American Language Program / Visa
Our International Students & Scholars (ISS) office issues I-20 forms for international students to apply for an F-1 student visa. Our staff is happy to answer any of your questions; please contact us.
To assist you with the visa application process, we have created tips on preparing for your visa interview. Once you have entered the United States, you should become familiar with maintaining your status.
How to Apply for Your Student Visa
- Send in your American Language Program application to California State University, Fullerton.
- After you have received the I-20 and acceptance letter from ALP, pay the SEVIS fee online.
- Make an appointment to visit the United States Embassy or Consulate. Depending on your country, appointments can be scheduled by telephone, mail, online or in person. Here is a link to a complete list of United States embassies and consulates.
- When making an appointment, be sure to ask what fees are required and what payment methods are accepted. Application fees are non-refundable.
- Visit our page on Preparing for Your Visa Interview.
Visa Appointment Checklist
- Your passport, which must be valid for at least 6 months after your proposed date of entry into the United States
- Financial evidence showing you have sufficient funds to cover your tuition and living expenses during your visit
- Completed visa application forms DS-156, DS-158; some applicants will also need to complete form DS-157
- I-20 form and acceptance letter
- One (1) 2" X 2" photograph for each person applying; see additional information on photo requirements
- Receipt for SEVIS fee
- Receipt for visa processing fee
- Transcripts and diplomas from previous institutions attended
In addition to these items, you may need to present documentation and other evidence establishing social, economic, and family ties that will ensure your departure from the United States upon completion of your academic program.
Different Kinds of Visa
F-1 Student Visa: ISS highly recommends you obtain an F-1 student visa. This visa is designed for study in a language program or in a college/university for a degree.
B-2 Tourist Visa: We do not recommend that you obtain a tourist visa to enter the country for study purposes. A B-2 visitor visa means that the main intention is visiting the United States.
WT (Visa Waiver): If you intend to study full-time for a semester or more in the United States, do not enter under the visa waiver program. You are not permitted to stay in the country for more than 90 days. This waiver can not be changed or extended.