Nonimmigrant Visas: Study & Exchange

Beginning on December 3, 2020, the U.S. Embassy will offer a limited number of visa appointments to students who are studying in the United States. We are now able to accommodate returning students and those who are beginning new programs.  

To schedule a visa appointment, please send the following information by e-mail to

  1. Your full name as listed on your international travel passport
  2. Barcode number of your DS-160 form

IMPORTANT:  All visa appointments are subject to approval.  We will send a confirmation e-mail with COVID-19 prevention instructions to all applicants whose appointments are approved.  Applicants should not come to the Embassy unless they have received confirmation of their appointment. 

U.S. embassies and consulates recently began a phased resumption of routine visa services. The resumption of routine services is on a post-by-post basis, in accordance with the State Department’s Diplomacy Strong framework for safely returning our workforce to Department facilities. 

Student visas are a high priority, and we will make every effort to assist student visa applicants in a timely fashion, while keeping our staff and customers safe. 

The Student (F-1/M-1) Visa provides opportunities for qualified applicants to study at accredited postsecondary institutions in the United States. With thousands of academic programs, world-class institutions, and unmatched flexibility, the United States offers a wealth of higher-education opportunities. Visit the Department of State’s EducationUSA website to learn about educational opportunities for undergraduate and graduate study, opportunities for scholars, admissions, and more.

The Exchange Visitor (J-1) Visa program provides countless opportunities for international candidates looking to travel and gain experience in the United States. The multifaceted programs enable foreign nationals to come to the United States to teach, study, conduct research, demonstrate special skills or receive on the job training for periods ranging from a few weeks to several years. To learn more about exchange visitor visa programs, program sponsors, and more, please visit

Citizens of Visa Waiver Program (VWP) participating countries who intend to study cannot travel on the VWP or on visitor (B) visas, except to undertake recreational study as part of a tourist visit. Students must travel to the United States with student (F-1 or M-1) visas. For more information on the VWP, see Visa Waiver Program.

For short periods of recreational study, a Visitor (B) visa can be used. Enrollment in a short recreational course of study, which is not for credit toward a degree or academic certificate, is permitted on a visitor (B) visa. Learn more about Visitor Visas.

Study leading to a U.S. conferred degree or certificate is not permitted on a visitor (B) visa, even if it is for a short duration. For example, distance learning which requires a period of time on the institution’s U.S. campus requires an F-1 visa.