List of Cheapest Tuition Universities in the USA for International Students

Studying the US is not as expensive as many people think. There are actually low tuition universities where tuition fees is quite affordable for international students. So if you really want to study in the US, do not allow some high tuition fees you have seen online discourage you, as we are going to list some cheap tuition universities in the US.

So if you are considering studying in the US, you can take a look at these low tuition universities for international students

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Below is the list of affordable U.S. universities in no particular order:

  • Brigham Young University
  • Arizona State University
  • University of Wyoming
  • Ohio University
  • Illinois State University
  • Grand Valley State University
  • University of Houston
  • University of Iowa
  • Stony Brook University
  • University of South Florida

How international students can get the best value living and studying in the U.S.

Looking at the universities on the above list, you may notice that they are not in big cities, nor are they among the particularly large schools or an Ivy league. As USA Today reported “These colleges may not be as large as nor as diverse as those on the east and west coasts, but many international students enjoy the slower pace and the truly welcoming community they find. Because the schools are situated in places in the country with a relatively lower cost-of-living, the education experience and associated cost tends to be much more affordable.”

Since colleges these schools are located in smaller communities, students find themselves immersed in an area full of other local and international counterparts, there is not only an easier adjustment period, it also tends to be far more cheaper.   

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Here are some things that  can potentially help make sure that your university experience is a bit more affordable:

  • Student dorms mostly offers all-inclusive facilities for students, eliminating the need to pay for expensive rent and other utilities
  • College towns tend to be smaller, student-oriented places and makes it easier to get around with a bicycle
  • Students often get discounts at local restaurants and cafes, just for the fact of being a student!
  • Foreign students tend to have the highest tuition requirements, however, many also get access to scholarships for studying in the U.S.
  • If you are a person who is bilingual, make sure to take advantage of the number of students who are seeking language tutors. Why not make some bucks with your language skills?

How to apply for F-1 student visa

Once you have been given admission, the next step is to apply for the US F-1 visa to enable you travel to USA and pursue your studies there as an international student. But before you start this process, there are steps you need to follow which will be outlined below:

Make payment of your SEVIS Fee and Receive your I-20

The moment you are accepted, you will be required to make payment for the SEVIS I-901 Fee in order for you to be enrolled in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). After that, your school will provide you with a Form called I-20. This is the form that will be presented to the consular officer whenever you attend your F-1 visa interview. If you have a spouse and/or children  and they plan to stay in the United States with you while you are studying, they will be expected to have individual Form I-20s, but they do not need to be enrolled in the SEVIS.

Complete Your Visa Application

Submitting an application for the F-1 student visa might vary depending on the U.S. embassy or consulate you are processing the visa with. You will be expected to pay a non-refundable visa application fee. There is also an online visa application available, that will allow you to complete and print the Form DS-160 to take to your F-1 visa interview.

Book an appointment and Prepare for your Interview

You can book or schedule your F-1 visa interview with the U.S. embassy or consulate. The waiting times for interview appointments might vary according to location, season, and visa category, so you should apply for your visa very early enough. An F-1 student visa for the USA can be issued up to 120 days in advance of your course of study start date. You will only be able to enter the US with an F-1 visa 30 days before your start date.

Documents that are needed for F-1 visa application

  • A valid international passport
  • The Nonimmigrant Visa Application, Form DS-160
  • The application fee payment receipt
  • A passport photo
  • A Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant (F-1) Student Status (Form 1-20)

More documents may be requested to prove your eligibility for the F-1 student visa, which may include the following; academic transcripts, diplomas, degrees, or certificates. Test scores such as the TOEFL, SAT, GRE, or GMAT may also be needed, as well as proof of your intent to depart the U.S. after your program is complete and proof of your financial stability.

Your F-1 Visa Interview

Your F-1 visa interview will determine if you are qualified to be issued with an F-1 student visa for the USA. Let’s assume that you have gathered all the appropriate documents and meet all of the F-1 visa requirements, your visa will be issued or approved at the discretion of the consular officer.

You may be expected to pay a visa issuance fee. Also, digital fingerprint scans will be taken for record purposes. Your passport will also be taken for stamping of your visa and you will be informed when you can get it back, either by pick-up or by mail.

Keep in remember that getting a US visa is not guaranteed. So do not make any final travel plans until you have your visa approved by the embassy. If your visa is refused, you will be given a reason based on the section of law which applies to your ineligibility. Filing a waiver of ineligibility is possible in some cases.