As an F-2 visa holder, you are not eligible to be a full-time student and you are not able to take courses on a part-time basis that can be applied toward a degree-granting program. Therefore, if you wish to study full time, you must apply for a change of status from F-2 to F-1. F-2 visa holders may not enroll in school after they have applied for change of status to F-1 while the application is pending. They may also not receive wages or compensation of any kind until the F-1 status is approved.

In order to change status while in the U.S. from a dependent (F-2) to a student (F-1) status you will need to be admitted to a full-time academic program at a school that can issue you a Form I-20. In addition, your F-1 spouse must be in the U.S. and in status when you are requesting this change.

Note: If you are traveling outside the U.S., you can accomplish the change of status upon re-entry if you take your Form I-20 and financial documents with you and obtain an F-1 Visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate. Upon obtaining the F-1 visa, you can enter the U.S. as an F-1 student.

Your request for change of status to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) should consist of the following:

  • Completed Form I-539 with the processing fee (check or money order made payable to Department of Homeland Security); for the most current fee information visit the USCIS website.
  • Receipt for paying the SEVIS I-901 Fee
  • Original Form I-20 signed and dated
  • Original Form I-94 (you are very strongly encouraged to keep a copy of the front and back of the Form I-94)
  • Financial verification
  • Copies of your spouse's valid Immigration forms: I-94, I-20
  • Copies of the pages in each individuals passport that include biographical information, passport picture, and passport expiration
  • For further information please see instructions located in Form I-539.
  • Make an appointment at the Office of International Programs to review the above documents

Note: If you have been offered an assistantship, please include and highlight in your letter.

Contact Us

For more information about international programs, please contact the office.

Contact Information

Campus Address
Stroud Hall 103
(570) 422-3527
(570) 422-3579 (Fax)
Title of Department Leader
Interim Director International Study Programs
Steven Ives