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Frequently Asked Questions

  • Getting Accepted to Texas State...

  • I have been accepted! What are my next steps?

    • Review all the requirements for admissions and look closely at your acceptance letter which will give you valuable instructions that you should follow. Also review all of the steps that have been put up on our Next Steps after being Admitted page.

    • If you are currently on an F-1 visa status at another US school or institution, it is important to inform your DSO at your current institution that you will need your SEVIS record transferred to Texas State University.

    • After you have been formally accepted to Texas State, you will be emailed instructions on how to request your I-20. In the email you will be informed to submit necessary documents through our online I-20 Request website.Please know whether you are an initial, transfer, change of status, or change of level student. Submitting the wrong form will cause a delay in your processing.

      After we have received all of your documents, we will process your I-20 request. Once your I-20 is ready, we will send you an email with instructions on how to acquire your I-20. We use to mail I-20s. If you are currently in the US, you can request to pick-up your I-20.

    • If there is a mistake on your I-20, notify International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) immediately.  You can e-mail or call 512-245-7966.  If the error is something that will cause problems at your Visa appointment or entry, the office will issue you a corrected I-20, otherwise, they may advise you to keep the I-20 and have it corrected at our office upon your arrival.

    • Registering for Classes:

      Before a new student registers for classes the first time, they are often required to meet with an Academic Advisor (undergraduate) or Faculty Advisor (graduate) first for direction on which classes they should register for.

      International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) cannot perform academic advising; it must be done by an Advisor in your academic department. Often times, new students are blocked from registering until they have had an appointment with an Advisor. Undergraduate students can identify which Advising Center to contact for your program by reviewing the website below and contacting the appropriate office to set up an appointment.

      Paying Tuition: 
      You cannot pay your tuition bill until after you have registered for courses. To pay your Tuition bill, you must log into the Student Business Services website (SBS) or the office in the J.C. Kellam Building (JCK).
      International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) does assist with paying your bill or take payment for classes; we cannot view your bill. All payments are through SBS:
    • You can travel into the U.S. no more than 30 days before the start date on your I-20. Because there are many things you may have to arrange upon arrival, such as: housing, advising, registration for classes, should come in at least one week before your classes begin. Additionally, you must attend the International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS)'s orientation which will be held sometime before the first week of classes and you should arrive at least in time for that.

    • International Resource Fair
      International Resource Fair is not mandatory, but the immigration Check-In is mandatory for all F-1 students. This Resource Fair is held by International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) at the beginning of the semester. The purpose of the Resource Fair is to provide new international students with information on:

      • maintaining their non-immigrant status
      • medical insurance
      • tax issues
      • employment
      • other issues related to international students

      Sign up for the mandatory Check-In

      Sign up for Resource Fair

      Remember to attend any other orientations that apply to you such as NSO for Undergrads and Graduate Orientation for Grads.

  • Once I arrive in Texas...

    • Review the information listed on the Next Steps page under Housing, or download the Housing Comparison Chart that our office has created for you. If you are living on-campus you may be able to get break housing, otherwise you should contact an apartment locator as soon as possible to start looking for nearby housing. 



    • You cannot get a Social Security Number (SSN) unless you have a job offer. You should not really need one to rent an apartment, although some apartment complexes say that you must. Many apartment complexes have worked with International Students before and will allow you to complete your application using other immigration documents that suffice to prove your identity instead of a SSN.

      If you are looking for a cell phone, you must find a company that does not require a SSN. Usually pay as you go, or services that allow you to pay monthly (such as Cricket, Simple Mobile, and Boost) do not require a SSN, but signing up for a service contract which lasts years (Sprint, AT&T, T-Mobile or Verizon) may require a SSN.


    • Our office cannot recommend the best phone service for International Students, but we can let you know that many International Students prefer using their own (GSM unlocked) phone from home, or buying an affordable phone with an Unlimited Plan from a provider who they pay monthly and can discontinue service with at any time.  Some providers of pay-month by month phone plans in San Marcos include: Simple Mobile, Cricket and Boost Mobile.

    • Most on-campus employment opportunities can be viewed in Jobs4Cats (Handshake).

      If you are a Graduate Student seeking a Graduate Assistantship to help you get In-state tuition, please refer to the Graduate College.

      As an F-1 student you are eligible for on campus without further approval from International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS). You may be eligible for off-campus work authorization, but only with approval from ISSS. Refer to the ISSS work authorization page for more information.