USA: STUDENT VISA
Study and Exchange
The United States supports international education and welcomes foreign students and exchange visitors. Students and exchange visitors must be accepted by their schools or program sponsors before applying for visas
|To enter the United States to attend:||You need the following visa category:|
|University or college||F|
|Private elementary school||F|
|Another academic institution, including a language training program||F|
|Vocational or other recognized nonacademic institution, other than a language training program||M|
Before you can apply at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate for an F or M student visa, you must first apply to and be accepted by a SEVP approved school. Want to know more about the approved schools, please contact Avisa4you and visit our study in USA section.
When you are accepted by the U.S. school you plan to attend, you will be enrolled in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). You must pay the SEVIS I-901 Fee. The U.S. school will provide you with a Form I-20 to present to the consular officer when you attend your visa interview. If your spouse and/or children intend to reside with you in the United States while you study, they must obtain individual Form I-20s, but they do not pay the SEVIS fee
New Students – F-1 and M-1 student visas can be issued up to 120 days in advance of your course of study start date. However, you will not be allowed to enter the United States in F-1 or M-1 status earlier than 30 days before your start date.
Continuing Students - May renew their visas at any time, as long as they have maintained student status and their SEVIS records are current. Continuing students may enter the United States at any time before their classes start.
Gather Required Documentation:
Gather and prepare the following required documents before your visa interview:
- Passport valid for travel to the United States - Your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond your period of stay in the United States (unless exempt by country-specific agreements). If more than one person is included in your passport, each person who needs a visa must submit a separate application.
- Nonimmigrant Visa Application, Form DS-160 confirmation page
- Application fee payment receipt , if you are required to pay before your interview
- Photo – You will upload your photo while completing the online Form DS-160. If the photo upload fails, you must bring one printed photo in the format explained in the Photograph Requirements.
- Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant (F-1) Student Status-For Academic and Language Students, Form I-20 or Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant (M-1) Student Status for Vocational Students, Form I-20 – Your school will send you a SEVIS-generated Form I-20 once they have entered your information in the SEVIS database. You and your school official must sign the Form I-20. All students, their spouse and minor children if they intend to reside in the United States with the student, must be registered in the Student and Exchange Visitor System (SEVIS). Each person receives an individual Form I-20.
Additional Documentation May Be Required:
Additional documents may be requested to establish that you are qualified. For example, additional requested documents may include evidence of:
- Your academic preparation, such as:
- Transcripts, diplomas, degrees, or certificates from schools you attended; and
- Standardized test scores required by your U.S. school;
- Your intent to depart the United States upon completion of the course of study; and How you will pay all educational, living and travel costs.
Attend Your Visa Interview:
At Avisa4you, we train you for interview sessions.
Entering the United States
A visa allows a foreign citizen to travel to a U.S. port-of-entry (generally an airport) and request permission to enter the United States. A visa does not guarantee entry into the United States. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials at the port-of-entry have authority to permit or deny admission to the United States. If you are allowed to enter the United States, the CBP official will provide an admission stamp or paper Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record
At Avisa4you , we will advise you about Arrival Procedures for Students or Exchange Visitors. Review admissions requirements, as well as restrictions about bringing food, agricultural products, and other restricted/prohibited
Additional Information: Students with F visas have an additional 60 days after the program end date listed on Form I-20, and any authorized practical training, to depart the United States.
Extending Your Stay & Change of Status
Let Avisa4you advise you on extending your stay or changing your status.
Have you been refused a visa or your visa voided? Kontact us at Avisa4you.
- Spouse and children
- Your spouse and unmarried, minor children who intend to reside with you during your study may apply for F-2 or M-2 visas. Although SEVIS fee payment is not required, your school must issue them an individual Form I-20, which is required to apply for their visas. You must provide a copy of your F-1 or M-1 visa and provide proof of relationship.
- Your minor children are permitted to attend school in the United States while accompanying you.
- Unless canceled or revoked, a visa is valid until its expiration date. Therefore, a valid U.S. visa in an expired passport is still valid. If you have a valid visa in your expired passport, do not remove it from your expired passport. You may use your valid visa in your expired passport along with a new valid passport for travel and admission to the United States.
Students are not permitted to enter the United States earlier than 30 days before the start date of their program. If you wish to enter earlier than 30 days before your start date, you must qualify for a visitor (B) visa. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials may admit you to the United States on the visitor (B) visa, but you must apply to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for a change of status to student (F-1or M-1) status. You may not begin your course of study until the change of status is approved, and you may encounter lengthy processing times.
Generally, a citizen of a foreign country who wishes to enter the United States must first obtain a visa, either a nonimmigrant visa for temporary stay, or an immigrant visa for permanent residence. Exchange visitor (J-1) visas are nonimmigrant visas for individuals approved to participate in exchange visitor programs in the United States.