Why choose USA?
- Renowned education system with more than 4000 universities across the country
- Robust career opportunities
- Flexible curriculum
- Research opportunities with working facility
- Multicultural environment and facilities for international students
- Use of advanced technologies with an insight to science and engineering fields.
The United States of America welcomes international students on a study visa for pursuing various courses and participating in an exchange program, one can use a non-immigrant visa which is for a temporary stay.
The study visa falls under three categories:
F student visa: This is generally if the student has to undertake his/her graduation studies in an accredited Institute.
M student visa: This visa is for non-academic purpose and other vocational training categories.
J student exchange visa: This visa is granted to students who are participating in an exchange overseas program for pursuing a certain degree or a particular course.
- Prior to application for a visa one has to get an acceptance letter by the University or college
University or college that is certified by the Student Exchange and Visitor Program (SEVP), and is then able to provide I-20 and DS 160 forms for visa application, from the institution's international student office, one has to be present there when you apply for your student visa.
- Students can apply within 120 days from the initial start date of I-20 and can travel within 30 days from the start date of I-20.
There are three government bodies which takes care and scrutinise the student visa application process:
- U.S. Department of State- Consular Affairs ( Student visas)
- U.S. Department of State- U. S. Embassies and Consulates
- U.S. Department of Homeland Security – Study in the States
How to apply?
The next step is to complete the Non-immigrant Visa Electronic Application (DS-160) form. Make sure you read each and every guideline and norms while filling.
All the information provided by should be authenticated and accurate, in case of any assistance you should contact the respective immigration lawyer or translator.
- Once the application is completed you must pay the fees.
- Your profile is being created and the application ID or number should be kept for scheduling the visa appointment
- There has be two appointments scheduled one for the visa application center (VAC) where the biometrics and other details are captured and the other for the visa interview at the U.S. Embassy
Gather and keep ready the following necessary documents before your visa interview:
Passport - Your passport must be valid for at least six months prior your period of stay in the United States (unless exempt by country-specific agreements).
Each individual who falls under visa required category visa must submit a separate application, which includes any family members listed in your passport they will come under M2 category
- Non-immigrant 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 uploading fails, carry one photo along with you according to the standards mentioned in the form.
Certificate of Eligibility for non-immigrant (F-1) Student Status-For Academic and Language Students, Form I-20 or Certificate of Eligibility for Non-immigrant (M-1) Student Status for Vocational Students, Form I-20 – Your school will send you a Form I-20 after entering your information in the SEVIS database.
You and your school official must sign the Form I-20. Your spouse children, if they intend live in the United States with you, shall each receive an individual Form I-20.
- Certification of Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) almost all institutions require that this test.
Majority of the colleges require the international applicants to take an admissions test, usually known as the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT I) or the American College Testing (ACT) Assessment. Some may also require SAT II Subject Tests.
Attend Your Visa Interview
At a consular office you will be interviewed you for a student visa, and may request additional documents, such as evidence of your academics:
- Transcripts, diplomas, degrees or certificates from schools
- Standardized test scores required by your U.S. school
- Your intent to depart the United States upon completion of the course of study; and
- Your financial details covering all educational, living and travel costs.
A consular officer will interview you to determine whether you qualify to receive a student visa. You must establish a strong conviction and commitment that you meet the requirements to receive a visa.
Biometrics scans are taken as part of the application process during your interview
After your visa interview, the consular officer may determine and advise whether your application requires further administrative processing.
After the visa is approved, you need to pay a visa issuance fee (if applicable to your nationality), and then make arrangements for the return of the passport and visa to you.
Entering the United States
A visa does not guarantee you the entry into the United States. It only allows a foreign citizen to travel to a U.S. port-of-entry (generally an airport) and make a request permission to enter 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 an immigrant in the United States.
After you present your necessary documents like passport, visa, and Form I-20 at the port-of-entry, a CBP official will make this decision. Once you are given an approval to enter the United States, the CBP official will provide an admission stamp or paper Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record.