According to the most recent Open Doors Report on Foreign Education, the United States hosted over one million international students during the academic year 2019-2020. Following China at 34%, Indians have 18% and South Koreans have 4.6 per cent of the foreign student population in the United States.
The United States also has the highest proportion of visa rejections of any country in the world. This is mostly because many persons seeking for a US visa are uninformed of the conditions that must be satisfied while filling out their visa application.
Continue reading to learn more about the top 5 F1 visa interview questions and answers, the F1 visa application procedure, crucial interview recommendations, and other topics.
Top 5 F1 Visa Interview Questions and Answers in the United States in 2022
Before you leave for the interview, make sure your DS-160 is completely filled out. The questions are mostly drawn from the form you filled out. As a result, either seek the assistance of an expert or fill out the form after carefully evaluating each question.
In 2022, the following are the most frequently requested F1 visa interview questions and answers for Indian students:
1. How will you pay for your education in the United States?
You must state where you will get your money for the length of your course. Whether your education is being paid for by a parent or family, a scholarship, or a student loan.
Mention your sponsor’s yearly or monthly income, the work they do, and how long they have been employed or running a company/business. If your sponsor is a businessman, describe the nature of the firm, its yearly revenue, and its age.
If you have taken out a loan, make sure to include the name of the bank, the amount, and whether or not the loan was authorised. The same is true for any scholarships you may have. Mention the name and amount of the scholarship.
Bring all of your financial documentation to your student visa interview to demonstrate that you have sufficient finances.
2. Why did you choose this specific university/college to study at?
When preparing to answer this question, take a step back and consider how this institution or university can help you reach your long-term professional goals.
- Is there an exclusive course that will have a significant influence on your career?
- Is there a good networking opportunity at the college?
- What is the university’s global rating, and why does it matter?
- Have you done any research on the instructors who will be teaching you? Is there someone who stands out?
- Is the institution able to provide specialist certificates and courses?
- Is the university’s student body diverse? How would this benefit you?
Make a list of other similar questions and pay attention to what jumps out the most to you. Your response should represent how extensively you studied the college and how studying there will enhance your career.
3. Do you intend to return to the United States after completing your studies?
The visa officer wants to know why you wish to return to your native country. You must be specific about what you want to do and why.
Inform your visa officer if you want to study in the United States before returning to India to work for a firm. Explain why you wish to make this change.
Some students, for example, declare they wish to work in India because they have family there. Others say they desire a master’s degree because they want to apply for a specific position in the business where they are presently employed that requires it.
Whatever the reason, be honest and make sure you know exactly how you intend to achieve your objectives. This indicates to the immigration officer that you are serious about your education and do not want to come to the United States.
It is recommended that you emphasise your desire to return to India.
4. Do you have any relatives in the United States?
In your DS-160 Form, you are asked about your relatives or siblings who live in the United States, as well as their Name, Relationship, and Contact Information.
Your visa officer is already aware of this information. So, if you have blood relations in the United States, you may name them. However, if they aren’t blood relatives, you shouldn’t bring them up until specifically requested.
Lying about your relations may result in permanent refusal of entrance or visa issuance to the United States.
5. What motivates you to study in the United States?
You may always start by discussing the university and how well it fits your educational objectives. Aside from that, a degree from a US college is recognised globally and offers up a plethora of work prospects for students.
The American higher education system provides excellent academic flexibility, allowing students to transfer between courses and degrees or pursue various specialities. Universities are also quite supportive to international students, ensuring that they are comfortable and happy in the United States. Racism and bullying are also strictly prohibited at institutions. The cultural variety of the United States provides opportunities to interact with people from many cultures and backgrounds.
Other Frequently Asked and Answered USA F1 Visa Interview Questions and Answers for Students
Questions to Ask in an Interview About Your University or School:
- Why do you want to study in the US?
- How long are you planning to stay?
- What are the colleges you applied for and how many did you apply to get admitted to?
- Mention the names of the universities you got accepted to?
- What made you choose this specific university/college?
- Do you know your professors at that university? Their names?
- Tell us more about your academic background.
Interview Questions Concerning Educational Funds
- How will you be funding your study?
- Who is paying for your education in the US? What is their profession?
- The annual income of your parents and their designation
- How did you get this scholarship, and why do you think they gave it to you?
- Details about your sponsor’s job and monthly income
Interview Questions Concerning Your Family, Work, and Home Relationships
- Do you have brothers and sisters? If yes, how many?
- Do you have relatives living in the United States?
- Do you have any siblings? Do they have any plans to study in the US?
- Do you have relatives studying at the same university you are planning to go to?
