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International students who wish to pursue their studies at ASU must obtain an F-1 or J-1 visa. To obtain a visa, students must first receive a SEVIS number and I-20 document from ASU. Learn more about the SEVIS and student visa steps.
Request your I-20 from ASU
Once you have received your SEVIS and I-20 from ASU, here are your basic next steps:
In order to apply for an F-1 or J-1 student visa, you must complete Form DS-160. This form now requires applicants to provide information on all social media platforms they have used within the last five years. As such, you will be required to provide the following:
Username, screen name, handle or other identifier for each social media platform you use or have used.
Your current email address and phone number.
Any email addresses and phone numbers you have used in the past five years.
Please note: You will not be required to provide your passwords for any of these accounts.
Before you begin the online visa application, please gather the above information and make sure your social media privacy settings are up to date.
The consular officer may ask questions regarding any public information that is available on your social media accounts. Please be prepared to answer their questions.
Be prepared to demonstrate ties to your home country. Ties to your home country are the things that connect you to your hometown, homeland or current place of residence (i.e., job, family, financial prospects that you own or will inherit, investments, etc).
Practice your English in advance, as the interview will be conducted in English.
Unless you are under 18 years old, do not bring parents or family members with you to your interview.
Prepare to articulate why the program you will study in the U.S. will help or relates to your professional goals in your home country.
Answer all questions concisely with the appropriate information.
Be ready to explain any documents that you submitted during your application process.
It is harder for students from certain countries to obtain visas, so expect potential challenges or delays in processing.
Your main purpose to come to the U.S. is to study. You must clearly articulate your plan to return home after you have finished your degree.
If you have dependents that will stay at home while you study in the U.S., be prepared to share how they will support themselves in your absence.
Remain positive. It can be a tricky and challenging process, but a positive attitude can go a long way.
From the U.S. Department of State: When administrative processing is required, the consular officer will inform the applicant at the end of the interview. The duration of the administrative processing will vary based on the individual circumstances of each case. At the conclusion of the administrative processing period, the consular officer might conclude that an applicant is now qualified for the visa for which they applied. The officer may also conclude that the applicant remains ineligible for a visa. Visa applicants are reminded to apply early for their visas, well in advance of the anticipated travel date.
From ASU’s International Students and Scholars Center: If you are experiencing administrative processing delays longer than 30 days, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Some students will be denied a visa if the consular officer determines they are ineligible. Many students with a denied F-1 or J-1 visa application are not able to prove sufficient ties to their home country under INA section 214(b).
If your visa was denied, we recommend submitting a new visa application once you have addressed the concerns of the Consular Officer.
If this will impact your ability to arrive on time to ASU to begin your studies, please email email@example.com.
After you applied to ASU, you were issued an ASURITE UserID in an email. This ID gives you access to ASU's online student services through My ASU. You must activate your ASURITE UserID online.
Enrollment deposit (freshmen only)
Pay your enrollment deposit on My ASU to confirm you will attend.
You must submit your measles (rubeola), mumps and rubella immunization form before you can register for classes. Visit the ASU Health Services website for more information. If you are under 18 years old, please plan to bring a signed consent form for medical treatment with you to the U.S. Check My ASU and click on the MMR Immunization hold for detailed instructions.
Math placement test (undergraduates only)
Take the math placement test online. New students enrolling in a math class are required to take the math placement test unless they have transferred an equivalent course to ASU. Take the test as early as possible. Students who are required to take the test will see the item "Take Math Placement Test" under Priority Tasks in My ASU.
Complete pre-orientation on My ASU
All international students are encouraged to complete the digital orientation available on My ASU prior to arrival to ASU.
If you are a transfer student bringing college credit with you, Admission Services initially awards transfer credit. However, your academic advisor in your major will determine how the credit applies to your degree. Call 480-965-2437 or email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
ASU offers on-campus housing options at all campus locations. As a student living on campus, you will have convenient access to the opportunities, resources and programs offered at ASU, both academic and professional. To apply to live on campus, please visit My ASU to choose your housing preferences. If you intend to live elsewhere, please notify the university by choosing that option on your Priority Tasks in My ASU. If you are a transfer or graduate student not planning to live on campus and need assistance with your housing transition, please contact Off Campus Housing .
