USA Student Visa – Comprehensive Details and Requirements

USA continuous to be a foremost destination for the student seeking to study abroad.

Are you on the list? You require a USA student visa to move forward.

The blog will provide you with complete information about the USA student visa and other relevant details to get an entry into your aspired USA university.

USA Student Visa – Comprehensive Details and Requirements

Types of USA Student Visa

The government of the USA happily welcomes the students from other countries to join and extract education from their land. However, this admission cannot be obtained without the presence of a USA Student Visa. USA student visas can be categorized into several types. You can make a choice based on your age and underlying purpose. The most prevalent categories of a USA Student Visa are as under

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1. F1 Student Visa

The F1 student visa is the most popular USA Student Visa. The visa permits you to undergo a study program in a USA college or university or pursue a language course in an English language institute. The visa enables you to pursue a course that involves above 18 hours of study per week. All the major undergraduate, as well as graduate courses, such as MS, MBA, etc., can be accomplished via an F1 student visa.

The major steps involved in applying for an F1 student visa are as under

  • SEVIS fee payment and obtaining the I-20 form
  • Payment of the visa fee and obtaining the visa form
  • The accomplishment of the visa interview in your selected US embassy


Comprehensive information on the steps is given in the following sections.

The children or partner of an F1 student visa holder can apply for an F2 visa to accompany him.

The F2 visa does not allow to study or work in the country.

2. J1 Exchange Visa

The J1 exchange visa is for individuals who want to undergo an exchange program in the country. The program may include short-term vocational training or some kind of research program.

The partner or children of a J1 exchange visa holder can accompany him on a J2 visa. The visa permits the spouse to work in the country if the permission is taken beforehand.

3. M1 Student Visa

The visa allows you to admit into a non-academic or vocational course in the country. The process of applying for an M1 student visa is similar to that of an F1 visa. The difference here is the students are not permitted to extend their stay duration if traveling on an M1 student visa.

Prerequisites to Acquire a USA Student Visa

Applying to a SEVP school or university is the first step to initiate your USA student visa process. After acceptance, you are likely to receive Form I-20 from the school which plays a crucial role in the application and approval of your USA student visa. The other mandatory documents to request a USA student visa are as under

USA student visa – Document requirement (F1 visa)

  • A valid passport (must be valid for at least six months beyond the duration of your stay)
  • Proof of admission in a SEVP approved school
  • Passport size photograph
  • Your academic records
  • Proof of financial stability
  • Copy of the visa application form
  • English language proficiency test scorecard (such as IELTS and TOEFL)

A few more can be required, however, these are the important ones.

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USA Student Visa – Employment Rules

  • The students are not permitted to accept off-campus employment within the first year of their study
  • Employment of above 20 hours/week is not allowed (the hours can be increased during breaks and vacations)

Cost of Applying for a USA student Visa

The fees can be divided into two parts

  • SEVIS fee
  • Visa application fee

The associated fees for different visa types can be seen in the below table

Type of visa SEVIS fee Visa application fee
F1 $350 $160
J1 $220 $160
M1 $350 $160


The candidates traveling on F2 and J2 visas do not require to pay the SEVIS fee.

The Process to apply for a USA Student Visa (F1)

  • Enroll in your desired USA university and obtain form I-20
  • Pay the SEVIS fee
  • Request for a DS-160 visa form which is an online visa application form that enables you to apply for a USA student visa
  • Take a printed copy of the form submission success page
  • Settle the visa fee
  • Schedule your interview with your nearby US embassy
  • Attend the interview at the scheduled date and time
  • Wait for the answer

How to Apply

The application process is completely online and can be accomplished using the US Embassy and Consultants India website.

The other leading resources are – https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/ for DS-160 visa application form and https://www.fmjfee.com/i901fee/desktop/index.jsp?view=desktop for SEVIS I-901 form.

The visa can be applied up to 120 days before the initiation of your desired study program.

USA Student Visa Validity (After Encountering a Study Break)

If your study break exceeds 5 months, you are likely to request and obtain a new student visa to get back to your class. If your break or activities are associated or part of your study program, the validity of your visa can be sustained.

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English Language Requirements to Attain a USA Student Visa

Like other leading immigration countries (like Canada and Australia), the USA also asks you to present proof of your language proficiency to gain your desired visa. An effective way to accomplish the task is to complete a language proficiency test with a remarkable score and the most compelling option is, of course, IELTS. The scorecard is accepted by over 10,000 organizations (including educational institutes, government bodies, private employers, and so on)belonging to 140 countries across the globe.

To gain admission to a USA university or institute, you must hold an IELTS score of 6.5 bands or above which is not an easy chore, however, reliable and Reputed IELTS Coaching can help you to attain the same.

Connect with Our USA Student Visa Professional to know more!

Dalia Avasthi

Dalia Avasthi is the Student Visa Head in Aspire Square and has an expertise in counseling, mentoring, and processing within the Student Department. Her specialization lies in her knowledge of countries like Canada, Australia, UK, USA, and New Zealand. With more than 10 years of experience within the industry. She is a trusted and valuable asset of Aspire Square.

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