- Are you in a relationship?
- Do you plan to stay back after your studies in the United States to work?
- We see that you have good work experience. Do you also have savings?
- Do you plan on working while studying?
Questions About Student Visa Interviews in General
- Is this your first time in the US, have you visited before?
- Why didn’t you choose to study in Canada, Australia or any other country?
- After completing your course here, what are your plans?
- Have you planned further in case your student visa is not approved?
6 Mistakes International Students Must Avoid During Their F1 Visa Interview in the United States
You are given an immediate decision – “visa approved” or “visa denied”!
Your F1 visa interview will be no more than 5 to 7 minutes long. This makes it difficult to impress the visa officer interviewing you in such a short period of time.
Here are 11 things you should not do during your F-1 student visa interview:
- Failure to Prepare for the Interview
Nothing is worse than showing up for a US visa interview unprepared! If you are serious about studying in the United States, you must bring all relevant documents to the interview, be well-dressed, and prepare for often requested interview questions and responses ahead of time.
While there is a comprehensive collection of F-1 student visa interview questions available below, here are some of the most common question types to get you started:
- What are your study plans in the United States?
- Why did you choose to study at the university you’ve planned to attend
- How are going to fund your study
- Details about your parents, guardians and/or relatives in the US
- Where do you plan to stay while in the US?
- What are your post-graduation plans?
Always be specific in your responses. Don’t belabour the point or over-explain your responses.
If the interviewer believes you need additional information, you may be asked extra questions. You may also be required to produce particular documentation to back up your claims. As a result, it is always wise to be prepared.
- Failure to demonstrate your Intent to Return
Proving your desire to return entails stating that you intend to return to your home country after completing your study in the United States.
The F1 visa is a non-immigrant visa, therefore stating that you want to stay in your home country permanently or not being specific about your property, company, family or friends, and any links you have back home would be regarded red flags.
- Lack of confidence in your replies
Make an excellent first impression. Smile at your interviewer, exchange pleasantries, and dress formally. The tone of the rest of your interview will be set by this.
The essential thing to note here is that the interviewer wants to know whether you have a good justification for picking the university you want to attend and if you have a solid financial plan to back up your school charge and cost of living while studying in the United States.
So be prepared to respond to these inquiries. Be truthful and stick to your response. Your interviewer will notice if you appear doubtful or reluctant when answering a question. They may even ask you a series of questions on the same subject or request documentation to back up your allegations. Respond boldly and comfortably.
- Failure to carry your documentation
You will be familiar with the DS-160 form and the I-20 form if you are familiar with the requirements and application process for the F1 student visa.
Your I-20 paperwork is issued by the SEVP-approved US college or university where you have been admitted. This form contains information such as your course duration and education money. It also allows you to make an appointment with the local US Embassy or Consulate for your F1 visa interview.
At your visa interview, you must bring the original Form I-20, the DS-160 confirmation document, and a valid passport. Your passport must be valid for at least six months after your stay in the United States.
Other papers include the payment receipt for your F-1 visa application, your photograph, and so on. See the list of F1 visa interview papers below for a comprehensive list.
- Being late or missing an appointment
Arriving late for a visa interview demonstrates that you are unconcerned with your academics.
You will not be permitted to enter the US Consulate for your interview if you arrive 15 minutes after your planned appointment time. You will have to reschedule your appointment for another day.
- Failure to clearly share information regarding your lodging
If you wish to remain with a relative in the United States throughout your course, or if you want to stay in university-provided housing, you must be certain.
Your interviewer will want to hear why you are making these decisions. Assume you have an uncle in the United States but wish to remain on campus. When asked why, you can say that you don’t feel safe living with them because they aren’t blood relations. Staying on campus will also provide you with greater freedom in terms of group studies, projects, part-time employment, and any other extracurricular activities that you may be interested in.
Prominent Overseas Careers customers are coached by US F1 visa advisers to prepare for visa interviews. We also assist with your online visa application and the proper papers for your F1 visa.
What exactly is an F1 Student Visa?
An F-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa that permits overseas students from all over the world to study full-time in the United States.
F1 students are only permitted to study at SEVP-approved institutions.
Who requires an F1 visa?
If you wish to study at a, you’ll require an F Visa.
- University or college
- High School
- Private elementary school
- Another academic institution, including a language training program
How can I obtain an F1 visa to study in the United States? (F1 Visa Application)
You must be accepted into a degree programme at a US institution of higher learning that is accredited.
Then, through the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System, wait for the I-20 form or the Certificate of Eligibility for Non-immigrant (F-1) Student Status (SEVIS).
The institution or college that a student has been admitted into sends the I-20 form to them.
