An F-1 visa allows an international student to enter the United States to study in a language and/or academic program. If you are studying at WSU on an F-1 visa, you must comply with U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) requirements, as well as university requirements.
F-1 students are required to maintain full-time student status.
Full-time status, fall and spring semesters:
- Undergraduate students: 12 credits
- Graduate students: 10 credits
In certain situations, such as when you are in your last semester before graduation, working on a dissertation, or have a qualifying emergency, you can request to drop below a full course load.
Inform WSU of any change in program
Your Form I-20 must accurately reflect your current status as a student. You are responsible for keeping it up to date. If you change your academic program in any way, please inform the Office of International Programs.
Your I-20 will need to be updated to reflect any of the following:
- Change of major
- Graduating from your academic program
- Change of level (e.g., from undergraduate to graduate study)
- Extending your F-1 immigration status
- Dropping below full-time enrollment
- Canceling enrollment
Check the detailed status requirements to be sure you follow proper procedure and meet U.S. government requirements.
If you will be traveling outside the United States while your F-1 visa is in effect, you will need to follow certain procedures.
Change of addressIf you move to a new local residence, you must update your address within 10 days of your move. Your new address will be sent to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security automatically via the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS).
Washington State University recommends you have medical (health) insurance for you and any dependents you bring with you. WSU will automatically enroll you in its international Student Health Insurance Program (iSHIP), but you will need to purchase separate coverage for anyone else who comes with you.
Finding the policy that is right for your dependents
Evaluate different insurance products to find one that best suits your dependents’ circumstances.
If you have questions about the WSU iSHIP policy, please contact WSU Cougar Health Services.