USA Study Visa: USA Student Visa Requirements for Indian Students

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The USA is probably the world most preferred educational destination in the world. Aspirants can choose myriad subjects for students in world-class institutes. But, students must note studying in the US is not possible without a USA study visa. Every year the US welcomes thousands of students, and the application for a study visa exceeds every year; hence, students must stay aware of the visa requirements before applying to avoid rejection.     

The student visa in the USA is considered a US F1 visa, and the requirements are listed below.

US Study Visa Requirements  

  1. A valid passport with a minimum of 6 months validity beyond the stay period. 
  2. Current passport size photograph.
  3. Form I – 20
  4. Confirmation page of DS – 160. 
  5. Visa fee payment for SEVIS. 
  6. Application as non-immigrant 
  7. University documents. 

A student’s parents or family members can also visit the US with an F2 visa. Family members include parents, spouse and unmarried children under 21 years of age. However, it is essential to know that the requirements for F2 are different from the US study visa. 

Requirements for F2 student visa 

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USA Study Visa: USA Student Visa Requirements for Indian Students

The requirements of an F2 Visa includes – 

  1. Valid passport
  2. Visa application confirmation 
  3. Birth certificate of the dependent children 
  4. A photograph based on US visa rules
  5. Applicants I – 20 form.
  6. Visa payment fee
  7. Spouses marriage certificate
  8. Copy of I – 20 visa form of the F1visa holder
  9. Financial documents of the applicant, including tax records, bank statements and others. 

Eligibility for F2 Student Visa 

The eligibility of F2 visa is – 

  1. Must be a spouse or family member of the student. 
  2. Should be a dependent unmarried child under 21 years.
  3. The applicant has enough finances to support the family in the US. 

However, apart from an F1 student visa for the USA from India, students can also opt for an M1 visa for vocational training in the US. But the USA student visa requirements for M1 are different from the previous visa. 

M1 USA study visa Requirements 

The M1 study visa requirements are – 

  1. Applicants can only apply for vocational courses in the US.
  2. Candidates must have to meet the minimum eligibility for vocational courses. 
  3. Must have been admitted to any US university and have an I-20 form.   
  4. Demanded English language proficiency.
  5. Substantial funds to cover expenses in the US.  
  6. Applicants must not have any intention to stay in the US after the course. 
  7. Candidates must have a permanent country of origin.
  8. Applicants must also prove that their native country will be benefitted from the education.    

Documents required for an M1 Study Visa 

  1. Confirmation of DS-160.
  2. Passport validity of at least 6 months. 
  3. Current photograph
  4. Visa appointment 
  5. Receipt of fee payment 
  6. Proof of financial stability
  7. Educational certificates

However, apart from these guidelines, students must check the requirements and eligibility for a US student visa from the official website. As visa requirements might need the approximation for tuition fees hence, for this, students can consult the table below. 

Study Program Estimated tuition Fees (per year)
Undergraduate degree (Bachelors)$15,000 to $40,000 
Graduate degree (Masters)$20,000 to $40,000
Doctoral degree$20,000 to $45,000

But, the cost will vary with university and degree; hence, it is vital to check the fee structure and additional charge from the university website or officials. Also, for reference, the top 20 universities of the US are given below – 

UniversityQS World University RankingsTimes Higher Education Ranking
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)15
Stanford University 34
Harvard University52
California Institute of Technology (CalTech)62
Yale University 149
University of California Los Angeles 4020
Princeton University 207
Columbia University 1911
New York University (NYU)4226
Cornell University 2122
University of Chicago1010
University of Pennsylvania 1313
Duke University5223
Boston University11262
Johns Hopkins University 2513
Carnegie Melon University 5328
Northwestern University 3024
University of Southern Carolina11263
University of California Berkley328
Brown University6064

Hence, applicants need to refer to the eligibility and document requirements before applying for a USA study visa. This will help accumulate required documents much before application and give ample time for preparation.    

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the cost of an F1 Visa application?

For a US study visa, students have to pay $160.  

2. What is the processing time of an F1 Visa application?

For an F1 visa, the processing starts immediately after the interview. 

3. What is the validity of an F1 Visa?

For Indian students, an F1 visa is generally valid for 5 years from the start of the program.

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Debasmita Das

Study abroad professional with 14 years of extensive experience in advising associates, recruiting and counselling students.

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