a PhD. However, it will not harm your application if you have done it :).
  • You will be endorsed by the Tech Nation.

As you can see, all of these visas are very similar. But, the main difference is based on (a) scientific degree and (b) practical experience.

What’s important for Global Talent Visa for Computer Scientists?

Scientific Degree & Practice

If you have a scientific degree in any of the areas, mentioned above, then you can apply for one of the visas. However, if you do not have a PhD, then you can apply only for Tech Nation Visa.

Regarding practical experience, the situation is the same. With PhD and practical experience in the industry you may apply for any of these three visas. However, with PhD but without practical experience, you can’t apply for Tech Nation Visa.

Scientific Career vs. Industry for Global Talent Visa

Also, to make the right decision between these visas you must think about your future career. In other words, think thoroughly do you plan to work in the industry or at the University.

For example, let’s imagine: you got your PhD but plan to work at the startup. Or a commercial company. Then Tech Nation Visa will be more relevant. However, for academia, you must apply only for Global Talent Visa in Engineering. Or Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa in Science respectively.

The same situation if you plan to work at the research project, funded by the UK Government. Or work as a fellowship, for example, at the think-tank.

In Tech Nation you will be assessed by experts from digital technologies who (not always) have PhD by their own. At the same time, they have huge practical experience of doing amazing computer science stuff. And, simultaneously, they know how to generate millions of pounds with this.

Indeed at the Royal Society and the Royal Academy of Engineering experts with mainly deep theoretical knowledge participate in the assessment of the applications. Surely, some of them work for global companies and participate in the industry.

At the same time, this difference of future way, practical or theoretical, is obvious. Hence, you must pay attention to this.

What Documents Do You Need For Global Talent Visa?

Traditionally, your Global Talent Visa application will contain three main parts:

  1. Personal Statement. Surely, if you apply for Global Talent Visa in Engineering (or in Science), then your Personal Statement must be not the same as for Tech Nation Visa.
  2. Letters of Recommendation. For Global Talent Visa in Engineering (or in Science) you must have recommendation written in support of the application from an eminent person resident in the UK. For Tech Nation Visa you must have three letters of recommendation.
  3. Curriculum Vitae. Here again, we have a difference. For Global Talent Visa in Engineering (or in Science) you must have outlined your career and publication history. But for Tech Nation Visa you need a simpler CV in up to three pages.
  4. Supporting Documents. In other words, this is evidence of your exceptional talent or promise. For the Global Talent Visa in Science, you must have at least one evidence. For Tech Nation Visa you must have not more than 10 documents and each of them must be no longer than three A4 sides (three pages).

What Supporting Documents Do You Need To Apply For Tech Nation as a computer scientist?

For computer scientists, there are plenty of opportunities to demonstrate their exceptional knowledge and practical attractiveness of them in Tech Nation Visa Route.

Supporting documents must contain facts to confirm thoughts from the Personal Statement and Letter of Recommendation. As a result, any of these documents will be good:

  1. Extract from the published scientific paper, where you are an author or co-author;
  2. Supporting letter from a company that they use your scientific work (with examples);
  3. Proof of any freelance work at the digital project within your specific field;
  4. Letter from a company, which is interested in your scientific findings or to hire you;
  5. Supporting letter from a person, whom you meet at the scientific event who can write about the commercial attractiveness of your research;
  6. Screenshot from Google Scholar or ResearchGate with clear proof of your impact on the scientific network. In brief, this means hundreds or thousands of followers, quotations, impressions, etc. to prove your high score.
  7. Testimonial from any person who can confirm a positive reputation, contribution to digital technologies and society;
  8. Confirmation that you are a member of scientific and/or industrial association;
  9. Proof that you were a speaker at the conference within the industry;
  10. Extract and brief of patents or any other scientific research achievements;
  11. Finally, you can choose any of the documents from this list if it is relevant for you.

Conclusion

I tried to highlight the most controversial aspects of Global Talent Visa for Computer Scientists here. However, if you have any questions about your specific situation – let me know. I will be glad to share my humble opinion with you.

By the way, for the cover of this post, I use a photo of Margaret Hamilton, who was standing next to listings of the software she and her MIT team produced for the Apollo project. It was in 1969. But if she was doing the same now and wanted to get Global Talent Visa, then she will have a choice between Tech Nation Visa or Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa in Science.

Talent Visa Help has been created for informational purpose and is not an official guidance for Global Talent Visa (Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa) application.

Talent Visa Help should not be used as a substitute for the official Tech Nation Guideline or Home Office Guideline. Talent Visa Help is NOT linked either with Tech Nation or Home Office. The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed in the texts belong solely to the authors at Talent Visa Help. The contents of Talent Visa Help do not constitute legal advice and authors accept no liability for the accuracy of information provided. Applicants should always consult the official governmental guidance and seek professional immigration advice where appropriate.

For additional assistance, please, contact help@talentvisahelp.com

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