Immigrating to the USA

Map of the USA
Map of the USA

The following map of the USA of America came from the US Government Information Exchange site, a good source of information about the USA government. AL – Alabama AK – Alaska AZ – Arizona AR – Arkansas CA – California CO – Colorado CT – Connecticut DE – Delaware FL – Florida GA – Georgia HI...

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Customs and Immigration
Customs and Immigration

Your literal journey to becoming an international student in the USA is almost over and your metaphorical one can almost begin. But before you get excited, you have to stand in long lines and prove that you’re allowed to be here by going through passport control and customs. When you land in the USA, after...

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Traveling on a Budget
Traveling on a Budget

The USA is a big place and you’ll probably want to explore it as much as possible. But you’ll also need to be able to afford those trips, as well as trips back to your home country. How can you pay for everything? Traveling The USA has tons of obvious places to visit like San...

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Air Travel
Air Travel

Whether this is your first time or your 50th time flying to the USA, advice about traveling is always helpful. After all, if you’re moving across the world to learn stuff, you might as well as start now. Before flying Arrive at the airport at least two hours before your flight is scheduled to depart....

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Before You Leave
Before You Leave

You’re not stressed at all about what’s left to do before you leave your home country and become an international student in the USA, right? Good, then you won’t mind if we give you these last few tasks to make sure your transition to the USA is as smooth as possible. Walking tasks Take your...

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Packing
Packing

Just because you’re excited about being an international student in the USA doesn’t mean you’re ready to leave your home country. First things first – you have to pack.  What you should do to prep Check the luggage allowance on your flight and the cost of paying extra for additional suitcases if necessary. It might...

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Immigration-Related Web Sites
Immigration-Related Web Sites

American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA)AILA is a national bar association of more than 5,200 attorneys who practice immigration law. For more information, call 1-202-216-2400, fax 1-202-371-9449, or write to American Immigration Lawyers Association, 1400 Eye Street, NW, Suite 1200, Washington, DC 20005 USA. American Immigration Center This site provides information about topics relating to USA immigration....

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Additional Visa Information
Additional Visa Information

Contact the USA embassy or consulate for information about visas to the US. Every embassy and consulate has a small library of information about studying in the US. They can advise you as to the procedures required for a student visa. Key contacts for USA embassies and consulates are listed in the USA State Department...

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Employment
Employment

Do not count on being able to scrape up the funding after you arrive in the US. Getting a job is not an effective means of financing an education in the US. There are numerous restrictions on employment by foreign nationals, and some types of visas prohibit it entirely. Even when employment is permitted, it...

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Maintaining Visa Status After Arrival
Maintaining Visa Status After Arrival

If a student on a F-1 visa is not able to complete their studies by the expiration date on the I-20 form, they must apply to the school’s Foreign Student Advisor for an extension 30 days before expiration. Extensions are normally granted for academic and medical reasons so long as there have been no violations...

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Changing Visa Status After Arrival
Changing Visa Status After Arrival

The B-2 visa (Tourist Visa) is not considered a student visa for full-time study. Studying in the USA on a B-2 visa is grounds for deportation. Switching from a B-2 visa to a F-1 or J-1 visa after arriving in the USA is extremely difficult, and may be grounds for deportation or prosecution for visa...

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Proving Non-immigrant Intent
Proving Non-immigrant Intent

You may need to establish that you intend to return to your home country after your studies are complete. You may need to demonstrate economic, personal, social, and cultural ties to your home country. Some of the methods of doing this include: Providing a list of the names, addresses, ages, and occupations of close family...

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Sufficient Financial Resources
Sufficient Financial Resources

To get a F-1 visa approved, you will need to demonstrate that you have sufficient funds to pay for the first year of study and that you have resources available to cover the rest of your educational program. For an M-1 or J-1 visa, you will need to demonstrate that you have sufficient funds to...

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Visas
Visas

A visa is a grant of permission to enter the country. The USA entrance requirements are as follows: You must be healthy. No inoculations are required to enter the US, unless you were recently in a country with epidemics such as cholera and yellow fever. HIV-positive people are not allowed to enter the US. You...

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Passports
Passports

Your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond the end of your intended stay in the US. Before leaving for the US, make a photocopy of the page containing your photograph and passport number. If your passport is lost or stolen, this will make it easier to replace the passport. Keep the...

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Conversations
Conversations

There are lots of stereotypes about how people from different cultures or who speak different languages communicate. Sometimes these are fairly accurate and can cause misunderstandings, and sometimes they’re just funny to read about. In an effort to offend as few people as possible, here are some common cultural features about how Americans have a...

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Common Usage Errors
Common Usage Errors

Even if you passed the TOEFL with high marks, you might still make mistakes in English sometimes. And that’s ok! Just remember that most native English speakers probably speak your native language much worse than you speak English.  If you want to arrive in the USA super confident about your English, you can start to...

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Glossary
Glossary

As an international student in the USA, you’ll probably come across a lot of education-related terms that you don’t understand. But after reading the glossary below, you’ll be an expert on all-things education. Academic Year The period during which school is in session. The school year typically runs from August through May at most colleges...

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English-English Dictionary
English-English Dictionary

If you’ve watched both British and American tv shows, you’ll know that citizens of those countries speak the same language but use many different words. Many English-speaking countries outside of the USA often use British terminology but include their own slang, while some countries with other native languages use American terms. It can be confusing,...

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British English and American English
British English and American English

We don’t like to generalize, but, generally speaking, there are differences between British English and American English. And if you’re an international student in the USA from an English-speaking country – most likely a Commonwealth nation – you’re probably already very aware of some of them. But American English tends to be taught in many...

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Teaching Styles
Teaching Styles

Don’t forget that somewhere in between all your new experiences as an international student in the USA you’ll have to actually go to classes. But when you get there, you may be a bit surprised at how they’re taught.   Teaching styles in the USA may be different to those you’re used to in your home...

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Professional Associations for ESL
Professional Associations for ESL

If English isn’t your first language, you might be wondering how your English teachers knew what to teach you or how to teach it. And the answer is that someone checked to make sure they were headed in the right direction. Below are several organizations that provide accreditation to various schools and training facilities or...

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English and TOEFL Preparation Sites
English and TOEFL Preparation Sites

English as a Second Language Home Page This site provides a set of ESL links for international students who wish to learn English through the World Wide Web. ESL Cafe ESL Cafe provides a nice online environment for learning and exercising English, operated by Dave Sperling. freeENGLISH The freeENGLISH web site provides 130 hours of...

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Intensive English Classes
Intensive English Classes

Immersion is the best way to learn any language, especially English. American English is filled with idioms and jargon, more so than other languages. You won’t be able to learn all the peculiar turns of phrase until you try living the language. If you have a choice between a casual English class and an intensive...

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English Proficiency Testing
English Proficiency Testing

The whole point of moving to the USA to get a higher education is to actually learn something. But how can you learn anything if you don’t speak English? That’s why most schools require that international students from non-native English-speaking countries (there’s usually a list) must take a test to prove their proficiency in English....

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