Office of International Programs
Apply for an F-1 Visa
An F-1 visa is for students who want to study at an accredited US college or university. It is issued by the US Department of State in a US embassy or consulate abroad. A visa does not guarantee entry into the US. It allows travel to a US port-of-entry to request permission from a US immigration officer to enter the US. An F-1 visa is not renewable while in the US.
Students should become familiar with the F-1 visa requirements in their country and allow plenty of time to prepare their applications. More information is located at http://www.travel.state.gov/, at US embassies/consulates, and at EducationUSA Advising Centers.
Steps of the F-1 Visa Application Process
1. Obtain a UT Tyler Form I-20
- Students should ensure that the data on their Form I-20 is correct and the spelling of their name as it appears in their passport.
2. Pay SEVIS I-901 Fee
- Payment of the SEVIS fee and completion of other visa application forms are required for a visa interview.
- Instructions for payment of the SEVIS fee are located at the U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement.
- Additional information about the SEVIS fee is located at Study in the States website.
3. Apply for an F-1 Visa and Schedule a Visa Interview
- An interview at a US embassy consular section is required.
- Wait time for an interview appointment varies among embassies and consulates. Check visa wait times on the US Department of State website or the local US embassy or consulate website.
- Refer to the local US embassy or consulate website for instructions about scheduling an appointment, paying the visa application processing fee, and a list of required documents.
- Visa applicants should be prepared to answer questions about ties to their home country, English language skills, their academic background, the academic program to which they have been admitted, and their financial support.
Hear what students say about the F-1 visa application process by viewing the EducationUSA video,
"International Students Demystifying the Visa Process".