International Steps to Enrollment

Transferring an I-20

Changing Your Academic Level

Welcome to the SJSU Spartan Community!

Here are some important steps and links to help ensure a successful start to your educational career at SJSU. Although these steps are presented in numerical order, keep in mind that you may not necessarily complete all of these steps in the order that they are presented.

Step 1: Obtain I-20 and Admission Letter

You will receive a MySJSU message within 5-7 days after your official admission with information on receiving your admission packet, including your I-20.

TRANSFER I-20s: If you are in the U.S. on an F1 visa, please  follow the instructions for transferring an I-20.

After your completed transfer-in form is returned and processed, you will be emailed with I-20 delivery options.

Undergraduate students currently enrolled at SJSU will need to request a Change of Academic Level.

Please note: If you are currently on an F2 or H4 visa and want to convert to an F1 visa, you will need to work with the International Student & Scholars Services (ISSS) Office to apply for a change of status.

Step 2: Complete the Next Steps Intent to Enroll process

Let us know that you are planning to attend SJSU!

Intent to Enroll

Step 3: Apply for a visa (students outside the US)

After you receive your initial Form I-20 from San Jose State University, you can begin the process of applying for your visa to come to the U.S. Students who receive a Form I-20 can apply for a F-1 visa. Before you apply for a visa, you must first pay the I-901 SEVIS fee.

For information on how to apply for a visa and schedule your visa interview, visit SJSU's International Student and Scholar Services website and the US Department of State's webpage on student visas.

Step 4: Review several online resources to prepare for arrival

Visit the International Student and Scholar Services website for pre and post-arrival information.

The Welcome to California website also lists campus resources, as well as, local resources.

Step 5: Purchase health insurance and prepare immunization documents

All international students are required to purchase health insurance. Contact the International Student and Scholar Services office for questions regarding insurance. Please note, insurance holds are removed one or two days after purchase.

Please also review information regarding immunization requirements

Step 6: Register and pay for classes through your MySJSU account

You will be able to use your MySJSU account to view your assigned enrollment appointment dates for course registration. Note: All F-1 students must register for a full-time course load every semester. General information, including when registration is available can be viewed at the Office of the Registrar. The registration and semester calendar is a great resource as well.

Questions regarding registration?

Visit the Registrar's website or contact the Office of the Registrar

Paying for Classes

After you register for classes, check your MySJSU account for fees and due dates.

Note: You must first register for classes before paying fees.

The Bursar's Office is responsible for receiving tuition and fee payments. The Bursar's office also oversees international wire transfer information. Should you have any questions regarding payment please contact their office.

Step 7: Plan arrival date and arrange for housing in U.S.

Arrival Date

The earliest date you can arrive to the U.S. is 30 days before the Program Start (on Form I-20). Also, keep in mind the graduate student orientation date (viewable through NextSteps). Please plan your travel accordingly. If you are unable to arrive to the U.S. on or before this date, please contact the International Student and Scholar Services office immediately as this may affect your visa status.

Resources to book your flight and travel to SJSU:

Mineta San Jose International Airport

San Francisco International Airport

Oakland International Airport

Shuttle Service for both SFO and MSJ


Review SJSU housing options. Also, check out the International Student Advising Office tips about obtaining housing in San Jose at

Step 8: Get your SJSU Tower Card, Transportation Sticker, and Library Card

After you register, obtain your SJSU ID card or SJSU Tower Card and SJSU Library Card

Also, consider obtaining an Eco Pass if you are planning to use public transportation.

Step 9: Attend the University Graduate Student Orientation

Please refer to your NextSteps account to register for the university orientation and to find specifics about this special event.

Departments may offer their own department orientation. Please check your department's website for more details.

Step 10: Attend Global Spartan Welcome

International students arriving in the U.S. from abroad or transferring their SEVIS record from another school must attend the Global Spartan Welcome at SJSU hosted by the International Student and Scholar Services Office. The Global Spartan Welcome is designed just for international students, and covers immigration and cultural topics to help prepare new international students for their transition to university life in the U.S.

Step 11: Clear your Provisional Admission and TO-DO List:

If you were admitted pending submission of final documents, please submit outstanding documents by the posted due date on your MySJSU "To-Do List".

If you have any questions about submitting your MySJSU "To-Do List" outstanding items to the GAPE office, please contact our International Admission Evaluators

Step 12: Review Steps to Completing Your Master's Program and the Steps to Graduation brochure

It is never too early to prepare for your educational journey. Visit our Graduate Admissions and Program Evaluations website to review our Steps to Completing Your Master’s Program, our Steps to Graduation brochure, along with deadlines related to candidacy and graduation. The brochure offers great resources and tips for success throughout your education at SJSU.

For more information on what to expect as an international student at SJSU visit International Student and Scholar Services.


If you have any questions about your program, including transfer credit questions, please contact your Department Graduate Advisor and see the Graduate Catalog.

We look forward to welcoming you to SJSU!