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How to Apply - International - More Information for Applicants

Here are more important details for international students who decide to apply for admission to SF State.

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SF State E-Mail Account

Admitted students will automatically have an SF State e-mail account generated for them. Information about your created account will be communicated to the email account submitted on your CSU Mentor application.

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Accept Admission Offer

Newly admitted students who plan to attend San Francisco State must accept their Admission Offer for the spring semester between November 1 - 20. For the fall semester between March 1 and May 1. Students admitted after the deadline have three weeks after their date of admission to accept their Admission Offer. To accept your Admission Offer please go to the SF State Gateway.

For more information, including frequently asked questions, go to Accept Admission Offer.

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International Student Financial Affidavit

For students who plan to enter the U.S. on an F-1 or J-1 student visa, certificates of eligibility (Form I-20 or DS-2019) for obtaining the visas cannot be issued until the student has proven ability to provide full financial support for the entire stay at SF State. A financial statement must show that the student has the cost of living and studying at SF State for two semesters in deposit at a financial institution in the U.S. or foreign country. The date on the financial statement must be no more than 12 months from the start of the application term. For fall semesters, financial statements must be dated no earlier than August of the previous year. The cost of living and studying at SF State for two semesters are shown on the costs section of this site.

Students who are studying at other U.S. institutions and have valid visas may be able to transfer to SF State without applying for a new visa, but they still need to submit a financial statement.

Proof of funding signed and dated by the financial institution's appropriate officer must be submitted with the SF State Financial Affidavit form available at www.sfsu.edu/~admisrec/forms/ugradforms/fs.pdf. The form may be submitted by fax, email attachment, or mail.


A sponsor is a person willing to financially support the student while he or she is studying at SF State. The sponsor must submit a letter indicating willingness to support the student, signed and dated by the sponsor, or sign and date the appropriate section on the SFSU Financial Statement form. In addition, the sponsor must submit her/his financial statement (see above) and attach it to the letter or form.

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Medical Health Insurance

International students must purchase the California State University (CSU) Insurance (except government-sponsored and employer-sponsored health plan) before enrolling in classes.

When you have purchased the CSU sponsored health insurance policy, it will be automatically reported to SF State Registrar's Office and your registration hold will be removed.

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All new and readmitted students born after Jan. 1, 1957 will need to show present proof of measles and rubella immunizations. Students younger than 18 must also present proof of immunization against hepatitis B. Submit a copy of immunization record with English translation, if needed, or use the MMR/Hep B certification form for your doctor/clinic to complete. Please submit by email attachment, mail or fax to:

San Francisco State University
Registrar's Office
1600 Holloway Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94132
FAX: 415-338-0588 E-mail: records@sfsu.edu

Failure to comply with this requirement will result in a registration hold that prevents you from enrolling in classes. San Francisco State University's Student Health Center has more information about immunization.

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International Transcript Assessment Service

SF State offers an international transcript assessment and evaluation service for prospective applicants. The transfer evaluation is meant to assist prospective applicants who have completed course work from overseas and plan to transfer to SF State to prepare by taking the appropriate courses at U.S. institutions they are currently attending. For more information go to: www.sfsu.edu/~admisrec/forms/ugradforms/AppointmentRequest.pdf.

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California Residency

To be eligible for California resident classification, an applicant must be either a U.S. citizen or permanent resident (Green Card holder) or have a visa that allows residency, and have maintained residency in California at least one year. F and J visa holders are not eligible for California residency. For more information regarding California residency, please visit www.sfsu.edu/future/apply/residency.html.

Under California law, nonresidents are required to pay nonresident tuition.

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Obtaining an F-1 Student Visa

Apply for a visa at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate in your home country using the Notice of Admissions and an I-20 form from SF State. If you have been accepted by several U.S. colleges or universities, do not apply for your F-1 student visa until you decide which institution you want to attend. Only use the SF State I-20 form to apply for a visa and enter the U.S. if you are planning to attend our university.

Please read the "Visa and Immigration Information" information in the "new students" section of the OIP Web page: oip.sfsu.edu/f1/new/home

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Financial Loans or Scholarships

There are scholarships available to continuing and currently enrolled international students at SF State. International students are not eligible for United States federal or state financial aid. For more information: oip.sfsu.edu/f1/current/financialassistance.

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Office of International Programs

The Office of International Programs (OIP) assists international students who would like to apply to SF State. Once a student is enrolled at SF State, OIP helps students adjust to life at the University and in the United States. The OIP offers orientation programs, workshops on important topics, and one-on-one counseling on immigration, academic, employment and financial matters.

OIP employs courteous, multilingual staff members who are sensitive to the needs and concerns of international students and eager to help make your stay enjoyable, comfortable and safe.

For further information, please visit the OIP web page or contact the OIP at (415) 338-1293 or oip@sfsu.edu. OIP is located in the Viliage at Centennial Square, Building C on the SF State main campus.

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Improving English Language Skills

The American Language Institute (ALI) on the SF State campus can provide you with the English skills necessary for academic success. You are encouraged to enroll in ALI if you haven't acquired the minimum TOEFL/IELTS score to be admitted to SF State or if you need assistance in improving your language skills. ALI programs are offered three times a year, beginning in February, June, and September. Instruction focuses on reading, writing, listening and comprehension. ALI issues certificates of eligibility (I-20) for F-1 student visas.

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