If you want to study in the USA, there are a few steps you’ll need to take before heading to your new school campus. This guide will walk you through each step of the process to make sure your student visa application is submitted in time and approved on your first try! Read on to learn more about getting your student visa, including what documents you’ll need, and how much it costs, and more!
what is a student visa?
First, it’s important to know what exactly a student visa is. A student visa allows you to study at an accredited U.S. school and have time off during breaks (though not as much as with other types of visas). It lasts up to four years and can be extended indefinitely if you get married or have children while here on a student visa. You do not need one if you’re studying at an accredited U.S.
Step 1: Learn English
It is important that you learn English if you are going to come and study in America. The best way is by taking classes when you are still at home. You can also improve your English by watching American movies and listening to music. In fact, many students first learn English by watching television shows like Friends or Law & Order with subtitles on! If you have time, try reading some books written in English too.
Step 2: Apply for an F1 Visa from your home country
Most students will need an F1 visa. The application process is relatively simple and consists of two steps. First, you must apply for an I-20 form from your designated school or university; only then can you apply for your visa. If you’re interested in studying abroad but don’t have a destination yet, research schools and programs that offer relevant courses. This way, when it comes time to fill out your visa application, all of your information will be ready!
Step 3: Arrive in the US on an F1 visa
It is possible to arrive and apply for your visa at your port of entry. However, we strongly recommend you do not wait until your US entry date to start processing your application as it can take up to 6 weeks or more (depending on individual circumstances) for an F1 visa appointment. Instead, we recommend you begin processing as soon as you receive formal acceptance from the U.S.
Step 4: Start Applying For Universities
Start applying for universities. Before you even start on your visa application, have schools picked out that you’re interested in. You can do some preliminary research at Unigo or College Prowler. Don’t forget that you also need to apply for financial aid! Apply as early as possible so you get priority status with any scholarships or grants offered by individual schools.
Step 5: Set Up Your Finances While Studying
If you’re not sure how much money you’ll need while studying, start thinking about how much it costs to live comfortably. Research your potential expenses like housing, food, supplies, and other necessities. You might want to take an average of your last three months of bills as a baseline for what you’ll spend over that time period. Then add 10 percent for emergencies or unexpected costs that may come up during your studies.