Obtaining the I-20 paperwork is the first step in the US student visa application process.
When you’re I-20 are issued, the SEVIS receives the following information:
- Your SEVIS ID number
- Study program start and end dates
- Name of the program of study
- Your funding sources
- Cost of attendance
- Other personal information
After receiving your I-20, you must perform the following:
- Pay the SEVIS charge ($350) online and retain the e-receipt.
- Use the online DS-160 form ($160 USD) to apply for your non-immigrant visa. A printed confirmation with a barcode will be sent to you. To obtain your DS-160 form, you will need your I-20, passport, trip itinerary, and a picture for your visa.
- Make an appointment with the nearest US embassy or consulate.
Student (F and M) visas to the United States can be issued up to 120 days before the commencement date of your study programme.
However, don’t wait too long after receiving your acceptance letter to book your visa interview, since the procedure might take up to two months. Check the wait time for a visa appointment here.
Can an F1 student work in the United States?
Yes, an F1 student visa holder may work in the United States.
For overseas students, the F-1 visa in the United States allows for free on-campus employment and four options for off-campus employment. This will allow you to finance your living expenses in the United States while also gaining valuable experience in your subject of study.
Off-campus work falls into four categories:
- On-Campus Employment
- Optional Practical Training (OPT)
- Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
- Economic Hardship
- International Institutions
Optional practical training (OPT) allows F1 visa holders to work off-campus both during and after their degree. The assignment should be directly related to your field of study.
Curricular Practical Training (OCT) incorporates practical training within the curriculum. Both of these allow F1 students to pay for their studies while gaining useful job experience.
You must select one of the programmes since you will not be able to work for both.
What papers must you bring to your F-1 visa interview in the United States?
Before your visa interview, gather and prepare the following documents:
- Passport must be valid.
- Confirmation page for Non-immigrant Visa Application Form DS-160.
- Receipt for application fee payment
- Bring a digitally printed photo (Photograph Requirements) if your upload failed while completing Form DS-160 online.
- A signed Form I-20 from you and your SEVP-approved school official. Individual Form I-20s will be issued to your dependents who wish to live in the United States with you.
A consular official may ask for proof of:
Your academic preparedness, for example:
- Transcripts, diplomas, degrees, or certificates from the schools you have attended; and
- Standardized exam results required by your American school;
- Your intention to leave the United States after the term of study is completed; and
- With financial support documentation and bank statements, explain how you intend to pay for all educational, living, and travel expenses.
The SEVIS charge for an F-1 Student Visa is $350. (INR 25,380)
Fee for Visa Application (DS-160 Form): $160 (INR 11,602)
Other Important Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What if I miss the deadline for scheduling my immigration interview?
Send an expedited email to the embassy or consulate requesting an expedited meeting. The embassy will respond in two days.
Is it simple to obtain an F1 visa?
Even though the United States has a strict immigration policy and a higher visa denial rate than other countries, it is simple to obtain a US student visa if you have a well-prepared visa application, meet all visa requirements, and correctly answer all visa interview questions asked by immigration officers.
What exactly is the DS-160 Form?
The DS-160 is an online application for a non-immigrant visa.
What are the greatest states in the United States for international students to study?
The most popular states for study in the United States are California, Massachusetts, New York, Illinois, Texas, and Pennsylvania. Each state has about 50,000 international students from various nations.
Why was there a drop in international student enrolments in the United States?
According to a 2019 Education Data analysis, overseas students who did not enrol in a US college cited the following reasons for their decision:
- Visa application process/delay/denial – 87%
- Enrolled in another country – 58%
- Social & political environment – 58%
- Cost of tuition – 55%
- Securing a job in the US after graduation – 50%
However, over 200,000 Indian students were studying in the United States in 2019, representing a roughly 3% rise over 2018 and more than double the amount from six years earlier.
In 2020, how many international student enrolments were accepted by US institutions?
According to the 2020 report, international student enrolment in U.S. colleges is down 1.8 percent from the previous academic year. According to IIE data, this is the first decline in foreign student enrolment since 2005-2006.
An F1 visa permits international students to study in the United States at a SEVP-approved university or institution.
- Dependents may accompany students to the United States.
- F1 students are permitted to work on campus or participate in OPT.
All international student candidates must attend the F1 visa interview. Here are some of the most typical mistakes students make when attending a visa interview:
- Going unprepared for the Interview
- Not proving your Intent of Return
- Not being confident
- Not carrying the I-20 form & Valid Passport
- Not being specific about the arrangement of education funds
- Showing up late or Missing the appointment
- Not sharing details about your accommodation clearly