U.S. Visa Requirements

Note: Until further notice, UCR University Extension is operating in a remote learning environment only. Due to SEVP guidelines, new initial I-20s are temporarily paused until the campus is able to reopen. For questions, please contact immigrationadvising@ucx.ucr.edu'>immigrationadvising@ucx.ucr.edu.

F-1 Student Visa & I-20 Form

To study in a full-time academic program in the U.S., you need an original form I-20. Before you can apply for an F-1 student visa, you must qualify for an I-20.

  • The I-20 (also called a Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status) is an official nonimmigrant document issued by UCR University Extension to a student who has been accepted into a full-time program of study.
    • 18+ hours of instruction per week for language programs
    • 12+ units of enrollment for academic programs
    • All of our programs are full-time, except Conversation and American Culture, and certain custom programs.
  • If you are outside the U.S., you must apply for an F-1 (student) visa at your local U.S. embassy or consulate after you receive your acceptance packet and Form I-20.
  • If you are currently under any other visa type in the United States, please contact the University Extension Immigration Advising Office.

How To Receive an I-20

You must meet all admission criteria, show adequate proof of funding, and gain acceptance into one of our full-time programs. You can find a list of programs and the minimum amounts of funding below.

Once your I-20 has been issued, you will be mailed an acceptance packet via FedEx Express mail. There is no additional cost for mailing. If you would like your acceptance materials mailed to a different address or are requesting to pick up your acceptance materials, please contact the University Extension Admissions Office.

Funding Requirements

Before we can issue an I-20, you must provide financial documentation demonstrating that you have sufficient funding for your program fees, and estimated living expenses while you study in the U.S.

English Language Programs

  • 2-week English Program: $2,300
  • 4-week English Program: $4,100
  • 6-week English Program: $5,900
  • 8-week English Program: $7,300
  • 10-week English Program: $8,600
  • 12-week English Program: $9,600

Degree Pathways

  • 9-month Admission Preparation Program (APP): $45,900
  • 9-month Graduate Preparation Program (GPP): $42,900
  • 9-month Master's in Business Preparation Program (MBPP): $37,900
  • 12-week University Credit Program (UCP): $13,200

Postgraduate Certificates, Diplomas, and Master's Pathways

  • 9-month Postgraduate Diploma Program (PGD): $31,100
    • Big Data Technologies
    • Bioengineering Management
    • Digital Marketing
    • Engineering Management
    • Entrepreneurship
    • Event Management
    • Leadership & Organizational Excellence
    • Management
    • Project Management
    • Sports Management
    • Tourism & Hospitality Management
  • 12-month Postgraduate Diploma Program: $47,800
    • Entertainment Media Management
  • 12-week Postgraduate Certificate Program (PGCM): $11,800

Dependent Expenses

Only calculate for those coming to the U.S., if any

  • Spouse: $500 per month of your initial program
  • Each Child: $250 per month of your initial program
  • (Example: Student studying Intensive English wishes to bring his wife and one child as F-2 dependents. He must show a funding amount of $1500.00 (spouse) and $750.00 (child) = $2250.00 in addition to the $8200.00 to cover the total funding of $10,450 for the initial three-month period.)

You must submit documentation demonstrating sufficient economic solvency to cover expenses during your academic study in the U.S. Carefully review the acceptable and not acceptable funding types listed below.

Acceptable Funding Types

  • Bank Statement (Self)
    • Your full name must be listed as the account holder.
  • Bank Statement (Other)
    • The full name of the person sponsoring your education in the United States must be listed as the account holder.
  • Statements of Financial Support
    • Required if your education is sponsored by another party.
    • Required if you are not the account owner on the bank statement.
    • Endorsed by the person sponsoring your education.
    • Valid for 6 months from the date of signature.
    • View additional instructions
  • Letter from a financial institution
    • The full name of the account holder must be listed.
    • Contain an official signature, stamp, or seal.
  • Proof of scholarship or government sponsorship
    • The full name of the student must be listed.
    • Must be on institutional letterhead.
    • Endorsed with an official signature, stamp, or seal.

Not Acceptable Funding Types

  • Documents older than 6 months
  • Income statements
  • Funds not immediately accessible
  • Life insurance statements
  • Pension/Retirement funds
  • Tax returns

Document Requirements

  • Must be dated within the past 6 months. Required information must be in English (name, date, funding amount) or accompanied by an English translation. Must state currency used.

Transferring to UCR University Extension from another school in the U.S.

If you are currently studying in the U.S. at another SEVIS-approved school, you may be able eligible to transfer to UCR University Extension. However, there are requirements you must meet to qualify for a transfer.

  • You must apply to University Extension and gain acceptance like any other applicant.
  • There can be no more than a five-month gap between your last day of classes or Optional Practical Training at your previous school and the start of your program at University Extension.
  • University Extension's SEVIS School Name is University of California, Riverside Extension and our school code is LOS214F01959000.
  • Important: University Extension does not accept students transferring in Terminated or Completed status.

Bringing a Spouse and/or Child with You

  • Step 1: Indicate on your application that you wish to bring dependents with you to the United States.
  • Step 2: Submit copies of their passports for F-2 dependent I-20 issuance.
    • Only the legal spouse and unmarried minor children (under 21 years of age) are eligible to enter the United States in F-2 dependent status.
    • All dependents must receive an F-2 dependent I-20 and apply for a dependent visa at a US consulate or embassy.
  • Step 3: F-2 dependent spouses may study part-time in the United States but are not permitted to enroll full-time or engage in any employment.
  • Step 4: F-2 children may study at the elementary and secondary levels (K-12th grade) and may also enroll full-time at a college or university until 21 years of age.
  • Important: As you plan to bring your family, you must show proof of funding to cover their expenses. Add the appropriate amounts listed in the Funding Requirementsarea on this page to the corresponding program amount for the total amount of required funds.
  • Note: Other family members are not permitted to enter the U.S. as F-2 dependents (siblings, parents, grandparents, etc.)

After You Receive Your I-20

  • Step 1: Obtain your Form I-20 and pay the SEVIS I-901 fee online at www.fmjfee.com (This must be done before your visa appointment)
  • Step 3: Schedule your visa interview at www.usembassy.gov and pay the non-immigrant visa fee
  • Step 4: Prepare for your F-1 visa interview. Come prepared with all of the following materials to your interview:
    • Step 2: Complete the DS-160 nonimmigrant visa application at www.ceac.state.gov and be sure to print your confirmation page.
    • DS-160 confirmation page
    • Visa fee payment receipt
    • Original, valid passport (not a copy) - passport must be valid (unexpired) for at least six months past program start date
    • Photos for your visa
    • Original I-20 from UCR-Extension (not a copy)
    • School transcripts (if applicable)
    • Proof of financial funding

Helpful Tips

Bring photocopies of all of your documents, plan ahead, dress professionally, and speak to the consular officer with clear and simple answers. It is important to know why you are choosing UCR University Extension, what you hope to gain from the program, and what your future goals back in your home country are.

Wait times for a visa appointment vary greatly by consulate. Be sure to plan ahead and if you have visa delays, contact UCR University Extension as soon as possible. If your passport will expire soon, plan accordingly for a renewal.

If you have questions about the F-1 visa interview process, please contact University Extension Immigration Advising and we will try to assist you.

Working while in the U.S. on an F-1 (student) visa

The purpose of an F-1 visa is to study, not work. Full-time work is not allowed while you are enrolled full-time and studying on an F-1 visa.

Students may engage in part-time employment (20 hours or less) on-campus during their studies. No off-campus work is permitted without work authorization.