Nonimmigrant Visas: Study & Exchange

The Embassy is not currently processing routine non-immigrant visitor visas (e.g., most B class visas).  However, we continue to provide all immigrant visa services and we can accommodate non-immigrant visa services for mission-critical and emergency cases, including for student and exchange visitor visas (F, M, or J class visas); employment-based visas (e.g., H and L class visas); diplomatic or official visas; and cases (including B class visas) that relate to repatriations, adoptions, family reunification, emergency and medical travel, or other situations of a sufficiently compelling nature. If you believe your case meets one of these criteria, please write to ConsularPortMoresby@state.gov.

 

The Student (F-1/M-1) Visa provides opportunities for qualified applicants to study at accredited postsecondary institutions in the United States. With thousands of academic programs, world-class institutions, and unmatched flexibility, the United States offers a wealth of higher-education opportunities. Visit the Department of State’s EducationUSA website to learn about educational opportunities for undergraduate and graduate study, opportunities for scholars, admissions, and more.

The Exchange Visitor (J-1) Visa program provides countless opportunities for international candidates looking to travel and gain experience in the United States. The multifaceted programs enable foreign nationals to come to the United States to teach, study, conduct research, demonstrate special skills or receive on the job training for periods ranging from a few weeks to several years. To learn more about exchange visitor visa programs, program sponsors, and more, please visit j1visa.state.gov.

Citizens of Visa Waiver Program (VWP) participating countries who intend to study cannot travel on the VWP or on visitor (B) visas, except to undertake recreational study as part of a tourist visit. Students must travel to the United States with student (F-1 or M-1) visas. For more information on the VWP, see Visa Waiver Program.

For short periods of recreational study, a Visitor (B) visa can be used. Enrollment in a short recreational course of study, which is not for credit toward a degree or academic certificate, is permitted on a visitor (B) visa. Learn more about Visitor Visas.

Study leading to a U.S. conferred degree or certificate is not permitted on a visitor (B) visa, even if it is for a short duration. For example, distance learning which requires a period of time on the institution’s U.S. campus requires an F-1 visa.

If you have any questions regarding any part of the U.S. visa process, please contact the Consular section at ConsularPortMoresby@state.gov.