Types of student visa for USA

For individuals planning to study in the United States, there are primarily two types of student visas available: the F visa category and the M visa category. Here’s a brief overview of each:

  1. F Visa Category:
    • F-1 Visa: This is the most common type of student visa for academic studies in the USA. It is issued to individuals enrolled in full-time academic programs at accredited universities, colleges, high schools, private elementary schools, seminaries, conservatories, or other academic institutions. F-1 visa holders may engage in practical training related to their field of study and have the option for Optional Practical Training (OPT) after completing their program.
    • F-2 Visa: This visa is for dependents of F-1 visa holders, including spouses and unmarried children under 21 years old. F-2 visa holders are allowed to accompany the F-1 visa holder to the USA but are generally not permitted to engage in full-time study or employment.
  2. M Visa Category:
    • M-1 Visa: This visa is for students enrolled in vocational or non-academic programs at SEVP-approved institutions in the USA. It is commonly used for technical or vocational courses, such as cooking schools, beauty schools, flight schools, or vocational training programs. M-1 visa holders are not eligible for OPT.
    • M-2 Visa: Similar to the F-2 visa, the M-2 visa is for dependents of M-1 visa holders, allowing them to accompany the primary visa holder to the USA. M-2 visa holders are generally not permitted to engage in full-time study or employment.

These visa categories are designed to accommodate different types of academic and vocational programs offered by institutions across the United States. It’s essential for prospective students to determine the appropriate visa category based on their intended course of study and to comply with all visa requirements and regulations throughout their stay in the USA. Additionally, students should consult with their designated school officials (DSOs) or international student advisors for guidance on the visa application process and maintaining status while studying in the USA.

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By Aban

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