How to Apply for Your F-1 Visa

  1. Pay the I-901 SEVIS Fee. The form is available here. Be sure to print the receipt!!
  2. After paying the I-901 SEVIS Fee, make an appointment with the nearest U.S. Consulate and complete an application for an F-1 Student Visa.
  3. Take the following items with you to your visa appointment (remember, you need to show as much information as possible to the Consular Officer):
    1. I-20 Form
    2. Receipt of Payment for the I-901 SEVIS Fee
    3. Original Financial Documents
    4. GWU Acceptance Letter
    5. Scholarship Letter(s), if applicable
    6. Undergraduate Students Only: TOEFL, IELTS or SAT Verbal scores
    7. Graduate Students Only: GMAT or GRE scores depending on program
    8. Any other document the Consular Affairs requests


The Consulate Officer will ask you questions to determine three things:

  1. Intent to return – you need to prove that you will return to your home country upon completion of your studies.
  2. Proof that you have adequate funds.
  3. The similarity between your intended major and your future career objectives.


Helpful Hints

  • Allow yourself no less than 6 weeks to get your visa before you are scheduled to arrive in the U.S.
  • Be yourself, answer truthfully and remember, only you can discuss with the U.S. Consulate why you have chosen to study at GWU and why you should be issued a student visa!