Non-immigrant Visas – F-1

B-1/B-2 E-1 E-2 F-1 H-1B J-1 K-1/K-3 L-1 M-1 O-1 P-1 R-1 TN


(1) Overview
An F-1 visa allows foreign nationals to study at a school in the United States. Individuals need a F-1 visa if they need to study in the U.S. to attend a SEVP-approved U.S. college, university, or private middle or high school, or an accredited English language school.

(2) Qualifications
The student visa applicant must obtain admission from the desired school or program prior to apply for a F-1 visa. Once admission is determined, the educational institution will send a Form I-20, which confirms acceptance at a school, and eligibility for the F-1 visa. Once the I-20 has been issued, the student can then apply to a U.S. embassy or consulate for the F-1 visa. Under U.S. law, foreign students may not attend public elementary or middle schools (K-8) or government-funded adult education programs. Therefore, an F-1 visa to attend public schools cannot be issued. F-1 visas may be issued to attend U.S. public high schools (grade 9-12), but students are only allowed to attend for a maximum of 12 months. The school must indicate on the I-20 that the student has paid unsubsidized tuition and the amount the student has paid.