My Goal is to Study English
on an Intensive or Long-Term basis.
You need an F-1 Student Visa:
(Most RENNERT students enter the U.S. on an F-1 Student Visa)
An F-1 Student Visa is required if:
- You want to study for more than 90 days
- You want to take a full-time course of study for more than 18 hours of class per week
Part 1 - How to apply for an F-1 Student Visa
If you decide to obtain an F-1 Student Visa you must do this:
1.1 Make an appointment for an interview at your nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
In some countries it can be a month or two before an appointment is available, so it is a good idea to book an appointment at the same time you are registering at the school and gathering all your documents for your visa.
1.2 Register in one of our programs online, by fax or email and indicate that you need aa I-20 FORM.
The I-20 is a document that certifies that you have been accepted and have enrolled in a full-time course and that you have proven to us that you have sufficient financial means of support for the duration of your studies. You must obtain the I-20 from us to bring to your visa appointment. This document is not a visa nor does it give you permission to travel.
1.3 Send us a copy of your passport and financial documentation so we may issue you an I-20.
What is Financial Documentation? It can take the form of:
- A Bank Statement from your bank or financial institution.
If you are paying for yourself, you must provide a bank statement showing that you have the amount of the total tuition of your program plus $2000 per month if living in your own accommodations or $1000 per month if living in RENNERT accommodations.
- An Affidavit of Support.
If your company, parents or someone else is supporting you and your studies financially, you must have them sign an affidavit form and present THEIR bank statement demonstrating sufficient funds.
Part 2 - The Approval Process
Appointment at the U.S. Consulate in your Country
Once you have determined that you will apply for a visa and you have established when you would like to travel, you must schedule an interview appointment at your nearest U.S. Consulate or Embassy in your home country. You can do this on the website or your U.S. Embassy or Consulate. It is recommended to do this as soon as you are ready to book your course at Rennert as usually it will be 3-4 weeks and more before you will get an appointment at the embassy and it can take up to 120 days after the appointment to receive your visa.
While you are waiting for your appointment you can complete your registration at Rennert, gather the paperwork and documentation as explained in the previous section. You are also encouraged to bring additional documentation to your interview at the consulate. All paperwork is described below:
Which documents will I need to bring to my interview appointment at the consulate or Embassy?
- Valid Passport
You must have a current, machine readable passport.
- Form 1-20
You must bring your Rennert issued I-20, signed by you.
- Receipt of Payment
for the SEVIS I-901 fee as well as payment of the application fee.
- Financial Documentation
This is the same bank statement that you used to obtain your I-20 form from Rennert. If someone else like a parent or company is sponsoring you, also bring the Affidavit of Support form and the sponsor's financial documentation. This proves that you have enough money to support yourself during your time in the United States and shows the consul how you will fund your studies while in the U.S. You should bring any additional documentation that you think may help prove your financial stability.
- One 2x2 photograph
- Educational Records
Diplomas, transcripts, test scores (TOEFL, TOEIC, IELTS, Cambridge exams) showing your current English skill level. This will help support your claim that you need to improve your English and that you are a serious student. You may also bring letters from teachers or anyone else that may support you student intentions.
In addition, you must be prepared to prove to prove to the consul that:
*You should bring any documentation that helps support these statements*
- You are truly a serious student with intentions to study ONLY (not to work or sight-see).
- Your study in the United States is beneficial, if not essential to your future plans in your country.
- You will indeed return to your country after your studies are completed.
Additional Tips for your interview
You must convince the consul that you have "compelling ties" to your country and you do not intend to move to the U.S. permanently.
- If you own a home or anything of significant value, bring proof.
- If you are enrolled in a university for the next term, bring proof.
- If you must return to your job after only a temporary absence, bring proof.
- Be prepared to answer the question:
"Why do you need to study English in the United States?"
Think about your answer, and bring documents to prove what you are saying. If, for example, you are claiming that it will be important for your future job, bring documents to prove that you have already made plans to qualify for a job in which English will be necessary (courses you've taken in school, etc.).
- Don't forget to bring your smile, a good mood, motivation & spirit and think about if you have questions to ask the consul. The staff of a consulate are good, friendly people happy to meet you - there is no reason to be nervous.
The content in this section is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Additional information on these topics is available at the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services websites.