Register for classes by going to the Academic Support Team box in My ASU and clicking on Academic Advising to schedule an advising appointment.
Transfer students in Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering and W. P. Carey School of Business will receive additional information by email from their college about the next steps to take to receive advising and register for classes.
If you are a graduate student, you will need to contact your academic department about steps to take to select and register for courses. You can view your academic unit contact information in the My Programs and Degree Progress box in My ASU. Note that you may have holds on your enrollment that you need to complete before you can register for classes.
Tuition charges will be billed to your student account and may be viewed online through My ASU. By registering for classes you agree to pay all applicable tuition and registration fees. If you decide not to attend, you must completely withdraw from all classes before the semester begins.
If tuition is not paid by the applicable due date, you will automatically be enrolled in the tuition installment plan and charged a nonrefundable enrollment fee. Visit the Tuition and Billing website for more information.
You can access online billing through My ASU. Click on My Finances, then Make a Payment. Students are responsible for reviewing their ASU email account for notification of billing statements and reviewing their student account on My ASU for current information. Billing statements are not mailed to your home.
Most students will arrive in the U.S. at an airport other than Phoenix Sky Harbor (PHX). If you will arrive at PHX on an international flight, please see the international information on the Sky Harbor website .
Regardless of your Port of Entry (POE), at the first entry point into the U.S. as a legal nonimmigrant, you will be required to complete the items below. For more explanation of what to expect at a POE, visit the U.S. Immigration and Customs website .
At your point of entry, U.S. Customs and Border Protection will check your documents. This is where you will need to present your passport, visa and I-20 to the Customs and Border Protection officer.
The passport must be stamped by the port of entry official notating F-1 D/S or J-1 D/S (Duration of Status), date, and location of arrival in the U.S. If this is incomplete or the stamped date or visa classification is incorrect, please bring it to the attention of the port of entry official so they can make the correct annotation. Errors noticed after you leave the airport should be brought to the attention of the International Students and Scholars Center.
While a CBP officer inspects your immigration documents, you may be asked some general questions. Don't get agitated or nervous; it's just a routine procedure. Always answer clearly, honestly and politely. If there is a problem, suggest that they contact the International Students and Scholars Center at 480-727-4776. We are open during office hours, Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
There is no cause for alarm if you are asked to step into a side room. They may need to ask you some questions or verify some information. You are allowed to ask the officer what the issue is — just do so respectfully.
After checking your documents and clearing you to enter the U.S., you will proceed to the baggage claim area to collect your luggage. You will then need to enter a line with U.S. Customs (or Agricultural Dept.) officials where they may ask about the contents of your bags or ask to open them. Students should follow their instructions and answer their questions honestly and politely. Please bear in mind that the penalty for carrying contraband is very high and may result in deportation.
After you collect your luggage, you will go through the customs checkpoint. This is where you turn in the form you were given on the airplane. On this form, you must declare if you have funds exceeding $10,000 (in any currency) and any items that need to be declared. Please visit cbp.gov for detailed information on what you are allowed to bring and what items you need to declare.
Once you have cleared the customs checkpoint, you will exit into the international arrivals area of the airport. If you need to catch a connecting flight (to get to PHX), you will need to take your bags with you to the proper terminal or check-in counter for your domestic flight. At many airports, you will need to take a free inter-terminal shuttle to get to the proper location. We highly recommend visiting the website of your international destination airport to become familiar with what you will need to do.
Additionally, each U.S. airline has separate policies regarding charges for checked luggage and weight requirements. We strongly recommend researching your airline's domestic flight baggage policies so that you know if you will incur charges at check-in for your domestic flight. Finally, the U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has detailed information about what you can carry on and things to consider when traveling within the U.S.