In general, all applicants for a student visa must provide the following documents:

  • F-1 students must present all three pages of the USC I-20
  • J-1 students must present both pages of the USC DS-2019
  • Confirmation receipt showing completed non-immigrant visa application form DS-160 with the assigned ID number
  • Passport valid for at least six months after the proposed date of entry into the US
    • Make sure the name in passport accurately reflects formal name
    • Name must be broken out into separate lines for given (first) name and family name (last/surname) unless there is only one name and no family name
    • If the passport page does not accurately reflect the formal name, it is critical for students to get this corrected BEFORE the visa interview
  • Visa processing fee payment receipt
    • This fee is paid when students go to the US embassy/consulate to apply for the student visa
    • Fee payment receipt will be issued and students must keep this receipt for each applicant, including each child listed on a parent’s passport who is also applying for a visa
    • The receipt(s) must be presented to the consular officer during the interview
  • SEVIS I-901 Fee Payment Receipt
  • Proof of funding for amounts listed on I-20/DS-2019

In addition to the documents listed above, all applicants should be prepared to provide:

  • Transcripts and diplomas from any previous institutions attended
  • Scores from standardized tests such as the TOEFL, SAT, GRE, GMAT, etc. that are required by USC
  • Any additional documents that might help establish strong social and economical ties to their home country

Applicants with dependents must also provide:

  • Proof of the student’s relationship to his/her spouse and/or children (e.g., marriage and birth certificates)
  • It is preferred that families apply for F-1/J-1 and F-2/J-2 visas at the same time, but if the spouse and children must apply separately, they should bring a copy of the student visa holder’s passport, visa and copy of I-20/DS-2019 along with all other required documents

June, July and August are the busiest months at the US embassy/consulate and interview appointments may be difficult to find during that time. Please plan ahead to avoid repeat visits to the US embassy/consulate which could delay the visa issuance as well as the arrival to the US. Visit the US Department of State website to view current visa processing times at US embassies/consulates.

IMPORTANT: When students successfully receive their student visa, the consular officer will seal their immigration documents in an envelope and attach it to their passport. Students should not open this envelope!  The officer at the US port of entry will open it.