A visa is a document granting permission to enter the issuing country. In addition to your passport, you may need a visa issued by the country where you plan to study. It’s important to research the visa requirements of the country you will visit.
Generally, if you have a U.S. passport and will travel for less than 90 days (as in a summer program), you won’t need a visa; but this isn’t true for every country, so do your research.
If you’re a resident alien or international student and don’t have a U.S. passport, different rules could apply. Again, check with the specific country you plan to visit.
Start by making a visa checklist as soon as you’ve been accepted into a program. Visa processing times vary by country, so don’t delay.
You can’t apply for a student visa without a passport and an acceptance letter. Typically, you’ll also need bank documents or proof of funds, plus health insurance and a plane ticket.
While applying for your visa, you may need to visit your host country’s consulate. The consulate’s website will tell you that country’s specific visa requirements and how to apply. Below are visa requirements for common study abroad destinations: